College Sports

Area college basketball: Sac State, UC Davis play weekend exhibitions

Area college basketball fans will get a chance to preview the Sacramento State men’s and women’s teams and the UC Davis women’s team when they play exhibition games at home this weekend.

The Sac State men host Simpson College of Redding on Friday at 7 p.m. at The Nest.

Sac State, coached by Brian Katz, is coming off a record-breaking 21-12 overall and 13-5 record in the Big Sky Conference. The Hornets played in a postseason tournament for the first time since moving up to Division I in 1991 and had their first postseason win in 53 years.

The Hornets are led by Cody Demps, Eric Stuteville and Nick Hornsby, three of 10 returning players. They open the regular season next Friday at Arizona State.

The UC Davis women’s team hosts Humboldt State on Saturday at 2 p.m. at The Pavilion. It’s the only tune-up for the Aggies before they open the season next Friday by hosting No. 16 Stanford.

The Aggies, coached by Jennifer Gross, were 15-16 overall and 8-8 Big West Conference last season. They are led by senior forward Alyson Doherty.

The Sac State women’s team, also coming off its best season of the Division I era, will host Cal State East Bay on Sunday at 2 p.m. at The Nest.

The Hornets were 18-16 and tied for second in the Big Sky Conference with a 13-5 record. They played in the postseason for the first time and won two games in the Women’s National Invitation Tournament, advancing to the round of 16.

The Hornets, who return 11 players from last season, broke NCAA single-season records for 3-pointers made and attempted and also led the NCAA in steals, offensive rebounds per games and turnover margin playing coach Bunky Harkleroad’s innovative version of “The System.”

Sac State opens the regular season Nov. 14 at Utah State.

The UCD men’s team opens the regular season next Friday at 5:30 p.m. against North Dakota State in doubleheader with the women’s team at The Pavilion.

Bill Paterson: 916-326-5506, @SacBee_BillP