Cougar Women Take On No. 11 California

Dec. 29, 2007

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FIRST GLANCE: The Washington State women's basketball team (3-9 overall, 0-1 Pacific-10 Conference) continues its first road trip of the Pac-10 season, taking on No. 11 California (10-2, 1-0 Pac-10), Sunday. The Cougars and Golden Bears will tip-off at 2 p.m. at the Haas Pavilion in Berkeley, Calif.

THE COUGARS: WSU is led by junior guard Katie Appleton, who entered this week ranked seventh in the conference in scoring. She is currently averaging 12.8 points per game. Appleton also entered this week ranked first in the conference in steals and fourth in the conference in 3-point field goal percentage. She currently averages 2.58 steals per game and is hitting 43.2-percent of 3-point attempts. She also leads the team in rebounding; pulling down 4.9 boards per game.

Sophomore guard Colleen Betteridge is averaging a team-best 2.58 assists per game.

LAST TIME OUT: The Washington State women's basketball team faced a tough challenge in their Pacific-10 Conference opener Friday, falling 105-47 to Stanford, the nation's second-ranked team. WSU was led by sophomore guard Alexa Price, who scored nine points on three 3-point baskets. Junior forward Heather Molzen added eight points. Junior center Ebonee Coates' two first-half blocked shots moved her into sole possession of fifth place on the WSU all-time list for career blocks with 60.

SCOUTING CALIFORNIA: The Golden Bears, who achieved their highest ranking in school history this last week at No. 11, boast two of the Pac-10's top scorers - Ashley Walker is third in the conference at 17.7 points per game, and Alexis Gray-Lawson is 10th with 12.5ppg. Walker also leads the league in rebounding (10.1 per game) and is second in blocks (1.75 per game). Gray-Lawson is second in the Pac-10 in 3-point shooting (.480).

California's Devanei Hampton, a State Farm/Wade Trophy, Naismith Trophy and Wooden Award candidate, has returned to the lineup after missing the season's first eight contests. Hampton has averaged 9.0 points and 4.7 rebounds in nearly 17 minutes of action per game since her return.

The Golden Bears defeated Washington 66-40 in their Pac-10 opener Friday. Their only two losses of the season have come to sixth-ranked Rutgers (56-51; Dec. 10) and 10th-ranked Baylor (69-56; Nov. 25).

THE SERIES: The Cougars trail in the all-time series 19-29 and have lost each of the last five contests. WSU's last victory against California came in 2005 (Jan. 27). That day the Cougars came back from being down by 10 points to post a 10-point victory (79-69) over the Golden Bears.

NEXT UP: After starting their Pacific-10 Conference season on the road the Cougars return home for a trio of conference games. WSU hosts Washington Jan. 4 (Friday), in its only game next week. The game with the Huskies is the inaugural 'Cougs Have Heart' women's basketball game to raise awareness for heart disease. The contest, slated to tip-off at 7 p.m., will also be broadcast live on Fox Sports Northwest. The Cougars will then play host to USC (Jan. 10) and UCLA (Jan. 12) to round out their conference home stand.

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