After a two-game trip to Texas in which they lost both contests, the Matadors return home looking to get into the win column for the first time this year. Visiting The Matadome will be the University of San Diego Toreros.
So far this year, the Toreros have been a one-woman wrecking crew. Senior center Amber Sprague leads the team in points and rebounds and has accounted for over a third of San Diego’s total offensive output in the first two games. Being able to focus on a single player to shut down offensively may prove to be an advantage for CSUN.
The Matadors have been held to under 60 points in their first two regular season contests. Head Coach Staci Schulz said the team needs to focus on getting better shots, and getting them quicker along with getting more transition opportunities in order to increase offensive production.
Northridge is still working on its team defense and keeping the opposition off the charity stripe, which has been a concern since the beginning of the season. Schulz said they are making adjustments in practice in order to help prevent fouls. She also noted that the team will need to cut down on some of the turnovers.
Date: Tonight Tip-off: 7 p.m. Place: The Matadome, Northridge Series: Toreros lead 10-4 Last Meeting: Toreros 79, Matadors 50 (2007) Interesting Fact: CSUN has lost its last 17 home games and hasn’t won a home opener since the 2004 season.
Matador to watch: Analee Viena-Lota, sophomore, Guard/Forward Viena-Lota has started off her second year at CSUN in impressive fashion. After two games, she is tops for the Matadors averaging 12 points and 6.5 rebounds per game. In Sunday’s loss, she scored 16, including two three-pointers. Schulz has said that Viena-Lota can be a great player if she stays consistent. Her athleticism makes her versatile and creates match-up problems for the defense.
Torero to watch: Amber Sprague, senior, Center’ San Diego possesses an offensive juggernaut in the middle. Sprague leads the squad with 26 points per game along with six boards a contest. She is shooting over 65 percent from the field and stretches the defense as she is shooting 67 percent from the land of three. She has been named to the All-West Coast Conference team the last two years and is the bona fide leader of the Toreros.
What did she say? Stacy Schulz, CSUN Head Coach On coming back to Northridge from Texas for the home opener: ‘The road is always more difficult. It was a little rough around the edges out in Texas. Everything should be more polished at home and we are certainly going to be ready.’