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NAU Hosts Sacramento State, Portland State in Final Two Home Games

Raina Perez
Raina Perez

Game Information:

Opponent: Sacramento State (Thursday, Feb. 23/6:30 p.m.)

Opponent: Portland State (Saturday, Feb. 25/2:00 p.m.)

Location: Walkup Skydome - Flagstaff, Ariz.

GAME NOTES (PDF)

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - Coming off their first win in a month and with momentum now on their side, the Northern Arizona women's basketball team will play their final two home games of the season this week in the Walkup Skydome. The Lumberjacks will host Sacramento State on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. and Portland State on Saturday at 2 p.m. hoping to build a win streak before heading out on the road for their final two regular season games next week.

Saturday will be Senior Day for NAU's six seniors - Chelena Betoney, Rene Coggins, Bradlee Cotton, Taylor Leyva, Brittani Lusain and Catelyn Preston. They will be recognized prior to the game at approximately 1:45 p.m. so fans are encouraged to arrive at the Skydome early.

Follow the Action:

  • Both games will be televised live by NAU-TV and shown live on local Flagstaff cable on Suddenlink channels 4 and 104. Thursday's game will also be live on Fox Sports Arizona Plus and Fox College Sports Pacific. Saturday's game will also be live on Fox Sports Arizona and Fox College Sports Central. Check your local listings for channel information.
  • Both games will be streamed for free online at watchbigsky.com.

Promotions: Thursday's game will be a Sustainability/Unity game with NAU tote bags being given to the first 200 fans who pledge to be sustainable. Pom poms will be given out on Saturday for NAU's Native American Heritage Game/Senior Day. The final two Motto Magnet sets will also be given away to all fans at both games.

Robyne Bostick's Opening Thought: "Last Saturday was good because we were able to play a 40-minute game. It was a game of runs, but different players stepped up when we needed them to and we're going to need the same thing this weekend. We had six players score in double-figures and we hope to have balanced scoring again."

Previewing The 'Jacks: NAU hopes to send its seniors out as winners, as well as continue building on their momentum gained courtesy of a 77-65 victory over Southern Utah last Saturday. The 'Jacks are now 7-18 overall and 3-11 in conference play as they eclipsed last season's win total. NAU had six players score in double-figures for the second time this season versus Southern Utah led by freshman Raina Perez's 15 points. Redshirt junior Olivia Lucero, who scored 14 points herself versus the Thunderbirds, ranks eighth in the conference in scoring at 15.1 points per game. Seniors Taylor Leyva and Catelyn Preston both recorded double-doubles last Saturday and Preston has now notched double-doubles in her past two games. Based on her season-average of 11.4 points per game, senior Rene Coggins should become the 14th member of the school's 1,000 point club on Thursday. She enters the week with 991 career points. Senior Brittani Lusain also remains within range of joining the club as well needing 28 more points.

Scouting Sacramento State: Sacramento State snapped its four-game losing streak last Thursday with a 99-69 win over Montana at home before falling to Montana State on Saturday, 104-82. The Hornets have dropped five of six games during the month of February. The Hornets are 5-9 in conference play and 9-16 overall this season. They held off a fourth quarter rally by the Lumberjacks in the teams' first meeting this season to win 82-76 on their home court back on Jan. 14. Maranne Johnson ranks ninth in the Big Sky with a team-leading 14.7 points per game. She also paces the conference in three-pointers made and steals with 77 total and 3.1 per game in both categories. She posted 11 points versus NAU last month. Margaret Huntington tallied a double-double of 10 points and 14 rebounds against the Lumberjacks earlier this season. She leads the conference in rebounding at 9.3 per game.

Bostick on Sacramento State: "Sacramento State will play that up-tempo style for a full 40 minutes, so we're not going to be able to take any plays or possessions off on Thursday."

Scouting Portland State: Portland State posted a perfect weekend at home last week, first recording an impressive 69-65 win over Montana State on Thursday before cruising to a 68-45 victory versus Montana on Saturday. The two wins come after the Vikings had lost their six previous games overall. The Vikings improved to 6-8 within the Big Sky and 12-14 overall with their two wins. In their first meeting with NAU on Jan. 16 at home, the Vikings edged the 'Jacks, 56-55, after overcoming a seven-point halftime deficit. Sidney Rielly is one of two Vikings in the top six of the conference in scoring, ranking fourth with 16.9 points per game. Rielly notched a game-high 20 points on 8-for-10 shooting in the first meeting versus NAU. Ashley Bolston ranks sixth in the Big Sky with 15.9 points per game while also leading the conference with 4.9 assists per game. She totaled 11 points against NAU last month.

Bostick on Portland State: "Saturday is going to be a different style of game with Portland State playing primarily a 2-3 zone. We hope to have some good balanced scoring again."

Series History: 

  • NAU and Sacramento State will be meeting for the 45th time in school history. NAU leads the all-time series 29-15. Sacramento State won the first meeting this season, 82-76, on Jan. 14, 2017 at home.
  • NAU and Portland State will be meeting for the 44th time in school history. NAU leads the all-time series 23-20. Portland State won the first meeting this season, 56-55, on Jan. 16, 2017 at home.

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