Women's Basketball Returns Home For A Pair

Jan. 23, 2001



Thursday January 25, 2001
UCLA at OSU - 7:05 p.m. PST, Corvallis, OR
(Gill Coliseum)

Saturday January 27, 2001
USC at OSU - 2 p.m. PST, Corvallis, OR
(Gill Coliseum)

OREGON STATE BEAVERS (10-5 overall, 2-3 Pac-10)
G #23 Syesha Thomas, 5-6, Sr., (6.0 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 3.1 apg.)
G #34 Felicia Ragland, 5-9, Jr., (17.5 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 2.1 apg.)
F #31 Nicole Funn, 6-0 So., (14.6 ppg, 7.4 rpg, 1.9 apg.)
F #42 Brina Chaney, 6-5, Fr. (5.1 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 0.6 apg.)
C #22 Ericka Cook, 6-3, Jr. (12.7 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 2.2 apg.)

UCLA BRUINS (3-13 overall, 2-3 Pac-10)
G #1 Natalie Nakase, 5-2, So., (4.0 ppg, 1.4 rpg, 4.3 apg.)
G #20 Michelle Greco, 5-9, Jr., (19.9 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 2.0 apg.)
F #4 Kristee Porter, 6-0, So., (9.9 ppg, 8.6 rpg, 0.3 apg.)
F #10 Whitney Jones, 5-10, Fr., (5.5 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 1.1 apg.)
C #32 Malika Leatham, 6-2, Jr., (7.2 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 0.4 apg.)

USC WOMEN OF TROY (6-9 overall, 1-4 Pac-10)
G #10 Jessica Cheeks, 5-9, Fr., (8.1 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 1.7 apg.)
G #23 Aisha Hollans, 5-10, Fr. (12.6 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 1.6 apg.)
F #22 Tashara Carter, 6-0, Sr., (8.0 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 2.7 apg.)
F #32 Ebony Hoffman, 6-2, Fr., (11.5 ppg, 7.3 rpg, 2.0 apg.)
C #13 Denise Woods, 6-3, Sr., (9.6 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 0.9 apg.)

A GLANCE AT THE BRUINS: UCLA brings a 3-13 record into Thursday's game at Oregon State. Despite the slow start, the Bruins have won two of their last three games including a 59-56 overtime upset victory against No. 19 Arizona last Saturday. UCLA's offense stems around junior Michelle Greco. Greco leads the team and Pac-10 Conference in scoring with an average of 19.9 points per game. The 5-9 guard averages nearly 36 minutes of playing time per outing and has attempted 292 field goals, almost triple that of the next closest UCLA player. Sophomore forward Kristee Porter is second on the team in scoring with 9.9 points per game and leads the squad with 8.6 rebounds per contest. Porter has seen action in nine games with six starts. The Bruins are the worst free throw shooting team (.593) in the conference and worst rebounding squad (-10.1). UCLA is 0-7 on the road this season.

THE SERIES WITH UCLA: The Bruins lead the all-time series with Oregon State 22-11. The squads split last season with UCLA picking up a 23-point win (83-60) in Pauley while the Beavers won by 20 (72-52) in Gill. In her tenure as head coach at OSU, Judy Spoelstra has a record of just 2-8 against UCLA.

BRUINS AND BEAVERS LAST SEASON: In last season's Gill Coliseum meeting between Oregon State and UCLA, the Beavers snapped an eight-game Bruin win-streak with a 72-52 victory. OSU went on a 28-7 run over the final nine minutes of the contest to cruise to the 20-point victory on senior night. Felicia Ragland finished the game with a double-double on 14 points and 10 rebounds. The 5-9 guard also had a game-high six steals and five assists.

A GLANCE AT THE WOMEN OF TROY: USC brings a 6-9 overall record and 1-4 Pac-10 mark into its Thursday night game against the University of Oregon before travelling to Corvallis Saturday. The Women of Troy knocked off No. 19 Arizona last Thursday, 81-67, to break a six-game losing streak but dropped their Saturday night contest against Arizona State, 66-59. In an interesting note, Southern Cal's scoring, rebounding and steal leaders are all first-year players. Aisha Hollans leads the squad in scoring with 12.6 points per game while Ebony Hoffman is the only other player to average double figures in scoring with 11.5 points per contest and leads the squad in rebounding with 7.3 boards per game. Fellow rookie, Jessica Cheeks, is averaging 1.7 steals per game while senior Tashara Carter leads the team in assists with 2.7 per contest. Southern California averages 21.0 turnovers per game but its opponents average 23.1 miscues. So far this season, USC has not won a game outside the state of California.

THE SERIES WITH USC: The Women of Troy lead the all-time series with Oregon State 22-10. The Beavers have won three straight and five of the last six meetings in Corvallis. In her tenure as head coach at OSU, Judy Spoelstra has a record of 5-5 against Southern Cal.

TROJANS AND BEAVERS LAST SEASON: In last season's Gill Coliseum meeting between Oregon State and USC, the Beavers led from start to finish as they recorded the 73-66 victory. Nicole Funn had a big night for OSU, scoring a career-high 14 points on 6-of-7 shooting from the field.LOOKING BACK AT WASHINGTON STATE: Oregon State never trailed and pulled away in the second half to cruise to a 64-46 victory against Washington State last Thursday. Junior Felicia Ragland scored eight straight points including back-to-back 3-pointers to put the Beavers in front 50-30 with just over 12-minutes remaining and the Cougars would get no closer than 16 points for the rest of the night. Nicole Funn led all players with 17 points and eight rebounds while Ragland added 16 points, seven boards and three steals. Junior Ericka Cook reached double figures in scoring for the ninth consecutive game with 12 points and a team-high three assists. Freshman posts, Brina Chaney and Hollye Holbrook each played well for the Beavers. Chaney finished with eight points and six rebounds while Holbrook grabbed a career-high six boards.

LOOKING BACK AT WASHINGTON: Senior Megan Franza's off-balance 15-foot jumper with 4.5 seconds left on the clock lifted Washington past Oregon State, 69-67, last Saturday. UW led by as many as 14 points in the opening half but the Beavers sliced the lead to 35-30 heading into the locker room. OSU scored seven straight points to start the second frame and led by as many as 10 points. The Huskies slowly chipped away at the lead behind Franza's torrid shooting and Loree Payne's lay-up knotted the score 67-67 with 46 seconds remaining. OSU freshman Hollye Holbrook was called for a questionable player control foul on the ensuing possession which set-up Franza's game-winner. Four Beavers reached double figures in scoring on the night. Holbrook matched her career-high with 12 points on 6-of-8 shooting while teammates Nicole Funn and Felicia Ragland also added 12 points apiece. Ragland recorded her fourth double-double of the season with 10 rebounds while Funn grabbed nine boards. Junior Ericka Cook added 11 points on 4-of-5 shooting from the field. Franza finished with 28 points on 9-of-13 shooting from the floor including 4-of-6 from 3-point land.

BEAVERS FALL OUT OF POLL: Despite knocking off Washington State by 18 points and then losing on a last second shot at Washington, Oregon State dropped out of the Associated Press Top-25 women's basketball poll after garnering one vote last week. The Beavers received a season-high 25 votes in the Dec. 25 AP poll. Prior to this season Oregon State had not received votes in a national poll since the 1995-96 season, when OSU was ranked No. 22 in the final AP poll.

ONE, TWO: Thursday's game against UCLA will pit the top two scorers in the Pac-10 Conference. The Bruins' Michelle Greco leads the league with an average of 19.9 points per game while Oregon State's Felicia Ragland is second in the loop with 17.5 points per game.

FAST FACT: Oregon State has not picked up 11 wins prior to the month of February since the 1995-96 season and head coach Judy Spoelstra's inaugural campaign. Spoelstra's squad took a 12-4 record into the second month of the year, en route to earning the Beavers' most recent birth in the NCAA Tournament.

RECORD BOOK: Junior Ericka Cook has moved into 10th place in the Oregon State record book for career blocked shots. The 6-3 post's 54 swats surpassed head coach Judy Spoelstra's total of 47 to move into the Top-10.

REBOUNDING WATCH: Oregon State dominated the boards against Washington State last Thursday night, out-rebounding the Cougars, 45-34. The Beavers lost the battle of the boards against Washington however, 36-34, and pulled down only 10 offensive boards compared to the Huskies 16. On the season, OSU is out-rebounding its opponents 39.3-34.1 boards per game, ranking third in the Pac-10 Conference with a +5.2 rebounding margin. The Beavers continue to dominate the offensive glass, earning a 232-191 edge over their opponents.

INJURY UPDATE: Sophomore post Kristina Rukstelyte has missed the last four games after re-injuring her right knee in practice following the Pac-10 season opener against Oregon. Results of an MRI show that the Kaunas, Lithuania native, tore a piece of the meniscus as well as the anterior cruciate ligament that was repaired over the summer. Rukstelyte will be sidelined for an undetermined amount of time and her return to the Beaver lineup this season is questionable. Walk-on Marissa Nehl's status is also questionable, pending results after fainting in a recent practice.

RAGLAND RANKINGS: Junior guard Felicia Ragland recorded her fourth double-double of the season and ninth of her career, with 12 points and 10 rebounds last Saturday against Washington. Ragland was held below her second ranked Pac-10 Conference scoring average (17.5 ppg) in both games last week and was held without a 3-point field goal (0-2 at UW) for only the second time this season. The Tulare, CA native, has reached double figures in scoring in eight consecutive games and 14 of 15 games this season. The 5-9 guard has moved into sole possession of third place in Oregon State's record book for 3-point baskets made. Ragland has made 28-of-61 (.459) long balls this season and has a career total of 74 treys.

IT'S FUNN: Sophomore Nicole Funn ranks in the Top-5 in four different Pac-10 Conference statistical categories. Funn is second in the league in offensive rebounds (3.07), third in defensive rebounds (4.33), third in total rebounds (7.4), and fourth in scoring (14.6). The 6-0 guard's 7.4 rebounds per game leads Oregon State.

GOOD POINT: Freshman point guard Leilani Estavan leads the Beavers in assists with 52, for an average of 3.23 per game. The Palisades High School grad ranks second in the Pac-10 Conference with a 1.73 assist-turnover ratio. Estavan led all players with six assists against Washington State last Thursday and added four dishes against UW on Saturday.

FRESH FACES: Freshman posts Brina Chaney and Hollye Holbrook just completed their best weekend thus far in a Beaver uniform. Chaney knocked down 4-of-7 field goals for eight points and pulled down six rebounds against the Washington State last Thursday. Chaney also matched her career-high with three blocked shots against WSU and set a career mark with three steals in OSU's 18-point victory. Meanwhile, Holbrook recorded a career-high six rebounds against Washington State and had her first career blocked shot against the Cougars. Holbrook followed her top notch performance against Wazzu with a career-high 12 points on 6-of-8 shooting against Washington last Saturday.

COOK KEEPS STREAK ALIVE: Junior Ericka Cook has reached double figures in scoring during 10 consecutive games, the longest streak of any Beaver this season. The 6-3 post buried 4-of-5 shots from the field and finished with 11 points last Saturday against Washington. Cook had a career-high three steals at Washington State last Thursday, to go along with 12 points. The former North Medford High star, currently ranks 11th in the Pac-10 Conference with an average of 12.7 points per game.

HOME STREAK: The Beavers have won 53 of their last 82 (.646) games played at Gill Coliseum. Over the last eight seasons OSU is 70-34 in the friendly confines of Gill.

NON-CONFERENCE RECORD: Oregon State has an all-time non-conference record of 227-113 dating back to the 1976-77 season for a .668 percentage.

COACHING ADDITIONS: Oregon State has three new coaches on the sideline this season. Tony Newnan joins the Beavers after guiding the high-powered offense at the University of California-Santa Barbara and Stephanie Norman brings a wealth of experience to the staff after working as an assistant at Oregon from 1992-99. Jualeah Woods rounds out the staff, joining the Beavers after two seasons as an assistant at California, under her former coach, Marianne Stanley.

HEAD COACH JUDY SPOELSTRA: Judy Spoelstra has a record of 71-82 while in her sixth season at the helm for Oregon State. Spoelstra has recorded a 169-149 overall record while in her 12th season as a collegiate head coach, her first six being at Montana State. Spoelstra was named Pacific-10 Conference Coach of the Year at the conclusion of the 1999-2000 season.

BEAVERS ON THE RADIO: Join the voice of Beaver women's basketball, Jon Warren, as he calls the play-by-play for all of Oregon State's 2000-01 games. Every OSU women's game will be broadcast on the Internet on the Oregon State athletics home page - www.osubeavers.com. Thursday's game against UCLA will be broadcast solely over the Internet while Saturday's game against Washington can also be heard on the Beaver Sports Radio Network, through satellite affiliates.

BEAVERS ON TELEVISION: OSU will play six televised games this season on Fox Sports Northwest. The Beavers' Pacific-10 Conference season opener against Oregon on Jan. 5 will be broadcast on tape-delay, as well as the Jan. 18 game at Washington State, Jan. 20 at Washington and Feb. 17 vs. Washington State and Mar. 1 vs. Arizona. The Beavers can be seen Live on Jan. 13 against California.

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