BSU Gets Season-Opening Loss At Hands of SCSU
Monday, November 25, 2002
Friday, Nov. 29 vs. Lees Mcrae& 5:00 p.m. EST
Saturday, Nov. 30 @ Barry University& 7:00 p.m. EST
Tuesday, Dec. 2 @ Minnesota St.-Mankato 7:00 p.m.
&@ Barry University Tournament (Miami Shores, FL)

Bemidji will next travel to the Barry University Tournament over the break. Both squads in Lees-McRae (N.C.) and Barry (FL) will be foreign to the Beavers as they have never faced each other.

Despite the 17 point and 15 rebound effort of sophomore forward Stacia Swanson (Sioux City, Iowa), the Beavers were downed by a 77-47 count Saturday at Halenbeck Hall. BSU shot just 30.2% (19-63) from the field for the game and 20.7% on 6-29 shooting in the first half.

The Beavers hung with the Huskies in the early going as Swanson scored two buckets and two free throws, along with a three-pointer by junior forward Amber Graf (Hammond, Wis.) to put BSU up 9-8. That was the last time the visitors would have the lead as SCSU closed the half with a 24-8 run. Swanson already had a double-double at the intermission break with 10 points and 10 boards.

BSU did nab more steals than St. Cloud State (14-10) but turned the ball over 28 times and got out-rebounded 51-31.

Graf chipped in 13 points while senior guard Christi Goodhart (Manteca, Calif.) had six points and three steals.

Bemidji State has dropped six straight in the all-time series and ten in a row in St. Cloud...The last time BSU has won in St. Cloud dates back nearly nine years - Dec. 21, 1993 saw the Beavers win 90-62...All time, BSU is 15-21 in season openers including three straight losses and dropping 10 of the past 12...Last year’s loss at South Dakota State (89-52) broke a string of four seasons when the Beavers played in Bemidji to cap off a campaign.

Entering the 2002-03 campaign, junior forward Amber Graf (Hammond, Wis.) is primed to continue her play from last season. League coaches have taken notice of her as well as she is a 2002-03 preseason “Player to Watch.” Graf leads the BSU returners with 12 double-digit point efforts in 20 games last campaign and was tops on the squad in free throws made (48), free throw percentage (.800) and points per game (10.6). In the conference, she ranked 18th in ppg and 19th in rebounding per contest (4.9) in all games played. A transfer from the U.S. Naval Academy, Graf went six consecutive contests with 10+ points last season and against Minnesota-Morris (1-11-02), she tallied 12 points and 13 rebounds for her first career double-double. In addition, Graf established a school single-game record for accuracy with a five-for-five performance behind the arc against Winona State (1-18-02).

This season, Graf tallied 13 points on 6-12 shooting in her junior debut against St. Cloud State (11-23).

Senior guard Crystal Jones (Side Lake, Minn.) will return as the leader on the court this season as she was voted on by her teammate’s as team captain. Last season, Jones led the squad twice in points and tallied double-digits in points on ten occasions. Jones opened up the season by scoring 10+ in three of the first four contests and was second on the squad with 22 three-point field goals made and 24 total steals. In addition, BSU was 3-0 when she grabbed seven or more boards. Jones takes her hard work beyond the hard wood as seen her 4.0 grade point average she maintained both semesters last year.

What a debut! In the season-opener against St. Cloud State (11-23), sophomore forward Stacia Swanson (Sioux City, Iowa) hit for 17 points and 15 rebounds. The Metro State (CO) University transfer shot 6-15 from the floor, 5-5 from the free throw line, had three steals and an assist. Swanson had a double-double by halftime (10 points-10 rebounds).

Voice of the Beavers Shaun Michaels returns for his fourth year behind the mic as Bemidji State continues its broadcast agreement with R.P. Broadcasting of Bemidji. Michaels, who also hosts the morning show on Real Country 98.3, provides the Beavers with one of the most enthusiastic young radio voices in college athletics today. Brian Bisonette provides expert analysis and color commentary.

KKBJ is scheduled to provide live coverage of select Beaver women’s basketball games and also will have broadcasts available for any potential post-season contests. Mark your calenders for three contests to be aired on KKBJ: Dec. 20 vs. St. Cloud State, Jan. 3 vs. UM-Crookston and Jan. 4 vs. MSU Moorhead. The SCSU contest will be begin at 6:00 p.m. while the other two start at 5:30 p.m.

Additionally, these game broadcasts will be streamed live over the Internet via KKBJ’s web site. Broadcasts are available to Windows, Macintosh and UNIX computer users and are distributed in RealAudio format (requires RealOne player, available as a free download at
For more information or to listen to the Internet audio broadcasts, point your web browser to:

Internet listeners should be aware that server limitations allow only 120 concurrent listeners to BSU’s audio broadcasts. Internet audio broadcasts do not begin until approximately five minutes prior to the scheduled starting time of the pre-game show.

ALL-TIME SERIES: vs. LMC 0-0 // vs. BU 0-0 // MSU-Mankato 7-16
Bemidji State will face Lees-McRae and Barry for the first time in school history.

Against the Mavericks, BSU has dropped two straight in a series that has been running since 1976. The last win was a 86-57 contest, Dec. 13, 1998. Christi Goodhard had eight points on 4-9 shooting while she added four rebounds and two steals in 20 minutes of action.
In All-Time Series...
BSU Largest Margin of Victory: 29 (86-57, 12/13/98)
MSU Largest Margin of Victory: 47 (97-50, 1980)
BSU Highest Scoring Output: 96 (W, 96-74, 12/19/95)
MSU Highest Scoring Output: 97 (W, 97-50, 1980)
BSU Lowest Scoring Output: 47 (3 times)
MSU Lowest Scoring Output: 41 (L, 48-41, 1976)

vs. Lees-McRae (N.C.) (0-0, 0-0 C-VAC)
The Bobcats are a Division II institution and play their first match on Wednesday. They belong to the Carolinas-Virginia Athletic Conference and are led by head coach Gene Joiner. Last season, LMC went 18-9 and 16-4 in league play.

Lees-McRae returns its top three scorers from last season’s club. DeAnna Lady was first in points (15.0 ppg), rebounds (6.41 rpg) and field goal % (57.3) while she tallied 35 steals. Sophomore Julie Hardison connected on 44 three-pointers and dished out 72 assists while she averaged 11.3 points per game. Senior guard Lisa Lane chipped in averages of 8.37 points, 4.07 rebounds and shot 43.5 % from the field.

vs. Barry (FL) (1-0, 0-0 SSC)
The Buccaneers are coming off a 2001-02 season in which they finished third in the Sunshine State Conference with a 8-6 record. Head coach Nicci Hays leads the charge into her first year on the collegiate level. BU went 14-13 overall last season and returns two starters.

Most recently, Barry defeated Florida Memorial over the weekend, 60-33 as Candice Blackbird paced the way with 14 points on 5-10 shooting and added three steals and two blocks. Other notable returners include: Amra Alagic (13.5 ppg, 7.1 rpg), Sanja Zinvanovic (6.6 ppg, 3.6 apg) and Loreen Weaver (4.0 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 2.0 bpg)

vs. Minnesota State-Mankato (2-0, 0-0 NCC)
The Mavericks are fresh off of tournament championship over the weekend as they defeated Wisconsin-Parkside, 66-64 and then Mount Mercy, 104-56 in their own Pepsi Tip-Off. MSU-Mankato competes in the North Central Conference and finished 2001-02 with a 9-18 overall record. In conference play, the Mavericks were ninth with a 4-14 mark. Head coach Ann Walker maintains a 34-75 record with four years under her belt at MSU-Mankato and is 85-139 in eight years as a head coach.

Leading the way is Hannah Stolba, who was the Pepsi Tip-Off MVP, as she averages 17.0 ppg, 5.5 rpg and has hit on 10-18 field goals including 4-7 from long-distance. Kelli Freeman is next with 10.5 points per contest while Kim Curtis leads the points as she averages 4.0 dimes per game and adds 6.5 points a game.

Mike Power has a long history of resurrecting basketball programs with losing traditions into winners. The first-year coach comes here after a four-year stay at Metropolitan State College in Denver, Colo. where he posted a 56-52 record, setting a school record for best winning percentage by a head coach in his first two years (.636). Power’s teams finished in the top seven in the 14-team Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference three of his four years at the helm, making the RMAC Tournament three times.

Prior to his stay at Metro State, Power resurrected the Briar Cliff College program in Sioux City, Iowa. Power inherited an 0-29 team and in six seasons there posted a 127-73 record - including 93-17 over his final three seasons - and made three consecutive NAIA Division II National Tournament appearances. He led the Chargers to Elite Eight appearances in 1996 and 1997. Power’s teams posted two consecutive 30-win seasons at Briar Cliff, a 37-1 march in 1996-’97 which included a school-record 32-0 unbeaten regular season and a 37-0 record before suffering the first loss, and 31-4 in 1997-’98. Power developed three All-America players at Briar Cliff and won three consecutive NAIA Independent Midwest Region Coach of the Year honors.

Power also turned around a program with a losing history during a three-year stay at Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln, Neb. After a 5-20 finish during his first year at the helm, Power had built a program with a winning record by his third year when the Prairie Wolves finished 15-11. Under Power’s watch, Wesleyan led the nation (NCAA Division III) in scoring during the 1990-’91 season and also led the nation in three-point field goals per game in both 1989-’90 and 1990-’91.

Power also has experience coaching at the high school level, spending three seasons as an assistant coach at Pius X High School in Lincoln, Neb. from 1985-’88 and one year as head coach and physical education teacher at Gothenburg High School in Gothenburg, Neb. in 1991-’92.

The eighth head coach in the history of BSU women’s basketball earned a bachelor of science degree in social science from the University of Nebraska in 1988 and a master of physical education from Nebraska in 1994.

Walking the sidelines with Power will be first-year assistant Amanda Went, second-year graduate assistants Jason Sobolik and Paul Brunsdon.

Looking at BSU’s first nine non-conference opponents of the season, four are recognized in the national or regional polls from a season ago. South Dakota State will visit Bemidji after the Beavers travel to the Barry University Tournament and to North Central Conference programs St. Cloud State and MSU-Mankato. SDSU posted a 28-9 overall record in 2001-02 and finished third in the final edition of the USA Today/ESPN/WBCA Division II Women’s Basketball Poll. The next test will come Dec. 14th at Michigan Tech, which was 10th in the final Great Lakes Region poll last season. A week later, the University of North Dakota will be the opponent in Grand Forks as the Fighting Sioux were 12th in the final national poll.

As far as the NSIC is concerned, the Beavers will have to face the 2001-02 NSIC regular season champions in Southwest State on the road in the conference-opening weekend. To make things just as difficult, BSU has to travel to UM-Duluth and Northern State in mid-January before both programs come to Bemidji. Both squads finished with a 13-5 conference slate, which tied Concordia-St. Paul for second in the league. The Golden Bears are the only team from the top four conference finishers from last season that Bemidji State has the luxury of hosting first.

“We play one of the toughest non-conference schedules in the league,” Power said. “We have to go to North Dakota and Michigan Tech, which right there will be in the top five in the country. Then, we play the team that won our region (South Dakota State) last year, who has everybody back for our first game at home.”

According to the 2002-03 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Women’s Basketball Preseason Coaches Poll, the Beavers were chosen ninth with 31 votes in the preseason coaches poll. The league’s champion from last season in Southwest State was narrowly picked as the top team with 85 votes. BSU ended ninth in the NSIC as it went 3-15 in league play last season.

Concordia-St. Paul was second (84), Minnesota-Duluth third (77), Northern State fourth (62), MSU Moorhead fifth (56), Wayne State (Neb.) sixth (48), Minnesota-Crookston seventh (43), Winona State eighth (36) and Minnesota-Morris rounding out the list (18). Both SSU, which is #10 in the Women’s Division II Bulletin Preseason Top 25, and C-SP, which received five first-place votes, are recognized on the national level.

As far as the NSIC is concerned, the Beavers will have to face Southwest State on the road in the conference-opening weekend, Dec. 29. To make things just as difficult, BSU has to travel to UM-Duluth and Northern State in mid-January before both programs come to Bemidji. Both squads finished with a 13-5 conference slate, which tied Concordia-St. Paul for second in the league. The Golden Bears are the only team from the top four conference finishers from last season that Bemidji State has the luxury of hosting first.

The BSU Gymnasium, which seats 2,200, was originally constructed in 1959. Almost a year of work came to fruition as the physical education complex, the all-encompassing building that houses the BSU Gymnasium, was dedicated on January 4, 1960 by Minnesota Governor Orville Freeman in front of a packed crowd. This large building contains the gym, a swimming pool, classrooms and faculty offices.
The BSU Gymnasium hosts all Bemidji State University volleyball matches, men’s and women’s basketball games, as well as area high school playoff games. In addition, there are events ranging from concerts and recitals to faculty meetings and commencement ceremonies that take place there.
Not only does it house an array of activities, but perhaps more importantly it gives a distinct “home-court” advantage for the athletic squads that use it. BSU fans and boosters of all ages are regularly seen sporting the green and white colors in peculiar styles.

All tickets for BSU home events can be purchased at the gate or by calling 218-755-2045. Ticket prices are as follows: $5 general admission, $2 senior citizens/non-BSU students, $1 under-12 and BSU students with valid ID are free.