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Game Notes: Women's basketball tips off season at Northern Iowa

Senior guard Sara Hunter

Senior guard Sara Hunter

Nov. 7, 2007

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Game 1 
Colorado State (0-0) vs. Northern Iowa (0-0)
Nov. 9, 2007 | Cedar Falls, Iowa | McCleod Center (7,018) | 4:45 p.m MT

The Series  
 Overall Record UNI leads, 2-1
 In Fort Collins UNI leads, 1-0
 In Cedar Falls UNI leads, 1-0
 At Neutral Sites CSU leads, 1-0
 Warden vs. Northern Iowa 0-0

 Colorado State Sports Network:  90.5 FM - KCSU
 Cole Weinman:  Play-by-Play
 Lance Moorman:  Color Analyst

Live Stats  
 Gametracker:  www.UNIPanthers.com

CSU Media Relations Contact  
 Danny Mattie, Assistant Director
  Office Phone:  970/491-5050
   Cell Phone:  970/217-3140
   E-mail:  D.Mattie@colostate.edu
   Fax: 970/491-1348
 Garrett Finke, Student Assistant
 Amanda Nutting, Student Assistant

The Matchup
The Colorado State women's basketball team tips off regular-season play on Friday in Cedar Falls, Iowa, against the University of Northern Iowa Panthers.

The Rams and Panthers closed exhibition play with identical 1-1 records. Colorado State fell to Metro State, 55-42, in its opener but bounced back for a solid 58-42 victory over CSU-Pueblo. Northern Iowa opened exhibition play with a loss at the hands of South Dakota, 76-46. The Panthers closed exhibition play with an impressive 95-27 victory over Coe College.

About Northern Iowa
Friday's game marks the head coaching debut of first-year hire Tanya Warren. Warren was hired in April to take the reins at UNI, returning to the program where she spent six seasons as an assistant from 1995-2001.

Warren will have a tough test ahead of her, with six freshman and five sophomores making up the majority of her 13-player roster.

Three freshmen, guards Rachel Madrigal and Jacqui Kalin, and forward Erin Brocka are expected to be in the starting lineup against the Rams.

Kalin and Madrigal led UNI in scoring in two exhibition contests, averaging 12.5 and 11.5 points per game, respectively. Brocka chipped in 4.5 points per game and tied Madrigal for second on the team with 5.5 rebounds per contest.

As a team, UNI shot 40.9 percent from the floor, 37.5 percent from 3-point range and averaged 39.5 rebounds per contest.

UNI returns two starters from last season's squad that finished 17-12 (11-7 MVC) in a tie for fifth in the Missouri Valley Conference. Senior forward Megan Keefe started all 30 games and averaged 9.2 points and 4.1 rebounds per contest last season, while sophomore guard Nicole Clausen started 25 games and pitched in 4.0 points and 2.1 rebounds. Returning senior guard Traci Ollendieck played in 25 games last year, none as a starter, and averaged 6.4 points and 4.2 rebounds.

Season-Openers under Warden
The Rams are 2-0 in season-opening games under Head Coach Jen Warden, with both of those victories coming within the friendly confines of Moby Arena.

In her first season in Fort Collins, Warden led the Rams to an 83-69 victory over Concordia-St. Paul. Last season, Colorado State tipped off the season with an 89-72 win over UMKC.

Opening on the Road
Friday will mark the first time since the 2000-01 season that Colorado State opened the regular season away from Moby Arena. Colorado State is 8-6 all time in season openers played away from Moby Arena.

Home Sweet Home
Colorado State will play 14 contests in Moby Arena in 2007-08. In 2006-07, six of the team's eight wins came at Moby Arena. Overall since 1974-75, the Rams hold a record of 285-154 (.649) in Moby Arena.

Fan Support
Colorado State has had at least 1,000 fans attend each of the last 175 regular-season home contests. The last time that the Rams played in front of fewer than 1,000 fans was Jan. 5, 1996, against Idaho State.

On Pace for 100
Senior guard Sara Hunter is on pace for 100 starts in her career at Colorado State. Entering this season, Hunter has played in 86 career games at Colorado State, starting 75 of those contests. Over the last two seasons, Hunter has started each of the Rams' 58 contests.

Assist-to-Turnover Ratio Key
During the 2006-07 season, the Rams recorded 429 assists, but turned the ball over 452 times. The team notched four contests - at San Francisco, vs. Idaho, vs. San Jose State, and vs. Oklahoma Panhandle State - with a positive assist-to-turnover ratio. In those games, the Rams were 4-0.

Long-Range Rams
The 2006-07 team cracked the Colorado State single-season top 10 in both total 3-pointers made and 3-point field goal attempts, while ranking 12th in a single season in 3-point field goal percentage. Last season, the Rams made 145 of 445 3-point field goal attempts, 32.8 percent.

Magic Number: 60
Last season, the Rams were just 1-15 when scoring fewer than 60 points in a contest and 7-6 when eclipsing the 60-point plateau.

Double-Digit Performances
Colorado State's four returning players, senior guard Sara Hunter, senior forward Kelly Rae Finley and sophomores Juanise Cornell and Emily Neal, combined to score in double-digits in 33 games.

Hunter led the group with 16 double-digit scoring performances on the season, including 10 of the team's final 11 games.

Finley eclipsed double-digits twice, at New Mexico State and at home against UNLV, turning in 16 and 15 points, respectively. Neal reached double-digits in five contests and heated up late in the year, eclipsing 10 points in three of the team's final five games.

Cornell's 10 double-digit scoring games tied senior center Marilyn Moulton for third on the team. Cornell also recorded eight games with double-digits in rebounding, second on the team only to Moulton.

Head of the Class
As a freshman in 2006-07, forward Juanise Cornell turned in one of the finest rookie campaigns in CSU history. Her 189 rebounds ranks third among freshman in school history, while her 6.8 rebounds per game average is sixth and her 56 offensive rebounds was just two shy of breaking the freshman record of 57 held by Zenarae Pieters (1994-95) and Teresa James (1992-93). Cornell's 6.8 rebounds per game ranked first among freshmen in the Mountain West Conference. Offensively, Cornell also etched her name into the record books. She finished just 44 points shy of cracking the freshman Top 10 at CSU.

Looking Ahead
Colorado State returns to Moby Arena to take on the San Francisco Dons, Tuesday at 7 p.m.

The Rams hold a 3-2 advantage in the all-time series. However, the Dons walked away with a 62-51 victory last season in San Francisco.

Since opening the series in 1990, the Rams have played the Dons in four of the last five seasons heading into this year's matchup.




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