CSU womenâ€™s basketball (11-8, 3-3 MWC) is set to play its second consecutive road game Saturday as they head to San Diego to face the San Diego State Aztecs (12-6, 4-2 MWC).
Currently SDSU is ranked third in the Mountain West Conference standings and have won 13 consecutive MWC home games.
Last season, the Rams played the Aztecs close, losing the season series by a total of three points. Mountain West coaches picked SDSU as the preseason conference champion primarily due to the fact that the Aztecs returned four starters from last yearâ€™s 24-8 team.
CSU stumbled Wednesday with its loss against TCU and is looking to bounce back after one of their poorer performances of the year.
â€œI think hopefully weâ€™ve got that one out of our system,â€ said head coach Kristen Holt said. â€œIt comes down to mentally going in. Our players need to not look at who weâ€™re playing. They just need to come in and play their game no matter what.â€
This season the Aztecs are led by First Team All-Conference guard and reigning MWC Defensive Player of the Year JenÃ© Morris, who averages 15.4 points and three steals per game.
â€œSheâ€™s a really nice player, real athletic and quick,â€ Holt said. â€œShe certainly is the leader of that team. Weâ€™re going to have to keep her under wraps and limit what she does, because if she does what she does she could hurt us.â€
This season Morris is the conferenceâ€™s third leading scorer at 15.4 points per game.
The Rams did not come back to Fort Collins between games for the first time all season due to the distance to both Fort Worth and San Diego from CSU. Staying away from home presents different challenges for a team like the Rams due to their small bench.
â€œWe certainly have to keep track of their legs and their energy and adjust (practice time) throughout the rest of the week,â€ Holt said.
SDSU is near the middle of the conference in terms of offensive averages, ranking fifth in both scoring offense and scoring margin.
Holt credited the Aztecâ€™s talent, focusing specifically on athleticism.
â€œTheyâ€™re the most athletic team in the conference,â€ she said, â€œIf they (the Rams) have any fears about playing them, we definitely took it to them last year, so hopefully we have that same kind of mindset.â€
Womenâ€™s Basketball Beat Reporter Kyle Grabowski can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org