Women's Hoops Host San Francisco on Thursday
UPCOMING Â The Pepperdine women’s basketball team (9-10, 2-3) looks to start a new winning streak as it hosts San Francisco and Santa Clara, this week.
GAME #20 Â PEPPERDINE vs. SAN FRANCISCO Â Thursday (Jan. 29) at Firestone Fieldhouse, in Malibu, Calif. @ 7 p.m. Mini-pennants will be given to the first 100 fans.
The Dons (5-18, 1-4) notched its first WCC victory last week (Jan. 24) with a 48-45 victory over Santa Clara. Shay Rollins tied a career-high scoring record with 23 points.
GAME #21 Â PEPPERDINE vs. SANTA CLARA Â Saturday (Jan. 31) at Firestone Fieldhouse, in Malibu, Calif. @ 2 p.m. Rally towels will be given to the first 100 fans. All Pepperdine students will have the opportunity to enter a drawing to win a free trip to watch the WCC Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championship Tournament in Las Vegas (March 6-9). The drawing will take place during the game. All students over 21 are eligible to enter. For more information contact Kevin Borzenski at Kevin.Borzenski@Pepperdine.edu.
The Broncos (2-18, 0-5) continued their five game losing streak with a loss to San Francisco (Jan. 24) 48-45. Lena Gipson led Santa Clara with 12 points and 10 rebounds.
PLAYER Q & A’S ON THE WEB Â Pepperdinesports.com has interviews with Lauren Bell, Miranda Ayim and Alisha Bryant, in the features section on the web page. Nakeya Isabell is also featured in an article about her summer experience with Athletes in Action, in Africa.
GONZAGA RECAP Â The Pepperdine women’s basketball team played a strong first-half, but fell short in the second-half to a tough Gonzaga team, 66-43.
Pepperdine (9-9, 2-2) finished the first-half trailing by 11 points. The Zags (16-4, 4-0) continued to increase the scoring gap in the second-half despite some valiant Wave efforts.
Jessica Ross (Gilroy, Calif./ Notre Dame HS) and Lauren Bell (San Bruno, Calif./Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep.) each scored 11 points for the Waves. Heather Bowman was the games high-scorer with 18 points and five rebounds.
PORTLAND RECAP Â The Pepperdine women’s basketball team suffered a 59-56 loss to the University of Portland in a closely contested battle that came down to the final 30 seconds of the game.
The Waves (9-10, 2-3) played a strong second-half, shooting 41% on field goals as opposed to 34% in the first-half. Overall, Portland (10-9, 2-3) scored 14 points on fast-breaks to Pepperdine’s 4 points. The Waves had 17 steals to the Pilots seven and 22 turnovers to 30 Portland turnovers.
The game high-scorers were Jazmine Jackson (Oakland, Calif./Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep.) and Portland’s Laiken Dollente, with 14 points each. Jackson recorded seven rebounds and five steals. Miranda Ayim (London, Ontario, Canada) scored 13 points, five rebounds and two assists for the Waves. Nakeya Isabell (Seattle, Wash./ Cleveland HS) notched 10 assists
HONORING MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. Â The women’s basketball team joined the men’s team on Jan. 19, at a ceremony honoring the late Martin Luther King, held at the Pepperdine Law school. The two teams presented keynote speaker Stedman Graham with a signed basketball. Graham spoke on the power of believing in yourself and doing your best to improve every day of your life.
NCAA NATIONAL STAT RANKINGS Â Senior Nakeya Isabell holds the No. 13 ranking in steals (3.2 apg), assists (5.9 apg), and assist turnover ratio (2.27). Junior Miranda Ayim is ranked No. 60 in the nation for field goal percentage at 50.0.
The team holds the No. 3 ranking in the nation for turnover margin (7.71) and is No. 10 for steals (12.5 apg).
RACKING UP THE STEALS AND ASSISTS Â Senior Nakeya Isabell notched her 100th assist for the season against Saint Mary’s (Jan 17). She has recorded 54 steals to date with a season and career-high 10 assists against Hawaii (Jan. 2).
WCC LEADERS Â Pepperdine leads the WCC in steals with 245 and a 12.89 average and turnover margin at 26.6. The Waves rank No. 3 in offensive rebounds with 296 and a 15.58 average.
Nakeya Isabell ranks No. 1 for steals with 57/3.00 per game, No. 1 for assist/turnover ratio with a 2.27 ratio and No. 2 for assists with 111/ 5.84 per game. Miranda Ayim ranks in the top 15 on five different lists. Ayim is listed as No. 6 for blocks with 20/1.11 per-game, No. 5 for field goal percentage with .484, No. 13 for scoring with 202 points/ 11.2 per game, No. 10 for steals with 31/ 1.72 average and No. 14 for offensive rebounds with 35/ 1.94 per game. Jessica Ross ranks No. 5 for 3-point shots made at 30/1.58 average, No. 9 for 3-point percentage at .319 and No. 28 on the scoring list with 139 points/7.3per game. Taylor Smith is No. 14 on blocked shots with .47 average and No. 26 for scoring with 141 points/7.4 per game. Freshman Jazmine Jackson ranks as the top freshman on the steal list at No. 3 with 41/2.41 per game and is the third highest ranking freshman on the scoring list at No. 20 with 152 points/8.9 per game. Freshman Skye Barnett ranks No. 15 for offensive rebounds with 34/1.89 per game.
WCC PRESEASON POLL Â Pepperdine was picked to finish sixth in the West Coast Conference in a preseason vote of the league’s coaches. The predicted order is as follows: Gonzaga, Loyola Marymount, San Diego, Saint Mary’s, Santa Clara, Pepperdine, Portland and San Francisco.
WCC PRESEASON ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM Â Junior forward Miranda Ayim (London, Ont., Canada) was selected to the 2008-09 WCC Preseason
All-Conference team. Ayim finished last season as a first team All-WCC selection and led the conference in field goal percentages.
JULIE ROUSSEAU Â The fifth head coach in Pepperdine women’s basketball history, Julie Rousseau is now in her fifth season with the Waves. She is a former head coach of the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks and was an assistant coach at Stanford before joining the Waves. In just her second season, she led Pepperdine to a WCC Tournament title and a spot in the 2006 NCAA Tournament.
JOINING THE WAVES COACHING STAFF Â Maylana Martin Douglas (UCLA 2000), Darryl Brown (Temple 1995) and Maurice Hilliard (LaVerne 1991) round out the 2008-09 coaching staff. Rousseau describes "great chemistry among the staff and athletes." She went on to describe the trio as "evenly balanced, hard workers who have great character and a desire to mentor each of the young women in our program and help them grow."
WAVES RETURNERS Â Starting returners from 2007-08 are Jessica Ross (Gilroy, Calif./ Notre Dame HS) Miranda Ayim, Alisha Bryant (Pacoima, Calif./ Chatsworth HS) and Taylor Smith (Kailua, Hawaii/ Klaheo HS).
SERVICE Â The women’s basketball team is one of the most involved teams at Pepperdine in community service. On November 28-29, they will host their third annual Time Out 4 HIV/AIDS Tournament to promote awareness and raise money to fight the disease. In October, the team put on a series of basketball clinics for local youth to attend. All of this involvement, Rousseau believes, is the key to success in life and on the court Â which is giving to others and making the world a better place.
Senior Nakeya Isabell (Seattle, Wash./ Cleveland HS) spent the summer of 2008 in North Africa as a member of Althletes in Action. The team was on a pioneering ministry where they conducted clinics, competed against other collegiate teams and worked to build relationships with women in Africa and sports,
PEPPERDINE HISTORY Â Pepperdine has posted a winning record in 10 of the last 15 years and has registered six 20-win seasons over the past 10 years. The Waves captured the program’s first-ever West Coast Conference Tournament title in 2002 and followed that up with victories in 2003 and 2006. Pepperdine has also won at least a share of the regular-season championship in four of the last nine seasons. Pepperdine has made the postseason in seven of the last ten years, including the NCAA Tournament four times. Waves also played in the Women’s National Invitation Tournament three times in recent years.
WAVES IN THE PROS Â Rasheeda Clark, who played for the Waves from 1999-2001 and was the 2000 WCC Player of the Year, became the school’s first-ever player to be chosen in the WNBA Draft (however, she didn’t end up making a team). Then, Jennifer Lacy became the first WCC women’s basketball player to make a WNBA roster, as she won a spot with the Phoenix Mercury in 2006. Lacy was then part of the Mercury’s 2007 WNBA championship squad.
FIRESTONE FIELDHOUSE Â Firestone Fieldhouse opened on Nov. 30, 1973 and it has long been the home of the Pepperdine women’s basketball program. Since the 1976-77 season, which spans the last 31 seasons, the Waves have won more than 63 percent of their home games. Pepperdine has posted 24 winning seasons at home and just six sub-.500 seasons.
TICKETS Â A limited number of 2008-09 Pepperdine women’s basketball season tickets in the Lower Reserved section are available for purchase at a cost of $60 each. Individual game prices are $8 for adults and $5 for seniors and children. For more information please call 1-866-WAVE-TIX.
ABOUT PEPPERDINE Â Pepperdine boasts a one-of-a-kind athletic department with unprecedented success for a school of its size. The Waves have won a total of nine NCAA championships in five different men’s sports Â one of just 14 schools to have accomplished this feat. Of the 14, Pepperdine is the only non-BCS school and has by far the smallest enrollment. The majority of Pepperdine’s teams are ranked nationally year after year and compete for conference and national titles.