Boagni and Blair headline this week’s review of college hoops


In the latest news from college hoops the performance of the week belongs to Cantabrian Tessa Boagni and the stat of the week to Brooke Blair.

Boagni posted a career high 36 points as California State Northridge Matadors edged Cal State Fullerton 70-68 in their Big West Conference opener. She completed her ninth career double-double with 10 rebounds in a performance labeled by Matadors head coach Jason Flowers as “Big time – the numbers speak for themselves.”

Those numbers included 11 from 21 shooting from the field and 14 made free throws from 16 attempts.

Blair had back-to-back 14 points outings for Idaho State Bengals. The Bengals are 2-1 in Big Sky Conference play after a 76-70 defeat at the hands of Southern Utah and a bounce back 75-55 win at Northern Arizona.

Blair’s 5 from 9 shooting from beyond the arc across the two games has propelled her to the top of the NCAA Division 1 three-point shooting percentage chart.

This season the former Rangitoto College guard has made 34 from 67 attempts (50.7%).

Put into context, with 349 Women’s NCAA Division 1 basketball programmes, Blair is ahead of over 3,500 players on the shooting chart she heads. Blair has connected with at least one triple in every game and is leading the Bengals scoring in this campaign averaging 14 points per outing.

Stella Beck was also in good form scoring a season high 24 points as St Mary’s Gaels beat San Diego 75-53 to improve to 3-1 in West Coast Conference play. The former Hutt Valley guard had a shooting night to remember missing just once from 11 attempts.

Penina Davidson made 7 points and garnered 9 rebounds as Cal Berkeley Golden Bears improved to 2-2 in the highly competitive Pac 12 Conference – the Bears won at Arizona but only just (53-51).

Zara Jillings has enjoyed plenty of court time for Fordham University recently as the Rams have begun Atlantic 10 Conference play with three wins on the bounce, the latest victory a narrow 66-63 win against St Louis. Jillings has started all three conference games averaging 32 minutes, 7.7 points, 4 rebounds and three assists. Her shooting has also been impressive in the three game swing connecting with 10 of 16 shots at 63%.

Also in the Atlantic 10 Virginia Commonwealth Rams slipped to 0-3 after going down to Duquesne 70-51. On a positive note Tera Reed was the only Rams player in double figures scoring 13 points to add to 4 rebounds.

It was almost all the five’s for Krystal Leger-Walker as Northern Colorado Bears clawed Montana 68-50 for a fourth straight Big Sky Conference victory. Leger-Walker had four assists and a quintet of points, rebounds and steals.

14,400 spectators were on hand to see Jack Salt and University of Virginia Cavaliers take down the defending NCAA champions, North Carolina 61-49. Salt (4pts/3rebs/1block) was at the heart of the Cavs defensive effort described by NCU head coach Roy Williams as, “About as good a defensive game as we’ve had anybody play against us.”

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