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Broncos Close Regular Season at La Tech and New Mexico State

GOBRONCOSDOTCOM
GOBRONCOSDOTCOM

GOBRONCOSDOTCOM
►  What’s Happening This Week
Boise State University’s women’s basketball team closes the regular season this weekend when the Broncos head to Louisiana Tech University and New Mexico State University. The action begins with a 6:00 p.m. (Mountain) tip Thursday night in Ruston, La., against the La Tech Lady Techsters. The final game of the week for the Broncos will begin at 3:00 p.m. (Mountain) on Saturday at New Mexico State in Las Cruces.    

►  The End to an Era
This weekend when the Broncos travel to La Tech and New Mexico State Boise State will begin to close a chapter in the program’s history. The last 10 years the Broncos have called the Western Athletic Conference home. On Saturday the game against the NMSU Aggies will mark Boise State’s final WAC regular-season game ever as the Broncos change their address and move into the Mountain West Conference next season. All that will remain for Boise State and the WAC after this weekend  will be next week’s conference tournament in Las Vegas, Nev.

►  Radio Schedule
All Bronco radio broadcasts are presented by Learfield Sports. Both games will be broadcast with Thursday’s contest being aired on KBSU (AM 730) starting at 5:45 p.m. (Mountain). Saturday’s game with be on KBOI (AM 670) starting with the pre-game show at 2:45 p.m. (Mountain). Jack Smith will call the action for both games.

►  Game 29 Preview - Boise State at La Tech: Thursday, March 3
The Broncos travel to Louisiana Tech this Thursday night for the first of two games this week. The two schools joined the league together 10 years ago in 2001-02, when the ball is tipped at 6:00 p.m. (Mountain) in the Thomas Assembly Center at Ruston, La., it will be for the last time as WAC rivals.

Boise State snapped the program’s third-longest losing streak in history of nine-consecutive games last Saturday when the Broncos defeated San Jose State 83-68 on the road. They bring a 12-16 overall mark and a 3-11 WAC record into this weekend’s contests. A Boise State win or a San Jose State loss to Fresno State on Thursday would guarantee the Broncos the final berth into next week’s WAC Tournament at Las Vegas, Nev. San Jose State would have to win its final two games against Fresno State and Utah State at home to have a chance of passing Boise State.

Meanwhile, Louisiana Tech enters the week in first-place at 13-1 and 21-6 overall. A win Thursday over Boise State would clinch a share of the league title. The Lady Techsters suffered their first conference loss of the season Monday night at Nevada losing 71-66 to the Wolf Pack, ending a 14-game win streak.

Thursday’s encounter will feature La Tech’s second ranked WAC offense (73.7 ppg) and third ranked defense (63.7 ppg) versus Boise State’s fourth ranked offense (67.8 ppg) and ninth ranked defense (69.8 ppg). Kati Isham will lead the Broncos averaging 13.3 points a game and ranked ninth in the WAC, while Adrienne Johnson one of the league’s most prolific scorers will lead La Tech averaging 21.6 points to rank second.

►  Boise State vs. La Tech Series Recap
Thursday’s contest is the 25th meeting all-time between these two programs dating back to the 2001-02 season when they both joined the WAC. The Lady Techsters lead the series 16-7 which includes a split last season with the home team winning each time. The Lady Techsters won the first meeting this year in Boise 93-86 on Jan. 29.
La Tech dominated the series early on winning the first nine games and 13 of the first 14 meetings, which included four victories in the WAC Tournament quarterfinals the first four years.

Since that time the Broncos have closed the gap a little winning six of the last nine encounters. On Jan. 13, 2007 Boise State became the first conference team to defeat La Tech (68-47) in Ruston in 15 years. The win snapped the Lady Techsters’ win streak in home league games at 114. The next year on Jan. 12, 2008 the Broncos became the first to win back-to-back games in Ruston with a 85-68 victory. That win was the first of four straight over La Tech as they swept the season series two consecutive years in 2008 and 2009.

In games played in Ruston, La., the Lady Techsters lead 6-3, games played in Boise favor La Tech as well by a 6-4 margin and games on neutral floors are 4-0 to the Lady Techsters.     

►  What Happened Last Time
La Tech at Boise State: Boise, Idaho (1/29/2011) - Boise State’s rally attempt late in the game fell short as the Broncos lost a 93-86 shootout to Louisiana Tech in Taco Bell Arena. Down 15 points with five minutes to play, Boise State stormed back to make the outcome interesting pulling to within four points twice with under a minute to go. Boise State held La Tech without a field goal in the final five minutes, but the Lady Techsters held the Broncos off at the free-throw line converting 13-of-18 attempts in the final two minutes to get the victory.

Kati Isham led Boise State with 20 points including hitting six-of-nine 3-point attempts followed by Nicole Brady with a career-high 15 points and Lauren Lenhardt with 14 and team-high eight rebounds. The Broncos shot 42 percent (29-69) from the floor, 43.5 percent (10-23) from the arc and 85.7 percent (18-21) from the free-throw line.

La Tech had six players in double-figure scoring led by Adrienne Johnson with 21, Tarkeshia Wysinger-Mackey added 19 and a team-high eight rebounds, followed by Whitney Jones with 17 points. The Lady Techsters shot 52.5 percent (32-61) from the floor, 27.8 percent (5-18) from the arc and 66.7 percent (24-36) from the line. 

►  Looking at Boise State
The Broncos are 12-16 overall and 3-11 in WAC play which ranks them eighth in the standings. Boise State enters the contest coming off a 83-68 road win at San Jose State last week to snap a nine-game losing streak. The game against the Spartans was the lone game of last week for Boise State.

Junior guard Kati Isham continues to lead Boise State averaging 13.3 points per game to rank ninth in the WAC. She is fourth in the conference and 70th nationally in 3-point percentage hitting 38.1 percent on the year. Lauren Lenhardt is second on the team averaging 12.3 points (10th in WAC) and 5.8 rebounds per contest on the year, in league games she leads the team in scoring at 13.3 ppg (9th in WAC). Senior post Janie Bos adds 9.1 points and a team-high 7.0 rebounds (8th in WAC) per game.

Offensively, Boise State is averaging 67.8 points per game (4th in WAC) and 38.6 rebounds (6th in WAC) on the year. The Broncos are shooting 40.9 (4th in WAC) percent from the floor and 32.6 percent (4th in WAC) from the 3-point arc. In addition, they are converting 69.9 percent (4th in WAC) from the free-throw line.

Defensively, the Broncos allow 69.8 points per game (9th in WAC) and 37.8 rebounds (t-4th in WAC). Boise State is a minus-2.3 in turnover margin (5th in WAC).
Boise State returned two starters and seven letterwinners from last year’s 19-12 team that went 8-8 in WAC play to tie for fourth place. The Broncos were picked to place fifth by the coaches and fourth by the media in this year’s preseason polls.

►  Looking at Louisiana Tech
Louisiana Tech enters the game at 21-6 overall and 13-1 in league. The Lady Techsters lost Monday night at Nevada 71-66 for their first loss in WAC play. Prior to that they had won 14 straight. They are 11-1 at home this year with the lone loss coming at the hands of Houston (70-66) on Nov. 23. 

They are led by WAC Player of the Year candidate Adrienne Johnson averaging 21.6 points and 9.5 rebounds per game to rank second and third in the conference, respectively. Tarkeshia Wysinger-Mackey is second averaging 11.4 points per game.

La Tech is shooting a WAC-best 42.4 percent from the floor and 32.9 percent (3rd in WAC) from the arc. The Lady Techsters have struggled from the free-throw line converting 67.4 percent (8th in WAC). They average a league second-best 73.7 points per game and allow 63.7 (3rd in WAC).
 

►  Game 30 Preview - Boise State at New Mexico State: Saturday, March 5
The Broncos will close the regular-season at New Mexico State Saturday afternoon with tip scheduled for 3:00 p.m. (Mountain) in Las Cruces. This will be the last time the two programs meet as league rivals for the foreseeable future with the Broncos move to the Mountain West next season. Depending on what happens Thursday between Boise State-La Tech and Fresno State-San Jose State this game could mean alot for the Broncos. If Boise State loses to La Tech and the Spartans defeat Fresno State, Boise State will need to win against the Aggies to assure itself the last berth into the WAC Tournament next week.

It could also be a preview of the Broncos opening round game as New Mexico State is battling it out with the University Idaho for the fifth and sixth seeds, Boise State would likely play the fifth seed in the first round. 

Boise State snapped the program’s third-longest losing streak in history of nine-consecutive games last Saturday when the Broncos defeated San Jose State 83-68 on the road. They bring a 12-16 overall mark and a 3-11 WAC record into this weekend’s contests. Boise State will play at La Tech on Thursday prior to its game against the Aggies on Saturday.

Meanwhile, New Mexico State enters the week tied for fifth-place at 6-8 and 12-16 overall. The Aggies will host Idaho on Thursday before meeting the Broncos Saturday. Last week New Mexico State played three WAC games going 1-2 with a road win Saturday, Feb. 26, at Nevada (63-59)

Thursday’s encounter will feature Boise State’s fourth ranked offense (67.8 ppg) and ninth ranked defense (69.8 ppg) against NMSU’s sixth ranked offense (64.6 ppg) and seventh rank defense (67.2 ppg). Kati Isham will lead the Broncos averaging 13.3 points a game and ranked ninth in the WAC, while Madison Spence will lead the Aggies averaging 14 points (6th in WAC) per game.

►  Boise State vs. New Mexico State Series Recap
Thursday is the 24th meeting all-time between these two programs. The WAC is the second time these two have been league rivals dating back to the day they were both in the Big West Conference (1996-2001). Boise State currently holds a slim 12-11 advantage in the series.   In WAC regular-season games Boise State has a 6-5 advantage and a 8-2 mark all-time in Boise, NMSU leads in games played at Las Cruces 7-4 and 2-0 in neutral site games.

►  What Happened Last Time
New Mexico State at Boise State: Boise, Idaho (1/27/2011) - Lauren Lenhardt’s 30 points were not enough as Boise State fell victim to New Mexico State’s hot shooting from the 3-point arc in a 87-71 loss. In addition to the Aggies 15-of-24 shooting from beyond the arc, Boise State came out slow to begin each half digging themselves big holes. The combination of the two was too much to overcome.

Lenhardt recorded her second 30-point-plus game of the year with 30 versus the Aggies followed by Kati Isham with 14 and Diana Lee with 12. Boise State shot 41 percent from the floor, 26 percent from the arc and 88 percent from the free-throw line.

NMSU responded to every Boise State rally attempt with 3-pointers as the Aggies shot 63 percent from the arc, as well as 50.8 percent from the floor and 85.7 percent (12-14) from the line. Danisha Corbett led the Aggies with 31 points followed by Madison Spence with 18 and Jasmine Lowe with 17.

►  Looking at New Mexico State
New Mexico State enters the game at 12-16 overall and 6-8 in league. The Aggies are coming off a upset win at Nevada (63-59) last Saturday preceded by losses to Fresno State (65-55) and at Utah State (72-61). 

They are led by senior Madison Spence averaging 14 points per game to rank sixth in the WAC. Jasmine Lowe is second at 13.4 ppg (13th in WAC) followed by Tabytha Wampler at 12.1 ppg. NMSU is shooting 37.7 percent (7th in WAC) from the floor, 31.4 percent (6th in WAC) from the arc and 71.3 percent (2nd in WAC) from the free-throw line. The Aggies average a 64.6 points per game (6th in WAC) and allow 67.2 (7th in WAC).

►  Boise State vs. WAC
Boise State is 72-96 all-time in WAC regular-season games. However, against its current membership the Broncos are 63-72 in conference contests. Boise State is a combined 133-116 overall versus the current membership in all games (conference and nonconference games).