San Jose, Calif. - After a 10-day break, to take fall semester finals, the San José State women's basketball team returns to action on Saturday afternoon in War Memorial Gym against Bay-Area rival the San Francisco Dons.
at San Francisco (8-2)
Saturday, December 20, 2:00 p.m.
War Memorial Gym, San Francisco, 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.
OFFENSE...WE GOT OFFENSE...IT LEADS THE NATION!
The Spartans are scoring at a 92.3 points per game clip, which is the highest scoring average in the nation. San José State is in rarefied air among the likes of No. 9 Baylor (91.8 ppg), No. 25 DePaul (89.6 ppg), No. 2 UConn (89.3 ppg) and No. 5 Notre Dame (89.1 ppg) in the top-5 in scoring. Against Columbia (11/16) the team set a program and conference record for points in a game, when they dropped 119 on the Lions, which is the fourth highest single-game point total in the NCAA this year.
CAN YOU HANDLE PRESSURE...SPARTANS 2ND IN THE NCAA IN TURNOVER MARGIN
Through nine games the Spartans have shown an inkling of what their pressure defense is capable. SJSU has forced its opponents to turn the ball over 230 times and in those, made 120 steals. San José State made those opponent miscues pay off to the tune of a 254-112 advantage in points off turnovers. Nationally, the team ranks second in turnover margin at +11.89 and 12th in steals per game grabbing 13.0 per game.
SHARING IS CARING...SAN JOSE STATE RANKS 27TH NATIONALLY IN ASSISTS
At 16.9 assists per game the Spartans are ranked second in the Mountain West Conference and are 27th in the nation. Aniya Baker (So, PG, Perris, Calif.) leads the team with 4.9 assists per game, which is good for third among MW performers and 50th nationally. Chereese Thomas (Gr., PG, Dublin, Calif.) is also in the top-10 in the conference, seventh, at 3.2 assists per outing.
THREES ARE THERE FOR THE TAKING...SJSU IS 9TH IN THE NATION IN MADE 3-POINTERS
San José State is hitting an average of 9.0 shots from beyond the arc per game, which ranks ninth in the nation, but taking and hitting threes are nothing new under head coach Jamie Craighead.
With 245 made 3-pointers and 793 attempts, the 2013-14 Spartans shattered the program's previous marks in each category. The previous record of 146 3-pointers in the 27 games (1999-00) was equaled in just 20 games (at UNLV 1/29) last season. In addition, they passed the previous record for attempts in a season (493 in 29 games in 2000-01) in that same game.
Both marks set Mountain West Conference records as well.
CAREER FREE THROW RECORD FALLS IN UC DAVIS WIN
By hitting each of her six free throw attempts in the Spartans win over UC Davis (12/10), Ta'Rea Cunnigan (Sr., G, Winchester, Calif.) set a new San José State career free throw record. Cunnigan passed Cricket Williams (466 from 2001-04) to establish the new record 471...and counting. Cunnigan's 471 made free throws are the record for the school (men's or women's program). She glided past the men's record, Adrian Oliver's 442 free throws from 2009-11, in the team's win at UC Irvine (11/22).
CUNNIGAN NEARS SAN JOSÉ STATE SCORING RECORDS
Ta'Rea Cunnigan (Sr., G, Winchester, Calif.) ranks fourth on the program's career scoring list with 1,643 points. She enters the game against San Francisco 117 points behind all-time women's scoring champion Karen Mason (1,760 points from 1978-81) and 124 behind Ricky Berry (1,767 points from 1986-88) for the school's all-time record.
She is closing in on Elinor Banks (1,666 points from 1978-81) in third place on the program's career scoring list. Just past Banks is Cricket Williams (1,672 points from 2001-04), who occupies second place. Then Cunnigan will begin a final assault on the women's and then the school's all-time records.
EVERYBODY BRINGS SOMETHING TO THE PARTY!
In 2014-15, San José State is getting production up and down its lineup. Each of the 11 Spartans who have played in the first nine games are averaging double digit minutes. The bench has scored 310 of the team's 831 points; 38% of the total production. In four of its nine games, all 11 have been in the scoring column and in four of the other five 9 players have scored.
CUNNIGAN ABOUT TO TAKE THE NEXT STEP UP IN THREE MORE CAREER CATEGORIES
In addition to the scoring record, in which Ta'Rea Cunnigan (Sr., G, Winchester, Calif.) is 23 points from third place (Elinor Banks - 1,672) and 27 from second (Cricket Williams - 1,676), she is poised to move up a spot on three more career lists very shortly.
Cunnigan is four 3-pointers from Williams for sixth place on the 3-pointers made list. With her next steal, she will move into fourth place on the all-time steals list passing Kari Steele (226 from 1994-97). Finally, she is three field goal attempts from Hulett Brooks for fifth on the career list (554).
CUNNIGAN AMONG ACTIVE CAREER LEADERS IN THE NCAA
Among Division I women's basketball players, Ta'Rea Cunnigan (Sr., G, Winchester, Calif.) ranks first in free throw attempts (636) and free throws made (471). She is sixth in steal average (2.28/g) and eighth in steals (226). Her 1,380 field goal attempts are 10th and she is the seventh leading scorer among active player with 1,643 career points.
SPARTANS HOLIDAY GIFT TO THE COMMUNITY
In the spirit of the season, the San José State women's basketball team is inviting the entire community of San Jose to its December 22 game against Sacramento State...FREE OF CHARGE! It's the program's gift to San Jose. Game time is at 2:00 p.m. in The Event Center.
SCOUTING SAN FRANCISCO
The Dons are a member of the West Coast Conference, and come into their match up with San José State with an 8-2 record. In its last game, USF defeated the North Texas Mean Green 60-42 in War Memorial Gym. The combined record of its opponents in the Dons' six Division I wins are 20-37. The team's two losses came against squads with a combined record of 15-4.
San Francisco is under the direction of fifth-year head coach Jennifer Azzi. She brought a 33-88 record with the program into this season.
The Dons have three players scoring in double figures. They are led by a triple-threat, junior forward Taylor Proctor, who tops the squad in points (13.7/g), rebounds (8.1/g) and assists (2.2/g). Rachel Howard, a sophomore guard, is averaging 10.2 ppg and leads the team with 15 made 3-pointers. Finally, junior guard Zhane Dikes, is scoring 10.1 ppg and is second on the team at 6.4 rebounds per game.
This will be the 40th meeting between these programs, with Spartans holding an 22-17 lead in the all-time series. In games on the hilltop, the Dons hold 10-8 advantage. USF has won the last three meeting on their home court, with the last San José State win coming in 2004-05, a 48-47 final.