Moby Arena will see a womenâ€™s basketball game for the final time this season when the Rams host San Diego State tonight at 7 p.m.
The Aztecs (16-10, 8-6 MWC) enter the contest ranked fifth in the overall conference standings, only a half game behind New Mexico with the conference tournament a week away. In the tournament, the top three seeds get byes in the opening round while the four through nine seeds have to play four games to win the championship.
In their matchup earlier this season, CSU turned the ball over a season-high 35 times, leading to 30 points.
â€œNot only were we frantic in turning the ball over, but our shots were really rushed,â€ head coach Kristen Holt said.
The Rams shot 27.3 percent from the field in that game, their third lowest total all season.
Due to the nature of their earlier meeting, the Rams have made preventing turnovers a priority in tonightâ€™s game.
â€œThey have a lot of pressure on the defensive end, so weâ€™ve been working on ripping through and not making wimpy passes,â€ sophomore forward Meghan Heimstra said. â€œTheyâ€™re a good team on steals so weâ€™re just trying to protect the ball.â€
Senior guard Jene Morris is the Aztecsâ€™ cornerstone on both offense and defense. She leads the conference in steals at almost three per game and broke the conference record for career steals in SDSUâ€™s last game against BYU.
Morris is also ranked third in the conference at 16 points per game.
â€œSheâ€™s one of the best players in the conference,â€ Holt said. â€œSheâ€™s hard to guard because she can shoot the three, but sheâ€™s really quick and can put the ball on the floor. I think sheâ€™s really shown lately that sheâ€™s playing well and weâ€™re going to have to at least contain her a little bit.â€
Traditionally, teams use their last home game to celebrate their seniors; however CSU lacks senior players or managers, so the team intends to show their appreciation for the fans.
â€œAfter the game weâ€™re going to do a little meet and greet,â€ Holt said.
On the flip side, players have seen the positive to not having any players departing.
â€œThis shows how much we did this season and how much weâ€™re going to do next season gaining some players,â€ Heimstra said. â€œItâ€™s going to be fun, weâ€™re building. Our last game is going to be sad, but itâ€™s not like weâ€™re going to be losing anyone.â€
Womenâ€™s Basketball Beat Reporter Kyle Grabowski can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*CSU vs. SDSU *
Time: 7 p.m.
Where: Moby Arena