Feb. 19, 2013
The Long Beach State women's basketball team will be looking to extend its three-game win streak this week when it heads to UC Irvine for a 7 p.m. Big West showdown on Thursday, Feb. 21.
Fans can follow the 49ers all season long with every women's basketball game being broadcast live via Stretch Internet Radio on longbeachstate.com. Tyler Hendrickson is LBSU's play-by-play announcer.
BLACK & BLUE RIVALRY
Thursday's game will count toward the eighth annual Black & Blue Rivalry Series between Long Beach State and UC Irvine. The 49ers currently lead the series, 13-7.
SCOUTING THE ANTEATERS
UC Irvine (8-17, 4-9 Big West), which lost its first eight conference games, snapped the skid with a win at UC Davis on Feb. 2, and has now won four of its last five. The Anteaters are currently on a season-long three-game win streak after defeating UC Riverside (58-56) and Cal State Fullerton (43-39) last week. Camille Buckley leads the team with 11.1 points and 9.4 rebounds per outing, while Jennifer Tsurumoto is also averaging 10.9 points per contest.
Long Beach State leads in its all-time series with UC Irvine, 50-11. The two teams have been evenly matched recently as they have split the regular-season series in each of the last five years. The 49ers claimed the first meeting earlier this year with a 71-61 victory in Long Beach (Jan. 26).
WITH A WIN
A 49er victory over UC Irvine on Thursday will mean:
- LBSU earns its 15th win, marking the most wins in a season during the Jody Wynn era, and the most wins by a 49er squad since 2005-06.
- LBSU will have swept the Anteaters in the regular-season series for the first time since 2007.
FINDING THE OFFENSE
The 49ers shot a season-high 51.9 percent from the floor as they registered a season-best 80 points at UC Riverside on Feb. 16. It was the most points scored by LBSU since an 80-79 victory over UC Irvine on Jan. 22, 2011.
Long Beach State has shown its depth with nine of its 10 players reaching double digits in the points column at least once this season. Eight 49ers have also had multiple double-figure scoring games.
LIVE AND DIE BY THE THREE
LBSU has depended heavily on its performance from behind the arc this season. In their 14 wins, the 49ers shot a combined 39.0 percent (99-254) from long distance. They were over 40 percent in eight of those games and made at least 10 3-pointers on three occasions, including a season-high 12 vs. Canisius. On the flip side, Long Beach State is just 45-for-210 (21.4 percent) in its 11 losses.
GETTING TO THE LINE
In Long Beach State's first 10 Big West games, it got to the foul line about 19 times per contest. The 49ers have drastically increased that number over their last three outings, averaging approximately 30 free throw attempts a game during that stretch. They went to the line a season-high 38 times against Cal State Northridge (Feb. 9) and 29 times at Cal State Fullerton (Feb. 14).
FOR THE RECORD
Senior Mary Ochiltree is currently second in program history in career 3-point field goal percentage (39.1). Sophomore Ella Clark is also eighth among the 49er all-time leaders with 113 career blocks, while classmate Lauren Spargo ranks 10th with 249 3-point field goals attempted.
Sophomore Alex Sanchez has continued to produce in every aspect on the court. She leads the team with 10.6 points, 4.0 assists and 1.6 steals per game, while ranking second with 4.8 rebounds per outing. Sanchez, who notched a season-high 19 points at Utah Valley, has reached double figures in scoring in 14 games. She has led LBSU in the points column 10 times and has finished tops on the squad in assists on 19 occasions.
Sophomore Devin Hudson has registered a team-best five double-doubles on the season. The Ontario, Calif., native had back-to-back double-doubles with 10 points and a career-high 15 rebounds vs. UC Riverside (Jan. 17), and a career-best 17 points and 14 boards against Cal State Fullerton (Jan. 19). Hudson has led LBSU on the glass 17 times, corralling at least 10 rebounds on eight occasions. She has also scored in double figures in seven of the last 11 games. Hudson is averaging 10.5 points and 9.0 rebounds in Big West contests.
Ella Clark, who was granted a medical redshirt last season, is working her way back in to top shape. After averaging 6.7 points over the first nine contests, Clark sparked the 49ers over a season-long five-game win streak (Dec. 20-Jan. 5), registering 11.0 points per outing during that stretch. The London, England, native was named the MVP of the Beach Classic after draining 16 points against Canisius, and totaling 14 points and a career-best six assists vs. Sam Houston State. She has also reached double figures in three of the last four games. Clark recently had a season-best 17 points vs. Hawai'i (Feb. 7) and grabbed a career-high 11 rebounds at Pacific (Feb. 2).
SPARGO FOR THREE
Sophomore Lauren Spargo is tops on the team with 34 3-pointers made. She has more than one trey in 10 games, including a career-high four against Washington (13 points) and Canisius (14 points). She also totaled a season-high 16 points vs. UC Irvine on Jan. 26. The Santa Clarita, Calif., native has made 73 shots from long distance in her one-plus year career at LBSU, which puts her 10 away from breaking into the 49er all-time records.
Long Beach State returns to the Walter Pyramid next week when it plays host to Pacific (Feb. 28) and UC Davis (March 28) in its final home games of the season.
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