Women’s hoops takes on social media celebrities

By Luke Johnson:

San Jose State University heads to Sin City Saturday to compete against a pair of social media celebrities on the University of Nevada, Las Vegas’s women’s basketball team.

Dylan and Dakota Gonzalez aren’t only NCAA Division I athletes, but they sing, model and combine for 1.95 million followers on Instagram. One of their followers is arguably the biggest name in contemporary hip-hop, Drake.

The twins combined for 36 of their team’s 51 points Wednesday to propel UNLV (14-6, 5-3) to a five-point victory against Wyoming (15-4, 7-1), who was formerly undefeated in the Mountain West Conference. Dylan Gonzalez produced a career-high 20 points, but said that UNLV’s defense is the reason why her team pulled off the upset.

“That’s just all we work on in practice,” Dylan Gonzalez told the Las Vegas Review-Journal, “so when we execute defensively, it’s even better than executing offensively because it’s so much more intense on defense just because sometimes you can’t control things on offense, but defense you can always control what you’re doing.”

Dakota Gonzalez, a 6-foot junior guard, has been the team’s leading scorer the past two seasons and is averaging 12.4 points per game this go around. Dylan Gonzalez, another 6-foot junior guard, is contributing 8.7 points and 3.9 rebounds per game.

SJSU (6-14, 3-5) also took on a top Mountain West opponent Wednesday, but experienced a different result. Colorado State (15-4, 7-1) once led by 32 points before finishing off the Spartans, 68-56.

“The first 20 minutes we just stood around,” said SJSU coach Jamie Craighead in the post-game press conference. “They stood in a two-three zone and we just stood next to them… We were six of 36. Thirty missed shots in the first half, and only nine rebounds. I just don’t think we were playing.”

Senior point guard Dezz Ramos is on pace to become the fastest player to score 1,000 career points for SJSU. She currently has 961 points in 51 games and is putting up 21.8 per game this season. The current record holder is SJSU Hall of Famer Lora Alexander, who surpassed the 1,000-point mark within 55 career games set in 1990.

SJSU has bested UNLV in their last two meetings. In 2015, the Spartans won in a 99-97 shootout to end a 19-game head-to-head losing streak against the Running Rebels. The two face off for the first time this season Saturday at 4 p.m in Las Vegas.

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