No.16 Vikings close out four-game home stand

WWUVIKINGSDOTCOM Krystal Robinson
WWUVIKINGSDOTCOM
Krystal Robinson
WWUVIKINGSDOTCOM

Feb. 4, 2005

BELLINGHAM, Wash. -

UPDATE: The nationally ranked Western Washington University women's basketball team closes out a four-game home stand, playing host to University of Alaska Fairbanks on Saturday (3 p.m.) in a Great Northwest Athletic Conference contest on Haggen Court at Sam Carver Gymnasium.

The Vikings, who moved up one spot to No.16 in the latest Women's Basketball Coaches Association/NCAA Division II Top 25 and remained No.2 in the West Region ratings, are 17-2 overall and second in the league standings at 9-1, just a game behind leader and nationally No.2-ranked Seattle Pacific (10-0).

On Thursday, Western rolled over league foe Alaska Anchorage, 87-56, having a huge 51-18 rebound advantage.

Last week, the Vikings split a pair of home GNAC contests, defeating arch-rival Central Washington, 84-68, on Jan. 29 after having its 15-game winning streak, the school's longest in 20 years, snapped in a 65-58 loss on Jan. 27 to Seattle Pacific.

The loss to Seattle Pacific is Western's only setback in 10 home games this season. The Vikings have won 83 of their last 92 games (90.2 percent) at Carver Gym.

Junior transfer center Courtney Clapp, who has tallied double-figure points in 11 of her last 13 games, is second on the team in scoring with a 12.0 average and third in rebounding at 4.8. Her field goal percentage of 49.7 (86-of-173) ranks seventh in the GNAC. Clapp has averaged 14.0 points on 50.7 percent (68-of-134) shooting in the last 13 contests, after averaging just 7.7 points and 3.2 rebounds in the first six games of the season.

Senior guard Jodi Gerald has scored double-figure points in six of the last seven games, averaging 15.0 points and 7.1 rebounds over that stretch, and shooting 50.0 percent (39-of-78) from the field and 94.4 percent (17-of-18) at the line. On the season, she is averaging 11.0 points and leads the team in rebounds (7.1 avg.) and free-throw shooting (84.4 percent, 27-of-32).

Junior forward Tina Donahue broke out of a slump, scoring double figures in each of the last two games. She had scored 10 or more points in just one of the previous seven games after doing that in eight of the first 10 contests.

Donahue paces Western scorers with a 13.9 average, and is second in rebounds (6.2), assists (2.8) and free-throw shooting (83.3 percent, 80-of-96). She ranks eight among league leaders in free throw percentage and ninth in scoring.

Reserve sophomore guard Devin Dykstra is averaging 9.1 points and leads the GNAC in 3-point shooting at 63.3 percent (19-of-30). She is ninth among league leaders in free throw shooting (83.1 percent, 64-of-77), connecting on her last 17 free throws and 32 of her last 33 (97.0 percent).

Sophomore forward Krystal Robinson is averaging 6.7 points on 52.7 percent (59-of-112) field goal shooting, which ranks third in the GNAC. She is second in the league and 38th nationally in blocks (2.1), having at least one rejection in her last 14 games, and in 16 of her last 17 contests.

Junior guard Samantha Hubbard is second among GNAC leaders in assist to turnover ratio at 1.64, fifth in steals (2.1) and seventh in assists (3.9). She is averaging 5.0 points and 3.8 rebounds. She has made 6-of-10 floor attempts in the last three games, after not making a field goal (five missed shots) in the previous three contests.

Western also has been getting standout play off the bench, particularly from two freshmen, guard Angela Burt and forward Liz McCarrell. McCarrell had career highs of 18 points and eight rebounds in the win over Alaska Anchorage, and Burt provided the late-game spark in the Central victory.

The Vikings, coached by Carmen Dolfo (14 years, 295-107), top the league in rebounding margin (plus 10.2). They are second in scoring offense (75.3), scoring margin (plus 13.6), field-goal percentage (43.9 percent, 509-of-1160), and field-goal percentage defense (36.5 percent, 410-of-1122); and third in scoring defense (61.7), blocked shots (3.4) and assists (16.3).

They rank No.13 nationally in rebound margin, No.30 in scoring offense (75.3), No.33 in scoring margin, and No.37 in field-goal percentage and No.42 in field goal percentage defense.

Alaska Fairbanks is 10-9 overall and 6-4 in GNAC action, winning seven of its last nine games after a 3-7 start.

The Nanooks return the GNAC scoring leader in each of the last two seasons - 5-6 senior guard Adrienne Taalak (20.5 ppg-1st GNAC, 5.6 rpg, 43.0 3-pt. Pct., 43-100, 90.1 FT Pct.) and 5-10 senior center Cody Burgess (20.1 ppg-2nd GNAC, 7.6 rpg), who rank 1-2 in the league this year.

Taalak was a first-team GNAC all-star in 2003-04 as she topped the league with a 19.7 scoring average, making 3.1 3-pointers per game. Burgess, who missed most of last season with an injury, was a second-team GNAC all-star in 2002-03 as she averaged a league-leading 18.2 points and 8.9 rebounds.

Three other starters back from last year's 10-16 squad for second-year coach Lynne Andrew (20-25) are 5-2 junior guard Valerie Hartman (9.4 ppg, 3.7 apg), 6-0 sophomore forward Marsha Schirack (5.5 ppg) and 5-8 senior forward Andrea Durny (6.1 ppg).

Alaska Fairbanks is shooting 40.4 percent from the floor, and 35.6 percent from 3-point range. The Nanooks, who are averaging 71.3 points per game, are making 71.9 percent of their free throws.

Western has a 22-3 series advantage, winning 78-74 in overtime at Alaska Fairbanks on Jan. 6.

UPCOMING GAMES:

Feb. 5 (Sat.) ALASKA FAIRBANKS*# (CARVER GYM - HAGGEN COURT), 3 p.m.
Feb. 10 (Thu.) at Western Oregon*# (Monmouth, OR), 7 p.m.
Feb. 12 (Sat.) at Humboldt State* (Arcata, CA), 7 p.m.
*Great Northwest Athletic Conference contest
#broadcast on KBAI Radio (930 AM - Bellingham) and internet (wwuvikings.com)

THREE-DOT NOTES: Robinson's seven blocked shots against Alaska Anchorage were two short of the school record, and the most by a Viking player since Mar. 15, 1996, when Gina Sampson had seven versus Montevallo in the second round of the NAIA Division I National Tournament ... Western debuted at No.24 in the national poll three weeks ago, and moved up to No.17 last week and No.16 this week ... Dolfo coached in her 400th game for the Vikings against Seattle Pacific on Jan. 27 ... Thirteen of Western's 17 wins have been by 11 or more points ... The Vikings have not been outrebounded in any of their victories this season, and have not allowed more than 74 points in any of their wins. They have held the opposition under 40.0 percent field goal shooting in 12 of the triumphs ... Dolfo was named Women's Division II Bulletin Coach of the Month for December as Western won all six of its games, including a 78-64 victory over No.12-ranked Cal Poly Pomona ... The Vikings are 13-2 against West Region foes this season, including a perfect 4-0 versus California Collegiate Athletic Association teams ... Donahue received Women's Division II Bulletin Player of the Month honorable mention for November and was named GNAC Player of the Week for Nov. 21-27 ... Dykstra received GNAC POW honors for Jan. 2-8.

ALL-TOURNEY HONORS: Donahue and Gerald were named all-tourney at the second CCAA/GNAC Challenge Classic on Dec. 29-30. It was the third all-tourney honor for Donahue, who earned that accolade along with Clapp at the first Challenge Classic on Dec. 10-11. Donahue also named MVP at the 8th annual WWU/Lynda Goodrich Classic. Also earning all-tourney honors at the Goodrich Classic was Dykstra. Western has won outright or tied for the WWU/Lynda Goodrich Classic title in seven of its eight years, winning 15 of 16 games, including the first 11.

STATS AND RECORDS: Western shot a school-record 71.9 percent (41-of-57) from the field in its win over Evergreen on Dec. 13 with 36 of its 41 field goals coming in the key ... Donahue scored a career-high 31 points (also grabbed 11 rebounds) versus Warner Pacific on Nov. 27. She made all 16 of her free throws in that contest, setting a school record for free throws in a game without a miss. Donahue's free throw string ended at 21, six short of the school record ... Western set game marks for free throws made and attempted against Seattle U. on Dec. 4, making 37-of-50 attempts.

GNAC PRESEASON COACHES POLL: Western was picked second in the GNAC Pre-season Coaches Poll. Two-time defending champion Seattle Pacific was the overwhelming choice to take the title, receiving all 10 first-place votes. Seattle Pacific and Western are followed by Central Washington, Northwest Nazarene, Saint Martin's, Alaska Anchorage, Alaska Fairbanks, Seattle, Humboldt State and Western Oregon.

HOME COURT DOMINANCE: The Vikings are 9-1 at home this season and 343-58 (85.5 percent) in 33 years at Carver Gym, winning 83 of their last 92 home games (90.2 percent). They have reached double-digit victories at home in each of the last seven years. Western was 11-2 in 2003-04, 12-2 in 2002-03, 13-1 in 2001-02, 13-1 in 2000-01, 12-0 in 1999-2000, 13-2 in 1998-99, and 10-4 in 1997-98.

COACH DOLFO: Carmen Dolfo is in her 14th year as head coach at Western after taking a sabbatical last season. She has a 295-107 (73.4 percent) record. Entering this season, Dolfo ranked 15th among active NCAA II coaches in winning percentage and 39th in victories. Dolfo's teams have reached post-season play 13 times and have won 20 or more games 11 times. She was named GNAC Coach of the Year in 2004, Northwest small college Coach of the Year in 2000 and Pacific Northwest Athletic Conference Coach of the Year in 1995 and 1996. Dolfo was the top Viking assistant for four seasons (95-28, 77.2) and earned All-America honors as a player at Western.

THE TRADITION CONTINUES: With 727 all-time victories (33rd season), Western ranks among the Top 15 nationally on a list that includes all NCAA divisions, and is one of just four Division II schools ... The Vikings have made 25 straight post-season appearances and 32 overall, reaching nationals 14 times. They also have had 25 20-win seasons and 32 overall ... Western has had 19 winning streaks of 10 or more games with its longest being 19, and its longest losing streak is just four games ... Former Western coach Lynda Goodrich, now the Vikings' director of athletics, is a member of the NAIA National Hall of Fame. She coached Western for 19 seasons, winning more than 400 games (411-124, 76.7 percent). Another Viking NAIA Hall of Famer is forward Jo Metzger (1977-81), who earned first-team All-American honors in 1980 and 1981 ... Western has had 13 first, second or third-team All-Americans.

LAST SEASON: The Vikings finished 21-8, winning 20 games and reaching the national tournament, both for a school-record seventh straight time. They placed second in the GNAC at 13-5 and reached the semifinals of the NCAA II West Regional.

RADIO BROADCASTS: Twelve Western regular-season games as well as post-season contests are being broadcast this season on KBAI Radio (930 AM) with Doug Lange handling the play-by-play and Mark Scholten providing the color commentary. They also can be heard on the internet at www.wwuvikings.com.

ON THE WEB: For up-to-date statistics, box scores of every game, records, stories, etc., see the Western Athletic web page at http://www.wwuvikings.com. Up-to-date league standings and statistics can be found on the Great Northwest Athletic Conference web page at www.gnacsports.com.

PROBABLE WESTERN STARTERS & TOP RESERVES:

F  Krystal Robinson*, 6-1, So., Kent, WA/Kentridge (6.7 ppg, 2.1 bpg, 52.7 FG Pct.)
F  Tina Donahue**, 6-0, Jr., Stanwood, WA/Stanwood (13.9 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 83.3 FT Pct.)
C  Courtney Clapp, 5-11,Jr.,Kirkland,WA/Juanita/Santa Rosa CC(12.0 ppg,4.8 rpg,49.7 FG Pct.)
G  Samantha Hubbard**, 5-6, Jr.,Carbonado, WA/White River(5.0 ppg, 3.9 apg,3.8 rpg, 2.1 spg)
G  Jodi Gerald***, 5-10, Sr., Puyallup, WA/Cascade Christian (11.0 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 84.4 FT Pct.)

G Devin Dykstra*, 5-6, So., Sumas, WA/Nooksack Valley (9.1 ppg,54.2 FG Pct.,63.3 3-pt. Pct.) F Liz McCarrell, 5-11, Fr., Ferndale, WA/Ferndale (5.0 ppg, 52.3 FG Pct.) F Arielle White, 5-11, So., Kent, WA/Spanaway/Saint Martin's (3.9 ppg, 3.3 rpg) *letters

OPPONENT SKETCHES:

WESTERN OREGON UNIVERSITY: The Wolves (4-14 overall, 1-9 GNAC, Feb. 5 at Central Washington, Feb. 10 host Seattle U.), who have lost their last 12 games after a 4-2 start, return two starters from last year's 8-18 team - 5-10 senior forward Shannon Talbott (14.4 ppg, 8.9 rpg, 2.5 spg) and 5-2 junior guard Michelle Laski (4.6 ppg, 4.4 apg). Also back is 6-0 sophomore forward Kagney Kohne (13.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg). A top newcomer for coach Paula Pietrok (3rd year, 25-46; 14th overall, 217-147) is 5-8 freshman forward Leada Berkey (10.1 ppg, 5.7 rpg). WOU is averaging just 55.9 points per game, shooting 37.3 percent from the field, 27.3 percent from 3-point range, and 66.1 percent at the free throw line. Western holds a 27-7 series advantage, winning the last eight meetings (68-49 at Bellingham on Jan. 15).

HUMBOLDT STATE UNIVERSITY: The Lumberjacks (6-13 overall, 3-7 GNAC, 4-4 home, 2-9 road, Feb. 5 at Seattle Pacific) have won two of their last three games after losing 11 of 13 contests following a 2-1 start. They return two starters from last year's 4-23 squad - 6-2 senior center Nicole Lynch (17.2 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 50.2 FG Pct.) and 5-5 senior guard Denisha McCoy (6.0 ppg, 5.0 apg). Also back are 5-9 junior forward Kelly Fay (9.3 ppg, 7.3 rpg), who received a medical redshirt after missing most of last season with a torn ACL, and 5-10 junior guard Laura Berreth (6.6 ppg, 3.6 rpg), who took last year off. Rounding out the first five for first-year coach Joddie Gleason, who headed the program at Butte (Calif.) JC for five years (117-45), is 5-11 junior forward Jenna Washington (11.0 ppg, 8.2 rpg), a transfer from NCAA I Portland State. HSU is averaging just 60.2 points per game on 40.1 percent field goal shooting, but is holding opponents to 38.0 floor accuracy. Western has not lost to the Lumberjacks in 18 series meetings, winning 68-65 on Jan. 13 at Bellingham.

GAME SUMMARY:

Feb. 3 at Bellingham - WESTERN 87, Alaska Anchorage 56
McCarrell came off the bench to contribute career and team-highs of 18 points and eight rebounds as Western defeated Alaska Anchorage, 87-56, in a GNAC contest on Haggen Court at Carver Gym. The Vikings had a massive 51-18 edge in rebounds. Alaska Anchorage fell to 7-12 overall and 2-8 in conference play with its sixth loss in the last seven games. Guard Stephanie Beason had game-highs of 23 points and five assists for the Seawolves. Western, which narrowly won at Anchorage, 61-59, on Jan. 8, trailed much of the first eight minutes and held just a 20-19 edge with 8:47 left in the half. But the Vikings then ran off 10 straight points, helping them close the half with a 20-5 run that gave them a 40-24 edge at halftime. Western then put the game away early in the second half, holding Alaska Anchorage without a field goal for the first 5:30 of the period and taking a 52-26 lead. The Seawolves never got closer than 22 points after that. McCarrell, who had scored in double figures four times this season with a high of 11 but had gone scoreless in two games last week, was 6-of-9 from the field and hit 6-of-8 free throws. Donahue had 13 points, going 6-of-6 on free throws, and Robinson had a career-high seven blocked shots.

Viking Women by the Numbers
(Thru 19 games)

Leading at the half, 14-1
Trailing at the half, 3-1
Tied at the half, 0-0
In Overtime, 1-1

Shooting 50% or better, 3-0 Shooting 40-49.9%, 11-1 Shooting less than 40%, 3-1

Opponent shoots 50% or better, 0-1 Opponent shoots 40-49.9%, 5-0 Opponent shoots less than 40%, 12-1

WWU outrebounds opponent, 15-0 Opponent outrebounds WWU, 0-2 Teams are tied in rebounds, 2-0

Makes 0-4 three-pointers, 12-1 Makes 5-7 three-pointers, 4-1 Makes 8 or more three-pointers, 1-0

WWU shoots more FTs, 12-0 Opponent shoots more FTs, 5-2 Teams shoot same number of FTs, 0-0

WWU bench outscores opponent bench, 13-2 Opponent bench outscores WWU bench, 4-0 Benches score same number of points, 0-0

WWU commits fewer TOs than Opp., 8-1 Opp. commit fewer TOs than WWU, 6-1 Teams commit same amount of TOs, 3-0

WWU commits 20 or fewer TOs, 10-2 WWU commits more than 20 TOs, 7-0

Opponent ranked in NCAA II Top 25, 1-1

Scoring less than 50 points, 0-0 Scoring 50-59 points, 1-1 Scoring 60-69 points, 3-0 Scoring 70-79 points, 7-1 Scoring 80-89 points, 5-0 Scoring 90-99 points, 1-0 Scoring 100 points or more, 0-0

Allowing 50 points or less, 1-0 Allowing 50-59 points, 9-0 Allowing 60-69 points, 5-1 Allowing 70-79 points, 2-0 Allowing 80-89 points, 0-1 Allowing 90-99 points, 0-0 Allowing 100 points or more, 0-0

Game is decided by 1-4 points, 3-0 Game is decided by 5-10 points, 1-2 Game is decided by 11 or more points, 14-0

Playing a day game, 2-0 Playing a night game, 15-2

In November, 3-1 In December, 6-0 In January, 7-1 In February, 1-0 In March, 0-0

On Sunday, 0-0 On Monday, 1-0 On Tuesday, 1-0 On Wednesday, 1-0 On Thursday, 5-1 On Friday, 2-0 On Saturday, 7-1