November 22, 2010

‘Runners Offer Tough Test for Santa Clara Tuesday Night

Game Notes in PDF Format
http://santaclara.prestosports.com/audio-graphic-235x251_copysmall.jpg Michael Spero's Santa Clara Broncos page
Video Feature/CSUB Preview with Lena Gipson

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -
The Bronco women's basketball team continues a five-game road swing Tuesday night at Cal State Bakersfield. It will be SCU's only game of the week before breaking for the Thanksgiving holiday. Tip off is set for 7 p.m. at the Icardo Center.

Game Notes - Week #3 Nov. 22-28, 2010
SANTA CLARA (0-3) @ CSU BAKERSFIELD (3-0)

Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2010 • 7 p.m.
Game #4 • Road Game #3 • Bakersfield, Calif.
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LIVE COVERAGE
Tuesday's game at Cal State Bakersfield can be heard live, via a FREE broadcast on SantaClaraBroncos.com. Michael Spero (play-by-play) will call the action courtside.

GAME NOTES

  • Santa Clara is led by third year head coach Jennifer Mountain
  • The Broncos are in the midst of a five-game road swing and are beginning the year playing 6 of 8 away from home
  • Santa Clara has shot just 36 percent from the floor in their first three games
  • Guards Alyssa Shoji and Ricki Radanovich combined for 7 three-pointers against UNC
  • Santa Clara's 26 three-point attempts vs. UNC was a season-high among WCC teams
  • Senior forward Kathy Willinsky leads the team in FG% (62.5) 10 of 16
  • The two schools have played in each of the past three seasons, CSUB winning 2 of 3
  • Lena Gipson has had big games against CSUB, clearing 20 rebounds last season and scoring 22 points against the 'Runners two years ago
  • Bakersfield has been impressive this season at 3-0, beating NCAA Sweet 16 qualifier San Diego State 73-62 on the road last time out
  • Gipson's 16 double-doubles last season ranked No. 23 in the NCAA
  • Shoji led the team in scoring (13.7 ppg) last year
  • Shoji led the WCC in 3-point shooting (84) and was 35th nationally last year
  • Fulps (11.2 ppg) was the WCC's top scoring freshman last year
  • UP NEXT: A two-game road swing to play at South Dakota and Wichita State next week

SANTA CLARA
Look for the Broncos (0-3) to break out of an early-season shooting slump. SCU has made just .203 percent (13 of 64) of its three-pointers and is scoring just 56.0 points per game. The Broncos showed some resiliency on the road in Colorado last week, rallying to tie Northern Colorado in the second half and rebounding from a slow start against Colorado to give the Buffs a good game in Boulder. Junior guard Alyssa Shoji scored 16 and 15 points in those games to pace the Broncos offensively. Senior forward Kathy Willinksy is offering major contributions early on this season, matching her career-high with a 14-point effort at CU. Forwards Lena Gipson and Lindsay Leo give the Broncos a legitimate post presence and the addition of 5-foot, 10-inch freshman guard Ricki Radanovich has provided athleticism and another deep threat on the perimeter. SCU is playing 6 of 8 away from home to begin the year. Following Tuesday's game with CSU Bakersfield, the Broncos will travel to play games at South Dakota (Tuesday, Nov. 30) and Wichita State (Thursday, Dec. 2).

CAL STATE BAKERSFIELD
The Roadrunners (3-0) have been terrific in the early going this season, beating an NCAA tournament Sweet 16 team in San Diego State, 73-62, while also blowing out Big Sky Conference favorite Montana, 74-54. Guards Amber Williams and Britney McGee combine to score over 30 points per game and the 'Runners defense is allowing just 53.3 points per night. The defense is also generating over 14 steals per game. Bakersfield has a rich basketball tradition despite beginning its program in 2001. The 'Runners became the only school in NCAA history to reach the NCAA Division II tournament in every year of its existence before moving to Division I in 2007. The 'Runners all-time program record is 212-80. Tenth-year head coach Tim La Kose led Bakersfield to a postseason appearance in 2010 after a 16-13 finish, qualifying for the 16-team Women's Basketball Invitational last March.

THE SERIES

Santa Clara and CSU Bakersfield have played in each of the past three seasons – every year of the 'Runners Division I history. Bakersfield has won two of three and each of the last two, including a 78-76 win last season at the Leavey Center. Returner Tamiko Davis banked-in a layup with two seconds left in that game last season, allowing Cal State Bakersfield to hold on for the win. The Roadrunners had trailed by nine in the first half but rallied to lead by six with 4:34 to play. Lena Gipson had 20 rebounds in that game. Two years ago, in Bakersfield's 73-65 win over SCU at the Icardo Center, Gipson scored 22 points.

HEAD COACH JENNIFER MOUNTAIN

'JMO' became the eighth Santa Clara head women's basketball coach in April 2008. She came to the Mission Campus after serving seven seasons as the top assistant coach at Gonzaga, where she helped the Bulldogs to four-straight WCC regular season championships and one tournament crown. Her Santa Clara team ended the 2009-10 season in grand fashion at the 2010 WCC tournament in Las Vegas, winning twice to become the first No. 8 seed in tournament history to advance into the semifinals. It was the second-straight year Mountain's teams peaked when it mattered most. In her first year at Santa Clara, Mountain guided the Broncos into the WCC tournament quarterfinals. "Jen understands what Santa Clara is all about," said SCU Athletic Director Dan Coonan. "It's about competitive basketball but it's about so much more than that. Educating men and women for competence, conscience, and compassion -- that's what Santa Clara really stands for. We believe that and live that here. I think Jen is the perfect person who embodies those kinds of values."

The Jen Mountain File:
• Head Coach - Santa Clara University (2008-pres.)
• Assistant Coach- Gonzaga University (2001-08)
• Boys Head Coach - St. George's School (1994-2001)
• Amateur Player - Gonzaga University (1987-91)

LAST TIME OUT
Santa Clara University played well but could not overcome a slow start, dropping a 71-57 decision to the University of Colorado at the Coors Event Center on Friday. Colorado (2-1) jumped out to a commanding 18-2 lead but needed a 14-7 surge to begin the second half to initiate their seven-game homestand with a victory. Brittany Wilson scored a game-high 18 points to lead four Buffs in double-figures. Santa Clara (0-3) had closed the gap to seven in the early stages of the second half. Alyssa Shoji scored a team-high 15 points for SCU, making all three of her 3s following the break. Kathy Willinsky kept the Broncos close by scoring 11 of her 14 points in the first half.

"We shot 4 for 19 from the 3-point line, and that is one of our strengths," said Santa Clara head Coach Jennifer Mountain. "If we are not shooting the ball well we are going to struggle. We fought back, that's not our issue. This is a team that is always going to play hard and never give up. Missed opportunities and missed layups are things that you can't afford to do and be in ball games."

ESPN RANKS SCU RECRUITING CLASS AMONG NATION'S BEST
Next year's incoming class for the Santa Clara University women's basketball program has been ranked No. 56 nationally by ESPN HoopGurlz. The Broncos and third-year head coach Jennifer Mountain announced the signing of four outstanding high school players during November's early signing period last week:

Nici Gilday of San Jose, Calif. (Presentation HS)
Vanessa Leo of San Jose, Calif. (Archbishop Mitty HS)
Colleen Rooney of Centennial, Colo. (Regis Jesuit HS)
Tyler Woods of Corona, Calif. (Centennial Corona HS)

"All four of our future Broncos fit the mold of what Santa Clara is all about.  They are extremely bright young women who value education and grasp what it means to be a Bronco both on and off the court.  They are great role models and will representSanta Clara with respect and class at all times.  I am very excited about them joining us next year and having the chance to coach them," said Mountain.

LENA GIPSON NAMED PRESEASON ALL-WCC

Lena Gipson was named to the 2010-11 West Coast Conference Preseason All-Conference Team. Gipson, a senior power forward from Hanford, Calif., is one of the most prolific rebounders in Santa Clara University history. She was one of ten players recognized on the team, which was released along with the preseason coaches' poll. Santa Clara was picked to finish seventh in the eight-team league. Gipson was named an All-WCC First Team player last season after averaging a double-double (12.6 ppg/10.0 rpg) and collecting 16 double-doubles on the year, which ranked No. 23 among all NCAA players.

FREE GAME BROADCASTS ON SANTACLARABRONCOS.COM

In conjunction with the West Coast Conference, Santa Clara is pleased to announce that most home games and all conference road games this season will be broadcast FREE of charge on SCU's official athletics website (SantaClaraBroncos.com). Additionally, Santa Clara's Michael Spero (play-by-play) will call selected road games, offered online as FREE audio broadcasts.

BAY AREA BRONCOS

When Jennifer Mountain was hired as Santa Clara University's women's basketball head coach in April of 2008, the program was void of a single player from a Bay Area High School. This season SCU's roster will boast four Bay Area players. All three of the Broncos' incoming freshmen starred at local high schools: sophomore transfer Lindsay Leo (Archbishop Mitty), Ricki Radanovich (Carondelet), Iman Scott (Archbishop Mitty) and Arteivia Lilomaiava (Aragon).  "There is a tremendous amount of local talent and it's a crucial element to our recruiting," says Mountain. "It's going to help with the level of our program, local pride and our fan base."

SANTA CLARA WOMEN'S HOOPS ON YOUTUBE!

Check out the latest videos and features on the Broncos on the team's official YouTube page (youtube.com/scuwbb).