Women's Basketball Looks For Weekend Sweep

Jan. 14, 2005

CORVALLIS, Ore. -

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WOMEN'S BASKETBALL SEARCHES FOR WEEKEND SWEEP; BEAVERS PLAY NATIONAL TELEVISED GAME AGAINST UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON ON SATURDAY AT 3 P.M.

Saturday, Jan. 15, 2005
Washington at OSU
3 p.m. PST, Corvallis, OR
(Gill Coliseum)

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

TELEVISION - FOX NATIONAL

OREGON STATE BEAVERS (5-10 overall; 1-5 Pac-10)
G #14 Jessica Mellinger, 5-8, Sr., (2.1 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 1.7 apg.)
G #21 Mandy Close, 5-11, Jr., (10.4 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 2.1 apg.)
G #33 Shannon Howell, 5-9, Sr., (18.9 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 3.5 apg)
F #12 Casey Bunn, 6-0, So., (5.1 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 1.2 apg.)
F #42 Kim Butler, 6-1, Jr., (10.5 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 1.0 bpg.)

WASHINGTON HUSKIES (6-11 overall; 2-5 Pac-10)
G #4 Emily Florence, 5-5, Fr., (3.4 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 1.6 apg.)
G #5 Cameo Hicks, 5-10, So., (8.4 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 1.7 apg.)
G #20 Kayla Burt, 5-11, Jr., (9.2 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 2.6 apg.)
F #1 Jill Bell, 6-0, So., (8.2 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 1.3 apg.)
F #33 Kristen O'Neill, 6-1, Jr., (9.4 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 1.9 apg.)

A GLANCE AT WASHINGTON: University of Washington enters Saturday's game against Oregon State with a 6-11 overall record and 2-5 record in Pac-10 games. The Huskies have lost four in a row, after dropping an 86-77 decision at University of Oregon on Thursday. Four Huskies reached double figures in scoring against the Ducks, led by Kayla Burt's 19 points. No UW player is averaging double figures in scoring, but six players are averaging more than seven points per game. Junior Kristen O'Neill leads the team with 9.4 points. Sophomore Jill Bell adds 8.2 points and a team-best 6.0 rebounds. As a team, UW is shooting just 36-percent from the field. The youthful Huskies have no seniors on their roster.

BEAVERS AND HUSKIES SERIES NUMBERS: Washington leads the all-time series with Oregon State, 36-22. The Huskies and Beavers have split the last two season series meetings, with both squads winning on its home court. UW has won 11 of the last 16 meetings. In her tenure as head coach at OSU, Judy Spoelstra has a 7-11 record against Washington.

LAST TIME OUT AGAINST WASHINGTON: Oregon State center Brina Chaney took control and led the Beavers to a 62-59 victory against University of Washington in Gill Coliseum on Feb. 12, 2004. The 6-5 senior led all players with 19 points on 7-of-10 shooting, pulled down eight rebounds and tallied a season-high six blocked shots, including a crucial game-saving block of UW All-American Giuliana Mendiola's field goal attempt in the closing seconds. UW jumped out to an early 7-0 lead but the Beavers battled back to eventually take a 31-30 advantage into the locker room. The evenly matched second half saw neither team lead by more than three points. OSU senior Leilani Estavan added 16 points on 5-of-9 shooting and dished out a season-high eight assists. The Los Angeles native became the first player in school history to record 1,000 points and 500 assists during her career. Estavan broke the 1,000-point scoring barrier with a 3-pointer to open the scoring for OSU. Four players reached double figures in scoring for Washington, led by Mendiola's 17 points. Cameo Hicks added 13 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. UW held a 25-11 offensive rebounding advantage, which kept the Huskies in the game despite shooting only 34-percent (26-of-77).

STATISTICALLY SPEAKING: How Oregon State enters Saturday's game stacked up statistically against Washington:

	                OSU	UWPoints per game	        64.3	64.8Points allowed per game	68.8	68.4Field goal percentage	40.8	35.53-pt field goal percent	28.8	30.5Free throw percentage	71.1 	66.6Rebounds per game	        37.5	37.9Assists per game	        12.3	13.8Steals per game	         9.1	10.2

TELEVISION TIME: Saturday's game between Oregon State and Washington will be televised nationally on FSN. Mary Murphy and Cara Capuano will provide the commentary. The Beavers are 1-2 on the season in games that have been televised.

TSUNAMI RELIEF FUND: Oregon State and G.I. Joes have teamed up to provide life-saving relief assistance across South Asia. Volunteers will be accepting donations at Saturday's game that will go directly to Northwest Medical Teams to help them deliver medical supplies to the stricken areas of South Asia. For every dollar contributed by Oregon State, G.I. Joes will match the contribution up to $20,000.

LOOKING BACK AT WASHINGTON STATE: Senior guard Shannon Howell led all players with 33 points, helping Oregon State roll to an 83-55 victory against Washington State on Jan. 13. The Beavers led from start to finish en route to their first Pacific-10 Conference victory of the season. WSU managed just two field goals over the final eight minutes of action as OSU extended its lead to 30 (80-50) with just 2:42 left. Cougar head coach Sherri Murrell was ejected from the game with 6:18 remaining. Howell hit 9-of-20 field goals and 12-of-13 free throws for her fourth career 30-plus scoring outing. The 5-9 All-America candidate also dished out five assists and amassed five steals. Junior guard Mandy Close added 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting. Kate Benz led a pair of Washington State players in double figures for scoring with 16 points and 14 rebounds. OSU shot 46-percent for the game, while holding WSU to just a 33-percent clip. The victory was the 12th straight for the Beavers against the Cougars.

LOOKING BACK AT OREGON: University of Oregon rolled to an 82-58 Civil War victory against Oregon State on Jan. 8 in Corvallis. The Ducks opened up a 38-25 halftime advantage and never looked back. The Beavers used a 9-2 run to open the second half and pull within six (40-34), but UO senior Cathrine Kraayeveld buried a 3-pointer from the top of the key that spurred a 16-2 Oregon run and eventual 34-9 streak over a 12-minute stretch. Mandy Close's jumper with just under 10 seconds to play saved the Beavers from suffering their worst loss in Civil War history. Oregon's 24-point margin of victory was its largest since a 25-point victory (72-47) on Feb. 7, 1986. Shannon Howell led all players with 19 points and matched her career-high with seven assists. Kim Butler added 15 points on 7-of-9 shooting for the Beavers. Oregon had four players reach double figures in scoring with Andrea Bills' 17 points and seven rebounds leading the way.

INJURY UPDATE: Sophomore guard Melanie Casey has missed four straight games and will not play against Washington after spraining her ankle in practice on Jan. 1. Junior post Brittney Brown is doubtful for Saturday's game against Washington after spraining her ankle in practice on Jan. 9.

EVERYONE'S INVOLVED: Oregon State has had 10 or more players reach the scoring column in four games on the season (Idaho State, Rutgers, Pacific, Washington State). Against WSU on Thursday, the Beavers had 10 players score, nine players pull down at least one rebound, and eight players dish out an assist.

PUTTING POINTS ON THE BOARD: Oregon State has scored 70 or more points in eight of its first 15 games on the season. The Beavers scored 70 or more nine times in last year's 32-game schedule.

DID YOU KNOW: Senior guard Shannon Howell has led the Beavers in both scoring and assists during eight games on the year. Howell leads the squad with 18.9 points and 3.5 assists per game.

FREE THROW PHENOM: Senior guard Shannon Howell is shooting a team-best .860 (74-for-86) from the free throw line on the season. In her two years at OSU, Howell has buried 170-of-206 free throw attempts for an .825 clip - the highest career free throw percentage in school history.

KEY THREE: The Oregon State trio of Shannon Howell, Kim Butler, and Mandy Close has combined to account for 62-percent of Oregon State's scoring offense. The trio combines to average 39.8 of Oregon State's 64.3 points per game. The three have also dished out a combined 91 assists, while the remaining 11 players that have seen action for the Beavers combine for 94 assists. Howell, Butler and Close are all averaging double figures in scoring, yet the trio has reached double figures in the same game on just one occasion - the season-opener at Idaho State University.

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. The Los Angeles native buried 9-of-20 shots and 12-of-13 free throws for 33 points against Washington State on Jan. 13. Howell also dished out five assists and had five steals against the Cougars. Howell has reached double figures in scoring in 11 of Oregon State's 15 games this season and has scored 20-plus points on seven occasions. She has now scored 20-plus points 14 times and has reached double figures in scoring in 26 of her 37 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).

FIRST HALF FEVER: Oregon State boasts a 4-1 record in games that the Beavers are leading at halftime. In contrast, OSU is 0-9 on the season when trailing at the break.

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.

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 89 of their last 139 (.640) games played at Gill Coliseum. Over the last 11 seasons OSU is 104-53 in the friendly confines of Gill.

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

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 132-145 while in her 10th season at the helm for Oregon State. Spoelstra has recorded a 230-213 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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