PSU Vikings

02/09/2018 | News release | Distributed by Public on 02/09/2018 16:50

Vikings Go For Sweep of Bobcats Saturday Afternoon

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Portland State can move up the Big Sky Conference standings with a win over the Montana State Bobcats Saturday afternoon at the Pamplin Sports Center. Tip-off is slated for 1 p.m. PT. The win would give the Vikings their first season sweep of Montana State since the 2010-11 season. Portland State gained some momentum in the league standings with its 70-53 win over Montana Thursday night. The Vikings put the screws on the Lady Griz defensively, holding them to 53 points the fewest allowed by Portland State during league play. After a slow first half, the Vikings got things rolling in the second. They shot 61.5 percent from the floor in the second, while going 7-for-10 from beyond the arc. Three Vikings scored in double-figures en route to the 17-point win. The Vikings can climb up the standings with another win Saturday over Montana State. The win would give the Vikings a 7-5 record, while dropping the Bobcats to 7-6. Portland State could move all the way up to fifth in the league with a win and losses by Eastern Washington and Idaho State. The Eagles are at Idaho Friday night and the Bengals are at North Dakota Saturday. Regardless of what help the Vikings could get in the standings, Portland State needs to take care of business against Montana State. The Vikings took the first meeting of the year, 69-60, in Bozeman, Mont. The win broke the Bobcats 31-consecutive home win streak and was the first road win in the series for Portland State since 2013.

UP NEXT: The Vikings hit the road next week for a pair of league games. Portland State starts the week at Weber State on Thursday, Feb. 15 before heading to Pocatello, Idaho for a Saturday, Feb. 17 showdown with Idaho State.

MONTANA STATE BOBCATS
  • Montana State went 25-7 overall and claimed a share of the Big Sky regular season championship with a 15-3 record and entered the conference tournament as the No. 1 seed.
  • Montana State defeated No. 8 Weber State, No. 4 Eastern Washington, and No. 6 Idaho State en route to the Big Sky Tournament Championship and the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Bobcats fell to the Washington Huskies, 91-63, in the first round of the tournament.
  • Montana State was picked fourth in the Big Sky Preseason Coaches' Poll and third in the Media Poll.
  • Montana State enters the game 13-10 overall and 7-5 in league play. The Bobcats are 3-7 on the road.
  • Montana State is averaging 67.0 points per game, while allowing 63.3 ppg.
  • Montana State is shooting .420 from the floor and .365 from distance. The Bobcats have made 226 three-pointers, eighth in the nation, and their 9.8 three-pointers made per game is ninth in the nation.
  • Montana State has four players averaging in double figures, led by Hannah Caudill's 12.3 ppg.
  • Caudill is shooting .410 from the floor and .418 from three. She has hit a team-high 66 three-pointers, which is 37th-best in the nation.

GAME NOTES: PORTLAND STATE vs. MONTANA STATE
ALL-TIME SERIES: Montana State leads 35-25 all-time, dating back to the 1975-76 season, and 26-16 in Big Sky Conference play. The Vikings are 12-15 at home but have won two of their last three at home in the series. The Vikings have won two straight after dropping four straight.
LAST MEETING: January 11, 2018 at Worthington Arena, PSU 66, MSU 60: Portland State ended Montana State's 31-game home winning streak, which was the second longest active streak in the nation. The Vikings shot 47.1 percent from the floor and had three players score in double-figures, led by 's 18 points. She went 8-for-15 from the floor with a pair of three pointers. scored 15 with the majority of her scoring coming at the line (8-for-10). gave the Vikings a spark fof the bench, scoring 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting. Montana State hit nine three-pointers but turned the ball over 17 times, which led to 16 points for the Vikings. QUICK HITS
BY THE NUMBERS
  • Portland State is 12-10 overall this season and 6-5 in Big Sky Conference play.
  • Portland State is 7-2 at home with all of its home games being played at the Pamplin Sports Center.
  • Portland State is 3-2 in its last five and 5-5 in its last 10 games. PSU is 1-1 in overtime games.
  • Portland State is averaging 72.6 ppg and allowing 71.5 ppg on the year.
  • Portland State is shooting .434 from the floor, .359 from three-point range, and .776 at the line.

BIG SKY BATTLES
  • PSU is 150-201 all-time in Big Sky games.
  • PSU is 94-82 in home games and 56-119 in road games.
  • PSU is 9-10 all-time at the Big Sky Tournament.

WHO'S HOT?
  • JR G leads the team with 14.1 points per game over the last eight games, while coming off the bench. She made a PSU school record 35-consecutive free throws and is shooting .893 at the charity stripe, 10th-best in the nation.
  • JR F has been tremendous on the glass over the past five games, averaging 10.6 rebounds per game. She is also averaging 13.6 points per game with 21 blocks over that span.
  • Free throw shooting. Portland State is shooting .776 from the free-throw line on the year, ninth-best in the country.
NEWS AND NOTES
A TALE OF TWO SECOND HALVES: The Vikings have played two completely different second halves this season against Idaho. In the first meeting on Jan. 6 the Vikings gave up a season-high 51 points in the second half, going 20-for-31 (59.0 percent) from the floor. In the second meeting on Feb. 1, Portland State held Idaho to just 18 points, an opponent season low. Idaho went just 8-for-31 from the floor and 2-for-17 from distance in the second meeting. Unfortunately for the Vikings, they came upon the shot on both occasions.

THE CLOSERS: Portland State closed out back-to-back wins on double-digit scoring runs. The Vikings closed out their 77-64 win over Weber State (1/20) on a 15-0 run after holding the Wildcats scoreless over the final 7:04. Portland State closed out its 81-72 win at Sacramento State (1/27) with an 11-0 run, holding the Hornets scoreless for the final 3:39.

LOCKED IN AT THE LINE: RS-JR G has been almost automatic at the free-throw line this season. She is shooting .893 at the line this season, which leads the Big Sky and is 10th overall in the country. She went a perfect 14-for-14 at the line against Idaho State (1/18) matching a 26-year-old Portland State record for most free throws made in a game without a miss. She has also hit 35-consecutive free throws, surpassing the previous school record of 31 set by Jameela Magee during the 2004-05 season.

UNSELFISH BASKETBALL: The Vikings have played great team basketball for most of the season. They have posted 20-plus assists eight times. Portland State had a run of five-straight games with 20-plus assists, capped by a season-high 29 assists against Idaho (1/6). FR G is fourth in the Big Sky with 4.3 assists per game on the year.

PROGRESS REPORT: One of the biggest indicators of Portland State's improvement over the last three seasons has been the Vikings assist-to-turnover ratio. Two years ago, in their first year under Head Coach , the Vikings had a 0.6 A/TO ratio. Last season it improved to 0.9. The Vikings are averaging 1.03 assists per turnover this season. If the trend holds, and the Vikings finish the season with a 1.0-or-better ratio, it would be the first time since the 2009-10 season in which the Vikings would have more assists than turnovers.

MILESTONE WATCH: JR G is well on her way to becoming the 17th member of the Portland State 1,000 point club. Through just 55 games, Rielly has tallied 910 career points, bringing her just 90 points away from reaching the 1,000-point milestone. She surpassed the 800-point mark with 18 points at Montana State (1/11). She is currently averaging 18.2 points per game, well within range of reaching the milestone this season. She would be just the third Viking to surpass the milestone in just her first two seasons.

DOUBLE-DIGIT WINS: The win over Weber State (1/20) was the 10th of the year for Portland State. The Vikings went 16-17 overall a year ago, giving them back-to-back double-digit win season for the first time since the 2011-12 (15 wins) and 2012-13 (12 wins) seasons.

WINS vs. LOSSES: The Vikings are 12-10 overall this season. There is a stark contrast on the box score between wins and losses. In wins, Portland State is averaging 78.9 points per game is shooting .471 from the floor and .800 from the free-throw line. In losses, those numbers drop to 65.0 ppg, .392 from the floor, and .743 at the line. The Vikings are holding their opponents to 15.4 fewer points per game in wins. Rebounds per game and assists per game are also all up in Portland State wins this season.

PLAYER OF THE WEEK: JR G earned her first Big Sky Player of the Week honor of the season, second of her career, after dropping a career-high 32 points on Ole Miss to close out non-conference play. Bolston went 10-for-20 from the floor with a pair of three-pointers and a perfect 10-for-10 from the free-throw line to lead the Vikings to a 94-79 win over the Rebels.

NATIONAL HONORS: Not only did JR G earn Big Sky Player of the Week honors for her career-high 32 points in the Vikings' win over Ole Miss, Bolston was named the College Sports Madness Big Sky Conference and National Mid-Major Player of the Week as well.

BACK-TO-BACK 30-POINT GAMES: JR G posted her first 30-point performance of the season, second of her career, with 30 points in the Vikings' comeback win at UC Irvine on Dec. 16. Not to be outdone, JR G posted a career-high 32 points in the Vikings' next game, a win over the Ole Miss Rebels on Dec. 19. It was the first time that the Vikings had back-to-back 30-point scorers since Kelly Marchant and Claire Faucher posted 30 points in consecutive games in Dec. of 2009.

90-POINT MARK: Portland State is third in the Big Sky Conference with 72.7 points per game on the year. The Vikings have already surpassed the 90-point mark four times, going 3-1. Over the past 12 seasons the Vikings have only hit the 90-point mark 19 times.

COMEBACK KIDS: Portland State has come back from a double-digit deficit to win three times this season, two were second-half deficits.

  • The Vikings trailed by 11 points early in the third quarter against Northwest University (12/9) before winning 63-60.
  • Portland State trailed UC Irvine (12/16) by 16 points midway through the first half before coming back to force overtime on a last-second shot. The Vikings then outscored the Anteaters 18-8 in overtime to win 82-72.
  • The Vikings trailed by 11 points midway through the third quarter at Sacramento State (1/27). Portland State came back to tie it in the fourth before closing out the game on an 11-0 run to defeat the Hornets 81-72.

COMEBACK WIN: Portland State trailed UC Irvine by 16 points midway through the first half before coming back to win 82-72 in overtime on Dec. 16. It was the largest deficit overcome in a win under third-year Head Coach and the largest overcome by Portland State since it came back from down 19 to defeat Eastern Washington, 77-70, in January of 2011.

FINAL MINUTE HEROICS: Twice this season the Vikings have come back from a two possession deficit over the final 30 seconds of regulation to win. In both cases, FR G hit a big three-pointer to cut into the lead. In the Vikings' win at UC Irvine, Jimenez cut the lead from six to three points with a three-pointer with 19 seconds left. The Vikings went on to tie the game before winning in overtime. In Portland State's Big Sky opener win over Sacramento State, the Vikings trailed by four with 18 seconds left. Jimenez hit another big three-pointer with 6.8 seconds left to make it a one-point game. JR G then hit a pair of free throws with 0.8 seconds left to give the Vikings a one-point win.

COMING UP CLUTCH: Over the final minute of regulation and including overtime, both and have come up clutch for the Vikings. Rielly is shooting .556 (5-for-9) from the floor and .833 (12-for-14) at the line. Bolston is 1-for-2 from the floor and 14-for-16 at the line.

30-POINT GAME: JR G posted the second 30-point game of her career with a season-high 30 points in the Vikings' comeback win over UC Irvine (12/16). She is the first player since Kelly Marchant (2007-11) to record multiple 30-point games for a career. Rielly, Marchant, and Kelsey Kahle are the only Vikings to record multiple 30-point games since the Vikings joined the Big Sky Conference prior to the 1996-97 season.

IN THE RECORD BOOK: After setting the Portland State single-season blocks record in just her first year with the Vikings, JR F quickly turned her sights on the PSU career blocks mark. West surpassed the nearly 20-year-old record with five blocks against UC Irvine (12/16). She entered the game with 115 blocks before surpassing Kellie Chander-Read's (1994-97) record of 118 in the first half. She ended the game with 120 career blocks. She has increased her record to 155, which is 12th all-time in Big Sky Conference history.

BLOCKS TRIPLE CROWN: JR G , in just 43 career games at Portland State, set the PSU single-game, single-season, and career blocks record. She set the single-season record twice last season with 8 blocks against both Sacramento State and North Dakota. She also set the single-season blocks record with 94 a year ago. She now holds the career blocks mark with 155 blocks and counting.

FROM DOWNTOWN: The Vikings are shooting the ball from downtown at a higher clip than they did a year ago. Portland State is shooting .359 from distance with 6.6 three-pointers made per game this season. In 2016-17, the Vikings shot .300 from three-point range with 5.6 made per game. A large reason why is the addition of guards and . They have combined for 72 of the team's 145 three-pointers on the year. Additionally, JR G had just three games a year ago in which she hit three or more triples, this season she already has seven such games. Brown has also hit at least one three-pointer in all but two games this season. Over the last four games, brown is shooting .440 from distance with 11 three-pointers.

SPREADING IT AROUND: Portland State had a season-high five players score in double-figures in its win over Portland (11/28). JR G led the team with a game-high 18 points, while JR G and JR F each added 13 points. FR G and JR G added 11 and 10 points respectively.

20-POINT GAMES: Portland State has had four different players post 12 combined 20-point games on the season.

  • JR G recorded the team's first 20-point game of the year at Nevada (11/12). She has scored at least 20 points a team-high seven times this season, including a season-high 30-point performance at UC Irvine. Rielly's 18 career 20-point games are tied for seventh all-time at Portland State.
  • JR G recorded her first 20-point game with a career-high 27 points at Seattle U (11/22).
  • FR F added her first 20-point game with a career-high 26 points in a win over Multnomah (11/25).
  • JR G recorded her first 20-point game of the season with a career-high 32 points against Ole Miss (12/19). Bolston followed that with a game-high 25 points in the Vikings' win over Sacramento State (12/30) and 22 points against Idaho (1/6).

FRESHMAN PHENOM: FR G has quickly made her mark on the Portland State team. She has started every game so far as the Vikings' point guard and opened her career with three-straight games of at least 13 points and two three-pointers. She is fourth in the Big Sky with 4.3 assists per game. Her league-best 2.8 assist-to-turnover ratio is 15th-best in the nation.

BENCH HELP: Over the first eight games of the season, the Vikings had just five players coming off the bench, and only two who averaged more than 10 minutes per game. The PSU bench was outscored by 9.4 points per game, while starters accounted for roughly 80-percent of the Vikings' points. The Vikings' bench got deeper with the return of JR G from injury for the game against Northwest University. Since Bolston's return, the Portland State bench is averaging 19.4 points per game. JR G is averaging 11.2 points per game and is 52-for-54 at the free-throw line off the bench this season.

NATIONAL LETTERS OF INTENT: Portland State has signed three student-athletes to National Letters of Intent. Desirae Hansen,Jordan Stotler, and Ana Tainta will join the Vikings for the 2018-19 academic year.

  • Hansen, a 6-foot guard from Rainier, Ore. is a three-time All-Lewis & Clark League first team honoree at Rainier High School and is coming off league MVP season. She led the Columbians to a 25-5 overall record and a league championship with a 16-2 mark.
  • Stotler, in just her first year at Umpqua Community College, was named the Northwest Athletic Conference Southern Region Most Valuable Player, Defensive Player of the Year, and Freshman of the Year. She was second in the NWAC averaging 22.4 points per game and third with 13.4 rebounds per game. Stotler recorded a league-record 150 blocks and 4.84 blocks per game, 2.00 blocks per game better than second place. She is just 29 blocks away from the conference's career blocks record. She shot .484 from the floor and .345 from three-point range, hitting 39 triples.
  • Tainta, a 5-foot-10 guard from Zaragoza, Spain, averaged 19.4 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 2.3 assists per game while leading the U16 and U17 teams to three-straight Regional League Championships.