USU Women Travel to Lone Star State to Face Texas State and UTSA
March 5, 2013
LOGAN, Utah - TIP OFF - Utah State women's basketball (16-11, 13-3 WAC) begins its final regular-season road trip of the season of the season traveling to the Lone Star State. The Aggies head to Texas State (9-18, 3-13 WAC) on Thursday, March 7 at 5:30 p.m. (MT). Earlier this season, USU defeated the Bobcats, 82-69, on Dec. 31. Utah State will conclude the regular season at UTSA on Saturday, March 9 at 5 p.m. (MT).
During the final week of the regular season, seeding for the upcoming Western Athletic Conference Tournament is still up for grabs. Utah State currently stands in second place just behind Seattle which holds a 14-3 record. The Aggies have two games remaining this week, while the Redhawks host Idaho in their only remaining game.
AROUND THE CORNER - Utah State will play in its final WAC Tournament, beginning Wednesday, March 13. The tournament begins on Tuesday, March 12 with two women's games and two men's games. The No. 7 seed will face the No. 10 seed on March 12 at 1 p.m. (MT), while the No. 8 seed takes on the No. 9 seed at 3:30 p.m. (MT). Quarterfinal games begin at 1 p.m. (MT) on Wednesday, March 13. The final will be played on Saturday, March 16 and will be televised on ESPNU at 1 p.m. (MT).
SUPER SENIORS - This year's senior class has seen records fall during their four years as Aggies. During their four season's at Utah State, the team has had double figures in wins all four years, including a team-record 21 wins during the 2011-12 season. USU has also advanced to the Women's National Invitation Tournament (WNIT) the last two seasons. This season, the Aggies set a new school record with its 13th conference win. The Aggies set the record last season with an 11-3 WAC records. Guard Devyn Christensen set the all-time scoring record at Utah State with 1,446 points during her four years. Guard Jenna Johnson is third in career steals with 209. Despite fighting injuries during her career center Banna Diop ended her Aggie career third in blocks with 118.
GOING OUT IN STYLE -Several of Utah State's seniors had solid final regular-season games at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum. Senior guard Devyn Christensen scored 24 points in the, 81-57, win. Fellow senior guard Jenna Johnson had a career-high 14 rebounds. Senior guard Pualei Furtado earned her second career start against the Mavericks.
HARD TO BEAT AT HOME - For the first time in school history, the Aggies ended conference play undefeated at home with a perfect 9-0 record. Despite a slow start losing its first two home games to Montana and UC Irvine, Utah State won the next 10 at home to finish 10-2 at the friendly confines of the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.
SCOUTING TEXAS STATE - This is the third meeting between the Bobcats and the Aggies. On Dec. 31, Utah State defeated Texas State, 82-69, in Logan. In that game, both Devyn Christensen and Jenna Johnson scored 19 points in the win. The two teams met in El Paso, Texas in 2008 at UTEP Tournament with USU earning a tightly-contested 50-47 win.
Diamond Ford is the WAC's leading scorer, averaging 21.4 points per game. Ford scored 18 points in the earlier meeting this season. Ashley Ezeh also averages in double figures in scoring 15.4 points per game. Ezeh is also fourth in the conference in rebounds, bringing down 9.1 rebounds per game.
The Bobcats are 9-18 overall this season and 3-13 in WAC contests. Texas State has conference wins against UT Arlington, New Mexico State and Louisiana Tech. Utah State was 5-1 against those three teams with a loss to NM State. The Bobcats have lost four-straight games, falling to Seattle and Idaho last week.
Both Utah State and Texas State have given its fans free basketball this season. The Aggies have played five overtime games this season, while the Bobcats have played four.
AGGIES VS TEXAS STATE IN THE WAC 2012-13 USU 82, Texas State 69 (Logan) Total 1-0AGGIES TOPS IN THE NATION - For the third-straight week, Utah State women's basketball remains in first place in the current NCAA statistics in free throw percentage, shooting 80.3 percent from the free throw line.
The Aggies have hit 444-of-553 free throws this season and their 80.3 percent is also tops in the Western Athletic Conference. USU also has three of the top free throw shooters in the conference led by senior guard Devyn Christensen who shoots a league-leading 92.0 percent. She is now seventh in the nation from the charity stripe. Christensen has missed only nine of the 113 free throws she has attempted this season. Junior guard Jennifer Schlott is second in the WAC, shooting 83.2 percent (119-of-139), while senior guard Jenna Johnson is fourth, shooting 83.2 percent (124-of-149).
As a team, USU is 18th in the country and second in the WAC in three-point field goals made per game (7.5).
Utah State is also sixth in the nation in scoring offense (76.8 ppg) and fifth in steals (12.9 ppg). Individually, Christensen is also sixth in three-point field goals per game, making 3.26 threes a game. Christensen is also among the nation's leaders in scorers, standing 21st with 19.9 points per game. Johnson is also 16th in the nation and second in the conference in steals per game (3.19 spg).
Freshman guard Makenlee Williams is first in the WAC in three-point field goal percentage, shooting 41.0 percent from beyond the arc, while sophomore forward Franny Vaaulu is second in the league in field goal percentage, shooting 54.9 percent.
TOUGH D - The 11 points allowed in the first half against Louisiana Tech were the fewest since Utah Valley scoredonly 16 points in the first half on Jan. 7, 2012. In the first half, the Louisiana Tech shot only 13.3 percent, going 4-for-30.
BEST OF THE BEST - This year's senior class has had the best four-year record since Utah State's re-instatement during the 2003-04 season. Devyn Christensen, Banna Diop, Pualei Furtado and Jenna Johnson have had a four-year record of 68-53 record so far with two regular-season games remaining.
NEARING ANOTHER RECORD - Devyn Christensen is nearing yet another Utah State record. She is four points away from tying the single-season scoring record of 542 points. She currently has 538 points this season. Sharon Epps set the record with 542 points in 1982. She has already set the USU record for field goals attempted in a season with 476. The previous record was 449 by Mary Danielson in 1982. Jenna Johnson is close to the single-season steal record with 86 so far this season. The record of 94 was set by Carol Garrison in 1981.
PROTECTING THE HOME TURF - The Aggies and Seattle are the only two teams in the WAC that are undefeated in WAC play at home so far this season. Utah State is 9-0 in league play. The Redhawks are 8-0 with one home games remaining. Overall, Utah State is 10-2 at home this season. Last season, the Aggies were 12-3 at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, which is a school record.
FREE BASKETBALL - With the double overtime win against Denver on Feb. 14, the Aggies have now played five overtime games this season. This was Utah State's first double overtime game since a 70-64 win against Idaho on Feb. 22, 2009 in Logan. USU improves to 4-1 in extra time. USU is 4-0 in overtime conference games this season. The five overtime games is the most since the 2008-09 squad played six overtime games. Last season, the Aggies did not have one overtime game.
BUZZER BEATERS - Utah State has had several close calls this season. The Aggies have had six games this season with one team taking the final lead with 10 seconds or less. Senior guard Devyn Christensen has had a hand in three of these games with game-winning shots against Prairie View A&M (Nov. 12), South Dakota (Dec. 20) and Denver (Feb. 14). Freshman guard Makenlee Williams added a buzzer beater to lift USU over New Mexico State on Jan. 17. Senior guard Jenna Johnson also had late-game heroics, helping the Aggies to an overtime road win over Louisiana Tech on Jan. 26. USU felt the other end of the buzzer beater against UC Irvine on Dec. 18.
ALL GOOD THINGS COME TO AN END - The Aggies had their season-high eight-game winning streak come to an end on Feb. 16. The eight-straight games tied the 1975-76 team for the longest winning streak in school history. Utah State's last loss came against the Aggies' San Jose State, on Jan. 12, 103-80. Last season, USU's longest winning streak last season was six games.
WAC TO STREAM BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT FROM LAS VEGAS - The WAC will stream 16 games via the internet on WACSports.tv from the 2013 WAC Basketball Tournament at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas. The only games not shown will be the men and women's championships due to contractual obligations with ESPN. Individual tournament games may be purchased for $7.95 each. The tournament starts Tuesday, March 12, with four first round games. The women's quarterfinals will be played on Wednesday while the men's quarterfinals will be held on Thursday. Friday features two women's semifinal games and two men's semifinal games. More information and how to subscribe to any of these video streaming events can be found at www.WACSports.tv.
SCORING OVER 90 - Utah State has scored 90 or more points five times this season. The Aggies are 3-2 in those game. USU has wins over Idaho (91-85), UT Arlington (93-83) and Denver (92-89). Utah State has losses to UC Riverside (94-90) and New Mexico State (106-94).
HISTORY IS MADE - Senior guard Devyn Christensen found another Utah State record to break. On her ninth point against San Jose State on Feb. 9, she became the Aggies' all-time scorer. Christensen's historic basket came off an assist from fellow senior guard Pualei Furtado, one of Furtado's three helpers on the night, and was three of Christensen's team-high 17 points. Christensen's three-pointer gave her 1,354 points, passing Jerrie McGahan (1977-80) with 1,353 points. Christensen now has 1,446 career points.
DEVYN DOES IT AGAIN - Senior guard Devyn Christensen broke yet another career Utah State record against Idaho on Jan. 31. The current all-time USU leader in three-point field goals attempted and free throw percentage is the record holder for free throws made. She passed Ashlee Brown (2011-12) who made 289 in just two seasons in an Aggie uniform. Christensen now has 303 career free throws. The senior is currently first in the WAC and eighth in the nation, shooting 91.3 percent from the charity stripe. In WAC games and overall, Utah State averages 7.5 three pointers per game.
AGGIES IN THE NCAA STATS - In the most recent NCAA statistics release, senior guard Devyn Christensen is 21st in points per game (19.9 ppg). Christensen is seventh in the nation in free throw percentage (92.0 percent) and is sixth in three-pointers made (3.26). Senior guard Jenna Johnson is 16th in the country in steals per game (3.19 spg). As a team, Utah State is still first in the country in free throw percentage, shooting 80.3 percent from the charity stripe. The Aggies passed No. 2 Notre Dame which was tops in the nation. USU is still fifth in the country in steals (12.9 spg). Utah State is sixth in scoring offense, averaging 76.8 ppg.
STEALING HISTORY - Senior guard Jenna Johnson moved up to third in career steals with seven in the Aggies' loss to San Jose State on Jan. 12. She now has 209 career steals. She is just seven steals from tying Danyelle Snelgro (216) for second place. Former teammate Alice Coddington is the all-time leader in steals with 236. Johnson's eight steals against Montana State on Dec. 1 were the most by an Aggie this season.
TOPS IN THE WAC - Devyn Christensen is currently third in the WAC in scoring, averaging 19.9 points per game. She is behind San Jose State's Ta'Rea Cunnigan (20.2 ppg) and Texas State's Diamond Ford (21.4 ppg). Jenna Johnson is seventh, averaging 14.3 ppg, while Jennifer Schlott is ninth in scoring with 13.8 ppg. Christensen, who broke the WAC's single-season record for free throw percentage last season, is first this season, shooting 92.0 percent. She has only missed nine of the 113 free throws that she has attempted. Freshman Makenlee Williams is first in the league in three-point free throw percentage, shooting 41.0 percent from beyond the arc. Johnson is second in the conference in steals, averaging 3.19 spg, while Christensen is fifth with 2.70 spg. Jennifer Schlott is second in assists with 4.33 apg. Franny Vaaulu is second in field goal percent, shooting 54.9 percent from the field.
As a team, USU is first in free throw percent (80.3 percent). The Aggies are second in blocked shots (4.48 bpg). Utah State is still first in scoring (76.8 ppg) and second in field goal percentage (40.5 percent). Utah State is now first in steals (12.93 spg).
MAGIC NUMBER - The Aggies continue to have a magic number this season which is 70. When keeping opponents to under 70 points, USU is a stellar 12-0 this year. In nine of USU's 13 WAC wins this season, the Aggies have allowed under 70 points. Utah State is 4-11 when allowing more than 70 points.
GAME WINNER - Freshman guard Makenlee Williams' three pointer with one second left on the clock lifted Utah State over New Mexico State, 65-63, on Jan. 17. Williams continues to have a very strong rookie season, averaging 7.6 points per game. In WAC games, she scores 11.1 ppg.
AGGIES IN WAC OPENERS - Utah State is 5-3 in WAC openers winning the last four at home against UTSA this season and on the road against New Mexico State in 2011. In 2010, USU won at home against Boise State and in 2009, USU earned its first ever win against Louisiana Tech. This was the first time since USU joined the league that the Aggies faced a WAC newcomer to start the season. Utah State is now 3-2 in WAC openers at home.
USU IN WAC OPENERS (5-3) 2005-06 L, vs. San Jose State, 51-63 2006-07 L, vs. Boise State, 70-80 2007-08 W, vs. San Jose State, 68-58 2008-09 L, at Idaho, 63-71 2009-10 W, at Louisiana Tech, 69-66 2010-11 W, vs. Boise State, 69-57 2011-12 W, at New Mexico State, 74-56 2012-13 W, vs. UTSA, 79-66 (OT)WINNING THE FIRST HALF - Utah State has a solid record when out-scoring its opponents in the first 20 minutes of action. The Aggies are 11-1 when scoring more in the first half. The only game that Utah State lost when leading at half time was an overtime loss to UC Irvine on Dec. 18. USU was ahead 41-36 at halftime and lost in overtime, 71-70. The Aggies have been leading at halftime in seven of their 13 WAC games. The only game they didn't have the lead was an overtime loss to Seattle on Jan. 3, San Jose State on Jan. 12 and Louisiana Tech on Jan. 26.
CHANGING IT UP - In 27 games this season, Utah State has had eight different starting lineups. The lineup of Jennifer Schlott, Devyn Christensen, Jenna Johnson, Makenlee Williams and Franny Vaaulu have started nine games this season. Elise Nelson, Christensen, Johnson, Cristal Turner and Vaaulu have been the starters for two games. Stephanie Bairstow, Christensen, Johnson, Williams and Vaaulu have been the starters for a trio of games. The group of Nelson, Christensen, Johnson, Williams, Vaaulu and Schlott started one game, while Christensen, Johnson, Williams and Bairstow have been the combination of starters for two games. Against New Mexico State on Jan. 17, the Aggies had another group of starters in Schlott, Christensen, Johnson, Nelson and Haylee Thompson, which has started three games. Yet another lineup was unveiled on Saturday, Jan. 19 when Schlott, Christensen, Johnson, Williams and Thompson started. This group has started six games. On senior night, USU added another starting five with Pualei Furtado joining Christensen, Johnson, Williams and Vaaulu.
AGGIES SET SCHOOL RECORD - Against UTSA, Utah State set a school record, shooting 96 percent from the free throw line, making 24-of-25. The previous record was 95.6 against Colorado in 1980. In overtime, Utah State took control, making 12-of-13 free throws.
HOME OPENERS - Utah State fell to 3-7 in home openers after its 71-65 loss to Montana State on Dec. 1. The Aggies home wins came against Weber State (2011), Utah (2009) and Idaho State (2006).
AGAINST THE BEEHIVE STATE - Since the re-instatement, the Aggies are now 15-16 against the Beehive State, including this season's losses to BYU, Utah Valley and Utah. The Aggies now gone winless against the state for just the third time in the last 10 years. In USU's first season back in 2003, the Aggies went 0-2 against the state with losses to Southern Utah and Weber State. The 2006-07 season was the only other season where the Aggies went winless against the state with losses to both Utah Valley and Weber State.
FAREWELL - USU enters its eighth and final season in the WAC. Next season, the Aggies will be heading to the Mountain West Conference along with San Jose State. Last season, the Aggies finished third in WAC play with an 11-3 conference record which was its best finish since joining the league.
BEING SOCIAL WITH THE AGGIES - Fans can follow USU women's basketball at http://twitter.com/USUwbb and Utah State athletics at http://twitter.com/USUAthletics. Fans can follow along with the games and keep up with what the Aggies are up to.
SEASON OPENERS - This is the 10th season since Utah State women's basketball was re-instated for the 2003-04 season. The Aggies are 2-8 in season openers after a 78-62 loss to Utah Valley on Nov. 12. Last season, USU started the season with a win last season at Wyoming, 62-56. USU's other season opening win came to begin the 2009-10 season against in-state rival Utah in Logan, 67-58.
ADMISSION - Admission to Utah State's women's basketball games is $5 for adults, $1 for youth. A woman's sports pass is also available for $50. Contact the USU Athletics Ticket Office at (435) 797-0305 or at 1-888-U-STATE-1 (1-888-878-2831) for more information or visit the Utah State athletic web site at www.UtahStateAggies.com.
SILVER ANNIVERSARY - The 2012-13 season marks the 25th year of women's basketball at USU, and just the 10th since the program was restarted prior to the 2003-04 season. The women's hoops program at USU had been disbanded following the 1987 season due to budget cuts. USU is playing in its eighth season in the WAC after playing its first two seasons in the Big West Conference.
ALASKA - THE FINAL FRONTIER - The Aggies headed to the Final Frontier for the Great Alaska Shootout and returned with their first ever tournament win. With wins against Prairie View A&M and host Alaska Anchorage, Utah State captured the Great Alaska Shootout title. Senior guard Devyn Christensen was named MVP of the tournament, while sophomore forward Franny Vaaulu was also named to the all-tournament team. Vaaulu set the record for highest field goal percentage, shooting 81.8 (9-of-11).
AGGIES IN THE PRESEASON POLLS - Utah State women's basketball was selected first in both the Western Athletic Conference coaches' poll media poll. This is the first time that the Aggies have ever been picked first in a preseason poll. Last season, USU was second in the coaches' poll and third in the media poll. In 2010-11, the Aggies were picked seventh in both the coaches' and the media poll.
Senior guard Devyn Christensen became the second-straight Utah State women's basketball player to earn WAC Preseason Player of the Year honors when she was awarded the honor by both the coaches and the media. Last season, forward Ashlee Brown was named preseason all-WAC. Last season, Christensen was named to the second-team in the coaches' poll.
The league will have a new champion as Fresno State captured the regular season and tournament titles. The Aggies received 78 points in the WAC coaches' poll, including seven of the 10 first-place votes. Louisiana Tech was a close second with 75 points and the three remaining first-place votes. In its first season in the WAC, Denver was picked third with 55 points, while fellow newcomer Seattle U was fourth with 48 points. Idaho was just behind Seattle U in fifth place with 47 points. Texas State, another new team to the WAC, is sixth with 41 points, while San Jose State. Rounding out the coaches' poll is New Mexico State in eighth (27), and newcomers UTSA (26) and UT Arlington (17) in ninth and 10th, respectively.
LAST TIME OUT - Led by seniors Devyn Christensen and Jenna Johnson, Utah State women's basketball celebrated senior night with a resounding victory over UT Arlington, 81-57, on Saturday at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.
Seniors Christensen, Johnson and guard Pualei Furtado all earned starts today, which was the second of Furtado's career. Center Banna Diop, who missed the season due to injury, was also honored. Christensen ended the game with a game-leading 24 points to go along with eight rebounds and four assists. Johnson had her ninth double-double of the season with 17 points and 14 boards.
AGGIES ON THE RADIO/WEB - All Utah State games can be heard on KLGN (1390 AM) in Logan with Craig Hislop in his second season as the voice of the Aggies. They can also be heard on the web by going to the Utah State Athletics home page at www.UtahStateAggies.com and clink on the "Listen Live" link in the right hand column.
GAMETRACKER - Fans can follow Aggie home games through the USU web site at www.UtahStateAggies.com via GameTracker, a free service, which updates play-by-play and statistics throughout the game.
ON THE INTERNET - All of Utah State's home games are available to watch live through Utah State TV via the internet at www.UtahStateAggies.com. USU fans can also listen to every game both home and away, via USU's web site.
THE NEWBIES - This season, Utah State welcomes nine newcomers, including four transfers, Kelsey Corcoran (Winthrop), Mariah Miles (Oral Roberts), Jasmine Porter (San Diego State) and Kali Roche (Utah Valley) that will have to sit out the 2012-13 season. Freshmen Makenlee Williams, Haylee Thompson, Stephanie Bairstow, junior Tanja Steed and senior Cristal Turner also join the Aggies this season and will be eligible to play in 2012-13.
Jerry Finkbeiner - Jerry Finkbeiner took the reigns as Utah State's ninth head women's basketball coach. Finkbeiner added assistant coaches Micha Thompspon and Robert Donaldson. Stu Sells enters his second season as an assistant at Utah State.