January 4, 2011

Northridge Returns Home to Host Long Beach State in Big West Match-Up

Jan. 4, 2011

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. -

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Matadors Host 49ers in Important League Game

The Cal State Northridge women's basketball team (1-13, 1-1 Big West Conference) plays its first home game since Dec. 8, 2010, when it hosts Long Beach State at The Matadome on Jan. 5 at 7 p.m. The Matadors enter Wednesday's contest fresh off a successful opening weekend of league play that saw the team register their first win of the season.

Two Matadors enter the game averaging double--figures in scoring. Jasmine Erving leads the team at 12.6 ppg and recorded the 40th double-figure game of her career with a season-high 23 points at UC Davis on Jan. 2. Violet Alama is averaging 11.5 points on the season and is the team's top shooter from the field this season at 45.2 percent.

For the season, Northridge is shooting 37.1 percent from the field and 29.6 percent from 3-point range. The Matadors are averaging 34.2 rebounds, 13 assists and 18.5 turnovers per game. However, in their two Big West games, CSUN shot 45 percent from the field and limited its opponents to a 29.5 percent clip from 3-point range.

Among Big West schools, CSUN ranks second in the Big West with a team free throw percentage of .744. The Matadors feature two of the conference's top shooters from the charity stripe in Janelle Nomura (.812, third) and Violet Alama (.796, sixth).

Long Beach State enters the game with a 2-13 overall record, having dropped both of its Big West Conference games thus far. Courtney Jacob and Brandi Henton lead the 49ers in multiple categories and figure to be the focus of the Matadors' gameplan. Jacob is averaging over 14 points per game and Henton is at 12.4 ppg.

LBSU owns a 31-11 record in the all-time series between the two schools, having won the past three meetings. Northridge's last win in the series came on Jan. 17, 2009, an 88-84 overtime win at The Matadome. Jasmine Erving scored 25 points and had 11 rebounds for the Matadors, including a 10-of-12 performance from the field in the second half and overtime.

CSUN's Own Dr. J

Junior Jasmine Erving posted a pair of double-figure scoring games, the 39th and 40th of her career, in the Matadors' first two Big West Conference games. Against Pacific, she scored 10 points and followed that up with a season-high 23 points at UC Davis two days later. For the season, Erving leads the Matadors in scoring (12.6 ppg; 7th in Big West) and rebounding (6.0 rpg; 10th in Big West). She also ranks ninth in the league in field goal percentage (.423; 71-of-168) and sixth in blocked shots with 19. On the year, Erving has led the Matadors in scoring in five games and in rebounding six times. Finally, she has had three double-doubles and scored at least 20 points on three occasions.

Roses are Blue, Violets are Matador Red

Sophomore Violet Alama poured in 17 points in the Matadors' overtime win at Pacific on Dec. 31, finishing 6-of-10 from the field and a perfect 4-of-4 from the free throw line. For the season, she is averaging 11.5 ppg, the 12th-highest average in the Big West Conference. Alama also checks in at 12th in rebounding at 5.7 rpg, sixth in field goal percentage (.452; 57-of-126) and sixth in free throw percentage (.796; 43-of-54). Alama has led the Matadors in scoring, including a career-high 32 points against Eastern Michigan in her return home to Hawai'i, on four occasions and in rebounding three times.

CSUN's Flyin Hawaiian

Sophomore Janelle Nomura finished with nine points in both of the Matadors' games last week, settling her scoring average at a career-high 9.9 ppg. One of the league's top free throw shooters, she ranks third among all Big West players with an 81.3 percentage (69-of-85). She is also averaging 2.6 assists and 1.6 rebounds for the year and leads CSUN with 12 3-pointers. Nomura has led the Matadors in scoring three times, including a career-high 24 points at UTEP.

Hawaiian Punch

Senior Analee Viena-Lota scored a season-high 18 points in the Matadors' overtime win at Pacific. Against the Tigers, she finished 6-of-11 from the field, knocked down two 3-pointers and was a perfect 4-of-4 at the free throw line. Viena-Lota is now averaging 7.9 ppg and 5.5 rpg, which is tied for the 14th-best average in the Big West Conference. With 464 career rebounds, Viena-Lota now stands 22 shy of tying Tracy Burns (486 career rebounds) for 10th in school history. She has led the Matadors in scoring and rebounding on four occasions.

Haley's Comet

Freshman Haley White dished out a season-high 10 assists in the Matadors' overtime victory at Pacific. The 10 dimes tied her for the most by a Big West player this season and she now ranks third in the league with 52 assists and an average of 3.7 per game. She scored a season-high 13 points at Iowa State and is now averaging 4.4 points and 2.9 rebounds for the season. White also leads the team with 22 steals, an average of 1.6 per game, the 10th-best average in the Big West Conference.

Conejo Brings Lucky Feet to CSUN

Junior Bridgette Conejo came off the bench to score a season-high 12 points in the Matadors' overtime victory at Pacific. Against the Tigers, she was 5-of-9 from the field and knocked down two 3-pointers. For the season, she is averaging 5.0 ppg and 4.3 rpg. Conejo has led CSUN in rebounding twice this season, including a season-high nine rebounds against Washington.

Uncontested Shots

Through their first 14 games, Northridge ranks second in the Big West Conference and 33rd in Division-I with a team free throw percentage of .744 (189-of-254). Individually, Janelle Nomura ranks third in the Big West and 98th in Division-I with a season percentage of .812 (69-of-85). Violet Alama also ranks among the league leaders in the category, checking in at sixth in the Big West Conference and 122nd in Division-I with a season percentage of .796 (43-of 54).

Scouting Long Beach State

The 49ers enter Wednesday's game with a 2-13 overall record and an 0-2 mark in the Big West Conference. LBSU lost home contests to UC Santa Barbara, 70-43, and to Cal Poly, 83-72, in action last week. Courtney Jacob and Brandi Henton lead the team in most offensive and defensive categories. Jacob is averaging 14.2 points and 6.1 rebounds on the year, the highest averages on the team. Henton sports averages of 12.4 points and 4.7 rebounds. The 49ers are shooting 36.7 percent from the field and 25.4 percent from 3-point range. They average 38.7 rebounds, 11.9 assists and 22.7 turnovers per game.

Recapping Last Week

The Cal State Northridge women's basketball team split its two Big West Conference games last week, defeating Pacific in overtime, 74-68, before falling to UC Davis, 76-54. In the win over the Tigers, CSUN led wire-to-wire, saw Pacific battle back and take a two-point lead with 100 seconds left and then force overtime. In the extra period, the Matadors calmly knocked down their free throws and took home their first win of the season. Against UC Davis, the teams were separated by only eight points at halftime, but the preseason-favorite Aggies flexed their muscle to open the second half on an 18-5 run to put the game out of reach. Jasmine Erving scored a season-high 23 points for the Matadors, knocking down eight field goals and seven free throws, both of which were also season bests.

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