Eagles Prepare for First Road Swing of 2010-11 Season
Eastern will face two former Big Sky teams who are now members of the WAC
EWU vs. Idaho
Wednesday, Nov. 17 - 6 p.m.
Memorial Gym - Moscow, Idaho
EWU vs. Boise State
Saturday, Nov. 20 - 6 p.m.
Taco Bell Arena - Boise, Idaho
Live Stats: http://web.ewu.edu/groups/athletics/wbasketball/wblivestats/xlive.htm
Webcast: Wednesday's game against Idaho will have a live steam available with audio on VandalXtra, which is accessed via www.govandals.com
Radio: Saturday's game against Boise State will have a play-by-play broadcast available over the internet at www.BroncoSports.com
After opening the 2010-11 season at home with a 1-1 record, the Eastern Washington University women's basketball team will hit the road for the first time this year for games against Idaho on Wednesday (Nov. 17) and Boise State on Saturday (Nov. 20).
In its first outing of the year, Eastern topped the Titans of Cal State Fullerton by a score of 80-70. The Eags exhibited a versatile offense as six players scored in double digits and four others had four or more assists. The team was led by senior Tatjana Sparavalo, who earned her first-career double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds. Although strong in its season debut, Eastern was not as successful in its next contest, as it fell to Portland 77-58. The Eagles shot 34 percent from the field and made only 5-of-21 shots from beyond the arc. The team was also out-rebounded 53-31, including a 23-13 margin in offensive boards.
This week, the Eagles take on two opponents from the Gem State, both of which are members of the Western Athletic Conference. Eastern will first play Idaho, who returns four starters from its 2009-10 squad that went 11-20 overall. The Vandals are 1-0 this season after a 72-55 victory against Eastern Oregon on Saturday (Nov. 13).
The Eagles will be looking for their first win in Moscow since the 2002 season, and the first back-to-back victories against the Vandals since 2004-05. EWU and UI have traded wins for four-straight years, with Eastern being the most recent victor. Last season, the Eagles rallied from a 12-point deficit in the second half to beat the Vandals in overtime, 54-51.
EWU assistant coach Alison Chase will be in familiar territory on Wednesday, as she was an assistant coach with the Vandals for two years before joining the Eastern Washington women's basketball staff.
Following the contest with Idaho, the Eagles will travel south to face Boise State. The Broncos are 1-1 on the season after facing two teams that are quite familiar to the Eagles. Two days before Eastern lost a game to the Portland Pilots, Boise State suffered the same fate, falling 83-76 to UP. The Broncos rebounded in their next outing with a 73-48 rout of Big Sky Conference foe Idaho State.
BSU returns three starters from last year's squad that posted the same overall record as Eastern on 2009-10 at 19-12. The Eagles and Broncos have met 44 times in history, with Boise State holding a 26-18 advantage in the all-time series. The two teams have not played though since the 2003 season when Eastern survived in overtime with a 72-69 victory.
Eagle News & Notes
Sparavalo Shines in Season Debut
In Eastern's first game of the 2010-11 season against Cal State Fullerton, senior Tatjana Sparavalo earned her first-career double-double. Sparavalo had a team-leading 16 points and 11 rebounds. She went 6-of-13 from the field, including two three pointers and knocked down both of her attempts from the charity stripe. Sparavalo's 11 rebounds also marked a career high for the senior. Her previous high was eight against Idaho State on Jan. 10, 2008.
Piper Selected as Candidate for Lowe's Senior CLASS Award
EWU senior forward Julie Piper was selected as one of 30 candidates for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as a NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition. The 2011 women's candidate class includes five players who were CoSIDA Academic All-Americans last year, 22 student-athletes with grade point averages of 3.0 or better, four players who participated in the 2010 Women's Final Four and 15 players on the preseason watch list for the John R. Wooden Award. The candidate class will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, and those names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one finalist who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition.
Bringing Back the Blog
Eastern Washington women's basketball senior, Kyla Evans, is "bringing back the blog." As a freshman in 2007, Evans provided a blog for readers of www.goeags.com. Now, as a senior captain on the EWU squad, Evans will return to her role as the public voice of EWU women's basketball. Every two weeks, she will provide commentary on the happenings of the squad, as they strive for another memorable season! Check back bi-monthly to the women's basketball page on www.goeags.com to follow Kyla and her creative contributions.
Julie Piper has not missed a single game since the first time she stepped on the court as a freshman in 2007. She played in all 29 games during her rookie season, all 29 as a sophomore in 2008-09 and all 31 last year. She has started 82 of those 89 games. Besides her consistent court presence, Piper has scored at least two points in every game since Feb. 14, 2009 (0 vs. ISU), and has had at least three rebounds in every game since Nov. 28. 2008 (2 vs. UNLV).
Streaks to Remember
In 2009, Julie Piper had a streak of eight-straight double-digit scoring games (Jan. 30 – Feb. 26), which was tied for the fifth-best run in the Big Sky. As a team, the Eagles had a seven-game winning streak from Dec. 31 – Jan. 23, which was the longest streak for the Eagles since the 2002-03 season, when the team won seven in a row from Dec. 4 – Jan. 2. Notable "Non-Streak" - Last season, not a single player led in scoring for more than two games in a row. Eastern should enjoy a balanced offense this season as well, as all but one of those leaders is retuning for the 2010-11 campaign.
Evan's Unparalleled Work on the Perimeter
Heading into the 2010-11 season, Kyla Evans is the only active player in the Big Sky who has 150+ career three-pointers. She is also the only current Eagle who appears in the Big Sky record book, as she is 20th in career three pointers (170), tied for ninth in career three-point field goal percentage (.390), and third overall in Big Sky history in career three-point field average (2.27 per game). In addition to her dominance with the conference, she is fourth in the Eastern record book for career three pointers made (170) and attempted (436), and owns the school record for three-point field goal percentage (.390). She is also among the top five in EWU's single-season record book in those same three categories, all of which were accomplished in 2009-10.