Women's Basketball Takes Last Road Trip
Last Road Trip
Northern Colorado heads out on the road for the final time in the regular season as they play at Eastern Washington Friday and Portland State on Saturday. The Bears split the home series with the team earlier, losing to the Eagles by two, 51-49, and defeating the Vikings, 72-68.
Last Time Out
Northern Colorado split a weekend at home, falling to Idaho State, 62-51 on Thursday, but rebounding for the 75-68 victory over Weber State on Saturday. Senior guard Whitley Cox tallied 48 points in the two games, coming off the bench, while freshman Lauren Oosdyke had a double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds against the Wildcats.
First Meeting - Eastern
Going for the victory at home instead of overtime, the three-point shot with two seconds remaining fell just short as Northern Colorado lost to Eastern Washington, 51-49. Senior guard Whitley Cox was the only Bear to score in double figures with 16, while junior forward Lara Merritt scored seven. Junior center Brittany Fernandez led the team with six rebounds, four on the offensive end, while freshman guard Victoria Timm notched a career-high five assists. EWU was led by Brianne Ryan with 18 points and Nicole Scott chipped in 10. Julie Piper led all players with 13 rebounds as the Eagles out-rebounded the Bears 47-26.
First Meeting - Portland
True fans call them barnburners; the back-and-forth affairs that have fans of both teams on the edge of their seats until the final buzzer sounds. That was the case as Northern Colorado overcame a five-point deficit to defeat previously undefeated in league play Portland State, 72-68. Sophomore forward Kaisha Brown scored a career-best 21 points, including a red-hot 6-for-7 night from beyond the arc. Senior guard Whitley Cox tallied her first double-double of the year and fifth of her career, leading all players in both categories with 22 points and 11 rebounds. PSU was led by Claire Faucher with 19 points, while Kelly Marchant scored 15, and Lexi Bishop and Erin Yankus each had 10. Yankus also led the team with nine rebounds.
NC vs Eastern Washington
Northern Colorado is 5-2 all-time against Eastern Washington with a 2-1 record in Cheney. The two teams have never faced each other outside of Big Sky competition.
NC vs Portland State
The Bears will be searching for their first-ever win in Portland on Saturday as they are currently 0-3 at the Vikings home. All-time, PSU leads the series 6-3 and NC has never won two in a row against the Vikings.
The Eagles still have a hold on first-place in the Big Sky Conference standings with an 8-3 record and half-game lead over Montana and a one-game lead over Portland State. Overall, they are 15-9 on the year with a 9-2 mark at home. Julie Piper is the only player averaging double figures in scoring on the year at 11.5 and she also leads with 7.6 rebounds per game. The team definitely uses a balanced scoring attack as seven Eagles average more than six points a contest.
Scouting Portland State
The Vikings have dropped two of their last three games, but are still just one game off the lead in the conference title race. PSU is 13-11 overall and 7-4 in Big Sky Conference play. Senior Claire Faucher leads the team with 14.1 points per game, while Kelly Marchant averages 12.5 a game and Erin Yankus is getting a team-best 6.0 rebounds a contest. In league play, four players are averaging double figures and a fifth is at 9.9 as the team is scoring 4.8 more than the opposition.
On This Date
The Bears are 6-4 in games played on Feb. 19 with a 1-1 record in road games. A season ago, the team fell to Portland State 89-71, snapping a two-game winning streak on the 19th. On Feb. 20, the Bears sport an all-time record of 5-3 with a 2-2 mark on the road and haven't played since 2003.
With her 48 points over the weekend, senior guard Whitley Cox now ranks 39th in the country in scoring, averaging 18.0 points per game. She is one of three in the Big Sky Conference to rank among the top 40 in Division I scoring, along with Amy Patton, Northern Arizona (36th) and Charday Hunt, Sacramento State (37th). Junior guard Courtney Stoermer is also tied for fourth in the nation with her one triple-double on the year.
30 or Bust
For the second time this season, senior guard Whitley Cox topped the 30-point barrier with 30 off the bench in the win over Weber State. She is one of three players in the Big Sky Conference to score 30 or more in multiple games this year as she also had a career-best 32 at Denver. Amy Patton, Northern Arizona (3) and Kelly Marchant, Portland State (2) are the only other players in the league with multiple 30-point games, though four others have done it once this year.
With her 16 points and 11 rebounds in the win over Weber State, Lauren Oosdyke tallied her team-leading fourth double-double of the season. She is now tied for third for the most double-doubles this year in the Big Sky Conference, as only Amy Patton, Northern Arizona (8) and Julie Piper, Eastern Washington (5) have more. Five other players in the league have tallied double figures in two statistical categories four times this year.
Cox Into Third
Senior guard Whitley Cox now ranks third on the all-time scoring lists at Northern Colorado with 1,480 points. She is 110 points shy of second with at least five games to play, but is just 20 points shy of the 1,500 point milestone. Cox is also the active leading scorer in the Big Sky Conference with 1,345 points (her freshman year the Bears weren't in the league), 58 points ahead of Claire Faucher of Portland State.
Hall of Fame
On Friday evening, when the Bears are taking on Eastern Washington, former women's basketball standout Missy Borell-Vaughn will be inducted into the Northern Colorado Athletics Hall of Fame. Borell played for the Bears from 1999 to 2003 and is the team's all-time leading scorer with 1,866 points. She also ranks second on the career charts in rebounds (837) and owns the school record in field goals (682) and free throws (469), is second in blocked shots (157) and sixth in steals (153).
Junior guard Courtney Stoermer already ranks in the top 10 in four different statistical categories at Northern Colorado. Stoermer ranks fourth in both career assists (288) and steals (157), fifth in free throws made with 157 and sixth in three-pointers with 125. The standout is also just outside the top 10 in blocked shots, needing just two more to appear in that category and 84 points shy of showing on that list as well.
For the second time this season, junior center Brittany Fernandez had four blocked shots in a game when she did so on Thursday against Idaho State. Fernandez is now second on the team with 18 blocked shots, with nine coming in the last five games.
Crashing The Boards
Part of the success of Northern Colorado against Weber State on Saturday was the rebounding margin. The Bears out-rebounded the Wildcats 42-29. It was the 11th time this year the Bears had 40 or more rebounds in a game and the team is 11-3 in that instance.
The past three games, head coach Jaime White has used a new starting lineup with Lizzie Cooper, Courtney Stoermer, Lauren Oosdyke, Kaisha Brown and Lara Merritt on the floor for the opening tip. The quintet is 2-1 when starting together and the fourth different lineup used in 2009-10. Cooper, Stoermer and Merritt have started every game this season with four others getting at least one start.
Both junior guard Courtney Stoermer and sophomore forward Kaisha Brown already rank on the single-season charts for three-pointers made. Brown is currently tied for 16th with 46 triples, while Stoermer is tied for 19th with 44. Brown is just six away from moving into the top 10 and both players have already surpassed their totals from a year ago as Stoermer made 43 and Brown 41 in 30 games during 2008-09.
Junior guard Courtney Stoermer is oh-so-close to the 1,000 point barrier. She needs just 14 more to hit the huge milestone and become the 15th player in school history to score 1,000 or more. Stoermer will become just the fifth player in school history to score 1,000 in her junior season (Missy Borell, Whitley Cox, Jenny Edgerly, Trish Williamson).
It's All In The Numbers
The scoreboard really does tell all in a game. When the Bears put more than 70 up they are 7-0 this season. On the flip side, when they score 60 or fewer, they are 0-10.
Junior guard Courtney Stoermer recorded the first triple double in Division I school history at Sacramento State with 12 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. It was the first time this season Stoermer recorded double figures in rebounds and the 10 assists is a season high. Her triple double is also the only one in the Big sky this season and one of 24 in NCAA Division I play.
Lucky Number Six
For the second time this year, sophomore forward Kaisha Brown tied the Division I school record for three-pointers in a game with six against Portland State. Brown scored a career-best 21 points in the win, hitting 6-of-7 from beyond the arc. It was the 10th time since the transition a Bear has made six triples in a contest.
Free Throw Facts
In the final five minutes of a game, with the margin on the scoreboard 10 or less, the Bears are shooting .707 (65-for-92) on the season but are at .746 (50-for-67) since the end of finals.
Back To Back
Senior guard Whitley Cox became just the third player in Northern Colorado history to earn Big Sky Player of the Week honors and she did so in back-to-back weeks after leading the Bears to a 3-1 mark over a four-game home stretch. Cox is the first player since Mandy Morales from Montana earned back-to-back nods in Jan/Feb of last season.
Making The Free Ones
In the win over Colorado State, the Bears shot .938 from the free throw line, making 15 of 16. The percentage ties the school Division I record from Dec. 2, 2005 at Nevada with a minimum of 10 made.
Junior guard Courtney Stoermer leads the team with 46 steals on the season and is now fourth all-time with 157. She is also just 32 shy of the school record of 189 steals held by Renee L'Heureux (1981-85).
The Jaime White Head Coaches Show will take place at The Rio Grande (825 9th Street) on Tuesdays from 6:00-7:00 p.m. during the remainder of the year. Join Coach White and host Jason Alvine as they recap the previous week, preview the upcoming week and talk strategies with fans and players.
Junior guard Courtney Stoermer and senior guard Whitley Cox now both rank in the top 10 in career assists at Northern Colorado.
Northern Colorado has now made at least one three-pointer in 262 consecutive games, dating all the way back to Jan. 20, 2001 at South Dakota State.
Stellar In The Classroom
Six current Bears were named to the Big Sky All-Academic Team last season in Kaisha Brown, Lizzie Cooper, Courtney Kranz, Cassie Lambrecht, Lara Merritt and Courtney Stoermer.
Bears Add Four Freshmen
Three Colorado and one Minnesota high school standouts signed National Letters of Intent to play women's basketball at the University of Northern Colorado, announced Head Coach Jaime White. Molly Duehn, Kirsten Hess, Kim Lockridge and D'Shara Strange make up the signing class for the Bears and will enroll in classes in the fall of 2010.