Splitting on the road is often a decent outcome for a coach, and Fresno State went 1-2 on a three-game swing out of town last week.
And for coach Jaime White, the Bulldogs’ 80-60 loss at Cal State Bakersfield to wrap up the trip was worse than sub-par.
“I’d be singing a different tune if we had played well,” White said this week. “I just felt like we need more production from our seniors. They’ve been there, done that. They’ve been in big games. They’ve played back-to-back. They’ve done all of that, and I felt like we needed more production from them and they’re capable of it.”
In Sunday’s loss the four senior starters — Alex Sheedy, Robin Draper, Alex Furr and Raven Fox — shot a combined 26% (8 of 30) from the field.
“Coach has definitely giving us an opportunity to step up and given us a lot of confidence,” Draper said. “I feel that from her, but it also comes with a lot of responsibility.”
Draper played a season-high 37 minutes in the Bulldogs’ victory at San Diego while dropping a season-high 13 points, but shot 0 for 3 and went scoreless in the next outing at Bakersfield.
She wasn’t not the only Bulldog off her game: Four-year starter Sheedy is in the middle of a shooting funk, making just 35% (24 of 69) of her field goals this season.
“(Bakersfield) was no excuse,” Draper added. “We’re all athletes and we should be able to come back (from playing back-to-back games). We need to be more aggressive and more physical.”
The Bulldogs (3-2) on Thursday night host a UC Riverside team that’s off to a perfect 5-0 start.
“We know how to score and we know how to step up,” Draper said. “We just have to do it all at the same time.”
The Highlanders, ranked No. 7 in the initial Ratings Performance Index (RPI) released Tuesday, are led by Brittany Crain, who leads the nation in scoring with an average 29 points per game to go with nine rebounds.
Fresno State debuted at No. 22 in the RPI, the only team from the Mountain West Conference in the top 100. San Jose State was second-best at 135th.