Wildcats Fall To No. 3 Stanford, 76-62
Jan. 24, 2002
By RICK EYMER
Associated Press Writer
STANFORD, Calif. - Lindsey Yamasaki is worried only about this season.Matching last year's win total is fine, but Stanford has bigger things in mind.
'You can compare numbers, but this a different team,' Yamasaki saidThursday night after scoring 22 points in the third-ranked Cardinal's 76-62victory over Arizona. 'We can be better and we're measuring ourselvesdifferently.'
The victory allowed Stanford to match the best start in its history.
The Cardinal (19-1, 9-0 Pac-10) moved up a notch in the polls this week totheir best ranking since they were No. 3 at the end of the 1996-97 season. Theyalso began that season 19-1 and finished 34-2.
Sebnem Kimyacioglu added 11 points as Stanford won its 11th game in a rowand matched its win total from last season, when the Cardinal finished 19-11.Stanford is one win away from its 14th 20-win season in the 28-year history ofthe program.
'This is Stanford's best team in five or six years,' Arizona coach JoanBonvicini said. 'Who knows what will happen down the road?
Stanford has so many weapons and if you make a mistake, they can convert.It's not only the starters. They have people coming off the bench doing things.They have a shot to do damage in the tournament because they have good depth.'
Elizabeth Pickney had 24 points and nine rebounds for Arizona (9-10, 5-5),which lost in conference play for the first time in five games.
Nicole Powell came close to her third triple-double of the season, recordingnine points, nine rebounds and 10 assists before coming out of the game with3:04 left and the Cardinal ahead 70-50. Yamasaki, 3-of-6 from long range,scored 20 or more points for the sixth time this season.
'We're playing well, but we have so much more potential,' Kimyacioglusaid. 'There's still room to grow.'
Robin Roberson's basket brought the Wildcats within 50-40 with 12 minutesremaining, but the Cardinal answered with a 10-0 run - highlighted by a pair of3-pointers from Kimyacioglu - over the next four minutes.
The Wildcats stayed with Stanford for the first nine minutes. The Cardinaldidn't take their first lead until Yamasaki snapped a 14-14 tie with a3-pointer that sparked a 15-4 run. She hit another 3-pointer, as didKimyacioglu, during the run.
'Arizona is a dangerous team,' Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer said. 'Ididn't want to let them get going. Pickney is an excellent player, veryathletic.'
Stanford carried a 40-26 lead into halftime after outscoring the Wildcats28-12 in the final 12 minutes.
'It was a game of spurts,' Bonvicini said. 'We started well, but they dida nice job defensively and took us out of our game.'
Arizona, which dropped to 1-2 against ranked opponents, has given theCardinal trouble in the past, winning in its previous two trips to MaplesPavilion and taking four of the last nine overall from Stanford.
The Cardinal handed Arizona its worst conference loss in four years - 87-51- when they met in Tucson on Dec. 19.