Feb. 27, 2007
FULLERTON, CA - Having already clinched the No. 5 seed for next week's 2007 Big West Conference women's basketball tournament, the Cal State Fullerton women's basketball team (13-15 overall, 7-7 in the Big West) closes out the regular season at home on Thursday (March 1) at 7 p.m. as the Titans welcome UC Davis to Titan Gym. The finale will also serve as the final home appearance for Fullerton's five departing seniors: Charlee Underwood, Audrey Taylor, India McDaniel, Andrea Adams, and Ariel Adams, who will be honored in a ceremony prior to tip-off.
Cal State Fullerton's regular season finale with UC Davis can be heard live over the Internet for free at www.FullertonTitans.com. Log on to our homepage and click on the "Listen Live" logo with the microphone on the right-hand side of the page.
BIG WEST TV IS BACK!
Live streaming video for all Cal State Fullerton home games and select road contests will be available once again during the regular season through a partnership with the Big West Conference and CSTV. The subscription video service is \$79.95 for the entire season or \$9.95 per month. For more information, please visit the Big West website at www.bigwest.org/tv.
UC DAVIS: The Titans lead the all-time series with the Aggies, 3-2, having defeated UC Davis on its home floor earlier this season by a 60-51 count on Jan. 27... Over the course of the last two seasons, each team has won a game at home and on the other's court, with the road team's coming out on top in 2005-06 and home teams triumphing in 2004-05... Fullerton has scored 70 points or more against UC Davis in three of the five all-time meetings and leads the all-time scoring in the series by a single point (332-331).
SCOUTING THE AGGIES
UC Davis enters the weekend with a 13-14 overall record and an 8-6 mark against its future Big West Conference bretheren... After losing three straight to kick-off February, the Aggies have won four straight games entering the final weekend of the regular season, defeating Pacific (67-39), Cal State Northridge (69-68), UC Irvine (63-52), and Long Beach State (60-50) in that span... UC Davis features three players in double figures led by Heather Bates' 12.8 ppg and 7.0 rpg... Laura Thomas (10.1 ppg) and Haylee Donaghe (10.0 ppg) are also in double figures.
THE BIG (WEST) PICTURE
Cal State Fullerton is firmly entrenched as the No. 5 seed for next week's Big West Conference Tournament and awaits the results of this week's final weekend of league play to determine their first round opponent. The sixth-eighth slots are also still up for grabs with Long Beach State, UC Irvine and Pacific duking it out. The Anteaters (3-10) are in the best position for obtaining the sixth slot, as they will only need to defeat Long Beach State (3-10) Saturday night. Even if Pacific were to conclude the season at 4-10, UCI wins the head-to-head tiebreaker after sweeping the Tigers this year. Pacific has the toughest route to sixth place as they take on UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly, two teams tied for second. The Tigers, who own the tiebreaker over LBSU, if they were to finish 4-10, dropped both earlier contests against the teams.
THOMAS MAKES PUSH FOR PLAYER OF THE YEAR
In only her second season, sophomore Toni Thomas is challenging for Big West Conference Player of the Year honors as her consistent play has her among the league's leaders in nine different categories entering this week's games: scoring (1st), rebounding (3rd), field goal percentage (6th), free throw percentage (2nd), blocks (7th), offensive rebounds (5th), defensive rebounds (4th), minutes played (5th), and minutes per game (7th).
HOW THEY STACK UP
This is the final season of counting UC Davis as a non-conference opponent before the Aggies officially join the Big West Conference in 2007-08, but UC Davis would rank among the upper echelon teams in the league had they been a member this season. The Aggies are shooting .415 from the field entering this week's games (which would rank 3rd in the league) and .345 from three-point range - a total that would lead the Big West. UC Davis has allowed only 62.1 ppg this season, which would be second-best in the Big West, while its .717 free throw percentage would stand second in the league behind Cal State Fullerton.
THOMAS' STREAK NOW AT 17 STRAIGHT
Sophomore Toni Thomas extended her double-digit scoring streak to a career-best 17 consecutive games with her efforts against UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly, surpassing her previous best16-game streak with 10-or-more points that ran from Feb. 16, 2006-Dec. 9, 2007.
Thomas, who has scored in double figures in every game but one this season (at San Diego on Dec. 16), is averaging 17.6 ppg and 8.8 rpg during her active streak while shooting just under 45 percent (107-for-239) from the floor and 83 percent (79-for-95) from the free throw line.
THOMAS STILL LEAGUE'S BEST
Sophomore Toni Thomas remains atop the Big West scoring race at 17.5 points per game entering this weekend's games - besting second-place Jenna Green of UC Santa Barbara by 1.1 ppg. If the season were to end today, Thomas would be the first Titan to lead the league in scoring since Koko Lahanas accomplished the feat in 1994-95 after averaging a nation-high 26.8 ppg. Claudette Jackson (1992 - 20.3 ppg) and Genia Miller (1991 - 29.4 ppg) are the only other Titans to lead the Big West in scoring.
With her 11 points on Feb. 22 against UC Santa Barbara, senior Charlee Underwood became only the seventh player in Cal State Fullerton women's basketball history to score at least 1,300 points for her career. She needs 107 more points to pass Meg Gallagher's (1981-85) 1,421 career points for sixth place on the all-time list.
A LOOK DEEPER
Underwood's 1,315 career points would rank 15th on the school's all-time basketball scoring list when you include the top scorers from Fullerton's men's career list. In this "bigger picture," Underwood needs only 13 points to move past Tony Neal (1981-85) and 15 more to pass Henry Turner (1984-88) into 13th place.
In only her second season in a Titans uniform, Thomas is just 157 points away from becoming the 17th member of Cal State Fullerton's 1,000-point club. Thanks to a monster sophomore season, Thomas' 843 career points already ranks No. 20 on the all-time scoring list - just 19 points away from passing Amy Torczon (1984-88) for 19th place.
`Cause you shouldn't. With her 15 points against Pacific on Feb. 8, sophomore Toni Thomas became the first Titan to reach 400 points in a single-season since Shayla Bradshaw scored 487 points in 1995-96. Now the sophomore is inching closer to another milestone as her 45 points this past weekend at UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly has Thomas just 10 points away from becoming the first Titan to score 500 points in a single season since Koko Lahanas led the nation in scoring with 778 points (26.8 ppg) in 1994-95.
With at least two games remaining this season, Thomas' current pace would put her at 525 points for the year - a total that would rank 10th on the school's single-season list.
UNDERWOOD SCORES, REBOUNDS
Back-tracking just a little. With her eight rebounds on Jan. 18 against Long Beach State, Underwood became the ninth player in the history of the Fullerton program to score 1,000 points and grab 500 rebounds in a career. She is the second player to accomplish that feat in as many years as Amber Pruitt (2002-06) became the eighth member of that club last season - and the first since Claudette Jackson reached those milestones in the 1991-92 season.
DISHING IT OUT
Many teams are thankful to have a talented point guard in the backcourt, directing the team's success one pass at a time. This season, the Titans have been blessed to have two basketball-saavy passers in the backcourt as Audrey Taylor and India McDaniel have done an excellent job "quarterbacking" Fullerton's offense this season. McDaniel (104 assists) and Taylor (103 assists) both rank among the top five in the Big West Conference in assists and, after their performances at UC Santa Barbara on Feb. 22, became the first Titan guard tandem to each reach 100 assists since Marissa Frial and Shayla Bradshaw dished out 173 and 121 assists, respectively, during the 1994-95 season.
JUST ONE MORE
With one more victory in their final two scheduled games (including the Big West Tournament), the Titans will match the 1994-95 squad (14-15 overall) for the most wins in the last 15 years. Fullerton has also notched back-to-back double-digit win totals for the first time since 1996-97 season (10-16) and 1997-98 (10-17) seasons and the 24 combined victories the last two years are the most since the Titans won 36 games from 1990-92 (25-8 and 11-17 overall).
SPEAKING OF ONE MORE
With a victory in its final home game of the year on Thursday night against UC Davis, the Titans will post double-digit wins at Titan Gym for the first time since the 1990-91 team went 12-1 at home en route to the NCAA Tournament. Fullerton, which is 9-4 at home this season, has already clinched back-to-back winning seasons at home for the first time since the 1989-90 (9-5) and 1990-91 (12-1) seasons.
FROM WAY DOWNTOWN
Underwood is 49-for-151 (.325) this season from three-point range, ranking among single-season leaders in both categories. Her 49 three-pointers made (aside from being a career high) rank tied for fifth all-time with Joey Ray's 49 made in 1990-91. Her 151 attempts rank fourth on the single-season charts, eight short of Shayla Bradshaw's 159 attempts in 1994-95.
A SOUR NOTE
For the first time in seven games this season, the Titans lost when they had a "quartet" of players scoring in double figures, on Thursday night at UC Santa Barbara snapping a six-game winning streak to start the year.
STILL NO. 1
Cal State Fullerton continues to sit atop the Big West Conference in free throw shooting at .727 entering this week's games. The Titans have shot better than 70 percent from the line in 17 of 28 games this season (and eight times at 80 percent or better), but are only 9-8 in those games.
NOT NO. 1... BUT REALLY GOOD
Cal State Fullerton enters this week shooting a league-high .727 from the free throw line to rank No. 66 in the NCAA behind Wisconsin-Green Bay's nation-leading .815 from the charity stripe.
THOMAS STILL AMONG NCAA'S BEST
Thomas continues to rank among the NCAA's best in two different categories, entering the week ranked No. 50 in scoring and No. 71 in rebounding. Bolstered by an almost perfect 10-for-11 (.909) showing at the free throw line on Saturday at Cal Poly... Thomas also broke back into the nation's top 100 in free throw percentage at .804 (\#100). She is one of two players from the Big West ranked among the nation's top 100 scorers (Jenna Green - No. 92), one of four in rebounding, and one of two in free throw percentage.
BIG WEST'S BEST 1-2 PUNCH
Cal State Fullerton's Toni Thomas (17.5 ppg) and Charlee Underwood (14.4 ppg) each rank among the league's top 10 scorers - making them the best 1-2 offensive punch in the Big West, 110 points better than the UC Santa Barbara duo of Jenna Green and Jessica Wilson (769 points, 16.4 and 13.0 ppg, respectively). Thomas and Underwood have combined to score 879 points (31.9 ppg) and has accounted for 48 percent of the team's points this season.