Jan. 11, 2014
By Jason Clay
By Jason Clay
FRESNO, Calif. - Senior guard Taylor Thompson became the 20th player in Bulldog history to score 1,000 points in a career, as she scored 19 points to lead the Fresno State women's basketball team in a 60-50 victory over Colorado State on Saturday at the Save Mart Center.
Fresno State (10-5, 4-0 MW) has now won four-straight to open Mountain West play and the win over the Rams (11-4, 3-1 MW) gives the Bulldogs an early leg-up in the conference race after the two teams entered the day tied for first in the league standings.
"We're very grateful for this win because Colorado State is a great team," head coach Raegan Pebley said. "We know that every game in our conference, anyone can win. You got to show up and think, 1-0, you can't rest on past success."
Rest was one thing not on Thompson's mind Saturday. In playing all 40 minutes in the game, she scored her 19 points on 6-of-9 shooting and also grabbed a team-high nine rebounds, had four assists, no turnovers and two steals.
"Any time you get something like that it's a real honor because this is a great school with great players that come through," Thompson said of becoming the 20th Bulldog to go over 1,000 career points. "I'm just really honored to get that, it's a great accomplishment for me and a great accomplishment for our program and our team."
Pebley noted her accomplishment means that much more given the fact that much of her career she has been the main distributor, not scorer. Thompson ranks fourth in school history for assists in a career with 403.
"I think that is something special about 1,000 points for Taylor, is that in her career here she's played around great scorers," Pebley said. "She's played with some great scorers, some of the best in the west, not just in our conference. So to be somebody that sets them up to be great scorers, but then can also score 1,000 points in her career as well I think is tremendous.
"It's a testament to her when she says she does whatever needs to be done to help the team, that's exactly right."
The Bulldogs were able to end Colorado State's seven-game winning streak and they did so with defense, holding the Rams to a season-low 50 points.
"They're a team that scores a lot and our 3-point defense was great," Pebley said about holding CSU to 50 points and 2-of-11 from behind the 3-point arc.
CSU shot just 35.3 percent in the game and the Bulldogs forced the Rams into 15 turnovers.
Alex Sheedy had six of Fresno State's 12 steals in the game. The Bulldogs also did a good job converting, scoring 20 points off of CSU's turnovers.
"We couldn't allow them to play to their strengths, which was going to be in that half-court motion [offense]," Pebley said was a key to Fresno State's success on defense. "We did a great job of dictating the pace and I feel like we were able to find success with that and it fueled our offense. If we hadn't gotten some offensive transition points and some steals and turnovers, I don't know if we would have gotten the `W' tonight because in the half court their defense was excellent."
Fresno State ended up shooting 41.1 percent for the game, but used a big first half where they led by 13 points to fuel the victory. CSU quickly cut that halftime lead down to five points in the first five minutes of the second half, but the Bulldogs continued to find an answer all game long.
Along with Thompson's 19, center Jacinta Vandenberg scored 12 points.
Fresno State only hit 4-of-22 attempts from downtown, but were solid at the free-throw line by connecting on 10-of-11 attempts.
Colorado State was led by guard Ellen Nystrom, who scored 17 points and had six rebounds.
The Bulldogs remain at home to host San Diego State on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
"Catch the Wave" - ESPN2 790 AM is the home of the Fresno State women's basketball team.
|Email this article||Printer-friendly format|