San Jose, Calif. - In the team's final non-conference game of the regualr season, the San Jose State women's basketball team looks to stop a four-game skid when they travel to Cal State Fullerton to take on the Titans.
SAN JOSE STATE UNIVERSITY (3-7)
at CAL STATE FULLERTON (2-8)
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22, 2012, 3:00 P.M.
TITAN GYM, FULLERTON, CALIF.
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SCORING CONTINUES TO GO UP
Through eight games the Spartans are scoring 66.1 points per game. That is good for third in the WAC and 109th in the nation. The 66.1 points are the most a San Jose State team has scored at this point in the season since the 2003-04 team averaged 69.2. Since head coach Tim La Kose took over the progam last season, the scoring per game has risen by more nearly 20 points per game (46.8-to-66.1).
TURNING UP THE PRESSURE
With an eye on creating defensive pressure, the Spartans are among the best in the nation in taking the ball away from their opponents. Among 343 Division I schools, the Spartans are ranked 11th in the nation in steals, averaging 13.7 takeaways a game.
Among WAC schools, the Spartans are third in steals with three players ranked in the top-10. Ta'Rea Cunnigan (So., G, Winchester, Calif.) is averaging 4.1 steals second in the conference. Chereese Thomas (Jr., G, Dublin, Calif.) and Classye James (So., G, Palo Alto, Calif.), seventh and eighth in the conference, are are averaging 2.3 and 2.29 steals per game, respectively.
On a national stage, Cunnigan is eighth-best at picking her opponents pockets.
47 IS THE NUMBER ON THE BOARDS
The Spartans have won three games this season and in each win they outrebounded their opponent and their rebounding total was 47. In its seven losses, San Jose State has been outrebounded failing to reach 40 boards while their opponents have exceeded 40 rebounds in those games.
BYRD TURNING SHOTS AWAY AND GRABBING THE MISSES
Riana Byrd (Fr., F, Richmond, Calif.) leads the WAC in blocked shots with 24 overall, an average of 2.4 per game. Her per game average ranks 28th in the nation. She has recorded at least one block in each game this year and had a season-high six at USF (12/15), one shy of the program's all-time record.
She is second in the WAC in rebounds per game (9.6) and her 96 total rebounds are the most in the conference. Her 3.70 offensive rebounds per game ranks second in the league and she is also second in defensive rebounding (5.9).
SPARTANS THE YOUNGEST IN DIVISION I
In a list compiled by Sports Information Directors across America it has been determined that San Jose State is the youngest team in Division I. The list is based upon the total years played in college (Division I, II, II, NAIA or Junior College) by members of each school's team.
The Spartans return one player from last season, Ta'Rea Cunnigan who has one year of college experience. Classye James had one year of college experience (Oregon State) before transfering and sitting out last year and Chereese Thomas was at Ohlone College for the past two seasons. That totals four years of experience on a roster of nine athletes (0.444 years of experience).
Temple and SIU-Carbondale tied for second on the list with 0.727 years of college experience (eight years season on rosters of 11 players).
LAST TIME OUT
The Spartans surrendered a season-high 56 points by halftime and went on to lose to the San Francisco Dons 92-64 in War Memorial Gym (12/15).
The teams were tied 15-15 with 12:10 to play in the first half. Then a 19-to-4 USF run over the next five minutes put the Dons up by 15 with 7:08 to go.
The Spartans further put themselves behind the eight ball with four players picking up three fouls each in the first 20 minutes. Those fouls sent the Dons to the free throw line 20 times. They hit 18 attempts compared to San Jose State's 8 out of 12.
San Jose State was dominated the boards 55-to-32, including 40 defensive rebounds by USF. They limited the Spartans to one-shot possessions again and again.
The teams were nearly identical in shot attempts 67-to-64. But San Francisco hit 32 of their 67 (47.8 percent) to San Jose State's 21-of-64 (32.8 percent).
Ta'Rea Cunnigan's (So., G, Winchester, Calif.) 16 points led San Jose State. Emily Schill (Fr., F, Tecoma, Australia) had 12 and Jamiyla DeBoise (Fr., F, Houston, Texas), in her best game this season, had 10. Riana Byrd (Fr., F, Richmond, Calif.) had 11 boards and six blocks.
SCOUTING CAL STATE FULLERTON
The Titans are 2-8 after dropping their last seven in a row including a 54-36 loss at Oregon State last week.
Cal State Fullerton is being outscored by its opponents by 6.6 points per game (57.2-to-63.8) and are being outshot from the field and from behind the 3-point line.
The Titans are led by sophomore guard Chante Miles who is averaging 13.6 points. She is also the team leader in assists and steals. Kathleen Iwuoha, a sophomore forward, is the team's top rebounder (7.3 pg) who also scores at a 6.9 points per game clip.
Marsha Foster is in her fourth season leading the Titans women's basketball program. Entering 2012-13 she had a 35-57 record in Fullerton and an overall record of 38-79.
The two teams have met 36 times. The Titans hold a comanding 27-9 advantage in the all-time series. In games contested on the Titans home floor, San Jose State is 3-11. However the Spartans hve won those three games in the last eight trips to Fullerton. The last meeting was an 81-65 Titans win in 2011-12.