#25 Women's Hoops to Take on #18 LSU in NCAA First Round Friday night at 4 p.m. MST
March 13, 2001
TEMPE, Ariz. -
After earning a share of their first ever Pac-10 Conference title, the 25th-ranked Arizona State Sun Devils head to West Lafayette, Ind., to make their first NCAA Tournament appearance in nine years. The 11th-seeded Sun Devils will take on sixth-seeded Louisiana State Friday night at 4 p.m. MST at Purdue's Mackey Arena. The matchup will be the only first-round NCAA Tournament game featuring a pair of teams ranked in the Top 25 polls. If Arizona State should prevail over the Lady Tigers, it would take on the winner of the Purdue-UC Santa Barbara game Sunday at 7 p.m. MST in the second round. No. 4 seed Purdue and No. 13 UCSB will play Friday night 30 minutes after the conclusion of ASU's game. Arizona State finished the regular season with a 20-10 overall record and a 12-6 conference mark which put them into a three-way tie for first place in the Pac-10 Conference with Stanford and Washington, the first three-way tie for the league title in conference history. ASU's 20-10 record represents the most victories for the Sun Devils since the 1991-92 team went 20-9 and 11-7 in the conference en route to ASU's last NCAA Tournament appearance. Another victory this season would mark the most for ASU since 1982-83 when the Sun Devils went 23-7 overall, advancing to the NCAA Sweet Sixteen.
Probable Starters '00-01 Pos. Ht. Cl. PPG RPG NOTES#23 Betsy Boardman G/F 6-1 Fr. 11.7 4.1 Averaging 2.1 steals per game#52 Cian Carvalho F 5-11 Jr. 6.2 5.2 2nd on the team in rebounding#35 Melody Johnson C 6-2 Jr. 14.5 7.1 Five double-doubles on the season#4 Amanda Levens G 5-9 Jr. 15.3 3.5 Holds single-season trey mark with 59#33 Natalie Tucker G 5-9 Sr. 5.2 3.6* Has started 86 straight games
Off the Bench '00-01 Pos. Ht. Cl. PPG RPG NOTES#3 Liz Paulson G 5-11 Sr. 0.6 0.3 Had major back surgery in offseason#11 Aubrey McFadyen G/F 6-1 Sr. 1.8 1.0 Second on the team in blocks#12 Brett Leonard G 5-5 So. 3.1 1.6* ASU's back-up point guard#13 Leah Combs F 6-2 Jr. 4.4 4.0 5.3 ppg since return from knee injury#31 Jen Albert F 6-2 Fr. 0.6 0.5 Has played in 26 games this year#32 Rainy Crisp G 5-6 Jr. 2.5 1.6 Has 26 steals on the year#34 Li'i Liu G/F 5-10 Fr. 0.3 0.8 Has played in four games this year* assists per game
ExposureASU's flagship station XTRA 910 AM will broadcast all of ASU's NCAA Tournament games to the Valley of the Sun with Vince Marotta calling the action. The broadcasts are also available via the ASU official athletics web site (www.thesundevils.com). ESPN2 will televise the LSU game to a national cable audience. Announcers were not available at press time. ASU is 9-3 when playing on live television this year.
In the PostseasonArizona State is making its first appearance in the NCAA Tournament since the 1991-92 season and just its fourth ever showing in that tournament. ASU holds a 2-3 all-time record in the 'Big Dance' but has not won an NCAA Tournament game since 1983. In 1992, the sixth-seeded Sun Devils earned an NCAA bid for the first time in nine years but fell in the first round to host DePaul 67-65. Prior to 1992, the Sun Devils had appeared in the 1982 and 1983 NCAA Tournaments, advancing to the Sweet Sixteen in both seasons with first-round wins. Last year, the team returned to 'March Madness' for the first time in eight years with an appearance in the Women's National Invitation Tournament, falling at Colorado State 66-54.
The No. 11 seed marks the lowest seed the Sun Devils have had in their NCAA Tournament appearances, while the team's game in West Lafayette marks the team's first appearance in the Mideast Regional.
Pac-10 Conference HonoreesHead coach Charli Turner Thorne has been named the Pac-10 Conference Coach of the Year as selected by the league's coaches, ASU's first such honor, while a trio of Sun Devils also earned all-conference honors. Junior center Melody Johnson and junior guard Amanda Levens were named to the All-Pac-10 Conference team, marking the first time in school history that ASU has had two players earn first-team accolades. Arizona was the only other school to have two first-team selections this year. In addition, freshman guard/forward Betsy Boardman was named to the five-player Freshman All-Pac-10 squad, marking the third consecutive season that the Sun Devils have had a player named to the all-rookie team.
Turner Thorne Named WBCA District 8 Coach of the YearHead Coach Charli Turner Thorne is one of eight finalists for the 2001 Russell Athletic/WBCA Division I National Coach of the Year Award, the Women's Basketball Coaches Association announced last week.
As a finalist, Turner Thorne earns the distinction of WBCA District 8 Coach of the Year as selected by WBCA member coaches from that geographical region. Other district winners and national award finalists are Muffet McGraw of Notre Dame (District 1), Gail Goestenkors of Duke (2), Carol Ross of Florida (3), Mark Ehlen of Toledo (4), Sherri Coale of Oklahoma (5), Lisa Bluder of Iowa (6) and Elaine Elliot of Utah (7). The 2001 Russell Athletic/WBCA Division I National Coach of the Year will be determined by a WBCA committee, which will convene via conference call March 16 to select the winner. The winner of the Division I award will be invited to join winners at the Division II, III, NAIA, junior college/community college and high school levels to be honored at a banquet Wed., March 28 in St. Louis, Mo., in conjunction with the NCAA Division I Women's Final Four.
One Berth Followed By A BirthAnd if Sunday wasn't exciting enough for Charli Turner Thorne, she gave birth to her second son at 4:29 p.m. that afternoon in a Valley hospital, a little less than an hour after the Sun Devils earned their first NCAA Tournament bid in nine years.
Liam Turner Thorne, the second child of Turner Thorne and husband Will Thorne, weighed 8 pounds and 5 ounces and measured 21 1/2 inches long. The couple's first child, Conor Troy Thorne, was born on Feb. 9, 1999.
Turner Thorne, who celebrated her 35th birthday on March 10, expects to return to practice later this week as the Sun Devils prepare for their NCAA first-round game against LSU Friday night at 4 p.m. MST in West Lafayette, Ind. The fifth-year coach has coached full-time throughout her pregnancy and checked into the hospital at 8 a.m. Sunday morning to have labor induced.
In the RankingsArizona State returned to the national Top 25 this week, checking in at 25th in both of the national polls. ASU has been ranked in five of the last six AP polls but makes its first appearance of the year in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches poll. It is also the first time since 1983 that ASU has been ranked in the final AP poll.
The Sun Devils climbed as high as 22nd in the Feb. 26 Associated Press poll but dropped out for one week after a pair of losses in Oregon. The Sun Devils were ranked in all 17 polls during the 1982-83 campaign, climbing as high as ninth and finishing at 17th in the final poll. ASU broke into the national top 25 in early February, checking in at 23rd in the Feb. 5 Associated Press poll and marking the team's first national ranking since March 1, 1992 when the Sun Devils were ranked 25th by the Associated Press. As a team, Arizona State has been ranked a total of 39 weeks in the team's history. The Sun Devils spent most of the 1981-82 and 1982-83 seasons ranked in the national polls (32 straight weeks including all 17 polls in 1982-83). LSU is 18th in the latest AP poll and 17th in the USA Today rankings.
ASU vs. Ranked OpponentsWith its 70-67 overtime win over the 23rd-ranked Arizona Wildcats Feb. 24 , Arizona State holds a 3-3 record vs. ranked teams this year. The team's other wins were a 67-57 victory over then No. 23/25 Arizona Wildcats Jan. 27 and a 73-63 win over then No. 22/21 Oregon Feb. 3. Prior to that, the team's last upset over a ranked opponent was a 77-76 win over then undefeated and No. 7 Washington at Wells Fargo Arena on Jan. 8, 1998. Before its wins over the Wildcats and the Ducks, ASU had come up short in three contests with ranked teams this year, including a pair of losses under five points, falling to then No. 22 North Carolina State 54-51 Nov. 26 in the championship game of the Rainbow Wahine Classic and to then No. 2 Tennessee 67-63 Dec. 27 in the AstraZeneca Hoops for the Cure Classic.
In the Conference RaceThis year's conference title marks ASU's first Pac-10 championship in the league's 14-year existence. The co-conference championship (shared with Washington and Stanford) marks the team's previous best finish in the Pac-10 was a tie for fourth in 1993 (10-8). It is also the first Pac-10 title for either of ASU's men's and women's basketball team. With a 12-6 conference mark, the Sun Devils set a school record for the most Pac-10 victories, surpassing the 11-7 mark of the 1991-92 team which finished in fifth place.
Last Time OutASU fell to Stanford 51-49 Saturday afternoon at Wells Fargo Arena but clinched a share of their first Pac-10 Conference title. Arizona State led 24-23 at the half with no team holding a lead of more than three points in the first 20 minutes. Both team struggled from the field in the first half with Stanford shooting just 37 percent (10-of-27) and ASU checking in at 35 percent (9-of-25). Junior Melody Johnson turned in eight points and three rebounds in the first half, while Stanford junior Lindsey Yamasaki had nine points.
The Sun Devils opened the second half on a 5-0 run to take their largest lead of the ball game, 29-23, with 17:44 to play. Stanford then responded with a 9-3 run which included seven points by Phoenix native and freshman Nicole Powell to tie the game at 34 with 13:05 left. Stanford did not trail again. Powell hit a three-pointer with 3:20 left to put Stanford up 48-43. ASU junior Amanda Levens, who has set ASU's single-season mark for three-pointers with 59 so far this season, knocked down a trey to cut the lead to two with 1:57, but Stanford junior Bethany Donaphin answered with a basket 21 seconds later.
ASU cut the lead to one again when senior Natalie Tucker drilled a three-pointer with 1:19 to play but would not score again. Levens put up a three-pointer that missed with 10 seconds to play, but Powell got the rebound and was fouled. She knocked down one of two free throw attempts with 7.1 seconds to play, and another Levens long-range shot was off the mark to keep ASU from capturing the outright conference title.
Powell finished with 15 points and 12 rebounds, her ninth double-double of the season, while Johnson led the Sun Devils with 15 points and six rebounds. Tucker had 10 points for the Sun Devils, including a pair of three-pointers, and four assists. Donaphin was the only other Stanford player in double figures with 10 points including eight in the second half.
20 and Beyond...ASU's 70-58 win over Cal on March 8 marked the 20th win of the season for the for the Sun Devils, the team's first 20-win season since the 1991-92 squad went 20-9 on the season and just the fifth in the history of ASU women's basketball. A win in the NCAA Tournament would mark ASU's most victories since 1982-83. ASU's other 20-win seasons came in three consecutive years in the early 80s under then head coach Juliene Simpson (21-11 in 1980-81, 25-7 in 1981-82, 23-7 in 1982-83). The 1981-82 Sun Devils turned in a school-record 25 wins, falling in the second round of the NCAA Tournament to eventual national champion Louisiana Tech, while the season before, ASU notched 21 victories and fell to Georgia in the championship game of the National Women's Invitation Tournament.
About Louisiana StateLSU is making its third straight NCAA Tournament appearance and its sixth consecutive postseason appearance. Last year, the team advanced to the NCAA Elite Eight, falling to eventual national champion Connecticut 86-71. The Lady Tigers bring a 19-10 overall record into Friday night's game, falling to Vanderbilt in the SEC Tournament 70-58 on March 2 in their last action. LSU, ranked 18th in the March 5 AP poll and 17th by the coaches, has dropped four of its last six games. The Tigers are led by first-team All-SEC selection and 5-9 senior guard Marie Ferdinand who is averaging 20.7 points per game. The club's top rebounder is junior center DeTrina White who has grabbed 7.0 rebounds per contest this season. One of six SEC teams in this year's NCAA Tournament, LSU is averaging 70.9 points per game and is shooting 46.6 percent from the field.
In the SeriesThis is the first meeting between Arizona State and Louisiana State, while ASU is 2-9 all time against teams from the Southeastern Conference. Earlier this season, the Sun Devils dropped a 67-63 decision to then No. 2 Tennessee in the AstraZeneca Hoops for the Cure Classic on Dec. 27, while the team's last victory over an SEC team came in last year's ASU Wells Fargo Classic with a 61-56 decision over South Carolina in the championship game on Dec. 4, 1999.
ASU vs. the Mideast RegionArizona State has never faced Purdue, while UC Santa Barbara holds a slim 4-3 advantage in the series over the Sun Devils including a 76-66 win in the ASU Holiday Classic earlier this season in Tempe. ASU holds a 4-8 combined record against all of the other teams who make up the Mideast Region bracket (Tennessee 0-1, Texas 0-2, St. Mary's 0-2, Louisville 1-0, Denver 1-1, Texas Tech 2-2).
The Sun Devils played a total of 11 games against eight teams who have earned berths in the 2001 NCAA Tournament (Tennessee, UC Santa Barbara, Denver, Stephen F. Austin, Washington, Stanford, Oregon, NC State).
Other Mideast Region Games:
No. 1 Tennessee vs. No. 16 Austin Peay
No. 8 Texas vs. No. 9 St. Mary's
No. 5 Clemson vs. No. 12 Chattanooga
No. 4 Xavier vs. No. 13 Louisville
No. 7 Virginia Tech vs. No. 10 Denver
No. 2 Texas Tech vs. No. 15 Penn
Levens Sets ASU Single-Season Three-Point MarkWith two three-pointers vs. Cal on March 8, junior Amanda Levens set the school single-season record and now has 59 treys so far this season, surpassing the 56 by Crystal Cobb in 1990-91. Her 59 treys also already put her into seventh place on the ASU career chart in that category. Levens has met success on 42.1 percent of her attempts this season and is shooting better from three-point land than she is from the field (42.1 to 38.1 percent). In the last 10 games, she has shot 45.9 percent from beyond the arc (28-61), including a career-high 5-of-8 performance at Oregon State last weekend. The 5-9 junior ranks third in the Pac-10 in three-point field goal percentage and fourth in three-pointers made (1.97 treys per game). She has hit at least three treys in five of the last 10 games and at least one in each of the past 16 games. Her best performance from three-point land this season was a then career-high 4-of-4 three-pointers in ASU's win over Washington State on Jan. 13, while she surpassed that with a career-best five three-pointers at Oregon State on March 3.
Levens has drained at least one three-pointer in 26 games and more than one in 20 of those contests, while freshman Betsy Boardman has at least one trey in 20 games. Boardman has hit 36.2 percent of her attempts (34-94) which is good for 10th in the Pac-10, including a stellar 3-of-4 effort from beyond the arc vs. Oregon Feb. 3, a 2-of-3 showing at Washington State Feb. 8. and a 2-of-2 effort at Arizona Feb. 24.
As a team. Arizona State has knocked down 35.7 percent of its three-pointers (132-370), which ranks second in the conference behind Stanford (38.1). The team has had eight treys on three occasions (most recently vs. UCLA on Feb. 17), which was one shy of the school single-game record of nine treys.
SINGLE-SEASON THREE-POINTERS MADE1. 59 Amanda Levens 2000-012. 56 Crystal Cobb 1990-913. 52 Ryneldi Becenti 1992-934. 49 Crystal Cobb 1991-925. 47 Molly Tuter 1996-976. 44 Stephanie Freeman 1997-987. 38 Ryneldi Becenti 1991-92 Molly Tuter 1995-969. 34 Betsy Boardman 2000-01 34 Rosalind Senior 1988-89 34 Kristine Sand 1999-00
Tucker's TaleSenior point guard Natalie Tucker has started 86 consecutive games, every game of her three-year career at Arizona State. Since transferring to ASU from Texas A&M following the 1996-97 season, Tucker has proved to be a beacon of consistency for the Sun Devils. She has led the team in assists in each of the last three seasons, averaging 3.6 assists per game this season and 4.1 per contest in her career. Tucker has topped the century mark in assists in each of the last three seasons including 109 so far this year. Tucker ranks sixth at ASU in career assists (349) and also appears in the top 10 in career free throw percentage and three-pointers made.
Injury UpdateJunior Leah Combs returned to action on March 1 after missing three weeks after suffering a meniscus tear in her left knee vs. Washington on Feb. 10. The 6-2 forward had two points and two rebounds in nine minutes vs. Oregon and followed that up with six points on 3-of-3 shooting and four rebounds in 19 minutes at Oregon State. Combs, who underwent arthroscopic surgery on Feb. 15, started the first 18 games of the season and was averaging 4.3 points and 4.1 rebounds per game before her injury. Since returning from her injury, Combs has been on fire, shooting 64.2 percent from the field (9-14) and averaging 5.3 points and 3.0 rebounds including 11 points and six rebounds in ASU's win over Cal on March 3.
Keeping 'Em Off the ScoreboardArizona State leads the Pac-10 Conference in scoring defense, allowing just 60.8 points per game. ASU has held six opponents to 50 points or less this season including 47 by Cal on Jan. 6 and 51 points by Oregon State on Feb. 1, while four of those teams have managed 45 points or less (with a season-low 39 by South Florida). ASU held then No. 2 Tennessee to just 67 points, 16.4 points short of the Lady Vols' season average of 83.4, while conference scoring leader Arizona had just 57 and 67 points in both games vs. the Sun Devils compared to its season average of 80.9. Prior to ASU's 58-47 win at Cal, the last time ASU held a Pac-10 opponent under 50 points was in 1997-98 with a 69-49 win over Oregon State in Tempe, while 47 is the fewest points for a league opponent since defeating Oregon 79-42 in Tempe on Jan. 30, 1992. Prior to that, ASU had never held a Pac-10 opponent to less than 50 points on the road in the previous 14 years of conference play.
Taking Care of the BallArizona State is averaging a Pac-10 low 16.9 turnovers per game in 2000-01 which may not sound so good until you consider that the team had 20.5 turnovers per game last season. The Sun Devils turned in a season-low nine turnovers vs. La Salle and has had 16 or less giveaways in 12 of the team's 30 games this year. The Sun Devils have also won the turnover battle (having fewer turnovers than their opponents) in 20 of 30 games including a 24-21 advantage over then No. 2 Tennessee and a 20-11 edge at then No. 21/22 Stanford. Last year, the lowest turnover total for the team was 13 in their final game of the season in the WNIT vs. Colorado State.
The Sun Devils are second in the Pac-10 in turnover margin, forcing 2.27 more turnovers than they commit per game. Senior Natalie Tucker, who leads the team with an average of 3.6 assists per game (seventh in the Pac-10), is third in the league in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.65).
Comeback KidsCounting their Feb. 15 victory over USC, the Sun Devils have overcome four halftime deficits for victory this season and are 4-8 overall when trailing at halftime. ASU has trailed at the half in five of their last seven games and come up with victories in two of those contests. Their previous three wins after trailing at halftime had been on the road (at Northern Arizona, at California, at Washington State).
Tough on the BoardsArizona State also leads the league in rebounding defense, allowing just 33.6 boards per game including a season-low 21 by the Oregon Ducks Feb. 3. As a team, ASU averages just 35.3 rebounds per contest, which is ninth in the league, but has won the battle of the boards in 17 of its 30 games and is 14-3 in those games. The team's only losses when outrebounding its opponent came against Washington Jan. 11 in Tempe, at Oregon on March 1 and at Oregon State on March 3. Washington came into the game leading the Pac-10 in rebounding but lost that battle to the Sun Devils 40-35.
First and Facts About This SeasonSo far this season, the Sun Devils have accomplished a number of things that the team has not done in at least seven years:
* The Sun Devils have won their first ever Pac-10 Conference title, clinching a three-way tie with Stanford and Washington, and earned the school's first NCAA Tournament bid since 1992.
* Arizona State has won 20 games for the first time since 1991-92, including 12 at home which ties the school record.
* The Sun Devils won seven consecutive Pac-10 games (Jan. 11 to Feb. 8) for the first time in school history and turned in their longest overall winning streak since the 1991-92 squad opened the season with a school-record nine wins.
* ASU has defeated USC and UCLA twice this year, marking the first season sweeps over those schools in ASU history.
* Arizona State also cracked the national top 25 for the first time since 1991-92 and was ranked in consecutive weeks for the first time since 1982-83.
* ASU earned its first victory over Arizona in seven years, snapping a 14-game losing streak with its 67-57 win on Jan. 27, and then completed the first season sweep of the Wildcats since the 1992-93 season with a Feb. 24 win in Tucson, the team's first win at McKale Center in eight tries.
* ASU's win over the No. 22/21 Ducks on Feb. 3 ended an 11-game skid vs. Oregon.
* The Sun Devils have upset three ranked opponents this season which the team had not done in a single season since the 1991-92 NCAA Tournament-bound Sun Devils downed No. 17 Kansas, No. 21 Cal and No. 5 Stanford.
* With wins at UCLA and USC, Arizona State completed its first Pac-10 Conference road sweep since 1992-93 and notched its first sweep over the Los Angeles schools since the 1981-82 season and the first ever on the road.
* ASU's win at UCLA snapped a seven-game losing streak to the Bruins and marked the team's first victory at Pauley Pavilion since 1991-92, while the Sun Devils' victory at Cal also marked the first for the team since that same season.
Bench ProductionWhile Arizona State's bench turned in a season-low two points at Washington on Feb. 10, the team has averaged 14.6 bench points per game this year. ASU is 9-1 on the year when outscoring its opponent's bench (and just 11-9 when being outscored). ASU's reserves turned in a season-high 34 points vs. Cal State Northridge on Dec. 21, while the biggest output in conference play came at UCLA on Jan. 18 with 32 points including a career-high 12 points on 4-of-7 shooting from sophomore Brett Leonard. ASU got 16 points from its bench in wins over USC and UCLA, led by senior Aubrey McFadyen who had a season-high 12 points and four rebounds vs. the Bruins. McFadyen paced the bench in scoring again at Arizona Feb. 24 with six points on 3-of-4 shooting.
Junior forward Cian Carvalho broke into the starting lineup vs. Arizona on Jan. 27 after scoring a career-best 16 points to lead the team at UCLA Jan. 18, the third consecutive game that she notched a career scoring best. Carvalho has started the last 12 games and is fourth on the team in scoring and second in rebounding. Also providing sparks off the bench is junior guard Rainy Crisp who had seven points at USC Jan. 20, a career-best nine vs. Arizona Jan. 27 and six vs. Oregon Feb. 3.
Notes From the Charity StripeASU shot a season-high 86.4 percent from the free throw line on March 8 vs. Cal (19-22) ... Junior Amanda Levens missed a free throw in the first half vs. Stanford on March 10, ending a streak of 16 consecutive free throws made dating back to the second half of the Arizona game Feb. 24 ... Previously this season, the 5-9 guard has had streaks of 16 and 17 consecutive free throws ... The Sun Devils have gotten to the line 335 times more than their opponents (733-398) this year, an average of 24.4 attempts per game to just 13.3 for their opponents ... ASU shot just 25 free throws in its games in Oregon (including a season-low 7-of-12 at Oregon on March 3) ... Arizona State turned in a then season-high 80.9 percent performance from free throw line vs. USC on Feb. 15, knocking down 38 of 47 attempts (both numbers are season highs) ... The team's previous season high in that category also came against the Women of Troy when ASU shot 80 percent (16-20) from the line in Los Angeles on Jan. 20 ... ASU knocked down 15-of-15 attempts in the first half and its first 18 of the USC game with its first missing coming six minutes into the second half ... Since shooting just 40.9 percent from the free throw line (9-22) in its season opener vs. Texas-San Antonio, ASU has shot 66.7 percent from the charity stripe since (474-711) ... Levens is shooting a team-best 80 percent from the free throw line (144-180) which is good for third in the Pac-10 ... Levens has attempted twice as many free throws as both players ahead of her, while junior Melody Johnson leads the Pac-10 in free throw attempts with 200 trips to the charity stripe.
Head Coach Charli Turner ThorneSince Charli Turner Thorne took over the reins of the program in 1996-97, the Sun Devils have begun a steady climb back to the national prominence that the team enjoyed in the early 1990s. She has improved the team's wins total in each of her five seasons and guided ASU to five consecutive double-digit win seasons in as many years. In 1999-2000, Turner Thorne led the Sun Devils to a 14-14 regular-season record and a 7-11 mark in the Pac-10 Conference, both of which marked the school's most victories since 1992-93, while the team has surpassed both of those marks so far in 2000-01. Turner Thorne's Sun Devils also earned the team's first postseason appearance in eight seasons, falling to Colorado State 66-54 in Fort Collins, Colo., in the first round of the 2000 Women's National Invitation Tournament.
The Sun Devils' victory over Oregon on Feb. 3 marked the 100th win of head coach Charli Turner Thorne's coaching career and her 60th while at ASU. She has notched a 65-76 record in four-plus seasons at Arizona State and was 40-40 in her three seasons at Northern Arizona. With the team's win over Oregon, Turner Thorne has also led her Sun Devils to victories over every Pac-10 school in her four-plus seasons at ASU.
Super JuniorsAfter sitting out last season as Division I transfers, juniors Amanda Levens and Melody Johnson have made themselves right at home this season. The pair is 1-2 in scoring this season and has also been named all-tournament in both of ASU's tournaments this season (Asahi Rainbow Wahine Classic and ASU Holiday Classic)
Levens, a 5-9 guard who transferred from Old Dominion University, is pacing the ASU squad at 15.3 points per game and ranks sixth in the Pac-10 in that category. Levens has notched double figures in all but four of ASU's games this season. Johnson, a 6-2 guard from the University of Colorado, is second on the squad and eighth in the Pac-10 in scoring at 14.5 ppg and has scored in double figures in 27 of 30 games and had nine points in two others and eight vs. Oregon State on March 3. Levens, who was the Jan. 29 Pac-10 Player of the Week, has hit a school-record 59 three-pointers this season, while Johnson, who earned the first conference player-of-the-week award this year, leads the Sun Devils in rebounding at 7.1 boards per game which is good for sixth in the Pac-10.
Welcome AdditionsArizona State's top four scorers are making their debuts for the Sun Devils this season, led by junior Amanda Levens, a transfer from Old Dominion University who is averaging 15.3 points per game. Junior Melody Johnson, who transferred from the University of Colorado, is averaging 14.5 points and a team-best 7.1 rebounds, honorable-mention high school All-American Betsy Boardman is averaging 11.7 points (17th in the Pac-10) and junior Cian Carvalho, a junior college transfer from Hutchinson (Kan.) Community is fourth on the team with 6.2 points per game and second with 5.2 rebounds per contest. ASU's newcomers have been the leading scorers in each of ASU's 30 games this season, most recently with Levens matching her career high with 28 points at Oregon State on March 3 and turning in 20 points vs. Cal on March 8 and Johnson scoring a game-high 15 points vs. Stanford on March 10.