Tip-off to the last game

The women’s basketball team faces Eastern Washington for its last regular-season contest this weekend, and postseason positioning rides on the outcome.

The women’s basketball team faces Eastern Washington for its last regular-season contest this weekend, and postseason positioning rides on the outcome.

The Vikings and Eagles are both vying to win a game that will determine who finishes the season as regular season champions, as well as the tournament seeding.

Currently, Eastern Washington (18–10, 11–4 Big Sky) is ranked first and with a win they’ll secure the top spot. PSU (15–13, 9–6 Big Sky) is tied for third, but a win on Saturday in conjunction with losses elsewhere in the league will likely bump them into the second slot.

Regardless of the outcome, both teams are heading to the Big Sky Tournament, the location and final seeding of which will not be determined until after all conference games are finished on Saturday. This will be PSU’s fifth-straight appearance in the tournament.

After a devastating split last weekend that put the regular season title out of reach for the Vikings, the team saw its standing slip to third place. They still have hope for a second-place finish in the regular season, but would need a win along with two losses from Sacramento State to get there.

Last weekend did bring about some impressive playing. Senior guard Claire Faucher dished 12 assists over the weekend to increase her career number to 783. She already broke the Big Sky record early in the season and has padded her lead ever since.

Sophomore forward Katy Wade also entered the record books as the leader in single-season blocked shots against Weber State. Wade tied the 1991–92 record on Friday against Idaho State, then hit two more on Saturday to take the record.

In terms of shooting, sophomore guard Eryn Jones is PSU’s finest. Over the last seven games she leads the team with her 14.1 average points, and has shot many of them from downtown. She leads the Viks with 18 three-pointers over that seven-game span.

Eastern Washington was an unexpected winner of the Big Sky title after being predicted to finish seventh in the preseason polls. The Eagles will be heading to the Big Sky tournament—the question is whether they will share their place as champions. Second-place Sacramento State will be become co-champions if they win their two games and EW falls to the Vikings.

Saturday will be Eastern Washington’s senior night, and they will surely be on top of their game with so much on the line.

“We have gone through a lot together and I know the team wants them to have a memorable senior day,” said Eagles’ head coach Wendy Schuller in a statement released be EW.

The Eagles are also coming off a split weekend. They beat Weber State 70–56 on Friday night, but fell to Idaho State 63–71 the following night. Against Weber State, EW had three players shoot in double digits. Guard Chene Cooper made 23, including a perfect 6 of 6 from the free throw line, Julie Piper chalked 15 and Kyla Evans chipped in 10.

At home Eastern Washington is a tough competitor, having only lost two games overall this season and only one in conference. 

Audio of the game will be broadcast on KPDQ 800 AM and live stats will be available at www.goviks.com. Tip-off is slated for 2:05 p.m. in Cheney, Wash.