Pacific women return from a one-week hiatus and hit the road to face Warner

Final exams finally over, the focus returns to the hardwood for the Pacific women's basketball team.

Pacific (3-4, 0-2) took a week off to concentrate on exams, but it's back to basketball this week with road games against Warner Pacific and Evergreen State.

The good news for Pacific is that this weekend's games mark the end of a seven-game road trip that saw the Boxers travel over 2,000 miles - zig-zagging across the Pacific Northwest from Portland to eastern Washington, Puget Sound and even the San Francisco Bay Area.

After Saturday's game against Evergreen State, the Boxers can put their suitcases away for a while with four of their next five games at home.

Friday the Boxers travel to streaky Warner Pacific (4-5), a team that lost its first five games before rebounding with a four-game win streak. The Knights, picked to finish second in the NAIA Cascade Conference this season, are led by forward Nicole Brown, who is averaging a league-leading 20.7 points per game.

Pacific, meanwhile, may have found its offensive leader after losing future Hall of Famer DeeDee Arnall to graduation. Junior guard Amy Pedersen is first on the team and second in the Northwest Conference with a scoring average of 15.9 points per game. In just seven games, she has 111 points - over half her total from the entire 2005-06 season (212).

Pedersen's emergence will be important for a Boxer team that was picked earlier this month to finish dead last in the conference this season. Pacific received just 14 of a possible 90 points in a poll conducted last week by the league's nine coaches.

Pedersen is receiving plenty of help from her teammates, namely senior guard Trisha Terhar, who is second on the team in scoring at 8.1 points per game and first in rebounding with an average of 7.9 boards a game.

The rest of the load is being distributed pretty evenly, with seven players averaging over 10 minutes per game.

After this weekend's road trip, the Boxers will get another breather with a two-week break before hosting Warner Pacific on Jan. 2. The Boxers return to conference action three days later at Willamette.

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