San Jose, Calif. - The San José State women’s basketball team, having completed one of the toughest non-conference slates in program history and rejuvenated following the Christmas holiday break, open Mountain West Conference play in Logan, Utah against the Utah State Aggies.
Game # 12
San José State Spartans (2-9)
Utah State Aggies (5-6)
Wednesday, December 30, 6:00 p.m. (MT)
Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, Logan, Utah
Streaming video and 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.
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Fans across the nation and internationally can listen to every Spartans’ women’s home game and select road games via Stretch Internet Radio. Jess Knaster and Ta’Rea Cunnigan, the leading scorer in San José State basketball history, bring you all the action. You can access the broadcast through the women’s basketball schedule page at www.sjsuspartans.com.
TOP SCORERS MATCH-UP IN LOGAN
When the Spartans and Aggies meet on December 30, the top-two scorers in the Mountain West face off for the first of two times this year. Utah State guard Funda Nakkasoglu tops the league at 20.4 ppg and Dezz Ramos (Jr., PG, West Valley, Utah) is just behind her at 20.1 points a game.
TOP SCORING TEAMS MATCH UP IN LOGAN...AS WELL
When the Spartans and Aggies meet on December 30, the top-two scoring teams in the Mountain West face off for the first of two times this year. San José State leads the league at 77.9 points per game and Utah State is second at 72.2 ppg.
Since the 1989-90 season, the Spartans are 10-14 in conference openers (Big West, WAC and Mountain West). In those 24 years, SJSU began its conference slate on the road 11 times. In those games, San Jose State has posted a 4-7 record. Twice those road match-ups have been in Logan, Utah. The Spartans one the first meeting (63-51 in 2005-06) but lost the second (68-58 in 2007-08).
IT’S LADD TIME
MyMy Ladd (So., G, Seattle, Wash.) has emerged as a dangerous option for the Spartans on the offensive end of the court. A career 5.0 ppg scorer, in the last four games Ladd has tallied three double-figure scoring games and averaged 10.1 ppg over the stretch while grabbing 5.0 rebounds. In the last four games she has shot .609 from the floor, .667 from three-point range and .722 from the line.
Jasmine Smith (Jr., F, Burbank, Calif.) has three double doubles this season, which leads the team, and her most recent came in the team’s last road game, 10 points and 12 rebounds at UOP (12/12). For her career she has 12 double doubles with is the most by any active player in the Mountain West.
RAMOS NAMED PRESEASON MOUNTAIN WEST NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR
Dezz Ramos (Jr., PG, West Valley, Utah), who averaged 10.4 points, 3.5 assists, 2.8 rebounds and 1.2 steals in two seasons at Weber State and sat out 2014-15 due to NCAA transfer rules, earned MW Preseason Newcomer of the Year honors, by a vote of the conference coaches and media representatives last month. Ramos is the first Spartan to earn the honor.
RAMOS THE TIP OF THE SPEAR
Dezz Ramos (Jr., PG, West Valley, Utah) is showing why the voters for MW Newcomer of the Year got their selection correct. She leads the team in scoring at 20.1 point per game and ranks second in the Mountain West. Versus South Dakota (12/8) she erupted for 31 points. It was her Spartan high and the second best single-game scoring effort in her collegiate career.
MORE ON RAMOS
In addition to her scoring prowess, Dezz Ramos (Jr., PG, West Valley, Utah) is lighting up the Mountain West in several other categories. Entering this week’s play she leads the conference in three-point field goals (3.1/g), second in three-point percentage (.484), third in free throw percentage (.844), sixth in assists (3.9/g) and ninth in assist/turnover ratio (1.2:1).
FROM BEYOND THE ARC...THERE ARE NO RED LIGHTS
In 2014-15, the Spartans led the Mountain West in three-point attempts (872) and makes (271). That’s an average of 27.3 attempts and 8.5 makes per game and 2015-16 looks to be even higher. In 11 games the team had hoisted 301 threes (27.4/g) and has drained 96 (8.7/g). Both numbers lead the conference and the 8.7 makes per game is 14th best in the nation. SJSU is also ranked 12th in three-point attempts and 15th in total three pointers made.
Nyre Harris (Sr., G, Stockton, Calif.) is a team captain and is leading by example. Harris tops the team with 2.7 steals per game and 41 defensive rebounds. In addition, she second in minutes (28.1/g) and assists (26), third in total rebounds (5.6/g) and offensive rebounds (21). Harris has started every game and ranks fourth on the team at 9.6 point per game. In the opener, against Southern Oregon (11/13), Harris picked up the first double double of her college career scoring 11 points and grabbing 11 rebounds. At Pacific (12/12) she got her second with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
Harris, a 5-8 shooting guard, is tied for the conference lead in steals the 16th leading rebounder in the Mountain West.
Riana Byrd (Sr., C, Richmond, Calif.) is a good season away from becoming just the second player in San José State women’s basketball history to score 1,000 points and grab 1,000 rebounds in a career. Averaging both 9.0 points and rebounds per game over her three years at SJSU, Byrd currently has with 894 points and 876 rebounds. At her current pace she could reach both milestones and join the 1,000/1,000 club later this season.
- SMITH GOES TO THE HOOP AND BOARDS
Jasmine Smith (Jr., F, Burbank, Calif.) is averaging 11.0 points and 6.2 rebounds this year, which is second and first on the team, respectively. She is shooting a team-best .520, which ranks 75th in the nation and eighth the Mountain West.
Her scoring average is the 18th best in the MW and she is the 10th rebounds and is sixth in offensive boards (3.3/g).
SCOUTING UTAH STATE
The Aggies come into the game with a 5-6 record. They are the Spartans opponent for its conference opener for the second straight season; last season SJSU defeated Utah State 62-58 on Dec. 31. In games on their home floor, the team is 3-2, and most recently fell to Utah (64-61) in its non-conference finale. They average 72.2 points a game and have been outscored by opponents by an average of half a point per game.
Funda Nakkasoglu leads the Utah State offense and the Mountain West with a 20.4 ppg average. She is the only player averaging double figure scoring this year. Tijana Djukic is scoring 9.5 points per game and leads the team with 6.6 rebounds per outing. Nakkasoglu tops the team with 50 assists and ranks second on the team with 16 steals.
Jerry Finkbeiner is in his fourth season leading the Aggies program. He brought a 515-295 28-year career record into the season and was 41-53 at Utah State.
THE SERIES WITH UTAH STATE
This will be the 23rd meeting between the Spartans and Aggies. San José State trails in the all-time series 15-7 In the 10 meetings in Logan, SJSU is just 1-9. San José State won the first meeting, 63-51 in the 2005-06 season, but have been shut out since. On the brighter side the Spartans have won two of the last three meetings, including eliminating the Aggies in the first round of the 2015 Mountain West Basketball Tournament, 99-85.