Basketball Travels To San Diego, Hosts South Dakota State
Dec. 6, 2004
Coming off a second-straight victory at home, the USC women's basketball team (3-2), under the leadership of first-year head coach Mark Trakh, looks to extend its win streak with a pair of games this Tuesday, Dec. 7, and Saturday, Dec. 11. The Women of Troy travel to San Diego (3-3) on Tuesday for a 7 p.m. match-up at the USD Jenny Craig Pavilion, then return to Los Angeles to host South Dakota State (5-2) at the Lyon Center at 4 p.m. on Saturday. Both games can be followed with Live Stats and Audio at www.usctrojans.com.
USC put together its first back-to-back victories of the season by defeating Loyola Marymount, 77-56, on Dec. 5, a week after getting past Harvard at home. Senior forward Rachel Woodward led the Women of Troy with 14 points and 11 rebounds for the team's first double-double of the season and the fifth of her career.
Busy Week Ahead
The game against Loyola Marymount on Dec. 6 kicked-off a three-game week in which the Women of Troy travel to face San Diego on Dec. 7 (just two days after playing LMU) and return home to host South Dakota State on Saturday, Dec. 11. To make it more difficult, USC began finals week last Wednesday, Dec. 8.
Women Of Troy Share Online Diary
This season, the Women of Troy will share their thoughts on the year through their online diary - The Trojan Chronicles. Each week a different student-athlete will contribute to the diary so check it out at www.usctrojans.com and find out more about the Women of Troy.
Featuring only three upperclassmen and 10 freshmen and sophomores, USC is in search of its first NCAA berth since 1997. The team will rely on a number of local standouts, including returning part-time starters Jamie Hagiya (Torrance, Calif.), Jamie Funn (Los Angeles, Calif.) and Eshaya Murphy (Van Nuys, Calif.). The three sophomores earned Pac-10 All-Freshman honorable mention honors in 2004.
Meghan Gnekow, a junior guard from Santa Ynez, Calif., is the only full-time starter on the roster. She averaged 7.9 points and 5.5 rebounds last season.
The Trojans also boast a heralded recruiting class that includes local standout guards Brynn Cameron of Newbury Park (Calif.) High and Camille LeNoir of Harbor City's Narbonne High, as well as point guard Jazlyn Davis (Toledo, Ohio) and forward Símone Jelks (South Euclid, Ohio).
Loyola Marymount Game Recap
Rachel Woodward put together a double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds as USC defeated Loyola Marymount, 77-56, on Dec. 5. Woodward's double-double marked the first for the Women of Troy this season and the fifth of her career. Jamie Funn and Eshaya Murphy also finished in double figures with 13 and 12 points, respectively. Chloé Kerr matched Woodward with 11 rebounds of her own, far surpassing her former career-high of four. The match-up began close but several USC runs throughout the game, including an 18-2 run in the second half that put them up 58-35 at the 10-minute mark, helped the Women of Troy distance themselves to a comfortable lead throughout the second half. USC led by as much as 23 points on several occasions in the second half before finalizing the 21-point victory. Following two tie scores and four lead changes at the start of the game, USC took the lead for good when Woodward hit two shots at the free throw line with 8:42 left on the clock. The Women of Troy entered halftime ahead 31-25.
Familiar Foes - Part II
For the second-consecutive week, first-year head coach Mark Trakh will face a very familiar opponent. Coming off a victory over West Coast Conference rival Loyola Marymount, Trakh's USC squad will face another WCC foe - San Diego - on Tuesday, Dec. 7. During his 11-year tenure at Pepperdine, Trakh compiled a 15-8 (.652) record against the Toreros.
New Kid On The Block
South Dakota State is the new kid on the block this season, playing for the first time on the Division I level. Over the last three years, SDSU enjoyed its share of success in Division II, winning the NCAA DII National Championship in 2003 and making three-straight Elite Eight appearances.
USC Coaching Comparisons
With the exception of Cheryl Miller, every head coach in USC women's basketball history has begun their tenure at 2-2, including Marci Cantrell (1977), two-time national champion head coach Linda Sharp (1978-89), Marianne Stanley (1990-93), Fred Williams (1996-97), Chris Gobrecht (1998-2004) and now Mark Trakh. Miller, who coached two seasons (1994-95), notched six straight wins to start her career. After the fifth game of the year, Trakh, Gobrecht and Sharp all improved to 3-2.
Freshman point guard Jazlyn Davis was cleared to practice on Nov. 27 after sitting out for six weeks with a fractured left foot, which she suffered on Oct. 16. BUT, during her first practice back she suffered a broken right ankle and is not expected to return to the team until February.
Freshman forward Simone Jelks fractured her right hand on Nov. 14 and remains sidelined indefinitely.
Five Opponents Ranked In Top 25
USC's schedule features five opponents ranked in the Associated Press Top 25, including current No. 2 Stanford (Jan. 22 and Feb. 18), No. 7 Notre Dame (L, 60-56, Nov. 26), No. 15 DePaul (L, 77-99, on Nov. 20), No. 18 UCLA (Dec. 28 and Feb. 26) and No. 24 Arizona (Jan. 14 and Feb. 12).
Strength Of Schedule
According to the WBCA/Summerville Preseason Strength of Schedule rankings, USC's schedule is rated No. 66 overall and No. 73 for nonconference games.
Team News N' Notes
With a win over UMass on Nov. 19, head coach Mark Trakh notched his 200th career victory.
Player News N' Notes
Brynn Cameron hit four three-pointers against Harvard on Nov. 28 - a mark which ties for ninth among USC game records.
Rachel Woodward notched the team's first double-double of the season with 14 points and 11 rebounds against Loyola Marymount on Dec. 5.
San Diego -- The Toreros (3-3) return home this week after playing their last three consecutive games (and four of six games overall) on the road. San Diego fell at Long Beach State, 80-69, on Nov. 30, defeated UC Riverside, 73-53, on Dec. 3, and fell at Fresno State, 68-43, on Dec. 5. Freshman center Amber Sprague currently leads the team in scoring with 15.0 points per game, in addition to a team-best 2.0 steals per game. Fellow sophomore center Sabine Loewe averages a team-best 5.2 boards per outing and redshirt junior guard Polly Dong leads with 2.0 assist per game.
Head coach Kathy Marpe, who is currently in her 25th season at the helm of the Toreros' program, returned nine letterwinners and three starters from last year's squad. San Diego went 7-22 overall in 2004 and 1-13 in the West Coast Conference to finish in eighth place.
USC-San Diego Series Record -- USC is 2-0 all-time against San Diego. The teams recently began the series during the 2001 season. The Women of Troy defeated the Toreros on the road, 7-56, in 2001, and at home, 82-65, last year.
Team ComparisonsTeam Ppg Margin FG% 3-FG% FT% Rpg Apg TOpg Spg BpgUSC 67.6 +3.2 38.8 26.6 65..6 38.6 11.4 19.6 12.6 2.4San Diego 61.3 -4.2 42.0 38.8 72.5 34.0 15.0 20.7 9.2 3.3
San Diego Probable StartersNo. Name Pos. Ht. ppg rpg apg spg21 Amber Sprague Forward 6-5 15.0 4.7 0.7 2.04 Sabine Loewe Center 6-4 9.3 5.2 1.0 0.53 Ashley Voisinet Guard 5-10 0.7 2.0 1.5 0.85 Tiara Harris Guard 5-10 8.3 4.8 2.0 1.824 Amanda Rego Guard 5-10 7.5 4.8 3.0 1.3
South Dakota State -- The Jackrabbitts are 5-2 heading into this week and will face Texas State on Dec. 6 before traveling to Los Angeles. In its first season at the Division I level, South Dakota State has already enjoyed great success. The team's only two losses have been against Rutgers, 68-50, on Nov. 25, and Oregon State, 68-65, on Nov. 27. They have defeated teams such as Kentucky, 57-55, on Nov. 26 and Northern Illinois, 67-42, on Dec. 4. Senior forward/center Shannon Schlagel and sophomore guard/forward Megan Vogel are both averaging double figures in scoring with 15.4 and 12.1 points per game, respectively. Schlagel also leads the team on the boards with 6.6 rebounds per game and Vogel averages a team-best 2.6 assists per outing.
Under fifth-year head coach Asron Johnston, South Dakota State has embarked on its first season at the NCAA Division I level. In Division II, the Jackrabbitts captured the NCAA DII National Championship in 2003 and are coming off three-straight Elite Eight appearances. The team returned 10 letterwinners and three starters from the 2004 squad which posted a 26-7 overall record and 11-3 mark in the North Central Conference to tie for first place.
USC-SDSU Series Record -- Saturday's game will be the first-ever meeting between USC and South Dakota State.
Team ComparisonsTeam Ppg Margin FG% 3-FG% FT% Rpg Apg TOpg Spg BpgUSC 67.6 +3.2 38.8 26.6 65..6 38.6 11.4 19.6 12.6 2.4SDSU 70.1 +14.7 41.8 33.1 72.1 40.9 13.3 17.9 11.0 2.0
South Dakota State Probable StartersNo. Name Pos. Ht. ppg rpg apg spg32 Megan Vogel Forward 5-11 12.1 5.1 2.6 1.642 Shannon Schlagel Forward 6-0 15.4 6.6 1.0 1.452 Sarita DeBoer Center 6-2 8.4 5.0 1.4 1.720 Heather Sieler Guard 5-7 6.9 2.9 2.4 1.730 Brooke Dickmeyer Guard 5-10 8.1 5.4 2.0 1.1