Matador women’s basketball team continues long road trip

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Fresh off its weekend in Hawaii, the CSUN Matador women’s basketball team now heads to Washington for a pair of games, the first against Eastern Washington in Cheney and the second, a rematch of the fifth-place game of the Hawaii Tournament, against the Washington State Cougars in Pullman.

Eastern Washington is currently 2-3 after splitting a pair in the Ohio State Tournament this past weekend. The Eagles lost its first game to Western Illinois before coming back to beat Nicholls State. Joanna Chadd led Eastern Washington in scoring with an average of 9.8 points and Julie Page and Felicia Moore, both averaging nine points apiece.

“They’re going to be as good as anyone we’ve ever seen so far,” said head coach Staci Schulz. “They’ve got some quick shooters, they’ve got serious range and they’re kind of big across the board. They’re not huge in the post necessarily, but they are big in all positions.”

CSUN won its last meeting against the Eagles on Nov. 19, 2004 behind Matador-star Ofa Tulikihihifo, who scored 21 points, and LaJoyce King, who registered a double double, scoring 16 points and pulling down 11 rebounds.

CSUN will then head to Pullman for a rematch with the Cougars on Dec. 2. The two teams met for fifth place honors in the Hawaii tournament this past Sunday. The game was hotly contested to the bitter end, with the lead see-sawing back and forth and both teams keeping each other well within sight. CSUN trailed 63-61 with 20 seconds remaining, but had a chance to tie or win the game. The Cougar defense, however, forced a turnover at mid-court and CSUN fouled Charmaine Jones, who hit both of her free throws to seal the eventual 65-64 win.

“It will be tough,” Schulz said. “All we have to do is take care of that one category called rebounding and it should be a lot different game.”

Schulz acknowledges that facing WASU on its home court will be a much tougher challenge.

“They’re going to add some of that home court advantage up there,” Schulz said. “We’ve had a big push and so far the team is staying strong. We will see what happens.”

Ivan Yeo can be reached at ivan.yeo.80@csun.edu.