Utah's Heidi Carlsen hit all three of her 3-point attempts in Saturday's opener. She and the Utes travel to Washington Wednesday.
Nov. 22, 2005
University of Utah (1-0) at Washington (2-0)
7 p.m. PST - Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2005 - Bank of America Arena (10,000)
Radio: Hot Ticket 700 AM
Utes Hit Road, Travel to Face Washington
The No. 21/23 University of Utah women's basketball team hits the road for a pair of road games at Pac-10 schools this week. Up first is a matchup with the 2-0 University of Washington Huskies on Wednesday in Seattle.
Utah opened its season with an 83-46 pasting of Jacksonville (Ala.) State at home on Saturday.
Washington, meanwhile, opened its season on the road with a 56-52 win at Alabama Friday and a 71-69 victory at Florida State on Sunday.
The Utes and Huskies have squared off seven times before, with Utah holding a slim, 4-3 advantage in the series. Utah took a 64-56 victory over Washington at the Jon M. Huntsman Center on Dec. 4 last year.
Utah will return home Thursday (Thanksgiving) morning, before heading back out for the back end of the two-game roadie. The Utes will leave for Tucson, Ariz. Friday and will face the Arizona Wildcats on Saturday night. The Arizona matchup is the second in a three-game stretch of Pacific-10 opponents. Utah returns home Dec. 1 for a matchup with Oregon State.
Utah Fast Breaks
After averaging 89.0 points in two exhibition victories, Utah continued its high octane output in the season-opener, putting up 83 points against Jacksonville State.
Eleven different Utes saw playing time against Jacksonville State, with 10 of them seeing at least nine minutes of game action.
All 10 Utes who played nine minutes or more in the opener scored at least one point.
Utah hit 11 three-pointers and shot 44.0 percent from behind the arc against Jacksonville State.
Utah outscored Jacksonville State 24-9 off turnovers.
The Utes struggled at the free-throw line Saturday, hitting just 12-of-21 (.571).
Going On the Defensive
Utah has traditionally been one of the top defensive teams in the country. The Utes led the nation in scoring defense in three of the past six seasons (1999-2000, 2000-01, 2002-03). They have ranked in the top 10 in five of the last six years. Last season, Utah ranked second in the Mountain West Conference and 27th in the nation in scoring defense, allowing 55.7 points per game.
The Utes are on their way to another strong defensive season after their opener. Utah allowed just 46 points to Jacksonville State Saturday.
From Way Downtown ... Bang!
The Utes were one of the more prolific three-point shooting teams in the nation last year. The squad made nearly seven (6.9) treys per game, ranking No. 15 in the nation in three-pointers made per game. That number was also good enough to rank second in the MWC, just behind Wyoming's mark of 7.14 per contest.
Utah made at least five shots from behind the arc in 27 of its 34 games last season. The Utes also had seven games with double-digit three-pointers, including a record-setting 15 against TCU. The 15 treys against the Lady Frogs set a Utah single-game record, as well as a Huntsman Center record. For the second consecutive year, Utah also led the MWC in three-point field-goal percentage (.363).
In Saturday's opener, Utah hit 11 three-pointers and converted at a rate of 44 percent from behind the arc.
No. 4 Needs One More to Make Four
Senior Kim Smith begins the 2005-06 campaign as the three-time reigning Mountain West Conference Player of the Year. She'll be looking to win an unprecedented four MWC Player of the Year awards this season.
Smith averaged 17.8 points and 8.9 rebounds per game last season, leading the MWC in both categories. She opened the 2005-06 season right where she left off. The Mission, B.C. native scored 21 points against Jacksonville State in the season-opener, hitting 8-of-14 from the field and 3-of-6 from three-point range. Five of Smith's six rebounds were on the offensive glass. She also tied a career-high with five steals.
Sho Giveth, Sho Taketh Away
Moving to point guard from the off-guard position agreed with senior Shona Thorburn last season. Thorburn shared MWC Player of the Year honors with teammate Kim Smith. Not only did she rank in the top 10 in scoring and rebounding in the conference, she was also the league leader in assists and ranked No. 4 in steals.
Thorburn dropped 6.50 dimes per game last season and averaged 2.0 steals per contest in 2004-05. Her numbers continued to show the same sort of trends in the season-opener. Thorburn dished out eight assists and grabbed four steals against Jacksonville State on Saturday.
No Clang for Carlsen
Junior Heidi Carlsen has been shooting lights out ever since Night With the Utes on Oct. 27. After hitting 16-of-25 in the three-point shooting competition that night, she was just as hot in Utah's two exhibition games.
Carlsen was 6-for-7 from three-point range in the Utes' two exhibition games. She opened the season with a 3-for-3 performance against Jacksonville State on Saturday. Carlsen also tallied a career-high seven assists in her 24 minutes of playing time against the Gamecocks.