Women's Basketball Plays Host to USC, UCLA
Jan. 23, 2001
Oregon (No. 20 Associated Press, No. 20 ESPN/USA Today), which has won seven of its last eight games, plays host to USC on Thursday at 7 p.m. and UCLA on Saturday. The Ducks and Bruins tipoff at 1 p.m. for a nationally-televised Fox Sports Net audience. Oregon remains in first place in the Pac-10.
The UCLA game Saturday will be telecast live on Fox Sports Net. All Oregon women's basketball games are broadcast by KSCR (1320 AM) in Eugene and KUIK (1360 AM) in Portland, with Ray Martin providing the play-by-play for the sixth consecutive year. Games that don't conflict with Oregon men's basketball broadcasts will be carried by KUGN (590 AM) in Eugene, KXL (750 AM) in Portland and KTBR (950) in Roseburg. Radio broadcasts also can be heard on the Internet at www.goducks.com.
SERIES VS. USC
USC leads the series 23-10 and has won the last two contests. In the teams' last meeting on Feb. 26, 2000, the Women of Troy won 69-63 at Eugene. Shaquala Williams (22 points) and Angelina Wolvert (10 points) were the only double-figure scorers in that game. At Los Angeles last year, USC won 74-73 on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer by Tiffany Elmore.
SERIES VS. UCLA
The Ducks lead the series 16-15 and have won the last three. Last season, Oregon beat then-No. 22 UCLA 89-72 behind Shaquala Williams' 24 points and Lindsey Dion's 17 points and seven rebounds. Maylana Martin had 39 points on 17-of-22 shooting for UCLA.
COACH JODY RUNGE
Jody Runge is in her eighth season at the helm of the Ducks. She has compiled an impressive 154-65 (.703) record in her Oregon tenure, which includes a 94-37 (.718) mark in conference play. Her resume includes seven straight NCAA Tournament berths along with claiming back-to-back Pac-10 Conference championships in 1999 and 2000 for the first time in school history. She earned Pac-10 Coach of the Year honors in 1999 and in 1994. In addition, the Women's Basketball News Service selected Runge as its Coach of the Year in 1998.
Fred Litzenberger enters his sixth season in the Ducks' program. A native of Longmont, Colo., Litzenberger's 34 years in coaching includes six seasons as a men's collegiate head coach and 15 appearances for his teams in the NCAA Tournament. Second-year coach Dan Muscatell, the recruiting coordinator, and third-year coach Kirsten McKnight, a four-year Oregon basketball letterwinner, complete the coaching staff.
IN THE RANKINGS
Oregon moved down two spots to No. 20 in the Associated Press poll. It marks the 11th straight week Oregon has been ranked in the AP poll, which is the best mark under Jody Runge, and second only to the 1980-81 squad which was in the top 25 for 18 weeks in a row. Oregon began last season ranked in the first 10 polls. The Ducks are No. 20 in the USA Today/ESPN coaches poll. Five current top-25 teams are on Oregon's schedule.
Jenny Mowe (.587), Brianne Meharry (.548), Angelina Wolvert (.539) and Lindsey Dion (.500) have been a major factor in Oregon's status as one of the nation's best shooting teams. Among the Pac-10 field goal percentage leaders, Mowe is third and Meharry, Wolvert and Dion are fifth, sixth and eighth. Their backups, Ndidi Unaka (.571) and Alyssa Fredrick (.581), have proven to be prolific, too.
Angelina Wolvert sprained her medial collateral ligament in her left knee Jan. 18 at Washington about five minutes into the game. Wolvert missed the first game in her four-year career Jan. 20 at Washington State. She is listed as doubtful for this week. Lindsey Dion sprained her left ankle against the Huskies as well. She, too, missed the Washington State game. Her status is probable this week.
Jamie Craighead ranks first in the Pac-10 with a .477 mark (41 of 86) from 3-point range and also is first in 3-pointers per game (2.8). Last season, she shot .306 (30 of 98) from long range. Oregon also leads the Pac-10 as a team with a .369 3-point percentage. She also has scored in double-digits the last four games.
Put Lindsey Dion in the starting lineup and the Ducks usually win. In her four-year career, the Ducks are 29-4 with Dion starting. In the last two years, Oregon is 26-4 with her in the starting five (7-0 this season) and 8-8 when Dion isn't.
The Ducks have won 13 of their last 15 conference games.
MOVING ON UP
Jenny Mowe's third blocked shot Jan. 18 at Washington moved her into third place all-time on the Oregon list with 194. She surpassed Duck great Bev Smith, who had 193. Mowe had two more blocks against Washington State to give her 196. Alison Lang (405) and Stefanie Kasperski (402) rank first and second.
ON THE OFFENSIVE
Oregon ranks first in the Pac-10 with its .479 field goal percentage and second .700 free-throw percentage.
Jenny Mowe's .587 mark from the field ranks third in the Pac-10. Oregon's single-season record of .614 was set by Debbie Adams in 1980-81. The Pac-10 record is held by former Duck great Stefanie Kasperski (.606).
Eight Ducks have scored in double-figures this season.
THRUST INTO ACTION
With injuries to Angelina Wolvert (knee) and Lindsey Dion (ankle), juniors Ndidi Unaka and Alyssa Fredrick played extensive minutes in last Saturday's close loss to Washington State. Unaka scored a career-high 15 points and had six rebounds, while Fredrick made her first start in an Oregon uniform, scoring eight points and grabbing five rebounds.
MEHARRY AT THE CHARITY STRIPE
One of Brianne Meharry's strengths over her career hasn't been free-throw shooting ... until this year. A .636 foul-line shooter entering this season, Meharry is now 10th in the Pac-10 with a .733 mark
OREGON NO. 12 IN RPI, NO. 17 FOR SCHEDULE STRENGTH
The Ducks are ranked No. 12 nationally in the latest WBCA/Summerville RPI, tops in the Pac-10. Oregon also has the No. 17-rated strength-of-schedule in the nation.
Since Jody Runge's first year in 1993, the Ducks are 83-17 (.830) at home. Oregon hasn't lost two in a row at McArthur Court since February 1993 -- before Runge became coach. The Ducks also haven't lost more than three games in a season at 'The Pit' since Runge's first year.
Oregon has been one of the best free-throw shooting teams in the Pac-10 ... that is, until it shot a season-low 5 of 12 Saturday against Washington State.
Ducks at Washington State, Jan. 20
Joanna Smith came off the bench in the second half to hit three critical shots as Washington State edged Oregon 67-64. Smith gave the Cougars their first lead of the game, at 51-50, with a 3-pointer with just over nine minutes to play. The Ducks led 64-62 on a jump shot by Kourtney Shreve with 65 seconds left. Smith then hit her third long-range shot with 17 seconds to play, putting Washington State ahead 65-64. Victoria Harrod's free throws gave the Cougars their final lead with 2.2 seconds left on the clock. Kelly Berglund led WSU with 14 points, while Jessica Ottmar added 12. The Cougars hit all 15 shots from the free throw line. Brianne Meharry led Oregon with a game-high 17 points and eight rebounds while Ndidi Unaka added a career-high 15 points.
Ducks at Washington, Jan. 18
Jamie Craighead scored a career-best 16 points and Oregon snapped a tie by scoring the game's final 14 points to beat Washington 67-53. The decisive run began with the teams tied at 53 with 4:40 remaining. Oregon has beaten Washington 10 consecutive times. Oregon lost starting forward Angelina Wolvert to a knee injury just 4:55 into the game. Wolvert suffered a sprained medial collateral ligament in her left knee while battling for a loose ball. Then the Oregon defense tightened up down the stretch while the Huskies struggled with the execution of their offense. Brianne Meharry scored 11 for Oregon and Jenny Mowe added 10.
DUCKS IN DROVES
Oregon finished first in the Pac-10 in attendance last season, averaging 5,852 fans in 14 games -- the second-best mark in Pac-10 history (UCLA ranked second with a 3,713 average). Oregon ranks first again this season in the conference, averaging 4,782 per game, which is the 14th-best mark nationally.