March 4, 2014
UC Riverside (6-21, 2-12) at UC Davis (13-14, 8-6)
Thursday, March 6, 2014
Game Coverage: Live Stats | Audio (KDVS 90.3 FM) | Video | UC Davis Notes | UCR Notes
TIP-OFF: It all comes down to this. The UC Davis women’s basketball team (13-14 overall, 8-6 in the Big West Conference) makes its final push for a top-four finish and a first-round bye in next week’s Big West Conference Tournament with a pair of home games to close out the regular season this weekend at The Pavilion. Winners of their last three straight, the Aggies welcome UC Riverside on Thursday (March 6) at 7 p.m., before UC Irvine (March 8) visits for a 2 p.m. matinee tip, prior to which, UC Davis will honor its lone senior, Idit Oryon, as part of “Senior Day” festivities.
IN THE POLLS: Neither UC Davis, UC Riverside, nor UC Irvine, are ranked in the national polls entering the week.
#FORGENEVIEVE: The UC Davis women’s basketball team joined in the fight against breast cancer while honoring one of its own, hosting its annual “Pink Game” on Saturday, Feb. 22, during its Big West Conference clash versus Hawaii as pink clad fans showed up in support of the cause as the Aggies rallied for a, 56-52, victory over the Rainbow Wahine.
UC Davis has partnered with the UC Davis Health System to collect donations toward breast cancer research at its cancer center in honor of former Aggies’ women’s basketball player Genevieve Costello, who lost her brief but courageous battle with the disease on May 7, 2013, at the age of 26.
Those who wish to donate can participate by visiting https://secure.ucdmc.ucdavis.edu/giving/donations/online.html, filling out all the required fields, selecting “Cancer Center” in the “Please Select Recipient” drop down menu, and adding “Genevieve Costello Breast Cancer Research Fund” under the “Special Instruction for This Gift” section.
BE A FOLLOWER: Fans can keep up with the latest in UC Davis Athletics by “liking” us on Facebook (facebook.com/UCDavisAggies) and following us on Twitter (@UCDavisAggies). You can also “like” the women’s basketball program on Facebook by visiting facebook.com/UCDavisWomensBasketball as well as follow them on Twitter (@UCDavisWBB) and Instagram (instagram.com/ucdaviswomensbasketball). Game Day in-game updates are also available on Twitter by following us @UCDavisInGame.
“CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?”: Thanks to a partnership with Arizona-based Stretch Internet, live Internet audio will be available for both of this week’s games, as well as broadcast locally on KDVS 90.3 FM with Greg Wong and Sammy Meckler on the call. Visit the women’s basketball schedule page at UCDavisAggies.com to access the links.
“YOU ARE LOOKING LIVE...”: Bringing together live and on-demand video from each of the Big West Conference’s nine member institutions, BigWest.TV covers Big West sports, press conferences, interviews, and features, including every home and conference contest. Now in its 10th year, BigWest.TV will again air all of the Aggies home and conference clashes FOR FREE during the 2013-14 campaign. Log on to www.bigwest.org/thisweek for weekly schedules or visit the women’s basketball schedule page at UCDavisAggies.com.
I NEED STATS, STAT!: Live stats are available for all of UC Davis’ home games, as well as selected road contests, throughout the year. Follow along by accessing the links on the women’s basketball schedule at UCDavisAggies.com.
GOT TICKETS?: Single session tickets for the 2014 Big West Conference women’s basketball tournament will go on sale to the general public on Feb. 25 at 10 a.m. via the Honda Center Box Office in Anaheim, Ticketmaster.com, all Ticketmaster retail outlets, or by calling 800-745-3000. Tickets range from $10-$22 for general admission seats for the women’s tournament games while Big West students with a valid student ID and youth ages 3-17 can purchase a ticket for $5 for the women’s first round and quarterfinal games in Long Beach. All-session tickets are also available for $69 with premium all-session tickets located in the first four rows of seating available for $149. The women’s first-round (March 11) and quarterfinal (March 12) games will be played at the Walter Pyramid in Long Beach, Calif., with the semifinals (March 14) and championship game (March 15) to follow at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. For more information, please visit http://www.bigwest.org/sports/wbball/info/champs/.
BIG WEST BIG PICTURE: UC Davis enters the final week of the regular season holding on to sole possession of fourth place in the Big West standings with two games to play. The Aggies are one game ahead of a fifth-place log jam that features Long Beach State, UC Irvine, and Cal State Fullerton -- all at 7-7 in conference play -- but stand just one game behind third-place Hawaii and a game-and-a-half back of second-place Cal Poly for a No. 2 seed and a pair of bye’s into the tournament semifinals. Cal State Northridge, which is 11-4 in conference play, has clinched at least a share of the Big West regular season title and the No. 1 tournament seed.
A QUICK LOOK AT THE HIGHLANDERS: UC Riverside enters the week with a 6-21 overall record and a 2-12 mark in Big West Conference play for ninth place, but are just a game behind UC Santa Barbara (3-11) for the eighth, and final, tournament berth... the Highlanders lost their only contest of the week last Saturday, falling at Cal State Northridge, 77-75... UCR has lost two straight -- and 18 of its last 20 -- posting wins over UC Irvine (87-75) and UC Santa Barbara (67-57) on Feb. 15 and Feb. 20, respectively, during that stretch... At 18.9 ppg, Brittany Crain is the Big West Conference’s leading scorer entering the final week of the regular season, shooting .463 from the floor and just under 40 percent from beyond the arc... Simone DeCoud (11.7 ppg), Annelise Ito (10.5 ppg), and Natasha Hadley (10.2 ppg) also register double figures in the scoring column... UC Riverside averages 67.5 ppg and shoots .407 from the field while opponents are averaging 74.8 ppg and are shooting .411 from the floor against the Highlanders’ defense.
THE SERIES: UC Davis leads the all-time series with UC Riverside, 29-19, dating back to the 1971-72 season, and is 9-7 against the Highlanders since joining the Big West as full-fledged Division I members in 2007-08... the Aggies won the first meeting between the two teams earlier this year on the road, 77-67, back on Jan. 16 at the SRC Arena... UC Davis has won the last six-straight meetings with UC Riverside and is looking to post a sweep of the regular season series for the third-straight season... the Aggies are 12-7 at home against the Highlanders (with the location of two games in the series unknown), including a 4-2 mark as Big West rivals, having won the last two contests at The Pavilion.
A QUICK LOOK AT THE ANTEATERS: UC Irvine enters the week with a 14-14 overall record and 7-7 in conference play -- one of three times tied for fifth place in the league standings entering the final week... the Anteaters host Cal State Fullerton on Thursday before heading to Northern California to take on UC Davis... UCI had its brief two-game winning streak snapped with an 92-87 loss in overtime at Cal Poly last Saturday, following a four-point, 77-73, win at UC Santa Barbara... the Anteaters are 8-2 within the friendly confines of the Bren Events Center, but are just 5-11 on the road this season, losing nine of their last 11... Camille Buckley is averaging a double-double of 18 points and 11.2 rebounds per game while shooting .463 from the floor to pace the offense... Jennifer Tsurumoto is also in double figures at 13.3 ppg... UC Irvine averages 72.9 ppg and shoots .380 from the floor while opponents are averaging 72.5 ppg and shooting .419 from the field this season.
THE SERIES: UC Davis leads the all-time series with UC Irvine, 19-5, but the Anteaters have won four of the last five meetings (all by single digits) between the two schools, including a, 79-73, win in overtime in Orange County earlier this year... prior to the Anteaters’ recent dominance in the series, the Aggies had won 12-consecutive meetings from 2005-11, and 18 of the first 19 dating back to the 1975-76 season... UC Davis is 8-3 against UCI at home (with the location of one game unknown), but has lost two straight at The Pavilion in 2012 (68-59) and 2013 (70-57).
MILESTONE ACHIEVED: The 16th player in the history of the women’s basketball program at UC Davis to accomplish the feat, junior Sydnee Fipps reached the milestone 1,000 career points on Feb. 1 with a three-pointer in the first half against UC Santa Barbara at The Pavilion to become the first Aggie to reach 1,000 career points since Kasey Riecks (1,071) in 2011-12. A complete list of UC Davis 1,000-point scorers is below:
1. Carol Rische (‘79-83) - 1,711
2. Staci Stevens (‘85-88) - 1,417
3. Jessica Campbell (‘03-06, ‘07-08) - 1,413
4. Paige Mintun (‘06-11) - 1,382
5. Aimee Conner (‘89-93) - 1,261
6. Ellen Porshneva (‘03-06, 07-08) - 1,251
7. Sydnee Fipps (‘11-pres.) - 1,158
8. Kari Sivesind (‘92-96) - 1,145
t9. Jennifer Gross (‘93-97) - 1,143
t9. Lisa Jo Kellogg (‘88-91) - 1,143
11. Colleen Turnbull (‘99-03) - 1,137
12. Brenda Wyneken (‘81-84) - 1,103
13. Sarah Allen (‘98-03) - 1,089
14. Des Abeyta (‘96-00) - 1,080
15. Kasey Riecks (‘08-12) - 1,071
16. Kendall Greene (‘92-96) - 1,027
#WINNING: UC Davis’ 13 wins overall and eight Big West Conference victories eclipsed the Aggies win totals in both categories from all of last season and the most since they finished 17-13 overall and 9-7 in the Big West during the 2011-12 campaign.
WE SURVEYED 100 PEOPLE...: And the top three Aggies are on the board. Three UC Davis players are listed among the NCAA’s top 100 individuals in various categories, while UC Davis (as a team) also stands among the top 100 programs in three statistical rankings entering the week. Junior Kelsey Harris stands among the best in two different categories: ranking 37th in the nation in three-pointers per game (2.78 pg) while standing 31st in three-point percentage (.414). Molly Greubel adds to the list, ranking 38th in the NCAA in free throw percentage (.857), while teammate Sydnee Fipps is 83rd in scoring at 18.1 ppg and 100th with her 490 points. As a team, the Aggies are ranked 11th in the country in free throw percentage (.770), 39th in three-pointers per game (7.6 pg), and 90th in field goal percentage (.422).
“I WAS BUT THE LEARNER, NOW *I* AM THE MASTER”: With her 41 points last week on the Central Coast, junior forward Sydnee Fipps made another huge jump up the UC Davis scoring charts, leaping past three more all-time Aggie greats to grab sole possession of seventh. Of those three, perhaps the most notable is her current head coach Jennifer Gross, who entered the year in a tie for eighth with 1,143 points. Fipps enters the week needing 93 more points to match Ellen Porshneva (2003-06, 2007-08) for sixth.
DON’T CALL ME ‘JUNIOR!’: Fipps’ scoring exploits last week allowed the junior to etch her name in the record books for a second-straight year as the Mariposa, Calif., native supplanted Staci Stevens as the highest-scoring junior in the history of the program with 490 points (and counting). Fipps needs just 22 more points to match her sophomore-record 512 scored in 2012-13 -- a total that also ranks third on the school’s single-season list. With 10 more points, Fipps would collect only the fifth, 500-point season by an Aggie, joining single-season record-holder Stevens (600 in 1987-88), Aimee Conner (561 in 1992-93), and Sarah Allen (508 in 2002-03), along with her sophomore year.
“CEIL” THE DEAL: Sophomore forward Celia Marfone logged her third double-double of the season against Cal Poly, reaching double figures for the sixth time this season with her 12 points and collecting a career-high 12 rebounds in the upset of the Mustangs, surpassing her previous high on the boards of 10 set at Hofstra earlier this year. However, her biggest shots of the season may have come in the final two minutes of the contest as her left corner three-pointer with 1:24 to play erased a two-point deficit and her “and one” on UC Davis’ next trip down the court helped the Aggies pull away.
DOUBLE DOUBLE-DOUBLE: That’s a lot of doubles. When sophomore forward Alyson Doherty (22 points and 10 rebounds) and classmate Celia Marfone (12 points and 12 rebounds) doubled-up on Cal Poly in the Aggies’ eight-point win last week, it marked the first time since the 2004-05 season that UC Davis has had a pair of double-doubles in the same game. That season, Jessica Campbell (10 points and 11 rebounds) and Lara Gray (14 points and 13 rebounds) accomplished the feat in the Aggies’ season opener at Louisiana-Lafayette on Nov. 19.
ALYSON DOHER-”THREE”: For only the second time this season, Doherty was deadly from downtown, sinking her second three-pointer of the year early in the second-half against Cal Poly to help her team rally from a seven-point deficit en route to a 77-69 win over the league co-leading Mustangs. It was the fifth, three-pointer of Doherty’s career and her first since she drained one against San Francisco on Nov. 29 -- ironically, in the very same gym.
NOBODY’S PERFECT: However, the Aggies’ Molly Greubel did her best to be last Saturday at UC Santa Barbara. The sophomore finished her day perfect from the field against the Gauchos, ending 4-for-4 from the floor -- including sinking her only three-point attempt of the game -- and 5-for-5 from the line (to go with three assists against no turnovers) en route to her fifth double-digit scoring performance of the season. Greubel is the third UC Davis player to finish perfect from the field this season (with a minimum of three makes), but the only one of the three to have made all their field goals, three-pointers, and free throws. Earlier in the year, sophomore Lauren Beyer had the best perfect day against San Jose State, finishing an unblemished 5-for-5 from the floor and was joined in that game by junior Brianna Salvatore, who was 3-for-3 from the field -- including 2-for-2 from three-point range.
HARRIS HOISTS UP THE THREE: Of Kelsey Harris’ 98 field goal makes this season, 75 of those have come from beyond the arc, inching her closer to the top spot in the UC Davis single-season record books. Harris enters the week ranked third on the list, just one back of Lori Hurlbut’s 76 three-pointers in 1999 within reach of the single-season record held by Karen Boisvert, and her 81 three-pointers, in 1991.
SHE’S JUST ALY FROM THE BLOCK: Thanks to her three blocks this past weekend on the Central Coast, Doherty moved into ninth place on the school’s single-season list with 31 -- just three back of Staci Stevens (34 in 1986-87) for eighth -- and, coupled with her 27 blocks as a freshman last season, moved past Jessica Campbell (2003-06, 2007-08) for ninth on the career list -- six behind Kari Sivesind (64 from 1992-96) for eighth and seven behind Lauren Juric (65 from 2008-12) for seventh all time. Doherty ranks second in the Big West Conference this season with 1.29 blocks per game while her four blocks against Long Beach State on Jan. 11 were a career high and were the most since Juric knocked down four shots against Cal Poly on March 1, 2012.
MISS CONSISTENT: Since being held to single digits on Dec. 8 at Hofstra, Fipps has railed off 19 consecutive double-digit scoring performances with her 23-point effort at Cal Poly and 18 more at UC Santa Barbara last week, averaging 19.4 ppg over that span (including 12, 20-point performances) and has reached double figures in all but two games in 2013-14 (eight points in the season opener against USC being the other), leading, or sharing the team lead, in scoring in 21 of the team’s 27 contests.
20-POINTS OF LIGHT: Fipps registered her 14th, 20-point performance of the year (and 21st of her career) last Thursday in UC Davis’ win at Cal Poly and, if she keeps it up, the junior could challenge the school record for most 20-point games in a season, currently held by Staci Stevens and her 18, 20-point performances during her senior campaign in 1987-88.
NO SUCH THING AS A FREE LUNCH: However, there are such things as free points if you hit your free throws, which the Aggies have done with regularity this season. UC Davis enters this week of Big West Conference play shooting a league-high .770 from the line -- a total that also has them among the top 20 teams in the nation in that category (No. 11) as of March 3. Sophomore Molly Greubel (3rd - .857) and junior Sydnee Fipps (4th - .813) rank among the top-10 individuals in the Big West and headline a group that has shot 75 percent (or better) from the line in a game 19 times in 27 contests overall.
PLAYING THE PERCENTAGES: Speaking of field goal percentages, of UC Davis’ 1,430 shot attempts this season, almost 44 percent (624) have come from beyond the arc -- the highest percentage of any school in the Big West. The Aggies are second in the league in three-point makes (204) and second in attempts, but rank ninth in field goal attempts overall -- 79 fewer than eighth-place Hawaii -- despite leading the league with a .422 field goal percentage.
DOUBLE DIPPING: UC Davis’ Sydnee Fipps and Alyson Doherty both enter the week as members of a group of six players in the Big West Conference who rank among, both, the league’s top 15 in scoring and rebounding -- including the top four scorers in the conference and the top three rebounders. Fipps, who ranks second in the conference in scoring and 11th in rebounding, and Doherty, who is 14th in the league in scoring and ninth in rebounding, join Cal Poly’s Molly Schlemer, UC Irvine’s Camille Buckley, Hawaii’s Kamilah Jackson, and UC Riverside’s Brittany Crain, on the list.