#AztecWBB Set for Quarterfinal Clash with Nevada
March 11, 2014
SAN DIEGO - The sixth-seeded San Diego State women's basketball team will square off against No. 3 seed Nevada tonight in the quarterfinals of the 2014 Reese's Mountain West Championship beginning at 8:30 p.m. PT in Las Vegas, Nev.
All Aztec women's basketball games at the MW tournament will be broadcast live over the air by ESPN 1700 AM, with Jack Cronin handling play-by-play responsibilities courtside at Thomas & Mack Center. In addition, a live video stream via the Mountain West Network will be available on www.goaztecs.com.
SDSU (13-16) is coming off a hard-fought 63-56 victory over 11th-seeded Air Force in the third and final matchup of the opening round on Monday to earn the right to advance in the tournament. Meanwhile, the Wolf Pack (17-12)) received a bye in the first round after finishing third in the conference standings with a 12-6 mark this season.
Against the Falcons Monday night, senior Cierra Warren posted a game-high 20 points and pulled down 11 rebounds for her fifth double-double of the season. The SDSU cause was also aided by fellow classmate Danesha Long, who contributed 14 points, highlighted by four clutch triples, while junior Khristina Hunter added 10 points on 5-of-7 shooting to go with five boards. After Air Force knotted the score at 50-50 with 5:24 remaining in the contest, the Aztecs displayed their finishing kick with a timely 9-0 run over the ensuing 3:46 to give themselves enough separation and ultimately dispose of the pesky Falcons.
Statistically, Warren tops the MW in overall field-goal percentage (.555) and ranks fourth in scoring (15.6 ppg), fifth in blocked shots (1.3/gm) and 12th in rebounds (6.3/gm). The Aztec center tied for the top single-game performance in the league during the regular season with 14 FGs at Sacramento State and has eclipsed the 20-point plateau on 10 occasions. In addition, Hunter finds herself among the league leaders, occupying the sixth spot in field-goal percentage (.475) and the seventh position in rebounds (6.9/gm).
As a team, SDSU tops the MW in both rebounding defense (33.0/gm) and rebounding margin (+7.7), with the latter ranking among the top 25 in the nation. Elsewhere, the Aztecs find themselves among the top half of the league for all games in offensive rebounds (2nd - 15.4/gm)), field-goal percentage (3rd - (.423)), total rebounds (4th - (40.7/gm)) and scoring defense (67.8 ppg.).
Tuesday's contest will mark the 11th meeting between the two teams and second in conference tournament play. SDSU leads the all-time series 6-4, including a 67-39 conquest of the Wolf Pack in the quarterfinals of the MW Championship a year ago.
However, Nevada turned the tables this season, posting an 84-65 victory in Reno on Feb. 8 to put the brakes on a three-game slide against the Scarlet and Black. To help fuel their win, the Wolf Pack shot 51 percent from the field and drained 11 three-pointers, while the Aztecs hit just one of 11 shots from beyond the arc. During the second half, Nevada connected on 18-of-32 attempts from the floor, becoming one of just five teams to finish with a .500 field-goal percentage against SDSU this year.
If San Diego State defeats Nevada, it would advance to the semifinals where it would face the winner of the Fresno State-UNLV matchup on Friday, March 14, starting at 2:30 p.m. PT.
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