|Vandal women host Utah State|
The Idaho women's basketball team will try for its second straight win as it closes out a three-game Western Athletic Conference home stand against Utah State on Jan. 5 at 2 p.m. in the Cowan Spectrum.
While the Vandals look to gain momentum in conference play, recent history is on the side of the Aggies. Utah State has won four straight games in the series, and seven of the last eight against the Vandals. The Vandals, however, own a slim 12-10 advantage in the all-time series.
Utah State enters the game with a 5-9 overall record, and a 2-1 mark in WAC play. The Aggies are coming off a 71-68 overtime loss at Seattle U earlier in the week. Idaho, meanwhile, picked up its first WAC win of the season, an 82-65 victory over San Jose State that lifted the Vandals to 4-9 overall and 1-1 in the WAC.
The Aggies are led by Devyn Christensen, the WAC's second-leading scorer, who averages 20.9 points per game. Jenna Johnson and Jennifer Schlott each add 13.5 points per game for Utah State.
While the Aggies get most of their scoring from the top of their lineup, the Vandals bring a more balanced scoring attack to the table. Idaho has eight players averaging more than four points per game. At the top of that list is junior Alyssa Charlston, with 13.7. She also leads the team with 7.5 rebounds per game and a 46.4 field goal percentage. Freshman Christina Salvatore adds 11.1 points per game, sophomore Stacey Barr averages 9.2 and freshman Connie Ballestero scores 8.3 for the Vandals.
Idaho has overwhelmed its opponents with its 3-point attack this season. The Vandals average 8.2 made 3-pointers per game, the 12th best total in NCAA Division I, and shoot the long ball at 35.0 percent, the second highest percentage in the WAC and the 76the best in the nation.
After hosting Utah State, Idaho will hit the road for its next two games, conference matchups at Denver (Jan. 10) and New Mexico State (Jan. 12). Idaho's next home game is Jan. 17 against Louisiana Tech, and the Vandals also host UT Arlington on Jan. 19.