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Women's basketball coach led the Aggies to back-to-back WNIT appearances and the school's first 21-win season.
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USU returns to the semifinals for the third time in four seasons.
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Utah State Women's Basketball vs. Asbury
Utah State's Raegan Pebley (Pee-blee) enters her ninth season as head coach of the Aggie women's basketball program. Pebley was named the head coach at Utah State University on May 1, 2002, becoming the first women's basketball coach at USU in 16 years. She immediately went to work, spending the 2003 season recruiting and rebuilding Utah State's women's basketball program for its inaugural season in 2003-04. The Aggies reinstated women's basketball on March 5, 2002, after the program had been dropped following the 1987 season.
Despite being the third-youngest team in the nation in their inaugural season, Pebley's team soon saw the fruits of their labors, as they went 5-13 in the Big West Conference and earned a spot in the Big West's postseason tournament.
Pebley helped the momentum carry over from USU's freshman campaign into its sophomore season as her team doubled its win total from the previous season with nine games remaining on the schedule. Most coaches would have been satisfied doubling their win total, but Pebley didn't rest on her laurels, coaching the Aggies within one win of tripling their 2004 total (5-22) and guiding them to their second straight Big West Tournament appearance.
Pebley's 14 wins in 2004-05 tied her with Fern Gardner (1975) and Cindy Perkins (1979) for the second-highest single-season win total in school history. With 33 career wins, Pebley is third on the career coaching wins list.
While the Aggies struggled to a 3-24 overall and 2-14 conference mark in 2006, their first season in the Western Athletic Conference, year two in the WAC saw much improvement as Pebley once again came within one win of tripling their 2006 total, as the team went 11-18 in 2007 and 7-9 in the WAC to finish in seventh-place.
In 2008, the Aggies ended the season with a 9-20 overall record with a 5-11 WAC record to once again finish seventh in the league.
The 2009 season was a historic one for the Aggies. Utah State finished 16-15 overall and 9-7 in the WAC which was good for a tie for fifth place. USU also captured its first postseason win with a 59-58 overtime win over Idaho in the WAC Tournament. The Aggies lost to the eventual tournament champions, Fresno State, 57-54.
In 2010, the Aggies once again had a double-digit win count, ending the season with a 13-17 record. USU started the season with a win against in-state rival, 67-58, in Logan. It was the Aggies' first win over Utah since 1975.
Last season, Pebley and the Aggies reached new territory, advancing to the Women's Invitation Tournament (WNIT) for the first time in school history. Utah State finished the 2010-11 season with a stellar 18-15 overall record and a 10-6 record in WAC action, leading to its best-ever third-place finish. For the second-time in school history, the Aggies reached the semifinals of the WAC Tournament and advanced to the second round of the WNIT. Pebley also captured WAC Coach of the Year honors last season.
Under Pebley's direction 12 players have honored by the conference, including two honorable mention selections in 2004 and three honorable mention honorees in 2005, and consecutive all-freshman team picks in 2005 and 2006. In 2009, the Aggies made history when two players were named all-WAC. Danyelle Snelgro became the first Utah State player to earn first-team all-WAC honors, while Ana Pares was named to the second team. In 2010, Amber White was named to the second team. Alice Coddington was also named to the WAC's all-defensive team, while Banna Diop earned all-freshman team honors. Last season, Ashlee Brown became the second player to earn first-team all-WAC honors and was the first Aggie named WAC Newcomer of the Year.
For the second-straight season, Coddington was named to the WAC all-defensive team. Student-athletes have also flourished off the court with Pebley at the helm. Last season, seven players earned academic all-WAC honors. In 2010, nine players were honored, which was the most under Pebley. In 2009, four players were honored by the conference. In 2008, eight players earned academic all-WAC honors. Six players earned academic all-conference honors in 2007, while seven earned the honor in 2006. Five players were awarded academic all-conference accolades in 2005, with two earning the award in 2004.
Additionally, individual career and single-season records have fallen in Pebley's system. Alice Coddington broke the career steals record in 2011, breaking Danyelle Snelgro's record with 236. In 2010, forward Nicole Johnson broke the USU record for career blocks with 133. Taylor Richards broke the career assists record in 2007 and finished her career with 371. Brittany Hagen became the USU record holder for career three-pointers in 2005-06 and finished her career with 109 treys. Brittany Phillips ended her career at USU with a 37.9 three-point percentage from 2003-2007 and holds the current career record. Jessica Freeman became the USU career shot block leader in 2004-05 and finished her career with 127 and Ali (Aird) Marchant shot 59.7 percent from the floor in 2003-04 to break the single-season field-goal percentage mark and left USU as the career field-goal percentage record holder, hitting 53.5 percent of her shots.
In the summer of 2010, Pebley was one of several coaches to take part in a mock NCAA selection. The goal of the exercise was to continue educating coaches in the selection, seeding and bracketing.
A former player for the Utah Starzz of the WNBA, Pebley was an assistant coach for four years at George Mason (1997-99) and Colorado State (1999-2001) before coming to Utah State, as she helped guide CSU to a 48-17 record during her two-year stint with the Rams. She was a four-year letterwinner at Colorado before being a third-round draft pick by the Utah Starzz in 1997. She also spent one season with the Eastern Division Champion Cleveland Rockers in 1998.
Pebley, whose maiden name is Scott, grew up in Orem, Utah and graduated from Mountain View High School, where she was part of two 4A Utah State Championship teams from 1992-93. She earned All-American honors and was a two-time state Player of the Year at Mountain View.
Coaching has been in her family for sometime now as her father, Ray Scott, has coached women's basketball for more than 30 years. He got his start in the late 70's and early 80's with the Dallas Diamonds and New Orleans Pride of the old ABL. He has since coached at almost every level of women's basketball and is currently the head coach at Princeton High School in Princeton, Texas.
Pebley is married to Keith, who is a high school history teacher at Fast Forward Charter School and an assistant football coach at Logan High School. They have one son, Joseph, who was born July 9, 2003, and a daughter, Harper, who was born Jan. 30, 2007.
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