Titans Ring in Holidays With Trip to Spokane

Dec. 22, 2010

FULLERTON, CA -

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THIS WEEK...
Cal State Fullerton at Gonzaga
Dec. 23, 2010
12 p.m.
McCarthey Athletic Center (6,000) | Spokane, WA
Gametracker | Live Video

TIP-OFF: The non-conference schedule nears its end for the Cal State Fullerton women's basketball team (4-7 overall) as the Titans head north to a snowy Spokane, Washington, to take on defending West Coast Conference champion Gonzaga on Thursday (Dec. 23) at the McCarthey Athletic Center. Tip-off between the Titans and Bulldogs is scheduled for 12 p.m.

BE A FOLLOWER: Fans can keep up with the latest in Titans athletics by following us on Facebook (CSUF Athletics), Twitter (@CSUFAthletics) and Vimeo.com (vimeo.com/fullertontitans). In addition, the women's basketball team has established its own official Facebook fan page (search for Cal State Fullerton Women's Basketball).

CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW? GOOD!: Thanks to a partnership with Arizona-based Stretch Internet, select Cal State Fullerton women's basketball contests will be broadcast live over the Internet at FullertonTitans.com. To access the links, click on the headphones icon in the upper right-hand corner of FullertonTitans.com. There will be no Fullerton-originated broadcast of Thursday's contest.

I SEE YOU: For the fifth consecutive season, live streaming video for all of Cal State Fullerton's home regular season contests and selected road games will be available (on a subscription basis) live over the Internet courtesy the Big West TV platform. For a monthly subscription of \$9.95 or an annual subscription of \$79.95, fans can catch all the exclusive action from the comfort of their home computers. For more information, please log on to BigWest.org/TV. Live video will be available for Thursday's game by visiting GoZags.com/allaccess.

I NEED STATS, STAT!: For the second consecutive season, Cal State Fullerton men's and women's basketball will feature live stats via CBS College Sports' Gametracker interface for all of the Titans' home games as well as select road contests. Links will be available on both the men's and women's basketball schedule pages at FullertonTitans.com.

GONZAGA BRIEFLY: The Bulldogs have continued to roll in 2010-11, posting an 9-3 mark thus far this season (4-1 at home) after advancing to the NCAA "Sweet 16" a season ago... Gonzaga, a No. 7 seed in last year's tournament, posted wins over North Carolina and Texas A&M before falling to Xavier to end its tournament run... the `Zags have won seven in a row entering Thursday's game against the Titans, defeating BYU, 91-64, in their last outing on Dec. 21... Gonzaga is averaging 91.6 ppg as a squad over its last five games with an average margin of victory of 24.2 ppg... Katelan Redmon, in her second season with Gonzaga after transferring from in-state rival Washington, is one of three Bulldogs in double figures, averaging a team-best 19.3 ppg to go with 6.0 rpg and a .552 field goal percentage... Courtney Vandersloot (17.8 ppg, 9.58 apg), two-time WCC Player of the Year and an Associated Press and State Farm Coaches' All-America Honorable Mention selection, and Kayla Standish (14.8 ppg, 7.6 rpg, .554 FG%) are also players to watch... Gonzaga is averaging 84.9 ppg and shooting .487 from the floor for the season while holding opponents to 62.9 ppg and 38 percent shooting... head coach Kelly Graves is in his 11th year at the helm, posting a 206-117 (.638) overall record in Spokane while guiding the Bulldogs to six consecutive West Coast Conference titles, three NCAA Tournament appearances, and a pair of WNIT berths since taking over in 2000.

SERIES NOTES: Cal State Fullerton's series with Gonzaga is all tied-up at 2-2, with the Bulldogs winning the last two meetings, but the two programs haven't met since New Year's Eve in 2002 when Gonzaga posted a 75-57 victory at Titan Gym... Fullerton has traveled to Spokane only once in the history of the series falling 89-48 in 2001... the Titans' last win in the series came on Nov. 29, 1991, posting an 80-57 victory at Titan Gym... Fullerton also posted a 75-58 win on a neutral court in Irvine on Dec. 27, 1984 at the UC Irvine Marriott Christmas Tournament.

WCC SCHEDULE COMES TO AN END: Thursday's contest in Spokane will finally bring to an end the West Coast Conference portion of the Titans' schedule and Fullerton will look to improve on a 1-3 mark against the league this season. The Titans, who are 34-51 (.400) all-time against current members of the WCC, have lost three straight against West Coast Conference members after opening the "league schedule" with a 69-66 win over San Francisco on Nov. 18 at home. Since then, Fullerton has struggled against the WCC, falling to San Diego (71-60), Loyola Marymount (77-76), and Pepperdine (80-52) this season - all on the road.

PLANES, TRAINS, AND AUTOMOBILES: Eat your heart out Steve Martin. The workout continues for the Titans' luggage as Fullerton's 12th road contest in its first 15 games tips-off this week in Spokane with two more road games remaining before the Titans' first extended homestand. Following this week's trip to Washington to take on Gonzaga, the Titans' will have racked up just over 11,162 round trip miles during the non-conference portion of their schedule and will finish the road trip in January following the opening weekend of Big West play in Northern California with 12,020 miles traveled. At the end of the year, Fullerton will have finished the season with 13,001 miles under its belt this season - not counting any trips the Titans may have to make during the conference tournament and any subsequent postseason jaunts.

BREITE DOUBLES UP: Senior Jenna Breite was one of few bright spots for the Titans in their loss at Pepperdine last week, finishing with her second career double-double with 10 points on an efficient 5-of-7 shooting night and 10 rebounds against the Waves in Fullerton's 80-52 loss. With her performance, Breite, who last posted a double-double with a career-high 11 points and 10 rebounds last season against Portland State, has now grabbed double-digit rebounds in her last three consecutive games, averaging 11.7 rpg in that stretch.

MILLENNIUM WATCH: Keep an eye on the scoring column this season as the Titans have potentially three players who could join the 1,000 point clubs this season. Junior Megan Richardson, who led the Titans with 489 points as a sophomore last season, is the closest to the mark, needing just 32 points to become the latest player to reach the milestone. Also closing in on the mark, senior Lyndsey Grove (862 points) and redshirt junior Lauren Chow (796).

There have been 18 players who have reached the 1,000-point plateau in the history of the program, the last being Toni Thomas, who finished with 1,786 points from 2005-09 - the second-highest total in school history.

`TIS THE SEASON OF GIVING: Cal State Fullerton's 19 assists on 23 made shots last week at Pepperdine continued a trend of sharing the ball for the Titans, who are averaging almost 22 assists per contest over their last three games after handing out just 12.5 apg in their first eight games of the year. Fullerton's recent stretch included a school record 28-assist performance on 42 made shots against Sacramento State on Dec. 9, surpassing the previous mark of 27 assists set against San Diego in a 75-48 victory over the Toreros on Dec. 9, 1988. The Titans enter the week ranked third in the Big West in assists per game (15.00 apg) and lead the league with 165 assists overall.

SPEAKING OF GIVING: Senior Lyndsey Grove was the "Titans' Little Helper" against Pepperdine last week, setting a career high with six assists against the Waves despite being held to just five points and five rebounds - ending her streak of 10 consecutive double-digit scoring performances to begin the season. Her 27 assists this season are just eight shy of her career high of 35 set last season while she dished out four-or-more assists for the fourth time in 2010-11 against Pepperdine.

COMPLETELY OFFENSIVE: And we mean that in a nice way. Despite the Titans' recent scoring troubles on the road (averaging just 60.2 ppg during their five-game road skid), Fullerton's offense overall is among the Big West Conference's best, leading the league with 741 points overall and ranking second entering this week's games at 67.4 ppg.

QUITE A 1-2 PUNCH: The Titans scoring duo of senior Lyndsey Grove (14.0 ppg) and junior Megan Richardson (13.6 ppg) is among one of the Big West Conference's top 1-2 scoring punches this season, accounting for 41 percent of the team's scoring (304 of 741 total points) and combining to average 27.6 ppg. The only scoring duo ahead of the Titans' tandem is UC Irvine's Mikah Maly-Karros and Jade Smith-Williams, who have combined to score just under half of their team's points (350 of 730 total points for 47.9%) and are averaging a combined 31.8 ppg. Grove and Richardson rank third and fourth, respectively, in the Big West in scoring this week and Fullerton is one of six schools with a pair of players in the top 15 in the league in scoring.

THE TITANS' SWISS ARMY KNIFE: Senior Lyndsey Grove has been a "jill of all trades" this season for the Titans, providing a lift on both ends of the court for Cal State Fullerton. Grove, who leads the team and ranks among the league's top five in scoring entering this week, ranks fourth in the league in field goal percentage (.488), sixth in three-point percentage (.385), sixth in minutes (31.27 mpg), and tied for ninth in three-pointers made per game (1.36 pg), while also standing first on the team in steals (16), third on the team in assists (27), and second in free throw percentage (.850).

ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS...: As the calendar turns to December, visions of more than sugar plums are dancing in the heads of the Titans. More than just their two front teeth, Fullerton would like some tallies in the win column after it has suffered through a three-plus season stretch during which the Titans have gone just 3-18 in the month of December since the 2007-08 campaign and haven't had a winning December since going 4-3 in 2006-07.

CHOW PEEKING AT THE RECORD BOOK: Chow is rapidly approaching the school's three-point record, standing tied for third all-time with 155 made and needing just 10 more from long distance to break Charlee Underwood's mark of 164 set from 2003-07 while her 472 three-point attempts are second all-time and 10 shy of Underwood's mark of 482. Her three-point percentage of .328 is already eighth all-time. In other career record watch news, Chow's 240 career assists are also closing in on the all-time top 10 as she needs 75 more to match Chris O'Sullivan (1976-80) for 10th place while her 108 career steals are 45 shy of the top 10 list.

MORE THREE-POINT RECORDS: Senior Lyndsey Grove's career three-point percentage of .328 would rank mere percentage points behind Lauren Chow's mark in ninth place in school history while junior Megan Richardson has joined Chow on a pair of top 10 lists. Richardson's 91 three-pointers made are eighth all-time while her 272 attempts are 10th. Her career .335 percentage already ranks sixth as of this week's contests.

DUO SETS SIGHTS ON FREE THROW TOP TEN'S: Senior Lyndsey Grove and junior Megan Richardson are both closing in on a few career lists, mainly thanks to their accuracy from the free throw line. Grove, who led the Big West Conference in free throw shooting last season, is 211-for-249 (.847) for her career, which would set the school record for percentage with one more attempt while standing 23 makes shy of the top 10 in free throws made and 110 attempts back of that career category. Assuming Grove's record-setting performance above, Richardson's .805 career free throw percentage (207-for-257) would stand third while she would be 27 makes shy of the top 10 and 102 attempts back of the career top 10 list.

IRON WOMEN: Senior Lyndsey Grove played in her 100th career game last week at Pepperdine, joining a select group of 33 Titans - including teammate Ashley Richie, who joined the club on Dec. 4 at Bowling Green - who have appeared in at least 100 career games. Barring injury and major catastrophe, both Richie (103 games) and Grove have a great chance to break the current career mark held by Genia Miller with 18 regular season games remaining plus any possible conference tournament and postseason contests. Miller played in 118 games during her illustrious career from 1987-91, and her mark could be matched by Richie as soon as Feb. 17 against UC Santa Barbara at Titan Gym.

THE COMFORTS OF HOME: In the midst of yet another extended road trip, the Titans' affinity for playing in front of the hometown faithful becomes even more evident. Fullerton, which is just 1-6 in true road games this season (and 0-1 in neutral site contests), is averaging 81.7 ppg in three home contests this season compared to just 62.0 ppg in its seven road games (a difference of 19.7 ppg) and is shooting .467 (93-for-199) at Titan Gym to just .395 (163-for-413) on the road. Opponents, on the other hand, are scoring just 61.7 ppg at Titan Gym compared to 75.9 ppg on their own floors.

THE CURE FOR WHAT AILS YA: Was apparently just a little home cooking. Cal State Fullerton's win over Sacramento State on Dec. 9 improved the Titans to 3-0 at home this season - their best home start since the 1991-92 season when they opened with wins over Gonzaga, Georgetown, and Pepperdine. Fullerton, however, will have to wait a while to see if it can improve to 4-0 at home for the first time since 1983-84 as the Titans, who have won 12 of their last 14 at home (including four straight), don't play another home game until Jan. 5, 2011, against UC Irvine to tip-off a four-game homestand - their longest stretch of games at historic Titan Gym this season.

BLOCKS A PLENTY: The Titans ranked last in the Big West Conference in blocked shots last season with just 38 swats in 32 games, but it looks as if Cal State Fullerton is out to buck that trend in 2010-11. Through 11 games this season, the Titans have already rejected 33 shots - already 21 more than they had through 11 games in 2009-10. Fullerton, which stands seventh in the league in blocks entering the week, is led by the twin-tower duo of senior Jenna Breite (10) and Lauren Bushong (8), who have combined for over half of the team's total. Already this season, 11 different players have tallied a blocked shot - the most since 12 Titans finished with at least one swat during the 2008-09 campaign.

BREITE'S BLOCK PARTY: When senior Jenna Breite isn't busy cleaning the glass with her team-best rebounding total, the San Diego native has been adept at knock shots straight out of the air, finishing with a career-high five blocks against LMU on Dec. 7, doubling her entire season total to that point, and helping the Titans to a season-high nine swats as a team. Breite's five blocks were the most for a Fullerton player in a single game since Erin Whiteside finished with the same number against Nevada on Jan. 10, 1999. Breite, who leads the team with 10 blocks overall, enters the week ranked ninth in the league at 0.91 bpg.

CENTURY CITY: It had been 15 years since the Cal State Fullerton women's basketball team was able to test the graphic limits of the scoreboard with three digits in the scoring column, but on Dec. 9 against Sacramento State, the Titans did just that, scoring 100 points in a 26-point win over the Hornets at Titan Gym. Until then, Fullerton had been involved in nine 100-point games (all losses) since a 103-78 victory over Cal Poly on Valentine's Day in 1995. Against Sacramento State, the Titans fell just eight points shy of the all-time scoring record of 108 points set against New Mexico State on March 7, 1991, and their 51-point first half was just seven points shy of the single-half mark of 58 also set against the Aggies in that game. With the win, Fullerton improved to 12-21 in 100-point contests dating back to 1970.

NOT JUST FOR DESSERT ANYMORE: The Titans' defense has been serving up its fair share of turnovers this season, forcing the opposition into 186 miscues thus far and turning those into 188 points for the "good guys" through 11 games. Fullerton has forced 20-or-more turnovers in five of its 11 games, including a season-best 24 turnovers at Seattle University on Nov. 14 and against Sacramento State on Dec. 9. The 186 turnovers forced are fifth in the league (UC Davis is tops at 248) and the Titans' stand third in the Big West with a +1.36 turnover margin (the Aggies are first at +6.20). On the offensive side of the ball, Fullerton is also one of the best, as its 15.5 turnovers per game are the best in the league (UC Irvine is second at 16.9 per game).

TITANS SIGN TALL TRIO FOR 2011-12: Cal State Fullerton women's basketball head coach Marcia Foster announced Thursday that the Titans have signed three players to National Letters of Intent to continue their academic and athletic careers with the Titans.

Chelsea Austin (Los Angeles, CA/Beverly Hills HS), Natalie Williams (Cerritos, CA/St. Anthony HS), and Jessica Palmer (Elverta, CA/Antelope HS) will join the program as freshmen beginning with the 2011-12 season.

Austin, a six-foot guard/forward, helped lead the Normans to the second round of the CIF Division II State Tournament as a junior, averaging just under 14 points and 13.2 rebounds per game for the year while swatting 3.8 blocks per game. She was an All-Ocean League First-Team and All-CIF Second-Team honoree in 2010, helping Beverly Hills HS to a 21-13 overall mark.

Williams, a 6-1 forward/center who played her freshman season at Artesia HS in Lakewood, helped the Saints to a CIF Division V title as the division's top seed and a runner-up finish at the CIF State Tournament as a junior, averaging eight points and 10 rebounds per contest en route to All-Santa Cruz League Honorable Mention honors. St. Anthony's finished 26-10 overall, reaching the state title game for the first time in school history.

Palmer, a 6-2 left-handed post player from Northern California, averaged 9.2 ppg and 8.4 rpg as a junior, earning All-Capital Athletic League honors and serving as team captain for the second-straight season. She was also named the team's Best Defensive Player twice as a sophomore and junior.