COMPLETE WEEKLY PREVIEW (PDF)
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Following a two-week hiatus including final exams week, the Cal Poly women's basketball team will return to the court Monday in the Pacific Northwest, visiting Seattle U at 11 a.m. Dec. 17 at the Redhawk Center.
It's the fourth-ever meeting between the Mustangs and Seattle U, with Cal Poly winning the most recent matchup in November 2010, 74-57 (also on the road) to improve to 2-1 in the all-time series.
Junior guard Kamira Sanders, MVP of the 2018 WAC Tournament after leading the Redhawks to the title, paces Seattle with 15.4 points per game. Sanders, No. 2 in the WAC in minutes per game (34.7), gets to the free-throw line more than any other player in her conference, shooting 37-for-50 on the year.
Joana Alves adds 12.0 points and 5.4 rebounds per game for Seattle U (0-10). Cal Poly will be the Redhawks' fourth Big West opponent during non-conference play, with the other matchups taking place against Cal State Fullerton (falling 57-54 on Nov. 6), Hawai'i (67-51 Nov. 18) and UC Davis (76-59 Dec. 9). Seattle similarly comes in eight days removed from its most recent game.
Prior to beginning its 16-day break from game action to cover dead week and finals, Cal Poly (2-7) edged Eastern Washington 59-55 on Nov. 28 before falling to Saint Mary's 69-51 Dec. 1 to conclude a four-game homestand.
STANBACK NO. 4 IN THE BIG WEST IN SCORING: Mustang senior center Devin Stanback comes into this week fourth in the Big West in scoring, averaging 15.1 points. Additionally, her field-goal percentage of .551 (second throughout the conference) ranks 52nd nationally.
Stanback, also grabbing 4.8 rebounds per game, posted career highs of 30 points and 11 rebounds in the 88-85 loss at Sacramento State on Nov. 11.
NUNNELLEY EIGHTH IN REBOUNDING: Averaging 6.4 rebounds, Cal Poly senior forward Katie Nunnelley opens the week ranked eighth in the conference. She notched her second double-double in seven days against USF on Nov. 18, leading Cal Poly with a career-best 21 points to go with 10 boards.
Nunnelley corralled 17 rebounds at Sacramento State. The most rebounds by a Mustang since Hannah Gilbert secured 18 at UC Irvine on Jan. 9, 2016, Nunnelley's effort was seven boards back of the single-game school record (24 by Sherrie Atteberry in 1987). Additionally, at .875 via 21-for-24, Nunnelley leads the Big West in free-throw percentage.
STAHLEY, HOLT, ROUFOSSE ALSO AMONG CONFERENCE LEADERS: Senior point guard Dye Stahley, sophomore guard Malia Holt and junior forward Alicia Roufosse also rank among the Big West leaders in several categories.
Stahley ranks fifth in both assists (4.8) and steals (1.9) per game, along with third in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.0), while Holt is eighth (3.2) in assists plus seventh in steals (1.8). With Holt and Stahley combining for an average of 8.1 assists, the Mustangs are second in the conference in assists as a team (15.8). Stahley, whose 33.2 minutes played per game so far in 2018-19 are the sixth-most in the conference, won the Big West Best Hustle Award as a junior.
Roufosse, meanwhile, is 10th throughout the conference in rebounding at 6.1 per game, as well as fifth in field-goal percentage at .532.
VESELA SET TO MAKE MUSTANG DEBUT: The Mustangs returned seven letterwinners from last year's squad that finished second in the Big West standings at 11-5 en route to a semifinals appearance at the conference tournament, going 17-12 overall. They're joined by a recruiting class of 11 newcomers in 2018-19.
Among the 11 newcomers, Cal Poly will welcome junior power forward Hana Vesela to the court in Seattle for her first appearance as a Mustang.
Vesela, a mid-year transfer last season from Michigan State, helped the Spartans reach the NCAA Tournament as a sophomore, averaging 2.8 points and 1.1 rebounds while shooting .458 overall (as well as .455 from 3-point range and .714 from the free-throw line) in her 8.9 minutes per 21 appearances (including two starts) in 2016-17.
Vesela played for the Czech Republic U-20 program at the 2016 FIBA European Championship.
FOLLOW THE MUSTANGS: Mustang tickets are available at GoPoly.com, by calling (805) 756-4849 or by visiting the sidewalk window at the on-campus Performing Arts Center from 12 noon to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Links to follow Mustang games live throughout the season can be found above, on the schedule page or via the GoPoly Front Row app.
Photos © Owen Main
Cal Poly Returns to Court Visiting Seattle U at 11 a.m. Monday
COMPLETE WEEKLY PREVIEW (PDF)