CSU opens season vs. Bobcats, Bears
Nov. 9, 2012
Colorado State (0-0) hosts its first two games in three days starting Sunday vs. Montana State, followed by Northern Colorado on Tuesday. Tipoff on Sunday is set for 2 p.m. MT at Moby Arena (8,745), while Tuesday's game is slated for 7 p.m.
Head Coach Ryun Williams is eager to begin the 2012-13 campaign. With the return of two-time all-conference selection, Sam Martin, and the reigning Mountain West Sixth Player of the Year, Meghan Heimstra, the Rams will look to improve upon last season's 13-17 record. Sophomore LaDeyah Forte will lead Colorado State from the point guard position. She finished second in assist-to-turnover ratio in the MW in her rookie year.
The Bobcats will begin their season after two exhibition wins at home over Montana Tech (83-50) and Minot State (63-47). Sunday's game will be the first of a four-game road stretch for MSU.
Northern Colorado will visit Moby for its second game of the season after hosting MW foe Air Force Friday night. In its only exhibition tilt, UNC routed Regis 73-44 in Greeley on Nov. 2.
The game will be broadcast live on AM 1410 KIIX. Matt Wozniak, now in his fourth season with the Rams, calls all the action. Live game video will also be available via Rams All-Access subscription on CSURams.com, and for the first time, fans will be able to listen to every Rams' game for free on Rams All-Access.
About Montana State...
Series vs. The Bobcats...
The Rams are 5-5 vs. MSU overall with an 4-1 record in Fort Collins.
Last time at Montana State: Nov. 29, 2011...
After the Rams got off to a quick start with a six-point lead, Montana State went on a 13-1 run midway through the first half, and the Rams quickly found themselves with a 16-point deficit that they were never able to recover from.
Meghan Heimstra helped lead the team in the second half trying to cut the Rams deficit with a double-double performance. She registered 14 points and 10 rebounds on the evening. Sam Martin continued her impressive showing from the last game at Denver. She tallied a team-high 21 points, shooting 5-5 from the charity stripe. Mandy Makeeever also scored double-digits for CSU with 11.
Kim Mestdagh struggled on the court not scoring a single field goal in the contest. Her two points came from free-throws early on.
Hayley Thompson started her first game of the season after playing limited minutes due to an ankle injury. She scored five points in 30 minutes on the night.
About Northern Colorado...
Series vs. The Bears...
The Rams are 19-11 vs. UNC overall with an 12-3 record in Fort Collins. CSU hasn't lost to the Bears at home since 1978.
Last time at Northern Colorado: Dec. 2, 2011...
Colorado State fell to 1-6 on the season while the Bears improved their record to 5-3. It was the fourth-consecutive loss for the Rams.
Much like the matchup at Montana State earlier in the week, the Rams started with a lot of energy and flirted with a 10 point lead for much of the first half, but by the end of the first 20 minutes the Bears closed the gap to just one point and the teams exchanged leads in the second half.
The game was tied seven times and the lead changed eight times, all in the second half. Neither team had more than a three-point lead in the final stanza until UNC pulled away with free throws in the final minute.
Senior Kim Mestdagh regained her confidence, hitting three from beyond the arc, right out of the gate. She finished with her second game over 20 points this season with 28, but did not score down the stretch when the team needed it most as the Bears held her scoreless for the final 11 minutes, 14 seconds.
Sam Martin also recorded her third-consecutive game in double digits and sixth on the year. The sophomore tallied a double-double with 15 points, which included a perfect 5-5 from the line, and 13 rebounds. She has now made 10 free throws in a row dating back to Nov. 23 at Denver.
Sophomores Mandy Makeever (shoulder) and Hanne Mestdagh (knee) are still recovering from injuries sustained last season. Amber Makeever will return to the court this year after sitting out last season with a hip injury.
Freshman Caitlin Duffy (St. Thomas More, Rapid City, S.D.) a first team All-American, led her high school team to their first girls basketball state championship averaging 19.5 points, 6.8 rebounds, 3.8 assists, and 3.3 steals per game her senior year.
Freshman Taylor Varsho (Marshfield High School, Marshfield, Wisc.) was named all-state her sophomore, junior, and senior seasons. She averaged a team high 18.1 points, 3.9 rebounds, and 2.2 assists per game as a senior. Varsho ended her high school career as the Marshfield leading scorer with 1,364 points.
Freshman Emily Johnson (Georgetown High School, Georgetown, Tex.) was named captain in both her junior and senior seasons, earing the MVP title during her senior campaign. Johnson averaged 13.2 points, 3.9 assists, 2.3 steals, and 5.6 rebounds per game. Emily was also Texas Girls Coaches Association all-state as a junior and senior.
Junior transfer Katrina Ottesen (Central Arizona Junior College, Chandler, Ariz.) lead the Vaqueras in scoring, averaging 15.1 points and 2.3 assists per game, made a team-high 84 three-pointers, and was named female athlete of the year. Ottesen and the Vasqueras were undefeated in conference play and finished fourth in the junior college final four.
Junior transfer Alicia Nichols (Northeastern Junior College, Brush Colo.) was named an all-region IX player in 2011 and 2012. Nichols held high school records in career points (1,133), rebounds (924), steals (299), and assists (381.) She was named all-state during her junior and senior seasons and earned all-conference accolades all four years.
With just three losses at Moby Arena last season, the Rams' .769 (10-3) win percentage ranked eighth all-time in the women's basketball record book.
Following the opener, the team will be home for three more contests vs. in-state rival Northern Colorado, Seattle and Toledo on Nov. 13, 17 and 20, respectively. All three teams took part in last year's postseason. After finishing second in the Big Sky Conference, UNC fell in the first round of the WNIT to Colorado. Seattle, which completed its best season in program history last year with a 20-12 record, advanced to the final four of the Women's Basketball Invitational before faltering vs. Northern Iowa. Toledo made it all the way to the Elite Eight in the WNIT before losing to Syracuse in overtime.
CSU is in for a tough two-game road stretch in early December when they travel to Bowling Green and Colorado. The Buffaloes went far in the WNIT, advancing to the Elite Eight. They finished with a 21-14 record in 2011-12.
The Rams final home game in 2012 will feature a tough Denver squad that finished 19-12 last year, on Dec. 20.
CSU's two toughest opponents will challenge the Rams during a competitive Mountain West slate. San Diego State, will be CSU's first league game in Moby on Jan. 13, followed by a rematch in California on Feb. 13. MW newcomer Fresno State will visit Fort Collins on Jan. 27 before the Rams make their second Califormia trip in league play on Feb. 27. Both teams earned spots in the 2012 NCAA tournament with conference tournament titles.
MW career leaders...
With a .541 career field-goal percentage, Martin is fifth all-time in the Mountain West. After two years with CSU, the Colorado native has compiled a .545 field-goal percentage in conference play, which leads the MW in the all-time records. Melissa Dennett, who played from 2002-06, earned the second spot at .531, and Angie Gorton (1999-02) has the fourth-best percentage at .524, giving the Rams three of the top five league field-goal percentages of all time since the conference was formed in 1999.
Meghan Heimstra and Martin are two of five players in the MW with 350-plus career rebounds. Heimstra leads all current players with 503 boards and Martin is fourth on the list with 370. Heimstra is one of only 50 MW players to record 500 or more rebounds in her career.
The Century Mark...
Video and Audio Streaming...
Fans can also listen to every game this year for free on CSURams.com/All-Access.