Following an unexpected run to last season’s conference championship game, the Long Beach State women’s basketball team has carried over that momentum into an impressive start to this season’s Big West play.

Long Beach currently sits with a 9-6 overall record and a 2-1 mark in conference play.

The 49ers started Big West play with a 62-52 victory over Cal Poly followed by a 52-45 win over UCSB last week. Long Beach fell in its first conference away game, however, dropping a 73-52 decision at Cal State Northridge Wednesday night.

Sophomore guard Alex Sanchez, an All-Big West honorable mention last year, leads the team in scoring and assists with averages of 11.6 points and 4.1 assists per game.

Despite surprising many with last season’s run to the Big West title game, Long Beach was picked to finish in fifth place in the conference preseason media poll. The 49ers returned nine players from last year’s squad, but did lose leading scorer Tipesa Moorer to graduation.

One bright spot for the 49ers this season has been their successful performance despite a young roster. Long Beach’s top six scorers are all sophomores, and with only one senior on the roster, the 49ers may be a dangerous team in the Big West for seasons to come.

 A version of this article appeared on page 5 of January 11th, 2013’s print edition of the Nexus.