Women's Basketball Faces USC On Tuesday

Jan. 3, 2005


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Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2005
1 p.m. PST, Los Angeles, CA
(Lyon Center)


OREGON STATE BEAVERS (4-8 overall; 0-3 Pac-10)
G #14 Jessica Mellinger, 5-8, Sr., (1.7 ppg, 1.0 rpg, 1.6 apg.)
G #33 Shannon Howell, 5-9, Sr., (17.7 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 3.2 apg)
F #3 Tiffany Ducker, 6-1, Fr., (4.8 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 1.2 bpg.)
F #12 Casey Bunn, 6-0, So., (5.9 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 1.3 apg.)
F #31 Anita Rivera, 6-0, Jr., (4.2 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 0.7 apg.)

USC WOMEN OF TROY (7-4 overall; 1-1 Pac-10)
G #2 Jamie Hagiya, 5-4, So., (5.5 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 3.2 apg.)
G #11 Brynn Cameron, 5-10, Fr., (10.0 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 1.2 apg.)
F #5 Megan Gnekow, 5-11, Jr., (8.3 ppg, 5.9 rpg, 1.3 apg.)
F #33 Rachel Woodward, 6-1, Sr., (9.2 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 1.9 apg.)
F #44 Kim Gipson, 6-5, Sr., (5.3 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 0.7 apg.)

A GLANCE AT USC: University of Southern California enters Tuesday's game with a 7-4 overall record and 1-1 mark in the Pac-10. The Women of Troy knocked off University of Oregon by a 77-72 margin on Jan. 2. All 11 USC players that saw action in the game scored, and point guard Jamie Hagiya led the squad with 14 points on 4-of-5 shooting. Freshman guard Brynn Cameron is the lone USC player averaging double figures in scoring with 10.0 points per game. The balanced squad has six players averaging more than 7.3 points per outing. Five different players are averaging more than 4.2 rebounds per game, led by Meghan Gnekow's 5.9 clip. USC is averaging 68.5 points per game while holding the opposition to 64.4 points.

BEAVERS AND WOMEN OF TROY SERIES NUMBERS: USC leads the all-time series with Oregon State, 26-15, but the Beavers have won eight of the last 12 games. OSU head coach Judy Spoelstra has an all-time record of 10-9 against USC.

LAST TIME OUT AGAINST USC: Four players reached double figures in scoring as Oregon State used a big second half to knock off USC by a 73-66 margin on Jan. 29, 2004. Leilani Estavan had 14 second half points and the Beavers shot 58-percent from the floor to take control of the game. OSU seniors Estavan, Brina Chaney and Hollye Chapman combined to score 43 points. Estavan led the squad with 19 points on 8-of-14 shooting and dished out four assists, while Chaney finished with 12 points on 6-of-8 shooting. Chapman broke the 1,000 point scoring barrier with 12 points on 5-of-9 shooting. Mandy Close also reached double figures with 10 points. Ebony Hoffman led the Women of Troy with 19 points and seven rebounds. OSU held a 38-33 advantage at halftime and led by as many as 13 points with just under eight minutes remaining.

STATISTICALLY SPEAKING: How Oregon State enters Tuesday's game stacked up statistically with USC:

	                OSU	USCPoints per game	        64.4	68.5Points allowed per game	69.4	64.4Field goal percentage	40.7	38.63-pt field goal percent	27.6	32.6Free throw percentage	68.7	66.0Rebounds per game	        38.2	38.3Assists per game	        12.0	13.7Steals per game	         9.3	12.5

LOOKING BACK AT No. 23 UCLA: No. 23 ranked UCLA rolled to a 73-45 victory against Oregon State on Jan. 2. The Beavers struggled shooting from the start and the Bruins took a 27-18 lead into the locker room. OSU managed just 1-for-23 shooting from 3-point range in the game and hit only 27-percent from the floor, while UCLA shot 39-percent. Freshman Tiffany Ducker led the Beavers with eight points and eight rebounds. Ebony Young added seven points and two assists. Junior guard Mandy Close was forced to leave the game late in the second half after suffering a concussion. The Bruins had three players reach double figures in scoring led by Noelle Quinn's 20 points, 12 rebounds, and eight steals.

INJURY UPDATE: Junior guard Mandy Close will miss Tuesday's game against USC after suffering a concussion when she was inadvertently kicked in the head at UCLA. Junior post Kim Butler sprained her ankle on Dec. 31 and played limited minutes against UCLA on Jan. 2. Sophomore guard Melanie Casey did not make the trip to Los Angeles after spraining her ankle in practice on Jan. 1.

ROUGH START: The last time Oregon State dropped three straight games at the start of Pacific-10 Conference action was during the 1997-98 campaign. OSU opened the conference skein with losses to Stanford, California and UCLA. The Beavers picked up their first Pac-10 win with a 57-52 victory against USC on Jan. 10, 1998.

DEFENSE WINS GAMES: Oregon State is 0-8 on the season when allowing its opponent to score 70 or more points. The Beavers have scored 70-plus in seven of their first 12 games on the year, but just two of those games have been victories.

BE UP AT THE BREAK: Oregon State is 0-7 on the year when trailing at the half. The Beavers are out-scoring their opponent 389-378 in the opening half of action, but have been outscored 455-384 in the second 20 minutes.

BIG LOSS: Junior guard Mandy Close will be forced to miss Tuesday's game at USC after suffering a concussion against No. 23 ranked UCLA on Jan. 2. Prior to the UCLA contest, Close had reached double figures in scoring in four straight games. Close leads the Beavers with 12.7 points and 2.0 steals per game during conference action. The 5-11 Bozeman, MT, native has reached double figures in scoring during six games on the season. She has also pulled down four or more rebounds 10 times on the year. After 11 games, Close ranks second on the team in scoring (10.3 ppg) and third in rebounding (4.2 rpg).

STREAK STOPPED: Junior guard Mandy Close will be forced to miss the first game of her career on Tuesday while recovering from a concussion suffered against No. 23 ranked UCLA. Close had played in 74 consecutive games for the Beavers - the longest active streak on the squad.

T-DUCK: Freshman post Tiffany Ducker led Oregon State in scoring with eight points and eight rebounds against No. 23 ranked UCLA on Jan. 2. Ducker is averaging 8.5 points and a team-high 8.5 rebounds over the past two games for the Beavers. The 6-1 forward leads the Beavers in field goal percentage with a .548 (23-for-42) clip on the year and has a team-best 14 blocked shots.

OUCH: Senior guard Shannon Howell entered Pacific-10 Conference action as the leading scorer in the nation with 22.4 points per game. Howell is shooting just 5-for-40 (.125) after three Pac-10 games. The 5-9 guard is averaging only 3.3 points per game during conference play, but 17.7 points per outing on the season.

IT'S NOT JUST SCORING: Senior guard Shannon Howell matched her season-best with five rebounds at No. 23 ranked UCLA and tied for the team-lead in assists with two against the Bruins on Jan. 2.

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 12 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 34 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.

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 137 (.642) games played at Gill Coliseum. Over the last 11 seasons OSU is 103-52 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 131-143 while in her 10th season at the helm for Oregon State. Spoelstra has recorded a 229-211 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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