► What’s Happening This Weekend
Boise State University’s (15-12, 8-5 WAC) WAC title defense continues with the final two road games of the regular season when the Broncos travel to San Jose State University (2-25, 1-13 WAC) and the University of Hawai’i (6-20, 3-10 WAC). The week’s action begins with a 8:00 p.m. (Mountain) tip against the San Jose State Spartans Friday night in the SJSU Events Center at San Jose, Calif. The weekend will conclude with a Sunday night encounter with the Hawai’i Rainbow Wahine at 8:00 p.m. (Mountain) in the Stan Sheriff Center at Honolulu.
Following last weekend’s home split the Broncos find themselves in a three-way tie for third place with Idaho and Nevada two games back of leader Fresno State. With three games remaining in the regular season each game gains added importance as Boise State battles for its third consecutive title and seeding into next month’s WAC tournament in Reno, Nev.
► About The Broncos
The Broncos enter the week at 15-12 overall and 8-5 in WAC play, good for a third-place tie in the conference standings with Idaho and Nevada. Boise State looks to finish the regular season strong following a 2-2 split during their just completed four-game homestand. Most recently, the Broncos lost this past weekend to Utah State 65-61 before rallying to down Nevada 75-74 in a barn burner. Prior to that they split the previous weekend when they defeated San Jose State 58-53, Feb. 13, before losing to Fresno State 70-58 on Feb. 15. The Broncos completed their first road sweep of the year the weekend of Feb. 6-8 with victories at New Mexico State (79-77 ot) and at Louisiana Tech (66-61).
● The Man In Charge...
Gordy Presnell - The Broncos are in their fourth year under the leadership of head coach Gordy Presnell. To date, he has gone 78-44 while at Boise State and 474-171 in 22 seasons as a collegiate head coach. In competition versus San Jose State he has gone 5-3, while going 7-1 in games coached against Hawaii.
● As a Team...
Offensively - The Broncos have struggled scoring this season averaging 61.9 points per game (4th WAC) while shooting 36.7 percent (8th WAC) from the floor, 27 percent (9th WAC) from the 3-point arc, and 66.4 percent (6th WAC) from the free-throw line.
Defensively - Boise State is allowing 63.1 points per game (6th WAC) while opponents have shot 37.8 percent (3rd WAC) from the floor and 27.7 percent (2nd WAC) from the 3-point line. On the glass, Boise State is out rebounded by an average of 1.3 boards per game (6th WAC), 40.9 (3rd WAC) to 42.2 (9th WAC) rebounds.
● Who To Watch...
Marisa Stotler - The sophomore forward currently leads the team in scoring while coming in off the bench. She is averaging 9.6 points and a second-best 6.0 rebounds per game, 12th in the WAC on the glass. She has not played since injury during San Jose State game on Feb. 13.
Heather Pilcher - The freshman guard is second on the team in scoring at 8.7 points per game. The Lynwood, Calif., native has led the Broncos in scoring three times during league play.
Brittany Moore - The senior guard ranks third in scoring at 8.3 points per game. She missed the Idaho and Fresno State games because of injury but returned against Hawaii in a reserve role. She returned to the starting lineup at Nevada on Jan. 30. She has led team in scoring four times during league play including three of the last five contests.
Jamia Malone - The senior guard is fourth in scoring at 7.3 points while adding 3.3 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.2 steals per game. She has nine games in double-figure scoring.
Note: statistical rankings are for all games unless noted otherwise.
► Radio Broadcasts
Boise State Radio carries every regular season and postseason game on the air beginning with a 15 minute pregame show. Boise State assistant sports information director Doug Link is in his 11th year as the voice of Boise State Women’s Basketball providing the play-by-play for each broadcast. To tune into the action go to KBSU AM-730 in Boise, KEZJ AM-1450 in Twin Falls, and KBSK FM-89.9 in McCall.
► Games on the Internet
Fans can log on to BroncoSports.com and watch all home games. By becoming a Bronco Vision premium subscription member, Boise State fans will receive access to live games, past games, seasonal highlights, special features and interviews that can only be seen by paying the membership price of $9.95 per month or $69.95 per year. Bronco Vision members will need a high speed internet connection. Live stats can be found at BroncoSports.com to follow the game on game tracker. In addition, all games can be heard live on Boise State Radio’s website at http://radio.boisestate.edu/listenonline.html.
► Scouting Game 28 at San Jose State on Friday (2/27/09)
Game 28 features the second meeting of the year and in the last two weeks between Boise State and San Jose State. In the first encounter of 2009, the Broncos won a close 58-53 contest versus the Spartans in Boise on Feb. 13 to record their fourth straight victory against San Jose State. Last year Boise State won for the first time at San Jose State claiming a 78-51 victory over the Spartans in the Events Center. It was the last WAC arena for the Broncos to get a win in.
● The Spartans - San Jose State has been struggling this season entering Friday’s game with Boise State on a 12-game losing streak. On the year they are 2-25 overall and have a 1-13 record in conference action. They are coming off a rough weekend at home where they lost 87-69 to Louisiana Tech followed by a 64-50 defeat at the hands of New Mexico State.
● The Head Coach - San Jose State is in its second season under the direction of head coach Pam DeCosta. She currently owns a 5-53 record with the Spartans and a 50-119 overall collegiate head coaching mark. DeCosta is 0-3 versus the Broncos.
● As a Team - Entering this weekend, San Jose State possesses the WAC’s ninth ranked scoring offense averaging 52.4 points per game while shooting 35.9 percent (9th WAC) from the floor, 29.5 percent (5th WAC) from the arc, and 60.5 percent (8th WAC) from the foul line. Defensively they allow 70.7 points per game (9th WAC) while opponents have shot 44.7 percent (9th WAC) from the court and 34.6 percent (8th WAC) from behind the 3-point line. They are ninth in rebounding, averaging 32.2 boards per game while opponents grab 39.7 per game (6th WAC).
● Who to Watch - Junior guard Chasity Shavers, a former teammate of Boise State’s Jamia Malone at Tyler Junior College, leads the Spartans and is ranked 14th in the WAC for scoring at 10.3 points per game on the year. Following Shavers is senior Natalie White averaging 10.2 points and 3.9 rebounds each time out. White has had several solid performances against the Broncos over the years including a double-double on 13 points and 11 rebounds two weeks ago in Boise, Shavers missed the first meeting with injury.
● What’s Back From Last Year - The Spartans returned two starters and three letterwinners from last year’s 3-28 squad that went 1-15 in the WAC to place ninth.
● Conference Preseason Polls - The league’s coaches picked San Jose State to place eighth in this year’s WAC race, while the media selected them ninth.
● A Quick Look at the Series...
Friday’s game will be the 18 edition of the SJSU-Boise State series which the Spartans hold a 10-7 all-time advantage. However, the Broncos have won four straight over SJSU. San Jose State leads 10-5 in WAC regular season games and 6-1 in games played at San Jose. Boise State leads 5-3 in contests played at Boise and 2-0 on neutral site floors. Boise State completed a season sweep for the first time last year winning 78-51 on the road and 74-65 at home, the road victory was their first ever win in San Jose for the Broncos.
● The Last Time The Spartans and Broncos Met...
BOISE, Idaho (2/13/09) - Boise State held off a scrappy San Jose State team to claim a hard fought 58-53 Western Athletic Conference victory. The Broncos rallied from eight-points down in the first half to take an 11-point lead midway through the second. They then had to fight off a pesky Spartan rally attempt down the stretch to secure the five-point win.
The first period was a night mare for the Broncos who struggled to get shots to fall coupled with a spell where they turned the ball over four times resulting in a 11-2 Spartan run that gave them an eight-point advantage at 22-14 with 8:41 to play before halftime.
However, Boise State battled back to within one at the break, 30-29. Jamia Malone and Brittany Moore powered the Bronco rally by scoring eight and four points respectively as the home team out scored San Jose State 15-8 to close the half.
The second half started slow before the Broncos picked up their intensity. Down two points, 35-33, with 16:08 left, Boise State rolled off a 9-0 run to take a 42-35 lead with just under 13 minutes to play. The Broncos would never trail again in the contest.
After a 7-1 SJSU run cut the lead to three points, 42-39, the Broncos responded by stretching their advantage back out to a game-high 11 points at 52-41 with 7:23 showing on the clock.
The Spartans ran off a 10-2 run over the next five minutes to pull within three points, 54-51, with 2:10 remaining in the contest. However, Boise State held San Jose State at bay with two Marisa Stotler free throws and a Malone layup in the final minute and four seconds to defeat the Spartans by five 58-53.
Three Broncos scored double-points led by Stotler’s 14, followed by Moore with 13 and Malone’s 10, Melissa Rima added a team-best 10 rebounds. San Jose State was led by Natalie White with a double-double on 13 points and 11 rebounds, Kelly Blair matched White’s point total and was the only other Spartan in double-digit scoring.
► Scouting Game 29 at Hawai’i on Sunday (3/1/09)
Game 29 has Boise State on the islands for a Sunday evening encounter at the University of Hawai’i. This is also the second meeting of the year for these two schools with the Broncos defeating the Rainbow Wahine 70-61 in Boise on Jan. 12. Boise State has won six straight and the last two meetings in the Stan Sheriff Center at Honolulu where the Broncos are 2-5 all-time versus Hawai’i.
● The Rainbow Wahine - Hawai’i has also been struggling this season entering the week with a 6-20 overall mark and a 3-10 record in conference action good for eighth place. They are coming off back-to-back weeks where they played New Mexico State and Louisiana Tech twice going a combined 1-3 during the two series. They lost both games on the road 68-56 at La Tech and 69-57 at NMSU before hosting the pair last weekend, defeating New Mexico State 54-51 Friday then losing to the Lady Techsters 89-71 on Sunday.
● The Head Coach - Hawai’i is in it’s fifth season under head coach Jim Bolla who is currently on paid leave. Associate Coach Pat Charity is the acting head coach until the Bolla situation is resolved. She has gone 1-3 since taking over the program two weeks ago.
● As a Team - Entering this weekend, Hawai’i features the WAC’s eighth ranked scoring offense averaging 56.8 points per game while allowing 66 ppg (7th WAC). They have shot 39.5 percent (3rd WAC) from the court, 29.1 percent (7th WAC) from the arc, and 66.3 percent (4th WAC) from the foul line.
● Who to Watch - Sophomore Keisha Kanekoa leads Hawai’i averaging 11 points and 4.5 rebounds per game. Megan Tinnin is second on the team averaging 10 points and 4.8 rebounds. In the first Hawaii-Boise State encounter Kanekoa led four Wahine in double-figure points with 18, Tinnin added 11.
● What’s Back From Last Year - The Wahine returned two starters and seven letterwinners from last year’s 12-18 squad that went 6-10 in the WAC to place sixth.
● Conference Preseason Polls - The league’s coaches picked the Rainbow Wahine to place seventh in this year’s WAC race, while the media pegged them sixth.
● A Quick Look at the Series...
Sunday’s game between Boise State and Hawai’i will be the 18th edition of the all-time series in which the Rainbow Wahine hold a slim 9-8 lead. The series began when Boise State joined the WAC for the 2001-02 season. Hawai’i dominated the series in the early years winning eight of the first nine meetings. However, the Broncos have turned the momentum in their favor recently winning seven of the last eight encounters including six straight. Hawai’i holds a 5-2 advantage in games played in Honolulu. However, the Broncos have won two straight versus Hawaii on the islands.
● The Last Time The Rainbow Wahine and Broncos Met...
BOISE, Idaho (1/12/09) - The freshmen duo of Heather Pilcher and Courtney VanBrocklin combined for 31 points, 22 in the second half, as Boise State rallied from 11 down to defeat Hawaii 70-61. The Broncos exploded out of the gate to open the second period on a 30-10 run as they seized control of the game taking a 13-point lead with eight minutes to play.
In the opening 20 minutes Boise State struggled to get anything to fall for them as they shot 29 percent (9-31) from the floor, 10 percent (1-10) from the 3-point arc, and 66.7 percent (8-12) from the free-throw line. Meanwhile, Hawaii could not miss at one point finishing the half hitting 48 percent (12-25) from the court, 36.4 percent (4-11) from the 3-point line, and a perfect six-for-six from the foul line.
The second half saw a reversal of fortune in shooting the ball as Boise State came out fast. After Tara Hittle hit a short jumper for Hawaii to open the half and give the Wahine a nine-point advantage 20 seconds into the period, Boise State rolled off a 9-1 run that pulled the Broncos to within one, 37-36, with 15:54 to play.
Down 41-40 with 14:46 to go, Marisa Stotler hit the first of two back-to-back layups that gave the Broncos their first lead, 41-40, since a 2-0 advantage to open the game. Boise State would never trail again in the game as the Broncos pulled away.
By the time Hawaii could blink Boise State had opened the second half on a 30-10 run to claim a 13-point advantage, 57-44, with 8:12 remaining. VanBrocklin and Pilcher combined for 18 of the 30 points during the run with 10 and eight respectively. The Broncos took the largest lead of the game with 5:28 showing on the clock up 14 points at 65-51. Hawaii would get no closer than eight points which they accomplished three times down the stretch.
With the offense struggling early Boise State used defense to stay in the game and then take control. By the time the contest ended the Broncos had forced 23 turnovers resulting in a 31-to-seven advantage in points off turnovers.
Pilcher led Boise State with 16 points followed by VanBrocklin’s 15. Keisha Kanekoa led Hawai’i with 18 points followed by Megan Tinnin and Dita Liepkalne with 11 each, while Hittle added 10 points and 11 rebounds.