MWC Race Heats Up With Game At Utah

BYU's women's basketball team is 2-2 in the league after its first conference road trip of the season. Up next is another road trip, a short one to Salt Lake City to take on instate rival Utah this Saturday afternoon Jan. 26. The Utes are also 2-2 in the latest MWC standings.

Tip off: BYU (11-6, 2-2) @ Utah (9-7, 2-2), 3:00 p.m.(MST) Arena: Huntsman Ctr

Utes vs Cougars Game On KJZZ TV

The instate rival women's game between Utah and BYU on Sat. Jan. 26 will air live on KJZZ, Channel 14 locally in the Salt Lake City/Provo area.

BYU's Probable Starters

Pos. # Name Ht. Yr. PPG RPG

F 21 Jennifer Leitner 6-1 Jr 11.6 8.1

F 31 Lisa Osguthorpe 6-0 Sr 5.7 3.6

F 23 Chanell Rose 6-0 Jr 3.9 2.7

G 11 Erin Thorn 5-10 Jr 18.0 4.4

G 22 Stacy Jensen 5-6 Sr 10.4 2.9

Cougar Players Off The Bench

Pos. # Name Ht. Yr. PPG RPG

F/G 12 Melanie Pearson 6-1 Sr 9.2 3.1

F 51 Danielle Cheesman 6-2 Fr 7.6 3.1

F 50 Heather Cheesman 6-1 So 3.9 1.1

F 45 Lisa Hansen 6-5 Jr 2.9 2.6

G 25 Kali Taylor 5-11 Fr 1.6 0.4

F 20 Brittany Larson 6-0 Jr 2.0 1.0

G 05 Amy Lewis 5-6 Jr 0.8 0.6

Quickie BYU Stats

l Shooting from the field - .463 (457-986)

l Shooting from the free-throw line - .728 (206-283)

l Shooting from the three-point arc - .449 (155-345)

l Averaged 75.0 points per game

Last Game Recap

During its first MWC road trip of the 2002 season, the Cougar women went 1-1 with a six-point deficit 52-58 against New Mexico and a 81-52 win over Air Force. Against the Lobos it was Jennifer Leitner leading all scores with 15 points and eight rebounds. Stacy Jensen contributed 12 points. At the Air Force Academy it was Heather Cheesman coming off the bench for a season and career high 22 points. All-American Erin Thorn tallyied just one more point with 23 to lead all scores in that contest. Danielle Cheesman started the game for an injured Leitner with Cheesman contributing 12 points and six rebounds to the contest.

BYU Notes

The 2001-02 team returns four starters and eight letterwinners from last season.

After four games into the conference race and a 2-2 record in league play, All-American Erin Thorn continues to be the team's leading scorer with an average of 18.0 points a game. The team's leading rebounder is junior forward Jennifer Leitner who's averaging 8.1 boards a game. She's also averaging 11.6 points a game. Senior guard Stacy Jensen leads in the assist category tallying 79 to date for an average of 4.65 per game. Jensen is the other Cougar scoring in double digits, contributing 10.4 points a game.

2001-02 Season Highlights

TEAM

4 Points - 94 vs Washington State 11/24/01

4 Field Goals Made - 36 vs Washington State 11/24/01

4 3 PT Field Goals Made - 20 vs Arkansas Pine-Bluff 12/14/01

4 Free Throws Made - 21 @ USC 11/29/01

4 Rebounds - 43 @ SMU 12/8/01

4 Assists - 32 vs Washington State 11/24/01

4 Steals - 14 @ Weber State 12/01/01

INDIVIDUAL

4 Points - Erin Thorn, (29) vs Arkansas Pine-Bluff 12/14/01

4 Field Goals Made - Erin Thorn, (10) @ Weber State 12/01/01

4 3 PT Field Goals Made - Erin Thorn, (9) vs Arkansas PB 12/14/01

4 Free Throws Made - Jennifer Leitner, (8) @ USC 11/29/01

4 Rebounds - Jennifer Leitner, (13) @ UCLA 11/27/01

4 Assists - Stacy Jensen, (8) vs Washington State 11/24/01

4 Steals - Erin Thorn, (5) vs Washington State 11/24/01

MWC Standings - As Of Jan. 22

School Conference Games All Games

Colorado St. 4-0 15-3

New Mexico 3-1 14-4

UNLV 2-2 14-3

BYU 2-2 11-6

Utah 2-2 9-7

Wyoming 2-2 9-7

San Diego St. 0-3 8-8

Air Force 0-3 4-12

Cougars In MWC Stats (Conf. Games Only)

Top Three Finishes

1st - Field Goal Percentage (.444, 96-216)

1st - 3-Point Field Goal Percentage (.439, 36-82)

1st - Free Throw Percentage (.781, 50-64)

2nd - Rebounding Defense (141, 35.2 avg)

2nd - Blocked Shots (16, 4.0 avg)

1st - Assists (65, 16.25 avg)

1st - 3-Point Field Goals Made (36, 9.00 avg)

3rd- Defensive Rebounds (97, 24.25 avg)

2nd - Assist/Turnover Ratio (65 Asst, 16.2 avg/71 Turn, 17.8 avg, Ratio - .92)

Scouting Utah

The Utes have compiled an 9-7, 22 record to date, losing to CSU and New Mexico, the same teams the Cougars lost to on the very same road trip. Erin Gibbons leads Utah in scoring with 15.8 points and 2.5 rebounds a game. Two teammates join her in double digit scoring with Lauren Beckman tallying 14.7 points and Lindsay Herbert contributing 13.2 points a game. Beckman leads the team in the rebound category with an average of 8.9 per game.The Utes are shooting 43 percent from the field, 71 at the free throw line and 37 percent from behind the arc. As a team, Utah is averaging 67.7 points a game and they are holding opponents to just 57.9 points a game.

Series Record: 27-46 favoring Utah. During last season's conference season the Utes beat the Cougars in both meetings, but at the league's Championships, it was the Cougars coming back from a 20-point deficit at the break to win the game 62-54 sending BYU into the title game against CSU. At the Huntsman Center, Utah holds a 33-6 advantage. BYU last won there during the 1999-2000 season, the first year the two teams played for the newly formed MWC. The final score in that game on Feb. 26 was 46-41 for the Cougars.

Utah Probable Starters

Pos. # Name Ht. Yr. PPG RPG

F 13 Katherine McColl 6-0 Sr 6.1 7.5

F 25 Lindsay Herbert 5-11 Sr 13.2 4.3

C 52 Lauren Beckman 6-2 Sr 14.7 8.9

G 04 Erin Gibbons 5-9 Sr 15.8 2.5

G 14 Kelsy Stireman 5-7 So 3.9 2.7

Head Coach Jeff Judkins

Jeff Judkins, an assistant during the 2000-01 season is this year's head coach for the Cougar women. Judkins, a longtime University of Utah coach and player takes over the BYU program with a proven record of success dating back to his high school days at Highland HS in Salt Lake City.

An all-state selection in basketball, football and baseball, Judkins went on to play for Utah from 1974-78. While playing for the Utes, he helped the team win one conference championship and two berths in the NCAA Tournament. He was a second-team academic All-American and three-time first-team District VII academic selection. Judkins earned three first-team All-WAC honors and was a member of the 1977 United States World Games team that captured the gold medal.

He played five years in the NBA for the Boston Celtics, Portland Trailblazers, Detroit Pistons and the Utah Jazz. He was a second-round pick by the Celtics in 1978, the same year the Celtics selected Larry Bird with the sixth pick overall.

After his NBA career, he returned to the U of U in 1989, and remained with the men's program for 10 years. Judkins, a Salt Lake City native, graduated from Utah in 1978 with a degree in health and physical education. He is a member of the Utah Sports Hall of Fame and the Crimson Club Hall of Fame.

He and his wife Mary Kay, are the parents of five children: Jessica (20), Jordan (19), Jenna (16), Jaime (13), Jaxson (10).

Coach Judkins Quotes

(On Cougars) As a team we're doing okay right now. We probably had our best defensive game against New Mexico despite our poor shooting. I think we're trying too hard to shoot, we just need to relax and it will come. I thought Chanell Rose and Heather Cheesman played an outstanding game against Air Force. I'm also very happy with the play of our bench players, they all had a really good weekend. Our bench play is going to be the key for us.

(On Utah) The conference champion has got to go through Utah and we've got to play our game then we can beat them. They are the best man to man defensive team in our conference and have been for a lot of years. They also run the motion similar to us and so they will be difficult to defend. Utah also has one of the toughest inside players in our league in Lauren Beckman and they also have Erin Gibbons who's playing extremely well for them right now. I think that we have more depth and that may be in our favor, and it will probably be a big factor in the game. I know that last year we played them well up there, and that's a plus for us too and it should give our team some confidence.

BYU Practice Schedule At Home

The BYU team practices daily at the Marriott Center from 1 to 3:30 p.m. Coach Judkins' and or player interviews can be done prior to or after practice. No interviews are done 24-hours prior to a game. All interviews must be scheduled in advance through the Media Relations Office. The women's basketball SID is Norma Collett. She can be contacted by phone: 801-378-4908 during regular business hours or via e-mail norma_collett@byu.edu

Up Next

After Saturday's game against Utah, the Cougars are at home next week hosting San Diego State and UNLV on Jan. 31 and Feb. 2.

2001-02 WOMEN'S BASKETBALL - NUMERICAL ROSTER (Tentative)

No. Name Ht. Cl. Pos. Exp. Hometown/School

11 Erin Thorn 5-10 Jr. G 2V Orem, UT/Mountain View H.S.

12 Melanie Pearson 6-1 Sr. G 3V Irvine, CA/Woodbridge HS/UCLA

20 Brittany Larson 6-0 Jr. F 2V Chicago, IL/New Trier HS

21 Jennifer Leitner 6-1 Jr. F 2V Chico, CA/Pleasant Valley HS

22 Stacy Jensen 5-6 Sr. G 3V West Jordan, UT/West Jordan HS

23 Chanell Rose 6-0 Jr. F 2V Orem, UT/UVSC

25 Kali Taylor 5-11 Fr. G HS Lyman, UT/Wayne HS

31 Lisa Osguthorpe 6-0 Sr. F 3V Orem, UT/Mountain View HS

45 Lisa Hansen 6-5 Jr. C 2V/RS Bakersfield, CA/Centennial HS/UCSB

50 Heather Cheesman 6-1 So. F 1V Orem, UT/Mountain View HS

51 Danielle Cheesman 6-2 Fr. F HS Orem, UT/Mountain View HS

HEAD COACH: Jeff Judkins (1st Year)

ASSISTANT COACHES: Alli Bills, Trent Shippen

ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT: Jonas Chatterton

ATHLETIC TRAINER: Carolyn Billings

2001-02 Walk-On Players:

05 Amy Lewis 5-6 Jr. G Jefferson City, Montana/Jefferson City HS

24 Shauna Tuft 6-0 So. F 1V Mesa, Arizona/Highland HS

30 Melissa Brown 5-8 So. G 1V University Place, WA/Curtis HS

32 Aspen Casper 6-0 Jr. F 1V Central Point, Oregon/S. iMedford HS

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