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Texas Two-Step Up Next For Women's Hoops

Dec. 29, 2006

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IN A NUTSHELL: The University of San Diego women's basketball team (10-2) will take on the Texas Longhorns in the championship game of the Surf N Slam Tournament on Saturday at 8 p.m. inside the friendly confines of the Jenny Craig Pavilion.

SCOUTING THE LONGHORNS: Texas enters the game a 9-3 overall record after squeaking out a one point win over Oregon State University on Thursday evening. This will be the first meeting in program history between the two schools in the sport of women's basketball. The Longhorns are led offensively by Tiffany Jackson, who has a team-leading 19.4 points per game average. The only other Texas player averaging double figures is Erika Arriaran, who is averaging 10.8 points per game. The Longhorns are under the direction of 31st-year head coach Jody Conradt. During her tenure in Austin, Conradt has posted a overall record of 774-224.

REGO HAS CAREER NIGHT: Junior point guard Amanda Rego continued her impressive start to the season as she nearly notched not only a triple double, but a quadruple double as well. Rego fell just one point shy of a triple double, and three rebounds shy of a quadruple double. She finished the game with 10 steals, setting a new USD and tournament single-game record and she dished out 13 assists, tying herself for second in single-game assists at USD. With the 10 steals and 13 assists, she notched her team-leading fourth double-double of the season. With the 13 assists, Rego has now moved into ninth all-time at USD in career-assists and she is just seven assists shy of cracking the top-10 for single-season assists.

LAST TIME OUT: Junior point guard Amanda Rego fell just one point shy of a triple double, and three rebounds shy of having a quadruple double to help lead the University of San Diego women's basketball team to a exciting 76-53 win over the College of Holy Cross in the opening game of the Surf N Slam Tournament Thursday evening at the Jenny Craig Pavilion. Rego recorded her fourth double-double of the season as the San Diego native did it the unconventional way. She dished out 13 assists to tie herself for second at USD in single-game assists, and set a new program and tournament record for single-game steals with 10. She also had nine points to go along with seven rebounds and only committed two turnovers. Amber Sprague led all scorers with 16 points, while Kelly Winther was the second Torero in double figures with 15 points on 7-of-14 shooting. Senior center Sabine Loewe was the third Torero in double figures with 13 points on 6-of-7 shooting and freshman forward Morgan Henderson was the final Torero in double-digits with 11 points, just one shy of her career high. As a team, USD out rebounded the Crusaders 33-26, shot 53 percent from the floor and held HC to 42 percent shooting from the floor. With the win, San Diego now improves to 10-2 overall for the best start in program history and have surpassed their win total of last season. With the loss, Holy Cross falls to 5-7 overall. In the opening minutes of the game USD jumped out to a 6-2 lead, but some of the rust from a week off began to show as Holy Cross exploded on a 10-0 run, sparked by a Bethany O'Dell three pointer and capped by a Kaitlin Foley lay-up. Winther then took back five points for the Toreros as she hit a jumper followed by a three pointer on back-to-back possessions, but the Crusaders continued their torrid shooting, responding with a 6-0 run to take a seven-point lead at 18-11 with 8:12 remaining in the first frame. San Diego then shook off the rust of a week off as Henderson ended the Crusaders run with a drop-step lay-up off an entry pass from Rego. Then after a Sprague jumper, Sprague showed off her defensive skills recording a steal from Brittany Kiel and USD turned that into two points on a Winther jumper. All of this ignited a 21-6 run to close out the half and give USD a 32-24 lead going into the break. In the second half, USD quickly increased their lead to 10 at 36-26 on a pair of Sprague free throws, but Holy Cross refused to go away. With the score at 38-38, the Crusaders cut the lead in half with a 5-0 spurt, but USD would respond and push the lead back to double digits after the Holy Cross coach committed a technical foul and Henderson hit four consecutive free throws to push the score to 49-36. USD never looked back as they cruised their way to a 23-point win. For the Crusaders, Kaitlin Foley was the lone player in double figures as she scored 16 points on 6-of-8 shooting.

LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION: All USD home games, as well as select road games, will be streamed live via video on the athletics department website. Fans can watch all the action live from the comfort of their home by logging onto usdtoreros.com. Once on the home page, click the LIVE button on the top right of the page. Two former USD basketball standouts Paula Bott (play-by-play) and Susie Erpelding (color) will bring you all the action. The pair not only set USD records on the court but both earned the West Coast Conference Female Scholar Athlete of the Year award, the only two student-athletes in USD women's basketball history to receive such honors. This is a subscription service that will give you access to live video events of USD athletic teams, coaching interviews and much more. The cost for this service will be $6.95 per month or a yearly subscription can be purchased for $49.95.

THE FRESHMAN WITH THE HEADBAND IS BACK: Freshman forward Morgan Henderson returned to the spotlight on in Thursday's win over Holy Cross. She recorded her fourth double digit game of the season with her 11 points. But it wasn't only the points that stood out. Henderson was playing fundamentally sound basketball. She ended a 6-0 HC run with a text book drop step lay-up, which sparked USD's 21-6 run at the end of the first period, Henderson then was attacking the glass, following her own shots and tipping out the ball to a team mate so USD was assured possession. Henderson also wasn't afraid to take a charge, as she stood up to every offensive player the Crusaders threw at her and her sound defense was huge in helping USD win the game. Henderson's play off the ball was more impressive then the stat sheets will show anyone.

ABOUT THE RECORD: San Diego improved to 10-2 on the season with the win over Holy Cross. With the win, USD is off to the best start in program history surpassing that of the 1989-90 team that opened up 9-3 through 12 games. The 10 wins also surpassed the win total of last season.

LOEWE GETTING IT DONE: Senior Sabine Loewe continues to impress all who watch her this season. Loewe is the team's third leading scorer with a 10.3 ppg average. In Thursday's win over Holy Cross, the Germany native dropped in 13 points on 6-of-7 shooting. On the season, Loewe is shooting an astonishing .573 from the floor to lead all in the WCC.

SPRAGUE LEADING SCORER, AGAIN: Sophomore forward Amber Sprague led the Toreros in scoring for the third consecutive game and for the seventh time this season with her game-high 16 points over Holy Cross on Thursday. On the season, Sprague is the team's leading scorer with a 15.2 ppg average. Sprague also not only leads the team, but leads the WCC in rebounds per game at 8.2. Sprague, who was named the WCC Player of the Month for November, is making a case for the December Player of the Month as well as the San Diego native is averaging 13.7 points per game and 7.7 boards a game.

GOING STREAKING: San Diego is in the midst of a four-game win streak. USD began the season with six straight and the Toreros could push the streak to five with a win over Texas.

MORGENSTERN AND CARLSON TO REDSHIRT: San Diego freshman guard Hannah Morgenstern will redshirt the 2006-07 season after injuring her ACL. Morgenstern scored three points in a win against Cal State Northridge, and has made two more appearances this season. Erica Carlson, a 6-4 center from Tucson, Ariz., as yet to appear in a game for the Toreros this season and will make her Torero debut in the 2007-08 season as she recorvers from a shoulder injury.

MEET THE COACH: Head coach Cindy Fisher is entering her second season at the helm of the Toreros program. She was named the program's third head coach on April 19, 2005 after taking over for Kathy Marpe, who stepped down after directing the program for 25 years in 2005. During her first season at USD, the Toreros showed remarkable improvement and were close in majority of their games. The Toreros did record a huge 15 point win over Santa Clara on the road and were close in games against Georgia Tech, Boise State and against Loyola Marymount in the first round of the WCC Championship Tournament. Fisher also helped guide Tiara Harris to a All-WCC selection and Kelly Winther to a All-WCC Freshman team selection. At Wyoming, Fisher's Cowgirl teams showed improvement in each of her five seasons, culminating with an 18-12 mark during the 2002-03 season. The 18 wins were the school's most victories since 1989-90. She also led the Cowgirls to their first postseason appearance since 1989-90 with a trip to the 2003 WNIT, where Wyoming notched a first-round win over Montana before falling in the second round.

GAMETRACKER AVAILABLE: All San Diego women's basketball home games can be followed via Gametracker on the Toreros athletic web site at www.usdtoreros.com. Gametracker is a service of Online College Sports, the official web provider for San Diego athletics, and is a real time update of the action. Selected San Diego road games are also available via Gametracker. To see if Gametracker is available for a game go to San Diego Events at the top-right of the home page. If Gametracker is available there will be a Gametracker link.

TOREROS TABBED SIXTH IN WCC PRESEASON COACHES POLL: The University of San Diego women's basketball team was tabbed to finish sixth in the 2006-07 West Coast Conference preseason poll, as selected by the conference coaches. Loyola Marymount and Pepperdine were chosen as the favorites to claim the WCC women's basketball title with Gonzaga rounding out the top three. Santa Clara checked in at No. 4, Saint Mary's was selected fifth and the Toreros check in at No. 6. Rounding out the conferacne are San Francisco, who was picked seventh, and Portland was picked eighth, respectfully.

WOMEN'S BASKETBALL NOW A TICKETED SPORT: All USD women's basketball home games are now a ticketed event, effective at the start of the 2006-07 season. General Admission tickets will be available to the general public on the day of each game. USD faculty, staff, and student tickets will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. General admission tickets are $5 per person.