San Jose, Calif. - In its final home game of the 2014-15 season, the San José State women's basketball team will honor three seniors, Ta'Rea Cunnigan, Chereese Thomas and Rebecca Woodberry before the game, but need a win to remain ahead of Nevada in the Mountain West standings.
vs. Nevada (8-18, 4-11 MW)
Saturday, February 28, 2:00 p.m.
The Event Center, San Jose, Calif.
Streaming video is available on the Spartan Digital Network at www.sjsuspartans.com/video
Live stats available at www.sjsuspartans.com
Fans can view live stats of all San José State women's basketball games, home and away, by accessing the "Gametracker" feature at www.sjsuspartans.com. Click on the link on the women's basketball schedule page to follow the action.
Spartan Digital is your all-access passport to Spartan Athletics. For live and recorded video/audio of San José State women's basketball home, Mountain West (road and home) and select road contests, Spartan Digital is your home. Go to Spartan Digital at top of the Spartans Athletics home page or go to www.sjsuspartans.com/video.
Keep up with all 16 of San José State's team through social media sites Twitter and Facebook. For Twitter go to @sjsuathletics and on Facebook become friends with Sammy Spartan.
The women's basketball Twitter handle is @sjswbb and Facebook page is /SanJoseStateWBB.
Fans across the nation can now listen to every Spartans' women's home game via Stretch Internet Radio. KSJS-FM (90.5 FM, San Jose) also originates home broadcasts and select road contests.
WOMEN'S BASKETBALL TICKETS
Tickets for San José State women's basketball home games are free for all SJSU students with a valid student ID. Adult tickets are $5.00 and $3.00 for youth (12 and under).
Groups of 20 or more can buy discounted tickets at $3.00 per person by 5:00 p.m. the business day before the game via the Spartan Ticket Office at (408) 924-SJTX (7589) or (877) SJSUTIX (757-8849).
The Event Center Box Office opens two hours prior to tip-off for any weekend, holiday game or doubleheader and is open regular business hours (10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) for weekday games or weekday doubleheaders.
Parking for all San José State women's basketball games is in the University's Seventh Street Parking Garage. The Seventh Street Garage, located on the Northwest corner of San Salvador Street and Seventh Street, can be accessed through Seventh Street. Parking is $5.00.
THINK PLAY 4KAY AND PINK ON SENIOR DAY
The Spartans will celebrate the careers of three seniors, Ta'Rea Cunnigan, Chereese Thomas and Rebecca Woodberry, in their last regular-season home game on Saturday, February 28. It will also be team's annual Play 4Kay, pink game to benefit the Kay Yow Cancer Fund.
The Kay Yow Cancer Fund, in partnership with the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) and The V Foundation, is a 501 (c)(3) charitable organization committed to being a part of finding an answer in the fight against women's cancers through raising money for scientific research, assisting the under served and unifying people for a common cause.
Coach Kay Yow, former North Carolina State University head women's basketball coach, was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1987, and passed away on January 24, 2009, after facing her third bout with the disease. With the creation of the Fund, Coach Yow hoped to raise money to further cutting-edge research conducted by the nation's top doctors and medical experts to allow more and more cancer patients to have access to experimental drugs and clinical trials. Since the majority of these research projects are privately funded, these researchers desperately need our support in order for them to continue to make strides in finding a cure for cancer.
To date, the Fund has contributed over $3.9 million in support of women's cancer research.
2,000 POINTS WITHIN RANGE
Ta'Rea Cunnigan (Sr., G, Winchester, Calif.), San José State's career-scoring leader, currently sits at 1,932 points. She is 68 points from 2,000 for her career. The Spartans have a minimum of four games left in the season and if Cunnigan continues to score at her current clip, 16.8 ppg, she could reach the 2,000-point plateau in the team's first game of the 2015 Reese's Mountain West Basketball Tournament.
SINGLE-SEASON SCORING MARK IS THREATENED
The 2013-14 edition of the Spartans were the most prolific scoring team in program history. They surpassed the 2,300-point mark for the first time finishing the year with 2,308 points, an average 76.9 points per game. The 2014-15 Spartans are on pace to top last year's mark. The team has scored 2,025 points through 26 games, an average of 77.9 per game. At this pace, and with a minimum of four games left on the schedule, the team will break the program's single-season scoring record in the first game of the 2015 Reese's Mountain West Basketball Tournament.
BAKER HITS A CAREER-HIGH 20 POINTS AGAINST COLORADO STATE
Aniya Baker (So., G, Perris, Calif.) had herself and game and a first half to remember against Colorado State (2/25). Baker scored a career-high 20 points for the game. In the first half dropped five three-pointers on the Rams and a total of six for the game. She went 6-for-10 from downtown, including 5-for-7 in the first 20 minutes. Her last three of the first half, with 27 left, staked SJSU to a 45-44 halftime lead.
BYRD MOVES INTO 2ND PLACE ON CAREER BLOCKS LIST
With a pair of first-half blocked shots against Colorado State (2/25), Riana Byrd (Jr., F, Richmond, Calif.) moved past Rhoda Chew's (148 blocks from 1982-85) for second place on the program's career shot blocks list. Byrd has turned away 149 shots in 85 career games. Byrd is seven block from equaling the San José State's all-time leader Elinor Banks' (1978-81), who rejected 156 shot attempts in her Spartans career.
PUTTING UP POINTS
The 2014-15 Spartans are one of the highest scoring teams in the nation and have led the Mountain West from the opening week of the season. The Spartans currently rank 12th (77.9 ppg) in the nation and last week dropped out of the top-10 in the nation for the first time this year. For parts of four weeks, from December 6 through December 23, San José State was the top scoring team in the nation.
TIME TO MOVE PAST 11
For the fourth consecutive year, the Spartans have reached the 11-win mark. However, in the past three years, they ended the season with that total. The last time San José State won more than 11 games in a season came in 2005-06, when they went 13-15. The last time the team finished with a winning record was in 2004-05, when they ended the year 18-12. Sitting at 11-15 going into its match up at Colorado State, San José State still has the opportunity to reach the 2005-06 squad's total.
BYRD BOUNDS UP THE REBOUND LIST
With six rebounds versus Boise State (1/21) Riana Byrd (Jr., F, Richmond, Calif.) secured third place on the program's career rebounding list. To date, Byrd has ripped down 782 rebounds in 85 games (9.2/g). She began the season in ninth place with 603 career boards and has moved up six spots, but she has some work to do to reach Rhoda Chew (946 rebounds from 1982-85) in second place.
At her current pace, Byrd would finish her career as just the second Spartan to reach the 1,000-point/1,000-rebound plateau. She would join Elinor Banks (1,672 points/1,062 rebounds - 1978-81) as the only players in program history to reach the milestone.
SPARTANS SNAP OVERTIME JINX
With its 80-77 overtime win at Nevada (2/7), the Spartans snapped a five-game losing streak in games which could not be decided in regulation. Before the game in Reno, the last time San José State had won an overtime contest was in the 2004-05 season, when it defeated SMU 63-62 in overtime.
This season the Spartans have lost three times in overtime, at Utah (100-87), at Colorado (97-89) and vs. UNLV (72-68). In the history of the program, which began in the 1974-75 season, the Spartans have played in 23 overtime contests and have an 11-12 record in those games.
PRESSURE...SPARTANS 9TH IN STEALS & 15TH IN THE NCAA IN TURNOVER MARGIN
Through 26 games the Spartans have shown what their pressure defense is capable of doing. SJSU has forced its opponents to turn the ball over 542 times and in those, made 298 steals. San José State has made those opponent miscues pay off to the tune of a 508-320 advantage in points off turnovers. Nationally, the team ranks 15th in turnover margin at 5.96 and 9th in steals per game nabbing 11.5 per game. The team leads the Mountain West in both categories.
FIRST OFF THE BENCH
Rachol West (So., F, Bakersfield, Calif.) has doubled her per game scoring average, from 3.3 to 6.6. It took West just 12 games to surpass her 29-game point total from a year ago. She ranks second on the team in 3-pointers (35) and is the leading shooter from distance (.354). A 19-point outburst against Sacramento State (12/22) in which she drained 5-of-8 treys and grabbed five rebounds in just 19 minutes of work earned her first Mountain West Women's Basketball Player of the Week honor.
34...IT'S A MAGIC NUMBER
Former San José State career scoring leader Ricky Berry, who amassed 1,767 points in his career, wore #34. Ta'Rea Cunnigan (Sr., G, Winchester, Calif.), who passed Berry with a 25-point outburst against Boise State to take sole possession of the school's career scoring title, also wears jersey #34.
The Wolf Pack ended a three-games slide on Wednesday night with a 74-42 destruction of Air Force and enters its match-up against the Spartans with a 8-18 record, 4-11 in Mountain West games.
Nevada is under the direction of seventh-year head coach Jane Albright. Entering the 2014-15 season, Albright brought a 90-100 record with the Wolf Pack and in 30 years as a head coach she is 487-412. The Air Force win was the 495th of Albright's career.
The Wolf Pack offense is led by senior center Mimi Mungedi, who tops the squad in points (12.5/g), rebounds (9.5/g) and blocks (2.4/g). Mungedi leads the MW in rebounds and field goal percentage (.542). Iman Lathan, a sophomore guard, leads the team in assists (2.4/g).
This will be the 28th meeting between these programs in which San José State owns a 25-22 advantage. In the match up earlier this season in Reno, the Spartans defeated Nevada 80-77 in overtime. In games contested in San Jose, SJSU holds a 14-8 advantage, but are just 1-6 in the last seven games played in on Walt McPherson Court.