March 5, 2007
SAN DIEGO, Calif. - The University of San Diego women's basketball team has earned a berth into the Women's National Invitational Tournament (WNIT) after finishing the most successful season in program history. This will mark the first time the Toreros have appeared in the WNIT, having made two other post season trips to the NCAA Tournament in 1993 and 2000.
The Toreros have just finished the best turn around in program history, a 12-game improvement from 9-19 in the 2005-06 season to a 21-8 record this season. USD has set a lot of records along the way as they have recorded the first-ever 20-win season in program history, finished second place in the West Coast Conference for the first time in program history and had the best overall start in program history at 6-0 and in conference play at 6-0. These are just a few of the team highlights this season.
"We are very excited about continuing our season," said head coach Cindy Fisher. "We have worked extremely hard this season to be a post season team as we deserve the opportunity to play more games. There are not many post season teams out there and we are excited to be one of them and feel very fortunate to be a part of it."
"The entire athletic department is excited about the opportunity to participate in the WNIT," said Executive Director of Athletics Ky Snyder. "It is a tremendous accomplishment for our women's basketball team and a credit to coach Fisher and her staff. "
The Toreros will learn on Monday March 12 who they will play and where they will play in the first round of the WNIT. USD has put in a bid to host the first round at the Jenny Craig Pavilion, which will be held on March 14, 15 and 16, and will await the selection committee's decision on Monday March 12 after the NCAA selection show has aired.
Several individuals have also seen a lot of success this season led by junior point guard Amanda Rego, who was recently crowned the WCC Co-Player of the Year. becomes the first player in the history of the USD program to take home this honor and this also marks the first time in conference history there has been a Co-Player of the Year as Stephanie Hawk from Gonzaga was the other recipient of this award. Rego was the floor leader for the Toreros and paced the conference in both steals (2.75 spg) and assists per game (7.64 apg), leading the nation in the latter as well. This season, Rego has become the single-season assists leader at USD with her 214 assists. Rego has also moved into fifth-all-time at USD in career assists at 369. Rego has also set the new USD single-game record for assists with 14, and she has recorded double digit assists in 12 games this season. Rego was named the WCC Player of the Month in December and has taken home the WCC Player of the Week Award on two difference occasions.
Another individual who saw a lot of success as well is sophomore forward Amber Sprague. Sprague took home first-team All-WCC honors along with Rego. Sprague led the team in scoring at 14.6 ppg and rebounds at 8.1 rbg. Sprague has recorded six double-doubles on the season and scored a season-high 27 points in a win against Pacific on Dec. 12. Sprague was named the WCC Player of the Month for November after leading the Toreros to a perfect 5-0 record in the month. She has been named the WCC Player of the Week on two different occasions.
Freshman forward Morgan Henderson also saw a lot of success in her first collegiate season as she was named to the All-WCC freshman team. Henderson has been a huge boost both offensively and defensively. Henderson averaged 8.3 points per game and 3.3 rebounds per game overall and in conference action she as the team's third leading scorer at 10.2 ppg. Henderson was huge this past week for the Toreros as her career-high 28 points propelled USD to a win over Portland in the regular-season finale. Henderson recorded her first collegiate double-double in a heart-breaking loss to Pepperdine as he scored 15 points and pulled down a career-high 10 rebounds.
Finally coach Fisher was tabbed as the WCC Co-Coach of the year after orchestrating the University of San Diego's biggest turn around in program history and guided the Toreros to a second place finish in the WCC along with the program's first 20-win season. Under Fisher's tutelage, the Toreros have placed three players on the All-WCC lists this season, with Rego and Sprague taking home first-team honors and Henderson being named to the All-WCC Freshman team.
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