Wahine host
improved Fresno

By Al Chase

The Hawaii women's basketball team stopped the 'L' streak last Sunday. Now the focus is on beginning a 'W' streak.

The Rainbow Wahine host an improved Fresno State team tomorrow and a Nevada squad that has yet to win a Western Athletic Conference game Saturday.

The Hawaii coaches are well aware the Bulldogs have split their first six conference games and done it with a pattern of win the first game each series, then lose the second. The question is, can UH disrupt that pattern?

Stacy Johnson-Klein was named FSU's head coach last April after spending the previous two seasons as an assistant at Louisiana Tech. Under her tutelage, the Bulldogs (9-7, 3-3 WAC) equaled their victory output of a year ago and for the first time since 1996-97 have a winning record 16 games into the season.

Guards Lindsay Logan, an All-WAC first-team preseason pick, and Tiffany Simon and forward Omelogo Udeze are making their fourth appearance at the Stan Sheriff Center. Johnson-Klein, who had been experimenting with her starting lineup, packaged the three seniors with Java Johnson and Channan High in both games last week, resulting in an upset of Southern Methodist and a 10-point loss to Louisiana Tech.

Udeze, FSU's top rebounder, and Logan average 13.3 and 11.9 points per game.

"Logan is a scorer and she has pretty good company on the perimeter and solid people inside," UH coach Vince Goo said. "They are a team that can run and they can be very structured in the half court."

If the Hawaii coaches have seen a difference between last season and this one on the FSU films, it is the discipline Johnson-Klein has instilled in her team.

"They have all five starters back, but the reason they are better is the discipline," Goo said.

Discipline has always been a key reason for the Rainbow Wahine success. Hawaii is also producing a balanced scoring attack. Jade Abele has led in scoring five times, Christen Roper and Natasja Allen four times and April Atuaia twice. The coaches never know who will have the hot hand. Sunday against San Jose State, Allen and Amy Sanders combined for a 11-for-17 shooting night (.647) from the field. The rest of the team was 6-for-30 (.200).

"We didn't force any shots. We had a lot of good looks," Goo said "Just about every game, we've had one or two players shoot really well. It's good that we don't have to depend on the same player or two every night.

"What we hope for is that everyone can play good defense every night. Defense should be consistent every game, not far off the center line."

Hawaii is second in the conference with 57.9 points allowed per game. The Bulldogs are fifth, giving up 64.7 points per game.

Goo will continue with the same five starters, Abele, Roper, Allen, Atuaia and Michelle Gabriel. The first three substitutes in the rotation off the bench are Kim Willoughby, Milia Macfarlane and Sanders. The UH coach said Trisha Nishimoto is close to joining that group while the potential defensive matchups (and, at times, the score) determine when the other players see action.

UH Athletics

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