Bowser Becomes an Impact Center as a Northridge Sophomore

Staff writers Gary Klein, Mike Hiserman, Ralph Nichols and Gordon Monson contributed to this notebook

Todd Bowser has become a dominant force in the California Collegiate Athletic Assn. in only his second season. The numbers prove it.

Bowser is averaging 14.1 points and 8 rebounds after averaging 8.8 points and 5 rebounds as a freshman. Perhaps lost among those contributions, however, is Bowser's effectiveness on defense.

Bowser has scored in double figures in 8 of the 14 games in which he has played, yet opposing centers have reached double digits only three times. Sasha Radunovich, Wichita State's 6-9 starter, scored 13. John Anderson of Westmont and Tony Thiesen of Pomona each had 11.

Combined, opposing starters average only 6.7 points when matched against the 6-8, 270-pound sophomore.

"He's got great feet for that girth," Coach Pete Cassidy said. "He's a hard guy to get around. He anticipates and beats his man to a spot--legally.

"I'm tired of hearing other coaches scream about Todd being too physical. When you run into a wall, you hurt. Todd's a big guy. It's not his fault people bounce off him."

Improvement deparment: The Cal Lutheran men's basketball team needed just three weeks to surpass the total number of wins the Kingsmen recorded in Golden State Athletic Conference play last season.

The Kingsmen, who were 3-7 in their first year in the GSAC last season, are 4-1 and tied for first with Azusa Pacific.

Court scholar: Said Cal Lutheran guard Steve deLaveaga, who leads the Golden State Athletic Conference in scoring (27.6 points a game), when asked if he is a good student: "Sometimes when I should be reading that extra chapter, I'm out shooting free throws in the gym."

Hit or run: Northridge works on its free-throw shooting each practice using various types of challenge situations--most of them having to do with running.

"Either you're in great shape or you're great at free-throw shooting, theoretically," Cassidy said.

CSUN is 211 of 341--61.9%. Four of the team's top eight players in minutes played are shooting less than 56% from the line, however.

Turnover time: The Northridge women's basketball team has committed 389 turnovers. Its opponents have 422, so in 17 games, there have been 811 miscues--an average of 47.7 a game.

Point guard Vicki Mallett, CSUN's leading scorer with an average of 12.5, is usually involved when the ball is given away or stolen back. She has a team-high 87 turnovers but also leads the team in steals with 50.

Little, big man: Despite being only 6 feet, 3 inches, CLU forward James Faulk leads the GSAC in rebounding in conference games with an 8.5 average. Cal Lutheran, however, ranks last in the conference in team rebounding with a 37.5 average.

The Kingsmen lead the conference in free-throw shooting, hitting 73.4% from the line.

Stroker ace: Tony Chieffo became the second Northridge golfer to win the Bill Bryant UCLA Men's Invitational by firing an 8-over-par 76-76--152 at Industry Hills' Eisenhower course Monday.

The senior finished one shot ahead of UCLA's Tim Cruickshank (81-71--153). Albert Flores won the event for Northridge at California Country Club in 1981.

Northridge finished third in the team standings at 633, behind UCLA's B team and UC Irvine, which tied at 624. UCLA was declared the winner because its No. 5 man shot a lower score than his counterparts.

Wave breaker: Former Simi Valley High standout Marty Wilson continues to be plagued by injuries at Pepperdine. The 6-3 junior tore knee ligaments against the University of Portland on Saturday and is lost for the season.

He had started all of the Waves 17 games and was averaging 5.5 points, 3.6 rebounds and 6.5 assists. Wilson missed last season because of a protruding disk in his back.

Turner turnaround: Jason Turner, a Times All-Valley guard at Crespi High in 1986 who went to UC Irvine on a basketball scholarship, is playing this season for Saddleback College.

Turner, a 6-2, 175-pound guard, left the Irvine team midway through last season. He is averaging six points a game for Saddleback (15-6), which is ranked 10th in the state.

Kicks for Kirk: Joey Kirk scored a goal for the victorious West team in the Senior Bowl all-star soccer game last weekend in Santa Ana.

Kirk, an All-American forward who scored 30 goals last season for CSUN, scored on a 20-yard shot into the lower-left corner of the net that tied the score, 1-1, 15 minutes into the second half. The West won, 3-2.

Soccer talkers: Marwan Ass'ad is not a Washington Redskins fan, but the CSUN soccer coach said he was in hog heaven last week when he traveled to Washington, D. C., for a National Soccer Coaches of America Assn. convention.

About 400 youth, high school and college coaches jammed a Hyatt hotel for a four-day binge of clinics about tactics and techniques.

"Everything was soccer," said Ass'ad, who led the Matadors to a second-place finish last season in the NCAA Division II Final Four in Tampa, Fla. "You didn't hear anything about anything else."

Professional move: Juan Florez, a junior forward from Colombia who scored 10 goals for the CSUN soccer team last season, is playing professionally in Bogota and will not play for the Matadors next season.

Net losses: The CSUN men's volleyball team followed its 10th-place finish in the 24-team UC Santa Barbara tournament last weekend with a 6-15, 3-15, 15-10, 15-5, 4-15 loss to Hawaii in a Western Intercollegiate Volleyball Assn. opener Monday at CSUN.

The Matadors, ranked 10th in the nation, play a nonconference match Saturday at UC San Diego.

Net gain: Neil Coffman, an All-City Section volleyball player at Chatsworth High in 1986 who redshirted last year at UC Santa Barbara, has transferred to CSUN and will play for the Matadors next season.

Slick scorers: Karina Hardman, who scored 20 or more points in 13 consecutive games for the Moorpark women's basketball team, was named the Western State Conference player of the week last week.

Hardman was held to 11 points against Santa Barbara on Saturday to snap her streak. It was only the third time this season that she has scored less than 20.

The sophomore forward is averaging 25.3 points in conference games and has led Moorpark (14-10, 6-0 in conference play) to six consecutive victories.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World