Oct. 29, 2011
Colorado State (0-0) hosts its exhibition opener Sunday vs. Colorado Christian. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m. MT at Moby Arena (8,745).
Head Coach Kristen Holt and the Rams finished 14-16 in 2010-11 en route to building their program of excellence, improving their spot in the league standings by four notches for a fourth-place finish in the Mountain West. Junior Kim Mestdagh and freshman Sam Martin were awarded with post-season all-conference honors.
Mestdagh earned the preseason Player of the Year title to start the 2011-12 season. She is the first to earn the honor since Becky Hammon in 1998-99. CSU was picked to finish third in the final standings. It was the highest prediction for the Rams since the 2002-03 season, when CSU was picked to finish in second place.
The contest on Sunday will be the first for both teams. Colorado Christian ended the 2010-11 season with an 18-11 record. The Cougars traveled to the Division II NCAA tournament, losing to Wayne State College in the first round.
The game will be broadcast live on AM 1410 KIIX. Matt Wozniak, in his third season with the Rams, calls all the action. Live game audio will also be available via Rams All-Access subscription on CSURams.com.
Rams vs. Cougars series... Sunday's meeting between Colorado State and Colorado Christian marks the third game between the two schools under Head Coach Kristen Holt.
The Rams hosted CCU in their only exhibition tilt last season on Nov. 5. The team recorded 21 steals and Sam Martin shot 70 percent from the field in an 81-75 win.
About Colorado Christian...
The Cougars are under the direction of head coach Tim Hays in his fourth year with CCU. He has a 50-36 (.581) record in three years at the helm. Colorado Christian finished fourth in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference last season.
The Cougars' top returners are sophomore Christina Whitelaw and senior Stephenie Allen. Whitelaw averaged 15.3 points, 7.0 rebounds, 5.3 steals and 3.7 assists per game last season, while Allen averaged 10.5 points and 4.8 boards per game in 2010-11.
Rams' Returners... This season the Rams return three starters in Mestdagh and sophomore captains Sam Martin and Hayley Thompson. Other letterwinners returning are Kelly Hartig and Amber Makeever.
Redshirt junior Meghan Heimstra will see action again this season after sitting out last year with a hip injury. CSU also returns red shirt freshman Mandy Makeever, who played in only one game last season before falling prey to a shoulder injury.
Colorado State brings in five freshmen this season: Carlyn Chavez (Portland, Ore.), LaDeyah Forte (Pensacola, Fla.), Morgan Hunt (Colleyville, Texas), Hanne Mestdagh (Ieper, Belgium) and Fort Collins native Kara Spotton (Rocky Mountain). Hanne Mestdagh is the younger sister of teammate Kim Mestdagh.
Excellent in exhibition... Head Coach Kristen Holt is 5-0 in exhibition contests since taking over the reins of the CSU women’s basketball program in 2008-09. In those contests, the Rams have averaged 79.8 points per contest, while holding opponents to an average of 65.0 points. The following is a list of CSU’s exhibition games under Holt:
11/05/10 Colorado Christian W, 81-75
10/29/09 CSU-Pueblo W, 81-59
11/06/09 Adams State W, 84-67
10/31/08 Adams State W, 59-58
11/07/08 Colorado Christian W, 94-66
Marquee matchups... Colorado State’s 2011-12 schedule features seven contests against teams that participated in the postseason last year, four of which went to the NCAA tournament. The Rams' first regular-season contest is vs. Northern Iowa, which fell in the first round of the NCAA tournament to another Rams 2011 opponent, Michigan State. The Spartans won the Big Ten championship last season and advanced to the second round of the tournament. MSU finished the year ranked 18th in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches' Poll, and 12th in the AP/Writers' Poll.
At the beginning of December, the Rams will have a tough road matchup at Toledo. The Rockets were last season's WNIT champions, defeating USC 76-68. NCAA participant Bowling Green will then visit Moby Arena for a New Year's Eve matchup.
The MW schedule features two teams that were featured in the WNIT, TCU and Sweet-16 contender,Wyoming.
Moving up the charts... At the start of her senior year, Kim Mestdagh is on her way to the top of the charts in the Rams' record book. The leading returning point scorer in the Mountain West for the second-consecutive year has cracked the top-10 on the all-time points list at CSU. She enters the 2011-12 year with 1,233 career points, 102 away from ninth-place Karen Hosek-Kreuzer.
Last season Mestdagh led the Mountain West in free-throw percentage (.876), and was ranked in the top five in four other statistical categories. She hasn't missed a freethrow in 30 attempts, dating back to Jan. 29.
Mestdagh, a two-time second-team all-conference recipient, has hit more single-season three-pointers than any sophomore or junior in CSU history, eclipsing Becky Hammon each year.
The following is a list of Mestdagh's current spot in CSU's all-time record books:
Points 10. 1,233
Points Per Game (min. 45 games) 7. 13.55 (1,233/91)
Field Goals Made 15. 420 (999)
Field-Goal Attempts 11. 999 (420)
3-Point Field Goals Made 3. 221 (612)
3-Point Field Goal-Attempts 3. 612 (221)
3-Pt Field-Goal % (Based on 75 attempts) 10. .361 (221-612)
Free Throw % (Based on 100 attempts) 6. .804 (172-214)
Steals 13. 156
A family affair...
Colorado State's 2011-12 women's basketball organization features three sets of family members.
Amber and Mandy Makeever (twin sisters)
Kim and Hanne Mestdagh (sisters)
Taylor and Corey Steven (cousins)
New in 2011-12: Video Streaming...
The Rams will have all of their non-televised home contests streamed live on CSURams.com/All-Access this season. Fans can watch home games live on their computer for $9.95 per month or $59.95 per year. The fee also includes the ability to listen to the radio broadcast of every game online.
Colorado State will have six days before its final preseason tuneup. The team will play its second exhibition matchup, vs. CSU-Pueblo on Nov. 5.