Women's Basketball Hosts California On Wednesday

Dec. 28, 2004

CORVALLIS, Ore. -

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WOMEN'S BASKETBALL LOOKS TO GET BACK ON TRACK AGAINST CALIFORNIA; BEAVERS AND BEARS SEARCH FOR FIRST PAC-10 WIN ON WEDNESDAY IN CORVALLIS

Wednesday, Dec. 29, 2004
California at OSU
7 p.m. PST, Corvallis, OR
(Gill Coliseum)

RADIO BROADCAST ON KTHH (990 AM)
THROUGHOUT THE STATE ON BEAVER SPORTS NETWORK

OREGON STATE BEAVERS (4-6 overall; 0-1 Pac-10)
G #24 Mandy Close, 5-11, Jr., (9.8 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 2.0 apg.)
G #33 Shannon Howell, 5-9, Sr., (20.4 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 3.3 apg)
F #12 Casey Bunn, 6-0, So., (5.6 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 1.4 apg.)
F #31 Anita Rivera, 6-0, Jr., (3.9 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 0.7 bpg.)
F #42 Kim Butler, 6-1, Jr., (10.6 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 1.2 bpg.)

CALIFORNIA GOLDEN BEARS (6-4 overall; 0-1 Pac-10)
G #3 Sarah Pool, 5-7, So., (4.4 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 5.1 apg.)
G #5 Kristin Iwanaga, 5-6, Sr., (11.8 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 2.7 apg)
F #15 Krista Foster, 6-1, Fr., (5.3 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 1.0 apg.)
F #22 Leigh Gregory, 6-0, Sr., (12.8 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 1.5 apg.)
C #23 Jessica Lawson, 6-3, Fr., (9.6 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 0.8 bpg.)

A GLANCE AT CALIFORNIA: University of California heads into Wednesday's game against Oregon State with a 6-4 overall record and 0-1 Pacific-10 Conference mark after dropping an 81-50 decision at Oregon on Dec. 27. The Golden Bears shot just 36-percent against the Ducks and Kiki Williams was the lone player to reach double figures in scoring with 15 points. Cal had won six straight - all in Berkeley - prior to the Pac-10 opener. Three different players are averaging double figures in scoring, led by senior Leigh Gregory's 12.8 points per game. Fellow senior Kristin Iwanaga is averaging 11.8 points per game, while Williams adds 10.5. Cal leads the conference with a .514 (57-for-111) 3-point field goal percentage. Every player on the team has dished out at least one assist on the season and the squad is averaging 16.2 dishes per game.

BEAVERS AND BEARS SERIES NUMBERS: Oregon State leads the all-time series with California, 27-20. The Beavers have won eight of the last 13 meetings. The squads have split the season series during the past two years. In her tenure as head coach at OSU, Judy Spoelstra has a record of 11-7 against Cal.

LAST TIME OUT AGAINST CALIFORNIA: University of California used an 18-2 run over the end of the first half and start of the second half to hustle past Oregon State, 66-57, on Feb. 26, 2003. OSU senior post Hollye Chapman finished with 17 points and a team-high eight rebounds. Shannon Howell added 17 points on 8-of-16 shooting, while Jessica Mellinger had a season-best six rebounds and Karen Vickery posted a career-high six points on 3-of-4 shooting. Brina Chaney became just the fifth player in Pac-10 history to record 200 career blocked shots after tallying five rejections in the game. Leigh Gregory's 18 points led the Cal attack that saw nine different players reach the scoring column. The Bears held a 50-42 advantage on the boards and both teams shot 36-percent from the floor.

STATISTICALLY SPEAKING: How Oregon State enters Wednesday's game stacked up statistically against California:

	                OSU	CALPoints per game	        65.7	70.3Points allowed per game	68.3	66.8Field goal percentage	42.5	45.53-pt field goal percent	30.2	51.4Free throw percentage	69.5	75.5Rebounds per game	        36.2	32.9Assists per game	        11.9	16.2Steals per game	         9.8	8.9

LOOKING BACK AT STANFORD: Oregon State was hampered by poor shooting as No. 5 ranked Stanford University rolled to an 83-45 victory in the Dec. 27 Pacific-10 Conference opener for both squads. The Beavers managed just 30-percent shooting in the contest compared to the Cardinal's 52-percent clip. OSU senior guard Shannon Howell, who entered the game leading the nation in scoring with 22.9 points per game, was held to a career-low two points on just 1-of-14 shooting. Junior guard Mandy Close led the Beavers in scoring with 13 points and matched her career-best with four steals, while junior post Kim Butler chipped in 10 points. Stanford had three players reach double figures in scoring with Brooke Smith's 18 points on 9-of-10 shooting leading everyone. Stanford held a 50-31 rebounding edge.

WHAT A DIFFERENCE AN OPPONENT MAKES: Oregon State entered Pacific-10 Conference action coming off a 29-point victory against University of the Pacific on Dec. 21. The Beavers topped the Tigers by a 72-43 margin, scoring 41 first half points. In Monday's game against No. 5 ranked Stanford, OSU managed just 45 total points, losing by a 38-point margin as the Cardinal recorded the 83-45 victory.

IT'S ALL ABOUT NUMBER FOUR: Four different Oregon State players have led the Beavers with four or more steals over the past four games. Shannon Howell (Florida), Anita Rivera (South Alabama), Casey Bunn (Pacific), and Mandy Close (Stanford) have exchanged the team lead in steals for the Beavers during the last four games.

BATTLE OF THE BOARDS: Oregon State is 0-4 on the season when the squad is out-rebounded by the opposition. In Monday's game against No. 5 Stanford, the Cardinal held a +19 rebounding margin (50-31) - the greatest against the Beavers on the season.

PLAYING BIG: Junior guard Mandy Close has reached double figures in scoring in three straight games. Close had 11 points at South Alabama, 12 points against Pacific, and 13 points against No. 5 Stanford on Monday. The 5-11 Bozeman, MT, native has reached double figures in scoring during five games on the season. She has also pulled down four or more rebounds in eight games on the year. Close ranks third on the team in scoring and rebounding on the season.

DID YOU KNOW: Oregon State has scored first in nine of the 10 games the Beavers have played this season.

HOWELL HIGHLIGHTS: Senior guard Shannon Howell finished with a season-high 36 points and career-high seven steals at University of Florida on Dec. 12. Howell has reached double figures in scoring in eight of Oregon State's 10 games this season and has scored 20-plus points on six occasions. She has now scored 20-plus points 13 times and has reached double figures in scoring in 23 of her 32 career games at Oregon State. The 5-9 All-America candidate scored a career-high 40 points at Washington (Jan. 17, 2004) and scored 32 points in her Oregon State debut at No. 9 ranked Stanford (Dec. 27, 2003).

PRESEASON PAC-10 POLLS: Oregon State was tabbed to finish in eighth place in the Pac-10 Preseason Media Poll and was picked to finish ninth in the Preseason Coaches Poll. Stanford was picked to repeat as conference champion in both polls. OSU has finished higher than selected in the preseason polls the past five seasons.

GAMETRACKER: The Oregon State athletics homepage - www.osubeavers.com - will feature Gametracker for every home regular season women's basketball game during the year. Gametracker allows fans to view up-to-the minute statistics for each contest.

TICKET PRICES: Gates open one-hour prior to tip-off for all women's basketball games.
Reserved seats: $8
General admission: $6
GA seniors (62 or older) and children (3-18): $4

HOME-SWEET-HOME: Oregon State has won at least eight games in Gill Coliseum during each of the last six seasons. The Beavers finished the 2003-04 season with a 9-5 record on Ralph Miller Court.

IN GILL: The Beavers have won 88 of their last 136 (.647) games played at Gill Coliseum. Over the last 11 seasons OSU is 103-51 in the friendly confines of Gill.

NON-CONFERENCE RECORD: Oregon State has an all-time non-conference record of 249-133 dating back to the 1976-77 season for a .652 percentage.

PACIFIC-10 CONFERENCE TOURNAMENT: The Pac-10 Conference plays host to the fourth annual State Farm Women's Basketball Tournament, March 4-7, 2005, at HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif. This year marks the third year the tournament has been held at that site. A total of nine games will be played, with the champion earning the conference's automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament. Arizona State won the inaugural tournament in 2002, while Stanford has won the last two.

ON THE BENCH: Mary Kincaid, a 14-year coaching veteran, was promoted from her position of operations director to assistant coach in September after the departure of Todd Corman. Heath Alexander enters his third year as assistant coach after being elevated in status with the departure of Corman, while Jualeah Woods, who holds the longest tenure on staff, returns for her fifth year at OSU and serves as the director of recruiting. Bruce Henderson joins the Beavers as director of operations, after serving the past six years as an assistant coach at Portland State University.

HEAD COACH Judy Spoelstra: Judy Spoelstra has a record of 131-141 while in her 10th season at the helm for Oregon State. Spoelstra has recorded a 229-209 overall record during her 16 seasons as a collegiate head coach, her first six being at Montana State. She picked up career win No. 200 against USC on Dec. 27, 2002. Spoelstra has led the Beavers to four consecutive postseason tournament appearances in the WNIT. At the conclusion of the 1999-00 season, Spoelstra was named Pacific-10 Conference Coach of the Year. In September of 2003, Spoelstra was inducted into the Montana State University Hall of Fame as part of the 1992-93 MSU women's basketball team that won the Big Sky Championship.

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