Women's Basketball Season in Review
April 23, 2002
TEMPE, Ariz. -
The 2001-02 Arizona State women's basketball team turned in one of the most successful seasons in school history, tying the school mark for wins in a single season with a 25-9 overall record and earning the Sun Devils' second straight NCAA Tournament appearance. The Sun Devils earned the Pac-10 Conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament by upsetting second-ranked Stanford in the championship game of the inaugural Pac-10 Conference Women's Basketball Tournament. ASU downed Wisconsin in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to capture the team's first postseason win in 19 years and tie the 1981-82 NCAA Sweet Sixteen squad (25-7) for the most victories in a season. The Sun Devils also turned in their first back-to-back 20-win seasons and NCAA Tournament appearances since 1981-82 and 1982-83, while the team tied the school record for conference wins with a 12-6 Pac-10 mark which put them into a tie for second in the league.
In the PostseasonArizona State earned its second consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament and just its fifth ever showing in that tournament. This year's invitation marked just the second time in school history that ASU earned back-to-back appearances in the 'Big Dance' with the only other consecutive showings coming in the 1982 and 1983 NCAA Tournaments when the Sun Devils advanced to the Sweet Sixteen both seasons before bowing out to the eventual national champion (Louisiana Tech in 1982 and USC in 1983).
ASU holds a 3-5 all-time record in the 'Big Dance.' The Sun Devils won their first postseason game since 1983 with a 73-70 victory over eighth-seeded Wisconsin March 16 in the first round of the NCAA Midwest Sub-Regional at Memorial Gym in Nashville before falling to fourth-ranked and top-seeded Vanderbilt 61-35 on March 18.
Pac-10 Conference HonoreesA trio of Sun Devils earned All-Pac-10 Conference honors this season led by senior guard Amanda Levens who was named first-team All-Pac-10 for the second straight year. Levens became the first Sun Devil since Ryneldi Becenti (1992-93) to earn back-to-back first-team all-league honors. Senior center Melody Johnson earned her second career all-league accolade, being named an honorable-mention All-Pac-10 selection one year after being a first-teamer, while freshman Kylan Loney was an honorable-mention Pac-10 All-Freshman team pick, marking the sixth straight season that ASU has had a player mentioned on the league's all-rookie team. Levens and Johnson were also named to the Pac-10 All-Tournament team following ASU's upset of second-ranked Stanford in the championship game.
Academic HonoreesThree Sun Devils were named to the 2002 Pac-10 Women's Basketball All-Academic teams. Senior Leah Combs and sophomore Jen Albert were both named to the first team, marking the first time in school history that Arizona State has had two players earn first-team all-academic accolades. Sophomore Betsy Boardman earned second-team all-academic honors.
For Combs, who carries a 3.96 cumulative GPA and will earn her bachelor's degree in broadcasting this spring, the accolade marks the second consecutive year that she has been named to the first team and the third academic all-league honor of her career. Combs was also named to the 2002 Verizon Academic All-District second team for District VIII, marking the second straight season that she has been named to a district all-academic team.
Albert and Boardman are first-time league all-academic honorees. Albert carries a 3.85 GPA in elementary education, while Boardman holds a 3.44 GPA and is studying communications.
In addition the Sun Devils had seven players among the school-record 357 student-athletes who were named Maroon & Gold Scholar-Athletes for earning a 3.0 or higher semester grade-point average during the past year. Women's basketball honorees include Albert, Boardman, Combs, freshman Carrie Buckner, senior Melody Johnson, freshman Kylan Loney and freshman Alexis Tate. Combs and Albert were among the 40 Sun Devils who earned perfect 4.0 semester GPAs in the past year.
Johnson Taken in 2002 WNBA DraftSenior center Melody Johnson was taken by the Portland Fire in the fourth round of the 2002 WNBA Draft, held Friday, April 19. Johnson, who was the second pick in the fourth round and the 50th overall selection, became the first Sun Devil selected in the WNBA Draft directly out of college.
Previously, ASU had two players drafted, both in the inaugural WNBA Draft in 1997. Kym Hampton, ASU's career leading scorer and a two-time All-American (1981-84), was drafted as the fourth pick in the 1997 Elite Draft, while Monique Ambers (1990-93) was taken in the fourth round of that first draft.
A 6-2 center out of Colorado Springs, Colo., Johnson earned All-Pac-10 honors in each of her two seasons in Tempe (first team in 2001, honorable mention in 2002). She came to ASU after two years at the University of Colorado. In her two years in Tempe, she finished as ASU's career leader in field goal percentage, knocking down 56.2 percent of her attempts. She led the team in rebounding and was second in scoring in each of the last two seasons. She averaged 12.4 points and 6.7 rebounds per game in 2002 and finished second in the Pac-10 in field goal percentage at 55.2 percent.
20 and Beyond...With 25 wins this season, Arizona State tied the school record for wins in a single season. The only team to win as many games as this year's squad was the 1981-82 team which went 25-7 en route to an NCAA Sweet Sixteen appearance. This year also marked ASU's first back-to-back 20-win seasons since going 25-7 in 1981-82 followed by 23-7 in 1982-83. In 2000-01, ASU posted a 20-11 mark, which marked the team's most wins since 1982-83. ASU has surpassed its wins total from the previous year in each of the last six seasons:
ASU's Improvement Under Charli Turner Thorne Year Record 1996-97 9-19 1997-98 10-17 1998-99 12-15 1999-00 14-15 2000-01 20-11 2001-02 25-9
Big Wins and Great GamesDowned Wisconsin 73-70 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on March 16, overcoming a 14-point first-half deficit to earn ASU's first NCAA Tournament victory in 19 years ... the Badgers had been ranked as high as fifth in the national polls, winning 16 of their first 17 games of the year ... upset No. 2 Stanford on March 4 in the championship game of the 2002 Pac-10 Conference Tournament ... overcame second-half deficits in each of the team's three games in the Pac-10 Tournament (Arizona, at Oregon, #2 Stanford) ... downed Oregon 86-72 Jan. 6 in Eugene, ASU's first win at McArthur Court in nine tries ... turned in a seven-game winning streak in November and December ... downed Rutgers 59-56 Dec. 2 to capture the ASU Holiday Classic Championship ... felled Kansas State 76-58 on Nov. 25 at the Paradise Jam in the Virgin Islands and then defeated Richmond the following night to win the tournament title ...K-State went on to win 14 straight games and climbed as high as ninth in the AP poll after falling to the Sun Devils.
Turner Thorne Second in All-Time Wins at ASUWith a 90-86 record in six years at ASU, head coach Charli Turner Thorne has moved into sole possession of second place in all-time wins by a Sun Devil women's basketball coach. With ASU's victory over Arizona on Dec. 30, the 2001 Pac-10 Coach of the Year passed Maura McHugh who turned in a 75-65 record in her six seasons at the helm (1987-93). Juliene Simpson is the all-time winningest coach in ASU women's basketball history, notching a 134-92 mark in eight years (1979-87).
Since Turner Thorne took over the reigns 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. In 2000-01, Turner Thorne's Sun Devils captured ASU's first Pac-10 Championship, an NCAA berth, a return to the national rankings and the team's first 20-win season in nine years. The 2001 Pac-10 Coach of the Year and District 8 Regional Coach of the Year has improved the team's wins total in each of her six seasons and guided ASU to five consecutive double-digit win seasons.
Home-Court AdvantageWith a 13-2 home mark this year, the Sun Devils set the school mark for home wins in a season. ASU has turned in a 35-8 record at home in the last three seasons and won 12 home games in each of the previous two seasons. The Sun Devils closed out the 2001-02 season by winning their last eight games at Wells Fargo Arena and turning in an 8-1 Pac-10 home mark this year.
In the PollsArizona State was ranked for four weeks in 2001-02 and received votes in every poll of the season. The Sun Devils finished 26th in the final Associated Press poll (105 votes) and 33rd in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches poll (34 votes). ASU was ranked in the first three polls of the year, climbing as high as 21st, but dropped out after back-to-back losses in November. ASU was ranked 22nd in this year's preseason AP poll, marking the first time in 18 years that the Sun Devils were ranked in the preseason. ASU's No. 21 ranking on Nov. 19 was the highest since the Sun Devils were ranked 16th in the preseason AP poll in 1983-84.
Comeback KidsArizona State overcame second-half deficits to win four of its last five games, including its NCAA first-round victory over Wisconsin and each of its three games at the Pac-10 Conference Tournament.
Against the Badgers, the Sun Devils trailed by as many as 14 points in the first half, getting down 34-20 with 1:31 to play in the first 20 minutes. ASU closed the gap to nine points at halftime but trailed by as many as 11 in the second half. The Sun Devils scored a season-best 48 points and shot 65.5 percent (19-29) in the second half to rally for the victory. ASU trailed 63-55 with 6:25 to play, but the Sun Devils used a 14-2 run to take their first lead in the ballgame since holding a 2-0 advantage at the beginning of the game. Wisconsin went up by a point with 46 seconds to play, but senior Cian Carvalho knocked down four free throws in the final 27 seconds to give ASU the victory. For the Sun Devils in the second half, Carvalho had 13 of her career-best 24 points, senior Melody Johnson had 15 of her 18 points and senior Amanda Levens scored 13 of her 14 points.
In their opening game of the Pac-10 Tournament vs. Arizona, the Sun Devils had to overcome a 10-point halftime deficit (36-26) to earn the victory. Senior Cian Carvalho scored 15 of her 17 points in the second-half effort, and ASU held the Wildcats to just 17.4 percent shooting and four field goals in the final 20 minutes.
In ASU's semifinals win over the host Oregon Ducks, the Sun Devils lost a 12-point halftime advantage and trailed by as many eight points in the second half (45-37 with 10:12 to play). Arizona State responded to that deficit with an 11-2 run, fueled by eight straight points from senior Amanda Levens, to go up for good, 48-47 with 7:53 to play. Levens scored 16 of her 19 points in the second half to lead ASU.
The Sun Devils completed the trifecta of come-from-behind wins in their upset of second-ranked Stanford in the championship game. After leading 35-31 at halftime, Stanford scored the first five points of the second half and went up 40-31 with 18:10 to play. ASU answered with an 11-2 run of their own, that included six points each from Levens and senior Melody Johnson, to take a 43-42 lead with 12:24 to play, an advantage they would not relinquish. Again, Levens had a terrific second-half effort, scoring 17 of her game-high 22 points in the final 20 minutes.
Turning Up the DefenseThe Sun Devils led the Pac-10, ranked 28th in the country and set a school record by allowing just 59.1 points per game in 2001-02. Their 59.1 points-per-game average bested the previous school record of 61.5 ppg allowed by the 2000-01 team. The Pac-10's best defensive team, the Sun Devils ranked in the top three in the league in six defensive categories this year, including scoring defense (1st), rebounding defense (1st), three-point defense (1st), turnover margin (2nd), scoring margin (3rd) and rebounding margin (3rd).
ASU held seven teams under 50 points this year, including a season-low 40 points on three occasions (Fordham-Dec. 1, Washington State-Jan. 12 and Cal-Jan. 24). The Sun Devils finished 17-0 on the season when holding opponents to 59 points or less.
The Sun Devils set a school record by holding Chicago State to just nine points in the first half of its 83-43 victory Dec. 13, while Washington State had just 15 points in the first half in ASU's 68-40 win on Jan. 12. In its three games vs. Stanford, ASU held the Cardinal to an average of 66.7 ppg, 13.6 points below their league-leading average of 80.3 points per game.
The Battle of the BoardsThe Sun Devils outrebounded 25 of their 34 opponents this year and held a 21-4 record when outrebounding their opponents. ASU averaged 37.4 rebounds per game compared to a Pac-10 low 33.3 for their opponents. The team's rebounding defense of 33.3 boards allowed per game set the school single-season record, surpassing the previous mark of 33.5 allowed by the 2000-01 team, which also led the Pac-10 in the category. The Sun Devils held both Rutgers and Oregon (Jan. 6) to a season-low 23 rebounds.
Defending the ThreeThe Sun Devils also led the Pac-10 in three-point field goal defense, allowing their opponents to shoot just 29.5 percent from beyond the arc (91-308), including just 22.2 percent shooting by its three opponents in the Pac-10 Tournament (8-36). Although they finished ninth in the category last year, ASU led the league in three-point defense in 1998-99 and 1999-00.
ASU held its last 24 opponents to just 26.7 percent shooting from three-point range (66-247) and held 15 of its last 20 opponents under 30 percent from beyond the arc.
Winning the Close OnesThe Sun Devils finished the year with a 4-0 record in games decided by five points or less, including their 73-70 victory over Wisconsin in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Five of the team's last six games were decided by 10 points or less with ASU coming out on the winning end in four of those games. On the year, ASU went 9-4 in games decided by a 10-point margin or less.
Levens Lighting Up the ScoreboardWith 550 points this season, senior guard Amanda Levens finished fifth on the ASU single-season scoring charts and became the first Sun Devil to top the 500-point mark since Karen O'Connor had 545 points in 1988-89. The two-time first-team All-Pac-10 honoree ranked fourth in the Pac-10 in scoring at 16.7 points per game this year, which marked the highest scoring average for a Sun Devil since O'Connor averaged 19.5 points per game in 1988-89. The winner of two Pac-10 Player-of-the-Week honors this season, Levens scored 20 points or more on 12 occasions this year, including a game-high 22 points in ASU's upset of second-ranked Stanford at the Pac-10 Tournament.
Levens led the team in scoring in 20 of 34 games this year and was leading the Pac-10 in scoring at 20.2 points per game before spraining her ankle. She missed the first game of her career vs. Washington State on Jan. 12 and was been slowed by the injury, averaging just 12.4 points in her first 11 games back.
The transfer from Old Dominion University and two-time first-team All-Pac-10 selection scored a career-high 30 points in ASU's season-opening win over St. Peter's, while at the Paradise Jam, Levens just missed tying her career high with 29 points in ASU's win over Kansas State on Nov. 25. Levens' 30-point effort vs. St. Peter's marked the most points for a Sun Devil since Molly Tuter scored 32 in a 70-66 victory over Southern Utah on Nov. 8, 1997. In her two-year ASU career, Levens led ASU in scoring in 33 of 65 games and had 19 efforts with 20 points or more.
Joining the 1,000-Point ClubWith her 22nd and final point in ASU's upset of second-ranked Stanford on March 4, senior Amanda Levens became just the 13th Sun Devil to reach the 1,000-point mark for her career. She also became just the third player in school history to reach 1,000 points in two seasons with only Kym Hampton (1,258) and Olivia Jones (1,038) scoring more points in two seasons as Sun Devils. Levens, who came to ASU after two seasons at Old Dominion, finished 12th on the ASU career scoring charts with 1,020 points as a Sun Devil. Counting her two years at ODU, Levens scored 1,322 points in her career (302 points at ODU, 1,020 at ASU).
Senior center Melody Johnson also surpassed the 1,000-point mark for her career counting her two seasons at Colorado. She scored 1,333 points in her career (450 points at Colorado, 883 at ASU), while the Colorado Springs, Colo., native also topped the 500-board mark with 643 career rebounds (199 at CU, 444 at ASU).
ALL-TIME ASU SCORING LEADERS1. 2,361 Kym Hampton, 1981-842. 1,670 Cassandra Lander, 1980-833. 1,374 Molly Tuter, 1994-974. 1,370 Sherry Poole, 1984-875. 1,248 Robin Connolly, 1984-876. 1,224 Karen O'Connor, 1988-917. 1,194 Jodi Rathbun, 1983-868. 1,148 Lisa Salsman, 1989-939. 1,134 Jovonne Smith, 1989-9310. 1,038 Olivia Jones, 1981-8311. 1,033 Kim Griffee, 1979-8112. 1,020 Amanda Levens, 2000-0213. 1,017 Stephanie Freeman, 1995-98
Soft TouchSenior Melody Johnson finished as Arizona State career leader in field goal percentage, knocking down 56.2 percent of her career attempts (349-621). This year, she shot 55.5 percent (177-319), which ranked second in the Pac-10 and eighth on ASU's single-season charts. Johnson knocked down a perfect 7-for-7 Dec. 13 at Chicago State, turned in an 8-of-9 outing Jan. 6 at Oregon and had a 10-of-14 showing Feb. 14 vs. USC. In Pac-10 play, she also finished second in the league statistics at 55.6 percent (94-169), while at the Pac-10 Tournament, Johnson knocked down 62.1 percent of her attempts (18-29).
Double TroubleSenior Melody Johnson notched a team-best six double-doubles this season and just missed another with 14 points and nine rebounds in ASU's first-round Pac-10 Tournament win over Arizona on March 3. She turned in her sixth double-double of the year at Arizona on Feb. 23 with 14 points and 10 rebounds, while she had the first back-to-back efforts of her career with 13 points and 10 rebounds at Washington State on Feb. 7 and followed that up with 13 points and a career-high tying 12 rebounds at Washington on Feb. 9. In her last 12 games of the year, Johnson averaged 14.3 points and 7.2 rebounds per contest (171 points, 86 rebounds), including a season-high 21 points Feb. 14 vs. USC and 18 points in ASU's first-round NCAA victory over Wisconsin on March 16, up from her season averages of 12.4 ppg and 6.6 rpg. The Colorado Springs, Colo., native and two-time All-Pac-10 selection finished with 11 double-doubles in her two-year ASU career.
Johnson's 2001-02 Double-DoublesNov. 26 vs. Richmond 16 points, 11 reboundsDec. 30 Arizona 14 points, 12 reboundsJan. 19 at USC 16 points, 11 reboundsFeb. 7 at Washington State 13 points, 10 reboundsFeb. 9 at Washington 13 points, 12 reboundsFeb. 23 at Arizona 14 points, 10 rebounds
Loney Sets ASU Freshman Assists RecordWith 104 assists this year, true freshman point guard Kylan Loney set the ASU school record for assists by a Sun Devil freshman. Loney, who earned honorable-mention Pac-10 All-Freshman honors this year, overtook Jodi Rathbun who had 80 assists in her freshman year in 1982-83. Loney averaged 3.1 assists per game and turned in the fifth-best assist-to-turnover ratio in the Pac-10 at 1.42. She was the highest ranked Pac-10 freshman in the category, while Pac-10 Freshman of the Year Dee-Dee Wheeler of Arizona is the only other rookie in the top 10 (10th at 0.94).
Loney started all 34 games this season and finished second on the team in playing time with 27.4 minutes per game. Her minutes were the fourth-most by a rookie in the Pac-10 this season. The Ames, Iowa, native scored a career-best 10 points Feb. 7 at Washington State and had nine points in ASU's upset of No. 2 Stanford on March 4.
ASSISTS BY AN ASU FRESHMAN1. 104 Kylan Loney, 2001-022. 80 Jodi Rathbun, 1982-833. 71 Cassandra Lander, 1979-804. 70 Toya DeCree, 1981-825. 69 Leaf Newman, 1997-986. 68 Stephanie Freeman, 1997-987. 65 Karen O'Connor, 1987-888. 64 Lynda Englehart, 1978-799. 55 Sherry Poole, 1983-8410. 49 Patti Peppler, 1983-84
Levens From Beyond the ArcSenior guard Amanda Levens knocked down a team-best 57 treys which ranked second on the ASU single-season chart and just three shy of her own single-season school record of 60 (set in 2000-01). Levens shot 35.0 percent from beyond the arc (57-163) on the year and knocked down at least one three-pointer in all but six games this year and all but 11 games in her Sun Devil career. She also had more than one three-pointer in 17 games this year, including a career-best 6-of-9 performance in ASU's win over Kansas Dec. 5 and a 4-of-4 effort Feb. 2 vs. Oregon State. Against the Beavers, Levens knocked down three treys on three consecutive possessions and four in the game, two that were at least six feet beyond the arc.
Levens finished her career in second place on ASU's career list with 117 three-pointers in her two years in Tempe. With her three-pointer in the first half vs. Oregon on Jan. 31, Levens became just the third Sun Devil in school history to hit 100 treys in her career. Only Crystal Cobb (1989-94) knocked down more three-pointers than Levens, turning in a school-record 134 three-pointers in her four-year career.
SINGLE-SEASON THREE-POINTERS MADE1. 60 Amanda Levens, 2000-012. 57 Amanda Levens, 2001-023. 56 Crystal Cobb, 1990-914. 52 Ryneldi Becenti, 1992-935. 49 Crystal Cobb, 1991-926. 47 Molly Tuter, 1996-977. 44 Stephanie Freeman, 1997-988. 38 Ryneldi Becenti, 1991-92 38 Molly Tuter, 1995-9610. 37 Betsy Boardman, 2001-0211. 36 Betsy Boardman, 2000-01
CAREER THREE-POINTERS MADE1. 134 Crystal Cobb, 1989-942. 117 Amanda Levens, 2000-023. 116 Molly Tuter, 1994-974. 91 Kristine Sand, 1997-005. 90 Ryneldi Becenti, 1991-936. 73 Betsy Boardman, 2000-pres.7. 69 Stephanie Freeman, 1995-988. 66 Natalie Tucker, 1998-019. 56 Rosalind Senior, 1987-8910. 49 Tiffany Krahenbuhl, 1992-95
Kicking It Up a NotchPortland, Ore., native Betsy Boardman kicked it up a notch in the second half of the season, averaging 10.3 points per game over the last 23 games (238 points), up from her overall scoring average of 9.0 ppg. She also shot 41.8 percent from the field (80-191) and 39.5 percent from beyond the arc over that same stretch (30-76). In the first 11 games of the year, she averaged just 6.2 points per game and shot just 26.9 percent from the field and 24 percent from three-point land.
A Pac-10 All-Freshman selection last year, Boardman scored in double figures in 13 of the last 23 games, including a season-high 17 points at Oregon on Jan. 6 and a game-high 15 vs. at then No. 3 Stanford on Jan. 26.
Dishing It OutASU's starting backcourt of senior Amanda Levens and true freshman Kylan Loney became just the second tandem in school history to each dish out 100 assists in a season. The only other Sun Devil tandem to accomplish the feat was Karen O'Connor (155) and Carolyn DeHoff (109) in 1988-89.
The duo of Levens (145 assists) and Loney (104) averaged 7.3 assists per game this season, the most since Natalie Tucker and Kitch Kitchen averaged 8.4 assists as the second-best tandem in the Pac-10 in 1998-99. At 4.4 assists per game, Levens ranked fifth in the Pac-10 in the category. She led the team in the category in 19 of her last 23 games, including a career-high nine assists at Oregon State on Jan. 4 and again Jan. 16 vs. UCLA. Levens ranked sixth on the ASU single-season chart with 145 assists this year, the most since Karen O'Connor had 155 in 1988-89, and ninth in career assists with 240 in just two seasons.
Loney averaged 3.1 assists per game and finished fifth in the Pac-10 in assist-to-turnover ratio at 1.42, while Levens was sixth in the category at 1.39.
Notes from the Charity StripeWhile the Sun Devils got to the free throw line 820 times this year (24.1 times per game and 129 more times than any other Pac-10 school), the team knocked down just 63.9 percent of its attempts (524-820), which ranked ninth in the Pac-10 ... the team shot 68.1 percent from the line in its last five games (79-116), including 69.6 percent (64-92) in their three games in the Pac-10 Tournament ...with 20 free throws at the Pac-10 Tournament, senior Amanda Levens set the school record for free throws with 167 this year, surpassing her own school mark of 146 last season ... she also set the ASU single-season record for free throw attempts with 216 ... Levens knocked down 77.3 percent of her free throw attempts (167-216) , which was 10th in the league and gave her 41 more free throw attempts than any other Pac-10 player ... ASU shot below 60 percent from the line 12 times this year, including a season-low 50 percent at USC on Jan. 19 (9-18) and a 55.6 percent showing at Arizona on Feb. 23 (5-9) ... the team also tied season lows at Arizona with just five free throws and nine attempts.
Levens Repeats as Pac-10 Player of the WeekSenior guard Amanda Levens was named the Pac-10 Women's Basketball Player of the Week on two consecutive weeks (Dec. 10 and 17) after leading ASU to four straight victories. She became the first Sun Devil to ever earn back-to-back selections and the first to earn two conference player-of-the-week honors in a season since Ryneldi Becenti in 1992-93. The Player-of-the-Week honors were the second and third of Levens' career and the 19th and 20th all-time selections for ASU.
- The 2001-02 season marked the first time in school history (since joining the Pac-10 in 1986-87) that the Sun Devils defeated every team in the Pac-10 Conference at least once.
- With just two conference teams earning bids into this year's NCAA Tournament (Stanford and Arizona State), the Pac-10 Conference had its fewest number of teams invited to the 'Big Dance' since 1989 when only Stanford and Washington earned NCAA bids. At least four Pac-10 teams had been invited in each of the previous five years. While just ASU and Stanford went to the 2002 NCAA Tournament, four Pac-10 teams played in the Women's National Invitation Tournament (Oregon, Oregon State, USC and Washington). Oregon won the 2002 WNIT, while Pac-10 members went 4-0 in the first round of the tournament before knocking each other out in the second and third rounds.
- Senior Cian Carvalho led the Sun Devils with a career-high 24 points on 9-of-17 shooting in their first-round NCAA Tournament win over Wisconsin. For the second straight season, the Kapa'a, Hawaii, native finished second on the team and 14th in the Pac-10 in rebounding (5.7 rpg) and third on the team in scoring (9.0 ppg). The Sun Devils went 4-1 when Carvalho led the team in scoring this year.
- ASU's 48 points in the second half of their NCAA Tournament game March 16 vs. Wisconsin marked a season high for scoring in the final 20 minutes of a game for the Sun Devils. ASU shot 65.5 percent from the field in the second half (19-29) vs. the Badgers, which was the team's second-best second-half performance, behind the team's 80 percent effort at UCLA (16-20) on Jan. 17.
- Arizona State did not block a shot in three games at the Pac-10 Tournament but tied their season high with four blocks in the team's first-round NCAA victory over Wisconsin.
- ASU went 16-0 on the year when outshooting its opponents and 17-0 on the season when holding opponents to 59 points or less.
- Seven Sun Devils nabbed at least 28 steals this season, led by sophomore Betsy Boardman who had 52 to pace the team in the category for the second straight season. Freshman Carrie Buckner and senior Cian Carvalho tied for second on the team with 38 steals. Carvalho turned in the team's season high in the category with six steals in a win over Delaware State on Nov. 19, while Buckner nabbed 15 steals over the last seven games of the year (including eight at the Pac-10 Tournament.
- Senior Amanda Levens scored 57 of her last 71 points in the second half in ASU's last five games.
- Senior Rainy Crisp, who made her first career start vs. Washington State on Jan. 12, turned in the best assist-to-turnover ratio on the team this year, dishing out 67 assists to just 29 turnovers on the season (2.3). In her career, Crisp turned in a 1.67 assist-to-turnover ratio (144 assists, 86 turnovers).
- The Sun Devil rotation included 11 players this year with eight averaging at least 10 minutes per game, and sophomore Jen Albert and freshman Lauren Stagg just shy of the 10-minute mark at 9.2 and 8.1 minutes per game, respectively. Senior Amanda Levens led the team in minutes played at 29.2 per game, while true freshman point guard Kylan Loney was second at 27.4 minutes per game, which was fourth among Pac-10 freshmen.
- ASU's bench averaged 15.7 points per game this season (533 points), including a season-high 27 points at Chicago State on Dec. 13 and 23 in a Feb. 16 win over UCLA. ASU's bench had 20 or more points in seven games this year, while ASU went 16-3 on the year when outscoring its opponents' bench.
- ASU won three straight games over Oregon this year, including two at McArthur Court in Eugene. The team's Jan. 6 win in Eugene snapped an eight-game losing streak at McArthur Court which dated back to the 1992-93 season, while the team's three straight wins over the Ducks marked the longest winning streak in the series since the 1991-92 and 1992-93 seasons.
- ASU emerged from the non-conference slate with nine victories for the first time since the 1991-92 season.
ASU Picked Second, Fourth in Preseason Pac-10 PollsArizona State, which finished in a tie for second in the league and won the inaugural Pac-10 Tournament this year, was picked to finish second in the Pac-10 Conference by the media (with a pair of first-place votes) and fourth by the league's coaches. Last year, ASU was tabbed fifth by the coaches and sixth by the media in the preseason polls but surpassed all outside expectations by finishing in a tie for first with Stanford and Washington for ASU's first ever Pac-10 basketball title.
Not Shying Away From AnyoneASU's match-up with Vanderbilt and Commodore head coach Jim Foster (24th in all-time wins) in the second round of the NCAA Tournament marked the 11th time this season that Arizona State faced a coach ranked among the 25 all-time winningest coaches in NCAA women's basketball history. ASU played a total of 11 games coached by six of the top 25 coaches and come up with wins in seven of the games: Vanderbilt's Jim Foster (24th, 0-1), Arizona's Joan Bonvicini (18th, 2-1), Stanford's Tara VanDerveer (17th, 1-2), Northern Illinois' Carol Hammerle (22nd, 1-0), Kansas' Marian Washington (16th, 1-0), Rutgers' C. Vivian Stringer (3rd, 1-0) and Mike Granelli of St. Peter's (10th, 1-0). ASU has played teams coached by 13 of the top 25 coaches over the last five seasons, while in the past three seasons alone, ASU has played all five of the NCAA's winningest coaches.