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Vikings Hoping for Senior Day Breakthrough Tomorrow against Eastern Washington | #schoolshooting


TIPOFF

The goal of any college basketball season is to be playing your best basketball in March. Unquestionably, that’s been true for the Portland State women’s basketball team the past few games, even if it hasn’t resulted in the wins the Vikings have wanted.
 
Wednesday night, the Vikings played their third close game out of their last four, as they led by as many as 12 points in the third quarter and by as many as six in the fourth quarter against Idaho, but fell 73-68 in the end. The Vikings also were tied with Weber State, 63-63, with 2:15 to go on Feb. 23, but lost 73-65. Additionally, the Vikings led league-leading Idaho State, 60-55, with 3:09 remaining on Feb. 26, but fell 67-64.
 
So, the improvements have been there for the Vikings. They just need to get the breakthrough. Friday represents the Vikings’ last chance to get a conference win during the regular season, as they host Eastern Washington at Viking Pavilion for a 6 p.m. tipoff.
 
If the Vikings can continue the progress they have been making, then they should have a shot against the Eagles. Among those improvements have been:

  • The Vikings have shot 40.0 percent or better in three of their past four games after failing to do so in 13 of their first 15 Big Sky games.
  • The Vikings have assisted on at least 60.0 percent of their field goals in three of their past five games. That’s followed a six-game stretch in which the Vikings averaged only 8.17 assists per game.
  • The Vikings have essentially matched their opponent on the glass in three of their last five games. The Vikings out-rebounded Montana State, 39-37, on Feb. 21, the first time the Vikings had out-rebounded a Big Sky opponent this season. Additionally, the Vikings were even with Weber State, 32-32, on Feb. 23, which was a stark contrast to the Vikings’ first game against the Wildcats in which they were out-rebounded, 43-21, on Dec. 4.

 
In addition to the team improvements, the Vikings have gotten a number of standout individual performances in recent weeks. Wednesday night, it was the Esmeralda MoralesSavannah Dhaliwal show. Those two combined for the first 18 points of the game for the Vikings and finished with 41 of the team’s 68 against the Vandals.
 
Morales finished with 22 points to go with eight assists, three rebounds and three steals Wednesday, the latest in a string of strong games for Morales ever since the Vikings’ return from their second hiatus on Feb. 17. In the seven games since the Vikings returned to play against Northern Arizona, Morales has averaged 14.9 points, 4.3 assists, 2.4 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game.
 
Dhaliwal, meanwhile, finished with 19 points on 9-of-14 shooting Wednesday, giving her a strong start to her Senior Weekend.
 
Eastern Washington heads into Friday’s game having lost three of their last four, though they posted two of their best wins of the season before that recent stretch as they swept the Montana schools. The Eagles beat Montana, 63-57, at home on Feb. 14, then became the only Big Sky team to beat Montana State in Bozeman this season, as they topped the Bobcats, 76-69.
 
The Eagles represent a strong defensive team, as they stand second in the Big Sky Conference in both field goal percentage defense (.383) and steals per game (8.86), while also ranking fourth in both scoring defense (65.0) and turnover margin (+1.46).
 
Individually, Jaydia Martin and Jacinta Buckley rank fifth and ninth in the Big Sky with 15.0 and 12.9 points per game, respectively, to lead the Eagles. Martin ranks third in the Big Sky with 2.32 three-pointers made per game, and also ranks seventh in the conference with 1.54 steals per game. Buckley, meanwhile, ranks third in the Big Sky with 8.56 rebounds per game while also ranking eighth in steals per game (1.48).
 
Martin and Buckley led the Eagles to a 68-44 win over the Vikings back on Jan. 17. Martin totaled 19 points, 11 rebounds, four assists and three steals, while Buckley also had a double-double of 13 points and 16 rebounds. Andie Zylak, Milly Knowles and Jaleesa Lawrence combined for 30 points in that game, as the Eagles’ starters together accounted for 62 of the team’s 68 points. 
 
Alaya Fitzgerald led the Vikings with 13 points the last time they played the Eagles, while Morales and Dhaliwal followed with 12 and 10 points, respectively. A slow start proved too much for the Vikings to overcome, however, as the Eagles led the Vikings 22-6 after the opening quarter.
 
They’ll need to avoid that if they hope to pull out the win Friday. They’ve been doing a good job of that lately, but one or two more things need to fall into place for the Vikings to finally get their breakthrough.
 
The Vikings have at least put themselves in position for a breakthrough recently, as they are undoubtedly playing their best basketball in March. 
 

SENIOR DAY CEREMONY

The Vikings will honor their lone senior – Savannah Dhaliwal – in a pre-game ceremony before Friday’s game against Eastern Washington. The pre-game clock will count down to 5:47 p.m., at which point the ceremony will start. The game will still tip off at 6 p.m., however. 
                                                                              

GAME NOTES: PORTLAND STATE (5-22, 0-19) vs. EASTERN WASHINGTON (8-20, 6-13)

GAME DETAILS: Friday, March 4, 6 p.m., Portland, Ore. (Viking Pavilion)
LIVE STATS | LIVE VIDEO
SCOUTING EASTERN WASHINGTON: The Eastern Washington Eagles head into Friday having lost three of their past four games, though two of the Eagles’ best wins of the season came before that stretch when they swept the Montana schools. The Eagles beat Montana, 63-57, at home on Feb. 14, then became the only Big Sky team to beat Montana State in Bozeman this season, as they topped the Bobcats, 76-69. The Eagles dropped a road game, 79-72, to Idaho two days later, then split a home weekend against Northern Colorado and Sacramento State last weekend. The Eagles opened this week with an 81-67 loss to Northern Arizona in Flagstaff Wednesday. Statistically, the Eagles rank very strong defensively within the Big Sky Conference. The Eagles stand second in the conference in both field goal percentage defense (.383) and steals per game (8.86), and also rank fourth in both scoring defense (65.0) and turnover margin (+1.46). Offensively, the Eagles rank better from the outside than they do inside the arc. The Eagles rank fifth in the Big Sky with 6.86 three-pointers made per game, but also stand last in the conference in field goal percentage (.355). Individually, Jaydia Martin and Jacinta Buckley rank fifth and ninth in the Big Sky with 15.0 and 12.9 points per game, respectively, to lead the Eagles. Martin ranks third in the Big Sky with 2.32 three-pointers made per game, and also ranks seventh in the conference with 1.54 steals per game. Buckley, meanwhile, ranks third in the Big Sky with 8.56 rebounds per game while also ranking eighth in steals per game (1.48). No one outside of Martin and Buckley averages in double figures for the Eagles while only Jaleesa Lawrence (8.4) and Alexis Pettis (7.8) are above six points a game. Andie Zylak leads the Eagles and ranks eighth in the Big Sky with 3.6 assists per game this season. Martin and Buckley led the Eagles to a 68-44 win over the Vikings back on Jan. 17 earlier this season. Martin totaled 19 points, 11 rebounds, four assists and three steals, while Buckley also had a double-double of 13 points and 16 rebounds. Zylak, Milly Knowles and Lawrence combined for 30 points in that game, as the Eagles’ starters together accounted for 62 of the team’s 68 points. 
ALL-TIME SERIES: The Eagles lead the all-time series between them and the Vikings, 41-35. They’ve won four of their last six against the Vikings – including a 68-44 win in Cheney on Jan. 17 earlier this season – but the Vikings had won five straight before that. 
 

STORYLINES/STREAKS/RECORDS

  • The Vikings have had two breaks of 10 days or more this season. The most recent of those lasted 10 days between the Vikings’ games on Feb. 7 and 17. The Vikings also went 27 days without a game between Dec. 19 and Jan. 15.
  • The Vikings played 10 games in 24 days following their 27-day hiatus. They’ll now play their final eight regular-season games over 16 days from Feb. 17 to March 4.
  • The Vikings have had nine games either postponed or canceled this season. The Vikings’ road game at Idaho was rescheduled three different times.
  • Esmeralda Morales (12.4 ppg), Jada Lewis (10.4), Alaya Fitzgerald (10.1) and Savannah Dhaliwal (10.1) all average in double figures in scoring. Morales has been on a tear since the Vikings’ second return from a hiatus against Northern Arizona on Feb. 17. She’s averaged 14.9 points per game in the seven games since that return to play, including 22 points Wednesday against Idaho.
  • The Vikings have led or been tied with their opponent in three of their last four games. The Vikings were tied with Weber State, 63-63, with 2:15 to go on Feb. 23, only to lose 73-65. The Vikings led league-leading Idaho State, 60-55, with 3:09 remaining on Feb. 26, only to fall 67-64. Wednesday night, the Vikings led by as many as six in the fourth quarter and 64-62 with 4:06 remaining, but still lost 73-68.
  • The Vikings lost the rebounding battle by a single rebound Wednesday night against Idaho despite being without two post players. Wednesday’s game was the third time out of the past five games that the Vikings have finished essentially even with their opponent on the glass. The run started when the Vikings out-rebounded Montana State 39-37 on Feb. 21, which was the first time in 15 tries that the Vikings had out-rebounded a Big Sky opponent this season.
  • The Vikings have assisted on at least 60 percent of their fielsd goals in three of their past five games. Esmeralda Morales has led the Vikings in that better distribution as she’s finished with at least five assists in four of the team’s last five games, including two games with eight assists.
  • The better passing has helped the Vikings shoot over 40.0 percent in three of their past four games after doing so only twice through their first 15 conference games of the season.
  • The Vikings set a single-game program record with 36 three-point attempts against Montana State on Feb. 21. Idaho slowed the Vikings down from three-point range in their two games against them, but the Vikings averaged 9.25 makes over their previous four games while shooting 37-of-106 (.349) from deep during that stretch. 
  • The Vikings rank second in the Big Sky and 20th in the nation with a team free throw percentage of .769 this season. Esmeralda Morales has gone 58-of-64 (.906) from the free-throw line individually.
  • Jada Lewis ranks second in the Big Sky with 2.33 three-pointers made per game and ranks third in the conference in three-point field goal percentage (.358). Lewis had a quiet two-game series against Idaho, going 1-of-7 combined from deep against the Vandals. In the four games before the Idaho series, Lewis was averaging 3.5 makes per game while shooting 14-of-34 (.412) from deep. Lewis went 6-of-10 (.600) from three-point range against Weber State on Feb. 23 while leading all scorers with 22 points.
  • The Vikings have 12 games in which they’ve recorded 10+ steals this season, though they’ve averaged only 4.6 steals per game over their last five games. Three different Vikings rank in the top 15 of the Big Sky for steals per game, while the Vikings rank sixth in the Big Sky with 8.04 steals per game as a team. Esmeralda Morales and Mia ‘Uhila rank fourth and 10th, respectively, with 1.85 and 1.38 steals per game individually. Alaya Fitzgerald ranks 14th in the league with 1.33 steals per game.
  • Alaya Fitzgerald returned from concussion protocols in the Vikings’ first game against Idaho on Feb. 28. In her second game back, Fitzgerald returned to form with 10 points to go with four assists and three rebounds. She’s now scored in double figures in 11 of her last 15 appearances.
  • Savannah Dhaliwal finished two points shy of her season-high with 19 points on 9-of-14 shooting Wednesday against Idaho. Dhaliwal recorded her second double-double of the season a week earlier against Weber State, as she finished with 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting to go with 11 rebounds. Dhaliwals’ production has provided a feel-good storyline for the Vikings this season after she missed the last two seasons due to back-to-back ACL tears. Dhaliwal played in her first counting game in 985 days when she started the team’s season opener against Warner Pacific on Nov. 9.
  • Reilly Kelty has five games with at least three blocks this season and ranks seventh in the Big Sky with 1.08 blocks per game.
  • The Vikings have started three freshmen in all but one game this season. Usually, it’s been Esmeralda Morales, Alaya Fitzgerald and Rhema Ogele starting, but Mia ‘Uhila has started six of the Vikings’ past seven games in some sort of combination with two of the other three freshmen.
  • Head coach Chelsey Gregg is in her first year at the helm of the Vikings after spending the previous six seasons as first an assistant then an associate head coach for the Vikings. The players dumped ice water over Gregg’s head following the team’s first win of the season on Nov. 9. A photo of the moment was shared by the @NCAAWBB accounts as their photo of the week that week.
  • The Vikings have nine underclassmen out of the 14 players on their roster this season, while Savannah Dhaliwal represents the team’s lone senior.

 

NOTICEABLE IMPROVEMENTS

The Vikings are still hunting for their breakthrough win, but have made some noticeable improvements in recent weeks. Among those have been:

  • The Vikings have led or been tied with their opponent in three of their last four games. They led Idaho by as many as 12 points earlier in their game Wednesday, only to fall 73-68. Before that, the Vikings were tied with Weber State, 63-63, with 2:15 to go on Feb. 23, but lost 73-65. The Vikings also led league-leading Idaho State, 60-55, with 3:09 remaining on Feb. 26, but fell 67-64.
  • The Vikings have shot 40.0 percent or better in three of their past four games after failing to do so in 13 of their first 15 Big Sky games.
  • The Vikings have assisted on at least 60.0 percent of their field goals in three of their past five games. That’s followed a six-game stretch in which the Vikings averaged only 8.17 assists per game.
  • The Vikings have essentially matched their opponent on the glass in three of their last five games. That marks a big turnaround for the Vikings, who still rank last in the Big Sky Conference in rebounding margin (-7.44), rebounds per game (33.4) and defensive rebounds per game (23.0). The Vikings out-rebounded Montana State, 39-37, on Feb. 21, the first time the Vikings had out-rebounded a Big Sky opponent this season. Additionally, the Vikings were even with Weber State, 32-32, on Feb. 23, which was a stark contrast to the Vikings’ first game against the Wildcats in which they were out-rebounded, 43-21, on Dec. 4.

 

THREE-POINT SHOOTING

Idaho effectively limited the Vikings’ three-point shooting in their two games against them earlier in the week. However, in the four games before that series, the Vikings had been shooting extremely well from the outside. The Vikings averaged 9.25 makes per game in the four games before their Idaho series while going a combined 37-of-106 (.349) in those games. The Vikings made at least eight three-pointers in all four games, including a conference season-high 12 makes against Montana State on Feb. 21. Two days before that game, the Vikings actually shot better from three-point range than they did inside the arc against Montana on Feb. 19. The Vikings went 8-of-21 (.381) from deep against the Lady Griz versus a 10-of-34 (.294) mark from inside the arc. Overall, three-point shooting has been a key part of all of the Vikings’ wins this season, as four of the team’s five wins have come when they made at least nine three-pointers. Individually, Lewis ranks second in the Big Sky with 2.33 makes per game from the outside while ranking third in the conference in three-point field goal percentage (.358).
 

MONEY FROM THE LINE

A strength for the Vikings this season has been the team’s free-throw shooting, as they rank second in the Big Sky and 20th in the nation with a team free throw percentage of .769. The Vikings went a perfect 11-of-11 from the line against Montana on Feb. 19, their most makes without a miss in a game this season. Esmeralda Morales is 58-of-64 (.906) from the line individually, just off the school record that Eryn Jones set while going 51-of-56 (.911) from the line during the 2011-12 season. If Morales finished the season with at least four more free throws without missing, she’ll break Jones’ record.
 

UP-AND-DOWN PERIMETER DEFENSE

The Vikings held Idaho – the Big Sky’s top three-point shooting team with over nine makes a game – to only a 3-of-14 (.214) performance Wednesday. By doing so, the Vandals became the 12th team that the Vikings have held below 30.0 percent from three-point range this season. The Vikings started the season hot in that regard, as seven of the Vikings’ first 11 opponents failed to shoot above 30.0 percent from deep. However, the Vikings also had a stretch from Jan. 29 to Feb. 23 in which six of nine opponents shot 38.9 percent or better from the outside. So, the defense has been up-and-down for the Vikings this season. All told, the Vikings still rank fourth in the Big Sky with a three-point field goal percentage defense of .310. The high point defensively came against cross-town rival University of Portland on Dec. 12, when the Vikings held the Pilots without a make from three-point range on 0-of-17 shooting from the outside. That game came as part of a three-game stretch in which the Vikings’ opponents went a combined 4-of-50 (.080) from three-point range.
 

MORE OF MORALES, PLEASE

Esmeralda Morales has appeared to turn a corner ever since the Vikings’ second return from a hiatus against Northern Arizona on Feb. 17. Morales broke out of an offensive slump in that game, as she set a conference season-high with 24 points on 8-of-14 shooting overall and 5-of-8 from three-point range. Morales has followed with big games against Idaho State – 19 points, five assists, four rebounds and three steals – and Idaho – 22 points, eight assists, three rebounds and three steals – as she’s shown growth in her freshman campaign. In the seven games since the re-start against NAU, Morales has averaged 14.9 points, 4.3 assists, 2.4 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game. Morales’ best game remains her debut when she set multiple records while scoring 32 points against Warner Pacific on Nov. 9. Morales tied a single-game record that has stood since 1991 with eight three-pointers in the game. She also set five other freshman records in the game between the records for points (32), points in a debut (32), field goals made (11), three-point field goals made (8) and three-point field goal percentage (.727). For the season, Morales leads the Vikings while ranking tied for 12th in the Big Sky with 12.4 points per game. Morales has found other ways to contribute, too, as she ranks fourth in the Big Sky in steals per game (1.85), sixth in assists per game (3.78), 10th in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.29), tied for 10th in three-pointers made per game (1.56) and second in minutes played per game (35.4).
 

JADA CAN KNOCK DOWN THE J’s, DUH

Jada Lewis had a quiet series against Idaho, going just 1-of-7 (.143) from three-point range across both games, but had been on fire beforehand. Lewis averaged 3.5 makes per game over the Vikings’ four games before their Idaho series while going a combined 14-of-34 (.412) from deep. Lewis went 6-of-10 (.600) from deep against Weber State on Feb. 23, the third time Lewis has hit at least six three-pointers in a game this season, and the first time in Big Sky play. Lewis also went 4-of-12 from deep against Montana State on Feb. 21, which was the second time she’s lit it up from the outside against the Bobcats. Lewis went 5-of-7 from deep in the Vikings’ road game against Montana State on Jan. 22, meaning she went a combined 9-of-19 (.474) in the team’s two games against the Bobcats. Earlier in the season, Lewis hit six or more three-pointers in back-to-back games against Dixie State and Prairie View A&M on Nov. 12 and 20, respectively. Lewis set a new career-high for points in both games while going a combined 13-of-21 (.619) from beyond the arc. Lewis started with 22 points on 6-of-9 shooting from deep against Dixie State, then topped that with 23 points on 7-of-12 shooting from the outside against Prairie View A&M. Overall, Lewis ranks second in the Big Sky in three-pointers made per game (2.33) while also ranking third in the conference in three-point field goal percentage (.358).
                                                

THE LONG-AWAITED RETURN OF SAVANNAH DHALIWAL

Savannah Dhaliwal opened her Senior Weekend with one of her best games of the season, scoring 19 points on 9-of-14 shooting in the Vikings’ 73-68 loss to Idaho Wednesday. The game came a week after a strong two-game stretch against Montana State and Weber State, Feb. 21-23, in which Dhaliwal exploded out of halftime in each game. Dhaliwal scored 10 points in the first five minutes of the third quarter in each game, including the first 10 points for the Vikings in the second half against Weber State on the 23rd. Dhaliwal went on to a double-double of 17 points and 11 rebounds against the Wildcats, while going 7-of-10 from the field. The big second halves marked a return to form for Dhaliwal, who started the year scoring in double figures in 13 of the team’s first 16 games, but then went quiet with only 4.67 points per game over the next six games. Dhaliwal had another strong two-game stretch earlier in the season. She set her season-high with 21 points against Southern Utah on Jan. 27, going 9-of-12 from the field overall and 3-of-4 from three-point range. Dhaliwal then followed with 16 points on 7-of-9 shooting against Northern Arizona on Jan. 29. So, it’s been a dream return to play for Dhaliwal, who went 985 days without playing in a counting game before starting the Vikings’ season opener against Warner Pacific on Nov. 9. Dhaliwal missed the past two seasons due to back-to-back ACL tears, the first of which came in the Vikings’ home game against Idaho on Feb. 28, 2019. That kept her out of the entire 2019-20 season, and she re-tore her ACL in the fall of 2020, which forced her out of the entire 2020-21 season as well.
 

OOOOOOOOOO-HEE-LUH

Pixar took the little green aliens saying ‘oooooooooo’ in Toy Story from watching freshman guard Mia ‘Uhila. At least that’s the story we’re telling ourselves. ‘Uhila has the game to make it believable, especially in terms of her perimeter defense. ‘Uhila has grabbed at least two steals in 11 games this season and ranks 10th in the Big Sky with 1.38 steals per game. ‘Uhila has also helped the Vikings rank sixth in the Big Sky with 8.04 steals per game as a team. ‘Uhila has shown more to her game recently, however. She’s had three of her best scoring games in the past month, including a career-high 15 points against Montana on Feb. 19 in which she went 4-of-5 from the floor, 2-of-3 from three-point range, and 5-of-5 from the free-throw line. ‘Uhila also scored 12 points against Idaho State last Saturday, while setting a career-high with seven assists to go with four rebounds. 
 

ROOTING FOR LAY IS A LAY-UP

Alaya Fitzgerald, nicknamed Lay, returned from concussion protocols in the Vikings’ two-game series against Idaho. Wednesday’s game against the Vandals marked Fitzgerald’s return to form, really, as she finished with 10 points to go with four assists and three rebounds. Fitzgerald had been the Vikings’ top scorer since the team returned from its first hiatus against Sacramento State on Jan. 15 and before her recent absences. Fitzgerald averaged a team-best 11.8 points per game in the 12 games before she sat due to concussion protocols, while she also averaged 3.9 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.9 steals per game during that stretch. Fitzgerald has scored in double figures in 11 of her past 15 appearances, including a career game against Northern Arizona on Jan. 29. The freshman wing scored a career-high 23 points on 9-of-12 shooting from the field and 3-of-4 from three-point range against the Lumberjacks while adding a career-high eight assists, five rebounds and three steals.
 

YOUTHFUL ROSTER

Nine of the Vikings’ 14 players this season will be freshmen or sophomores, and neither class has had a normal basketball season due to the pandemic since they were either sophomore or juniors in high school. That should make for a youthful roster at times for the Vikings this season, especially considering the Vikings’ only have one senior – Savannah Dhaliwal – to counterbalance that youth. Even the Vikings’ juniors had their freshmen years in 2019-20 cut short in March due to the pandemic, and then weren’t able to work on their games nearly as much as they would have liked as sophomores during the 2020-21 season.
 

PRESEASON PREDICTIONS

Big Sky coaches and media members picked the Vikings to finish ninth and eighth in their respective preseason polls. The top three in both polls were identical, with Idaho State the clear favorite in both. The Bengals return several key players from last year’s team that ran away with the Big Sky regular-season and tournament titles. Because of that, the Bengals earned all but their own first-place vote in the coaches poll, and picked up 17 of the 22 first-place votes in the media poll. Montana State followed the Bengals at second in both polls, narrowly edging Idaho in third.
 

SEASON HIGHLIGHTS

March 2, 2022, Idaho 73, Portland State 68: The Vikings led by as many as 12 points in the third quarter and by as many as sixth in the fourth, the third time in the Vikings’ past four games that they’ve either led or been tied for the lead in the fourth quarter. Esmeralda Morales and Savannah Dhaliwal combined for 41 of the Vikings’ 68 points in the game.  
Feb. 26, 2022, Idaho State 67, Portland State 64: The Vikings led by as many as six points in the final five minutes of the fourth quarter against an Idaho State team that clinched at least a share of its second straight Big Sky regular-season title. Freshmen Esmeralda Morales, Mia ‘Uhila and Rhema Ogele accounted for 40 of the team’s 64 points in the game. 
Feb. 23, 2022, Weber State 73, Portland State 65: Jada Lewis went 6-of-10 (.600) from three-point range, including two back-to-back that tied the game at 63-63 with just over two minutes remaining. Savannah Dhaliwal scored 10 straight points to open the third quarter while finishing with a double-double of 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting to go with 11 rebounds.
Feb. 21, 2022, Montana State 82, Portland State 57: The Vikings out-rebounded a Montana State team that came into the game ranked third in the Big Sky in total rebounds per game. It was the first time the Vikings had out-rebounded a Big Sky opponent all season. The Vikings also assisted on 15 of their 21 field goals in the game, with their 15 assists marking their second-highest total in a conference game this season.
Jan. 29, 2022, Northern Arizona 79, Portland State 68: The Vikings assisted on 19 of their 29 field goals, tied for their most assists since they had a season-high 23 against Dixie State on Nov. 12. Additionally, the Vikings topped 50.0 percent from the field for only the third time this season while going 29-of-57. The Vikings out-scored NAU 40-20 in the paint, with the 40 points marking a new season-high for the Vikings from the inside.
Jan. 27, 2022, Southern Utah 64, Portland State 63: Savannah Dhaliwal recorded only the second 20-point game of her career while leading the Vikings with 21 points on 9-of-12 shooting overall and 3-of-4 shooting from three-point range. The Vikings came within a late free throw with 0.8 seconds remaining of upsetting the Big Sky leaders at the time in Southern Utah.
Dec. 19, 2021, Portland State 73, Simpson 45: Every player who dressed scored for the Vikings in their game against the Red Hawks. The Vikings assisted on 19 of their 27 field goals in the game, while nine of their 12 players recorded at least one assist.
Dec. 10, 2021, Portland State 75, Pepperdine 71: The Vikings erased a 16-6 deficit early in the game while returning to form from the outside. The Vikings went 12-of-19 (.632) from three-point range after going just 9-of-48 (.188) combined over their previous three games. Jada Lewis and Esmeralda Morales both broke out of individual shooting slumps, as they tied for the game high with 21 points while going 5-of-7 and 5-of-6 from deep, respectively.
Nov. 20, 2021, Portland State 75, Prairie View A&M 61: Savannah Dhaliwal recorded the first double-double of her career with 13 points and 11 rebounds. Jada Lewis set career highs for points (23) and three-pointers (7) to lead the Vikings offensively.
Nov. 12, 2021, Portland State 80, Dixie State 52: The Vikings held a Dixie State team that had just set a new school record with 22 made three-pointers in its season opener to 5-of-34 (.147) shooting from deep. Jada Lewis set a career high with 22 points on 6-of-9 shooting from beyond the arc.
Nov. 9, 2021, Portland State 87, Warner Pacific 64: Esmeralda Morales tied a single-game record that’s stood since 1991 with eight three-pointers against the Knights, while setting five new freshman records in the game. Morales broke the freshman records for points (32), points in a debut (32), field goals made (11), three-point field goals made (8) and three-point field goal percentage (.727). Savannah Dhaliwal also made her return after missing the last two seasons due to back-to-back ACL tears. Dhaliwal had 13 points on 5-of-6 shooting while setting new career highs for assists (6) and steals (2) in her first counting game in 985 days.
 



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