Top-Ranked Stanford Faces Santa Clara on Saturday at Approximately 7:30 p.m. in Fresno

March 15, 2005

Game Coverage: TV - ESPN2 | Tournament Central
Live Audio | Scoreboard | NCAA Bracket | Full Game Notes

TWO SEED...
This is the sixth time that Stanford has been a No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament and the first time since 2002. The Cardinal is 14-5 as a No. 2 seed and has never fallen before the Sweet 16 as a No. 2 seed. Stanford was also a No. 2 seed in 1989 (2-1, Elite 8), 1991 (3-1, Final Four), 1994 (3-1, Elite 8), 1995 (4-1, Final Four), 2002 (2-1, Sweet 16).

THIRTY SOMETHING...
Stanford is looking for its sixth 30-win season in school history. The last time the Cardinal posted at least 30 wins in a season was in 2001-02 when Stanford finished with a 32-3 mark and a trip to the Sweet 16. In each of the other four 30-win seasons, Stanford reached the Final Four and twice won the NCAA Championship.

SEEDING SIDEBAR...
Stanford, the top-ranked team in the country, was given a No. 2 seed, but it is not the first time that the country's No. 1 team did not get a No. 1 seed. In 1984, top-ranked Texas was awarded a No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

TOURNAMENT TALK...
The Cardinal is 40-16 all-time in the NCAA Tournament and has won two National Championships, advanced to six Final Fours and made nine Elite Eight and a dozen Sweet 16 appearances. This is Stanford's 18th-straight NCAA appearance and 19th overall. Stanford is the automatic qualifier from the Pac-10 for the third-straight year after winning the tournament title on March 7 with a 56-42 win over Arizona State.

PAC-10 PARTICIPANTS...
Five Pacific-10 teams will represent the conference in this year's NCAA Tournament, as Arizona, Arizona State, Oregon and USC all earned at-large bids. It is the first time since 1998 that the Pac-10 has sent five teams to the NCAA Tournament and the sixth time in conference history that five teams have been received bids (the Pac-10 has never sent more than five teams to the NCAA Tournament). Only the ACC (7) and the Big 12 (6) are sending more teams. The Big Ten and the SEC are also sending five teams.

SANTA CLARA BULLETS...
* This is Santa Clara's sixth appearance in the NCAA Tournament, and first since 2002. The Broncos won their first-ever game in the NCAA Tournament, a 73-71 victory over Cal in 1992, but lost their next five.
* The Broncos won their last-three games to take the West Coast Conference Tournament title, but had gone 5-5 in their last 10 regular season games.
* Santa Clara head coach Michelle Bento-Jackson will be on familiar ground, as she is a 1992 graduate of Fresno State.
* Santa Clara's Yasemin Kimyacioglu is the younger sister of Stanford's Sebnem Kimyacioglu. It will be the first time the two have matched up on opposite teams.

THE STANFORD-SANTA CLARA SERIES...
This will be the 29th match-up between Stanford and Santa Clara. The Cardinal has won the eight of the last nine meetings between the two schools and owns a two-game win streak against the Broncos. This will be the first post-season match-up between Stanford and Santa Clara and the first neutral court meeting. Stanford and Santa Clara last met on Dec. 2, 2001, with the Cardinal posting a 94-62 victory over the Broncos at Maples Pavilion.

STANFORD VS. THE WCC...
The Cardinal is 60-18 all-time against West Coast Conference foes, with two wins over WCC teams earlier this season (Pepperdine and USF). Stanford has faced off against seven of the eight teams in the conference and owns winning records against each opponent. The Cardinal has never matched up against Gonzaga.

THE WCC IN THE NCAAS...
The West Coast Conference is sending one team to the NCAA Tournament this year, with only automatic qualifier Santa Clara representing the league.

MILE MARKER...
If Stanford reaches the second round of the NCAA Tournament, it will be the 600th game of head coach Tara VanDerveer's coaching career at Stanford. She recently coached the 800th game of her career, a 73-69 win versus USC in the Pac-10 Tournament Semifinal. One of the winningest active coaches, her overall record heading into the NCAA Tournament stands at 631-170 (.788) in 26 years, while her record at Stanford is 479-119 (.801) in 19 years.

CONFERENCE CHATTER...
Stanford swept the Pac-10 honors, as Candice Wiggins was named Pac-10 Player of the Year and Pac-10 Freshman of the Year. Tara VanDerveer was named Pac-10 Coach of the Year and three Cardinal players were honored as All-Pac-10 selections, with sophomore Brooke Smith, senior Kelley Suminski and Wiggins earning First-Team honors and senior Susan King Borchardt taking honorable mention accolades.

RECORD REVIEW...
With an 84-41 win over Oregon State on Feb. 26, the Cardinal wrapped up the conference season, breaking two school records in the process. Stanford limited its Pac-10 opponents to only 56.9 points per game and held its conference foes to 34.4% shooting from the field -- both record-setting marks in school history and in the Pac-10.

DEFENSIVE DRIVE...
Stanford is poised to break the school record in scoring defense this season as it has limited opponents to 55.0 points per game this season. This would be the third season in a row that the Cardinal has broken the school record for scoring defense, as last year's team set a new mark with 58.4 points, besting the mark of 58.9 it had set in 2002-03.

WINNING WAYS...
Stanford currently owns an 20-game win streak, which is the fifth-best streak in school history. In the last 20 games, Stanford is averaging a margin of victory of 22.7 points per game, the closest win being a four-point win over USC on March 6. The victory over the Trojans is Stanford's only single-digit win since the Cardinal's three-point win over Texas Tech on Nov. 28.

STANFORD STATS...
Stanford owns a 29-2 overall heading into the NCAA Tournament. The Cardinal also owns the No. 1 ranking in the Associated Press and the USA Today/ESPN/Coaches' polls. It is the first time Stanford has ended the regular season as the top-ranked team in the country. It is also the first time that Stanford has been ranked No. 1 since December 1996 when the Cardinal began the season with the top ranking in both polls and stayed on top until a loss at Old Dominion.

CARDINAL CATALOGUE...
Three Cardinal players are scoring in double digits and 10 are playing double-digit minutes. As of March 7, Stanford is ranked in the top-10 nationally in scoring margin (No. 1, +22.3 points), won-loss percentage (tied for No. 1 with LSU, 93.5%), field goal percentage (No. 5, 47.8%), scoring offense (No. 7, 77.3 ppg) and in field goal defense (No. 8, 34.8%). Through 31 games, the Cardinal is also ranked No. 12 in 3-point field goal percentage (37.9%), No. 17 in turnovers (14.2), No. 20 in rebounding margin (+6.6), No. 22 in scoring defense (55.0 ppg), No. 25 in assists (16.4). Also ranked in the top-10 are Brooke Smith, who is No. 8 in the nation in field goal percentage, shooting 61.2% from the field, and Kelley Suminski, who is ranked No. 7 in three-point field goal percentage at 45.7%.

SENIOR SALUTE...
Stanford's five seniors won their 100th game together on Jan. 13 with an 88-53 victory over California. Since arriving on The Farm, the quintet has posted a 115-17 record. As freshmen in 2001-02, the squad advanced to the Sweet 16, and as juniors last season, they helped the team make it to the Elite Eight. They have only suffered three losses at Maples over the past four years, and the 13-0 record this year is their first perfect home season.*
*As sophomores in 2002-03, the group defended its home court during the regular season but lost a second-round NCAA Tournament game at Maples.

FIRST HALF FACTS...
Stanford has owned the lead at halftime in all but one game this season and is out-scoring opponents by an average of 13.9 points in the first 20 minutes. Twice, Stanford has only led by two points (at Utah and at Tennessee), but 19 times, the Cardinal has carried a double-digit lead into the break. Against USC in the Pac-10 Tournament semifinal, the Trojans took a four-point lead into the break -- the only time this season that Stanford has not led its opponent at halftime.

PAC-10 PRIDE...
Stanford won the Pac-10 Championship on Feb. 18, winning its 14th conference game at USC. The victory secured Stanford's record-tying fifth-straight Pac-10 title (the Cardinal also won five-straight between 1988-89 and 1992-93). Stanford has finished the regular season with at least 17 Pac-10 wins eight times. The Cardinal has posted four perfect 18-0 seasons and four 17-1 seasons.

PERCENTAGE PERFECT...
Stanford has finished all but one game this season with a better field goal percentage than its opponent. The Cardinal shot a season-high 63.0% from the floor en route to a 94-58 victory over USC on Jan. 22, and on Feb. 24, Stanford finished with 62.5% shooting against Oregon. USC was the only team to top the Cardinal in shooting, when the Trojans out-shot Stanford in the Pac-10 Semifinal on March 6. Through 31 games, the Cardinal's 47.8% shooting average ranks No. 5 in the nation.

STANFORD VS. RANKED OPPONENTS...
The Cardinal is 4-1 over ranked opponents this season, after defeating No. 25/-- UCLA, then-No. --/24 Arizona State and then-No. 12/11 Texas Tech. Earlier this season, Stanford lost on a buzzer-beater at then-No. 9/10 Tennessee. Last year, Stanford went 3-3 versus ranked foes.

SHOOTING FROM THE OUTSIDE...
Stanford made 15 3-pointers against UCLA on Jan. 20, just one shy of the school record and No. 3 in Cardinal history. The Cardinal made 10 shots from beyond the perimeter in the first half against the Bruins, a new Stanford record (besting the previous high of nine 3-pointers in a single half). Kelley Suminski led the way with five 3s, as five different Cardinal players connected a trey.

STEALING THE SPOTLIGHT...
Stanford's 21 steals against Eastern Washington at the Great Alaska Shootout was the third-best single game total in school history. Freshman guard Candice Wiggins led the way with five steals as nine different Cardinal players recorded at least one steal in the contest. Then on Dec. 10, the Cardinal posted 20 steals versus Pepperdine, with Wiggins taking the ball six times. Wiggins also picked up six steals at ASU on Jan. 7, five of which resulted in breakaway layups. In 31 games, the Cardinal is out-stealing its opponents 312-202.

SEEING DOUBLE...
Stanford has only posted six double-doubles this season. Senior forward Sebnem Kimyacioglu recorded the first double-double of the year when she posted 10 points and 10 assists at Oregon State on Dec. 27. Then on Jan. 4, Stanford saw two in one night as Brooke Smith and Kristen Newlin both posted a double-double against Washington. Smith finished with 12 points and 10 rebounds, while Newlin added 14 points and 11 boards. In Los Angeles, freshman guard Candice Wiggins added the fourth of the year, scoring 14 points and grabbing 10 rebounds at USC. Two days later, Wiggins scored 24 points and pulled down 16 boards at UCLA. She posted her third double-double of the year with 24 points and 12 rebounds in the Pac-10 semifinal against USC.

RANKINGS REPORT...
The Cardinal enters the NCAA Tournament with a 20-game win streak and a 29-2 record. Stanford won the Pac-10 title with a 17-1 mark in conference play and is currently ranked No. 1 in the AP the USA Today/Coaches' poll. The 1/1 ranking bests Stanford's highest previous ranking this season, when both polls ranked the Cardinal No. 2 during December. Stanford had not been No. 2 since the 2001-02 season and has not been ranked No. 1 in the nation since starting the 1996-97 in the top spot. This year, Stanford has been ranked in the top-10 for the entire season.

MAPLES MAGIC...
Stanford finished the regular season with a win over Oregon, extending its conference home win streak to 37 games. Stanford's last conference loss in Maples was on March 1, 2001, when USC posted a 62-59 victory over the Cardinal. Stanford owns an impressive 343-75 (.821) record at Maples Pavilion, including a 40-2 mark since the 2002-03 season. Tara VanDerveer's teams have compiled a 260-28 (.903) record at home* during her tenure and, with the 13-0 mark this year, have posted seven perfect seasons at Maples. Stanford has won 56 of its last 59 games at Maples.
*Home record includes this season's games at the Leavey Center.

STRONG FINISHES...
With the 84-41 win over Oregon State on Feb. 26, Stanford has won its regular season home finale in each of the last 17 years.

VANDERVEER'S VICTORIES...
Head coach Tara VanDerveer recorded her 600th career win last season, as the Cardinal defeated Missouri, 68-44, in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament. She won her 450th game as Stanford's head coach against Vanderbilt (57-55) in the Sweet 16 last March. Her overall record now stands at 631-170 (.788) in 26 years, while her record at Stanford is 479-119 (.801) in 19 years.

BORCHARDT BOOK...
Stanford's lone fifth-year senior, Susan King Borchardt, saw the court for the first time this season at Oregon State on Dec. 27. She suffered a stress reaction right before the season began, but made her debut with five minutes against the Beavers. Borchardt scored two points, connecting on her first shot of the year. Since that game, her court-time increased steadily and she made her first start of the season against Cal on Jan. 13. Against Arizona on Feb. 3, she tallied a season-high 17. She is now operating at full strength, averaging 22.7 minutes per game.COLEMAN CATALOGUE...
Sophomore Markisha Coleman has appeared in 23 games this season and is averaging 5.7 minutes per game. A walk-on, Coleman adds 1.0 points and 0.7 rebounds per game. Against Pacific, she played a career-high 16 minutes and dished out four assists. In conference play, Coleman scored a career-high five points against Cal on Jan. 13 in 10 minutes on the floor.

KIMYACIOGLU CORNER...
Senior Sebnem Kimyacioglu is one of the leading 3-point shooters in Stanford history. She has made 27 3s this season and is No. 4 in school history with 196 in her career. Kimyacioglu netted three 3s against UCLA on Jan. 20 as Stanford came one-trey short of the school record 16 threes in a game. Kimyacioglu is poised to break the school record in three-pointers attempted, as she is just one away from Vanessa Nygaard's mark of 536.

NEWLIN NEWS...
Sophomore center Kristen Newlin has become a part of the Stanford starting line-up with the injury to T'Nae Thiel. She started twice early in the season (at Utah and at USF). She is the Cardinal's second-leading blocker with 29 this season. As a freshman, Newlin set the school record for blocks in a game with eight at Washington State.

PERRYMAN PIPELINE...
With 147 rebounds so far this season, senior forward Azella Perryman is now ranked No. 11 in school history with 614 boards in her career. Through 31 games, Perryman is ranked No. 9 in the Pac-10 with 3.71 defensive rebounds per game.

PIERCE POINTS...
Freshman guard Cissy Pierce missed three games (home series vs. Arizona schools and at Cal) due to a laceration on her right hand suffered in shoot-around before the Arizona game on Feb. 3. Pierce appeared in 19 games prior to her injury and returned with seven minutes at USC on Feb. 18. She was also sidelined with the flu for one game (Oregon on F24), but returned against the Beavers in the home finale.

RAPPAHAHN RATINGS...
Junior Krista Rappahahn has been a key reserve for Stanford off the bench, averaging 11.6 minutes per game and shooting 36.9% from beyond the arc in 29 games. She made a season-high three treys against Louisiana-Lafayette at the Great Alaska Shootout and went 2-for-2 against UCLA to help the Cardinal make 15 threes in a game.

SMITH SCOOP...
Junior center Brooke Smith has made a huge impact during her first season on the court with Stanford. After sitting out last season due to transfer rules, the Marin native is the Cardinal's second leading scorer with 13.0 points per game and is the third-leading rebounder with 5.2 boards per game -- all of that in 23.2 minutes per contest. Her signature hook shot has helped her to a 61.2% field goal percentage -- the best in the Pac-10, No. 8 nationally, and third-best in school history for a single season.

SUMINSKI STORY...
Kelley Suminski has started 124 games during her four years at Stanford. She ranks No. 2 in school history with 205 three-pointers in her career. Suminski's 141st three-pointer boosted her into the top-10, but is even more special because she hit it with 0.3 seconds left in the Sweet 16 match-up versus Vanderbilt last March to help the Cardinal advance to the Elite Eight for the first time since 1997. She became the 25th player in school history to score 1,000 points when she hit her first bucket of the game against Louisiana-Lafayette at the Great Alaska Shootout. This season, she is ranked No. 7 in the nation in three-point field goal percentage, as she is shooting 45.7%. In 132 contests played, she has averaged 10.0 points per game, No. 21 in the school record books.

THIEL TALE...
T'Nae Thiel stepped it up a notch during the conference season. The senior forward is averaging a team-high 6.0 rebounds per game against Pac-10 opponents and is ninth in the conference with 152 rebounds in 27 games this season (5.6 rpg). She is ranked No. 8 in school history with 665 rebounds in her career. Thiel, who suffered a small fracture in her left foot against Oregon on Feb. 24, will be sidelined for three weeks and will return for the NCAA Tournament.

WIGGINS WIRE...
Freshman guard Candice Wiggins, the Pac-10 Player of the Year and Pac-10 Freshman of the Year and the lone freshman on the Wooden Award Voting Ballot and the Midseason Naismith Trophy list, leads the Cardinal in scoring with 17.3 points per game. The second-leading rebounder with 5.4 boards per game was named the Most Outstanding Player at the Pac-10 Tournament after helping the Cardinal to its third-straight conference tournament title. She recorded a career-best 31 points at ASU and also tallied a career-high six assists and six steals (five of which resulted in breakaway layups), and she tacked on a 28-point performance at Arizona on Jan. 9, to earn her first Pac-10 Player of the Week nod. Wiggins has scored 535 points this season, which ranks 16th in school history for points in a single season. She also leads Stanford with 79 steals this season -- which ranks No. 6 in school history for steals in a single season. Candice's late father, Alan, also had a knack for steals - in 1984 he helped the San Diego Padres to the World Series and set the club's single-season record with 70 stolen bases (besting his own record of 66 from the year before). Alan Wiggins ranks third all-time in Padres history with 171 stolen bases in his career.

Possible Second Round Opponent: No. 7 Iowa State Cyclones
IOWA STATE BULLETS...
* Iowa State started the year with a 15-1 record, but the Cyclones have gone 8-5 since then.
* Iowa State won four of its last five games to advance to the Big 12 Quarterfinals, where they lost, 61-59, to Texas Tech.
* Five Iowa State players are averaging at least nine points per game, but only seven players have seen the floor in all 29 games.

THE STANFORD-IOWA STATE SERIES...
This would be the third match-up between Stanford and Iowa State. The Cardinal has won the two previous meetings, both of which were played at Maples Pavilion. The Cardinal won the first match-up, 83-82, on Jan. 7, 1986 and the second contest, 95-82, on Nov. 21, 1999. Both games took place during Tara VanDerveer's tenure (the first match-up between Stanford and the Cyclones was during VanDerveer's inaugural campaign with the Cardinal).

STANFORD VS. THE BIG 12...
The Cardinal is 27-14 all-time against Big 12 foes, after besting Texas Tech and Missouri earlier this season. Stanford has challenged 10 of the 12 teams in the conference and owns winning records against each opponent. The Cardinal has never matched up against Kansas or Oklahoma State.

THE BIG 12 IN THE NCAAS...
The Big 12 conference is sending six teams to the NCAA Tournament this year, with automatic qualifier Baylor joined by five at-large selections: Iowa State, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Texas and Texas Tech.

Possible 2nd Round Opponent: No. 10 Utah Utes
UTAH BULLETS...
* Stanford handed Utah its first loss of the year, 63-57, in the season opener on Nov. 19.
* Utah opened the season with a 1-2 record with losses to then-No. 7 Stanford and then-No. 14 Michigan State, but the Utes rebounded quickly, winning 13 of their next 15 games.
* Ten Utes are averaging at least nine minutes per game, but only four have played in all 32 contests.

THE STANFORD-UTAH SERIES...
This would be the eighth match-up between Stanford and Utah and the second this season, as the squads opened against each other on Nov. 19. Stanford has won all of the previous seven match-ups, with the Cardinal posting a 5-0 record on the road in Salt Lake City.

STANFORD VS. THE MOUNTAIN WEST...
The Cardinal is 19-7 all-time against current Mountain West teams. Stanford has faced six of the eight teams in the conference and leads all but one of the series (San Diego State has a 4-3 advantage).

THE MOUNTAIN WEST IN THE NCAAS...
The Mountain West Conference is sending two teams to the NCAA Tournament this year, with automatic qualifier New Mexico joined by one at-large selection, Utah.

UTAH VS. THE PAC-10...
The Utes are 42-40 all-time against current Pacific-10 Conference teams. Utah has matched up against all 10 teams and faced two Pac-10 foes this season, with a loss versus Stanford and a win against Washington. The Utes have beaten every team except Stanford at least one time.

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