Jan. 30, 2013
By Jason Clay
By Jason Clay
FRESNO, Calif. - The Fresno State women's basketball team extended its program-record home winning streak to 20 games with Wednesday's 60-47 victory over Air Force at the Save Mart Center.
The Bulldogs (14-6, 6-1 MW) led wire-to-wire and tied their season-high by forcing 30 turnovers in a game where Fresno State dominated the Falcons (2-17, 1-5 MW) with its pressure defense.
"This is a great win for our program. 20 wins here at home, that is something as a program - the alumni, the department, our fans and definitely the current members of the team should be proud of," head coach Raegan Pebley said. "It's definitely something that we didn't talk about going into the game, didn't even mention it, but after the game I wanted to make sure that the girls knew that was a great accomplishment."
In the first half alone, Fresno State had forced the Falcons into more turnovers than points scored. Air Force was 6-of-24 from the field in the first half with 20 turnovers and only 16 points. For the game, the Bulldogs held the Falcons to just 34 percent shooting and only two 3-pointers.
"I like our defense. We change the pace and the makeup of the game through our defense," Pebley said. "Offensively, I think we are sharing the ball pretty well and we got a variety of people that can score in different ways."
Junior guard Ki-Ki Moore ignited Fresno State right from the get-go, scoring 15 points in the first 10 minutes of the game. In the first half alone she scored 19 points on 9-of-12 shooting in only 16 minutes on the court.
Moore, who has scored 15 or more points in nine-straight games now, did not score in the second half as she looked more for her teammates. She added seven rebounds, five steals and three assists to her well-rounded game.
"I think my teammates got me open setting a lot of screens," Moore said, "and then in the second half I kind of looked more for them."
The Bulldogs shot 43.6 percent in the game, their eighth-straight shooting above a 43 percent clip.
This game, just like the previous three, was put away early in the first half. The Bulldogs jumped out to a 23-point lead with 2:33 remaining in the first half. This is Fresno State's fourth win a row, all four wins have been by 10 or more points and it was the fourth consecutive game where the Bulldogs held a 20-point lead in the first half.
One key Pebley feels about these past four games that will really help the team down the stretch is that the Bulldogs have been able to develop some more depth by getting their bench more minutes.
"You always got to help develop your bench because you are going to need your bench in the month of February," Pebley said. "The team that continues to improve in February is set up for the most success in March.
"Teams either dial in or check out in February and it is real important to keep those bench players improving because you are going to need them to help seal up a couple of victories in February and March."
Fresno State finishes the month of January winning 7-of-8 games and the Bulldogs are now 36-5 in January games over the last five seasons.
The Bulldogs are a half-game ahead of SDSU, who was off on Wednesday, at the top of the Mountain West standings.
Fresno State does not play this weekend and returns to the court next Wednesday, Feb. 6, when they travel to UNLV. The Rebels are the only MW team Fresno State has not faced this year.
"Discover Fresno State Athletics" - ESPN2 790 AM is the home of the Fresno State women's basketball team.
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