Women's Hoops Opens WAC Play Vs. Hawai'i

San Jose, Calif. - After finishing non-conference play winning four of its last six games, this week the San Jose State women's basketball team opens Western Athletic Conference play hosting the Rainbow Wahine of the Univeristy of Hawai'i in UH's final Event Center appearance as a member of the Western Athletic Conference. 

vs, Hawai'i (5-10, 0-0 Western Athletic)
Saturday, January 14, 2012, 7:00 p.m.
The Event Center, San Jose, Calif.
Broadcast available on 90.5 KSJS-FM and Live stats available at www.sjsuspartans.com

Fans can view live stats of all San Jose State home games and most road contests by accessing the "Live Stats" feature at www.sjsuspartans.com.  Click on the link at the top of the home page to follow the action.

The Gold Zone is your passport to Spartan Athletics.  For live video/audio of all San Jose State women's basketball home games, sign up to be a Gold Zone member at www.sjsuspartans.com

KSJS (90.5 FM, San Jose) originates the majority of San Jose State women's basketball home broadcasts.  Jeff Bowe and Alex Scott call the women's basketball play-by-play.

Tickets for all San Jose State home women's basketball games are free for all SJSU students with a valid student ID.  Adult tickets are $5.00, $3.00 for youth (12 and under).

Groups of 20 or more can buy discounted tickets at $3.00 per person.  The ticket office opens two hours prior  to tip-off at The Event Center or can be purchased by calling San Jose State Athletics Ticket Office at 408-924-SJTX (7589).

Senior guard Sara Plavljanin was been named the Verizon Western Athletic Conference Women's Basketball Player of the Week for Jan. 2-8. It's the first WAC Player of the Week honor of her career.

The Zagreb, Croatia, native averaged 15.0 points 8.0 rebounds, 6.5 assists and 4.5 steals as the Spartans went 2-0 on the week, sweeping a road trip for the first time since the 2005-06 season. She opened the week with 15 points, a career-high eight steals, six assists and four rebounds in a win at Southern Utah. She followed it up with her first career double-double, posting 15 points and a career-high 12 rebounds, to go along with a career-high seven assists in a 57-45 win at Utah Valley.

In 15 Western Athletic Conference openers, San Jose State has a 5-10 record.  When the first game of conference play has been contested at home, the Spartans are 2-6 overall.

The last time the San Jose State opened conference play at home and won was the 2004-05 season when it defeated Nevada 76-63.

San Jose State finished its 2011-12 non-conference schedule with a 5-10 record.  The five non-conference victories are the most for a Spartans team since the 2005-06 season when the team also had five non-conference wins.

The most non-conference wins by a Spartans team in a single season are nine.  San Jose State achieved nine non-conference wins in both the 2000-01 and 2003-04 seasons.

Senior forward Brittany Johnson is the leading scorer in the WAC at 19.3 points per game and the 27th leading scorer in the nation.  She has recorded four double-doubles and has hit double figure scoring in all 15 games this year. If she scores in double figures against Hawai'i she will equal Cricket Williams who began 2002-03 with 16 straight, the longest streak to open a season for San Jose State in the last 10 years.

Senior guard Sara Palvljanin is the 24th ranked 3-point shooter in the nation at 41.0 percent.  She has hoisted 78 treys so far this year with 32 finding nothing  but the bottom of the net.  Against Santa Clara (12/17) Plavljanin set a personal best hitting seven 3-pointers, one shy of the schools all-time single game record.

With wins last week at Southern Utah (1/3) and Utah Valley (1/5), the Spartans picked up their first sweep of a multi-game road trip in almost exactly five years.  San Jose State last swept two road victories in the 2005-06 season, at Utah State (1/5) and Nevada (1/7/06).

The Rainbow Wahine, in their final season as members of the Western Athletic Conference, enter this week tied with San Jose State for fourth place in the conference with a 5-10 record.  In its last outings, Hawai'i hosted the Pepsi Rainbow Wahine Invitational from December 28-30.  They went 1-2 defeating Alcorn State 66-63 before falling to Florida Gulf Coast 72-52 and North Carolina State 84-54.  

The Rainbow Wahine finished last season with an 11-19 overall record, 5-11 in conference play and made it to the first round of the WAC Tournament.

Hawai'i is led in scoring by sophomore forward Kamilah Jackson (14.5 ppg, 10.1 rpg), who leads the WAC in rebounding and is fifth in scoing. Vicky Tagalicod, a junior forward who has only played in the last six games, is averaging 11.3 ppg, and senior guard Breanna Arbuckle is at 9.7 ppg. and has blocked 23 shots so far this year.

As a team, the Rainbow Wahine are averaging 58.8 points per game on .383 shooting from the field. 
Head coach Dana Takahara-Dias is in her third season leading  Hawai'i.  Entering the season her career record stood at 21-39.

HISTORY: Spartans vs. Rainbow Wahine
Hawai'i holds a 41-14 lead in the all-time series. The Spartans took the first three of the 55 meetings between these two teams.  Then, from the 1985-86 season to the first of two matchups in 2002-03, the Rainbow Wahine won 32-of-34 games.

The Spartans won the second meeting of the 2002-03 season, 71-67, and since that game the teams have split the next 18 meetings.  San Jose State holds a 7-to-2 advantage in its nine home games since that 2002-03 win.  The Spartans have won the last three matchups including a 53-43 victory last year, one of just two wins on the season.