No. 11/13 Stanford Takes on No. 23/25 USC at the Lyon Center

Jan. 28, 2006

Game Coverage: TV - Fox Sports Net | Live Audio | Full Game Notes | Gametracker

No. 11/13 Stanford (13-5, 8-2) at No. 23/25 USC (13-6, 7-3)
Jan. 29, 2006 * 12:00 pm
Lyon Center (1,200) * Los Angeles, Calif.

Series History:
Stanford leads, 34-18
TV: Fox Sports Net
Radio: 90.1 FM, KZSU (Jake Kelman)
GameTracker: GoStanford.com

Wiggins Wire...
Sophomore Candice Wiggins will become the 26th player in Stanford history to score 1,000 points. Through 53 games, Wiggins has scored 999 points. Last year, Kelley Suminski became the 25th to break 1,000 and ended her career with 1,364 points. Wiggins is just shy of the fastest pace to get to the milestone -- in 1980, Jeanne Ruark Hoff took just 49 games to reach 1,000.

Smith Story...
Junior center Brooke Smith is the Cardinal's second-leading scorer with 18.1 points per game and is second in rebounding with 7.4 boards per game. In her career, she is averaging 14.9 points per game (791 points in 53 contests), which is sixth-best in school history. Smith had a career-high night in the Cardinal's loss at UCLA, scoring 26 points and pulling down 17 rebounds.

Back-to-Back Disappointment...
In December, Stanford lost two games in a row for the first time since just two seasons ago, when the Cardinal suffered back-to-back losses at Arizona and Arizona State on Feb. 5 & 7, 2004 (Stanford was ranked No. 7 at the time). Stanford has not lost back-to-back games twice in a season since 2000-01, when the Cardinal lost at least two games in a row three times.

A Lot Allowed...
The Cardinal gave up 90 points in the Jan. 27 loss at UCLA, the most points allowed by the Cardinal this season. It is the first time Stanford has given up 90 points since Feb. 24, 2001, when the Cardinal lost 95-87 at Washington. That season, Stanford gave up 90 points or more in three games (a 30-point loss at No. 8 Purdue and a four-point overtime loss at No. 22 Oklahoma).

USC Bullets...
* The Women of Troy had won five-straight games before Cal snapped the streak on Friday night.
* USC is 2-3 against ranked teams this season, including a loss to Stanford on Dec. 30.
* The Trojans have suffered some injuries this season, with Jamie Funn out for the year after having hip surgery and Símone Jelks out for 2-6 weeks with a sprained left knee.

The Stanford-USC Series...
This will be the 53rd match-up between Stanford and USC. The Cardinal won all three meetings between the two schools last season, with two regular season wins and a victory in the Pac-10 Tournament Semifinals. Stanford has won 22 of the last-25 contests. The Women of Troy have not beaten the Cardinal since a 59-56 game in LA on Jan. 25, 2006.

Stanford vs. the Pac-10...
The Cardinal owns an overall record of 332-103 (.763) against current Pac-10 foes and a 299-53 (.849) record in regular season conference action, the best percentage in the league. Stanford won its fifth-straight regular season Pac-10 title and its third-straight Pac-10 Tournament title last season.

USC vs. the Pac-10...
The Trojans are 277-170 (.618) all-time against current Pac-10 foes. In regular season action, USC ranks third in the conference with 207 wins in their 20th year of Pac-10 play. Southern California is tied for third with two Pac-10 titles, behind Stanford's 14 conference crowns and Washington's three.

Stanford Stats...
Stanford owns a 13-5 record this season, with an 8-2 mark in Pac-10 play. The Cardinal is in first place in the conference with a one-game lead over USC and Washington. UCLA, California and Arizona State are in a three-way tie for fourth place.

VanDerveer's Victories...
Tara VanDerveer is just three wins away from her 650th career win and just five shy of her 500th win as the Stanford head coach. Last year, she 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 stands at 647-176 (.786) in 27 years, while her record at Stanford is 495-125 (.798) in 20 years.

Rankings Report...
Stanford began the 2005-06 season with a No. 11 ranking in the AP poll and a No. 10 ranking in the USA Today/ESPN/WBCA Coaches' poll. Prior to its first game, Stanford moved up to No. 9 in the USA Today poll - its highest ranking this season. The Cardinal is up from its lowest ranking this year (16th) and after seven-straight wins the Cardinal is now up to No. 11 in the AP poll and at No. 13 in the USA Today poll.

Maples Magic...
Tara VanDerveer's teams have compiled a 267-29 (.902) record at home during her tenure. The Cardinal has won 63 of its last 67 games at Maples and six-straight since the Tennessee loss on Dec. 4, 2005. With the 84-78 win over Arizona State on Jan. 21, Stanford improved its conference home win streak to 42 games. Stanford's last conference loss in Maples was on March 1, 2001, when USC posted a 62-59 victory over the Cardinal. None of the current Stanford team has lost a conference game in Maples.

Cardinal Catalogue...
Three Cardinal players are scoring in double digits and nine are averaging at least 13.8 minutes per game. Through all games on Jan. 23, Stanford is ranked in the top-25 nationally in scoring offense (No. 7, 79.6 ppg), assists (No. 14, 17.5 apg), three-point field goals per game (No. 14, 7.2 pg), field-goal percentage (No. 14, 46.7%), scoring margin (No. 14, 15.6 ppg), and three-point field-goal percentage (No. 17, 38.6%). Candice Wiggins is ranked No. 4 in the country in scoring with 21.2 points per game, while Krista Rappahahn is ranked No. 7 in the nation in threes per game, making an average of 3.1 treys per contest. She is also ranked No. 18 with a 45.7% mark from beyond the arc. Brooke Smith is also among the nation's best in field-goal percentage, ranked No. 21 with a 56.9% average.

Winning Ways...
After Stanford lost back-to-back games in December, the Cardinal rebounded with a seven-game win streak, during which time sophomore guard Candice Wiggins has averaged 26.9 points per game -- with four games of 30 points or more. Junior Brooke Smith has averaged 19.1 points and 8.7 rebounds per game during the stretch and freshman point guard Rosalyn Gold-Onwude has contributed 5.1 assists per game. Senior guard Krista Rappahahn has knocked down 3.7 threes per contest and freshman forward Jillian Harmon is adding 10.1 points and 5.9 rebounds per game. The Cardinal has bested its last five Pac-10 opponents by 17.9 points per game and is shooting 47.8% from the field, with a 39.9% mark from three-point territory.

Free Throw Woes...
Stanford is shooting a near-school low 68.0% from the free throw line. The worst free-throw shooting by a Cardinal team on record was in 1978-79, when Stanford went 64.8% from the charity strike. The Cardinal has not shot less than 70% since the 1999-2000 season when the squad finished the campaign with a 69.9% average. Against Arizona State, the Cardinal shot a sesaon-high 32 free throws and made a season-high 26, with sophomore Candice Wiggins leading the way, going 16-for-19 from the charity strike, which ties the school record for makes in a single game and sets a new mark for attempts.

Shooting from the Outside...
Stanford has made at least eight three-pointers in a game nine times this season - hitting 10 against Fresno State, at Pacific, and at Washington and knocking down 14 against Cal. Against Fresno State and Pacific, Krista Rappahahn was nine-for-ten from behind the three-point line, and against the Huskies, she hit a career-high six threes in a game. She has made six threes in a game three times this season. Rappahahn and sophomore guard Candice Wiggins are both strong beyond the arc, as both are hitting more than 40% of their shots this season. Against Cal, Wiggins hit a career-high seven threes in the game.

Pac-10 Pride...
Stanford finished atop the preseason coaches' poll with nine first-place votes (81 points). It is the sixth-consecutive time and sixth time overall that Stanford has been favored by the coaches to win the Conference title since the poll's inception in 1998-99.

Preseason Praise...
Sophomore Candice Wiggins was named to the Preseason Watch List for the Wooden Award and the Wade Trophy. A Kodak All-American last season, Wiggins is currently Stanford's leading scorer at 21.5 points per game. Wiggins was named the Bay Area's Most Dynamic Amateur Athlete of 2005 by KNTV-11 (NBC) and was selected as the Stanford/MET-Rx Student-Athlete of the Week for the week of Dec. 27-Jan. 2, after helping the Cardinal to a pair of wins against USC and UCLA. After helping Stanford to a road sweep in Oregon and a 37-point showing against the Ducks, Wiggins was named Pac-10 Player of the Week on Jan. 9. She has passed the 30-point mark four times in the last seven games.

Newlin Notes...
Junior forward Kristen Newlin was diagnosed with a stress reaction in her left femur and missed eight games, but returned for the Cardinal's contest versus California on Jan. 14. Newlin, who was averaging 12.3 points and 10.3 rebounds in her first six games, pulled down a career-high 17 rebounds at Texas Tech and scored a career-high 20 points against Tennessee. Newlin has four double-doubles in six games this season, with double-digit scoring and rebounding against all three of the Cardinal's ranked opponents (Minnesota, Texas Tech and Tennessee) as well as at Pacific. Newlin has also accumulated 12 blocks so far this season, upping her career total to 93.

Katrina Assist...
Assistant coach Charmin Smith is spearheading a year-long fund-raiser by the Stanford Women's Basketball team this year, as the program collects pledges for every Stanford assist in order to help the Peninsula Habitat, our local chapter of Habitat for Humanity International, build houses for Operation Home Delivery, a tremendous nationwide effort, that will shipped new homes to the Hurricane Katrina-devastated Gulf Coast area. The California Golden Bears are also launching a Katrina Assist program. More information and pledge forms can be found at GoStanford.com.

Looking Ahead...
Next season, the Cardinal will add four freshmen to its roster, as Jayne Appel, Michelle Harrison, JJ Hones and Melanie Murphy all signed a National Letter of Intent in November. Scout.com has ranked the class No. 3 in the nation, while Blue Star ranks the group at No. 4. The quartet will arrive on The Farm in 2006 and will make an immediate impact:Appel (6-4, C, Concord, CA/Carondelet HS)
Harrison (6-3, F, Orem, UT/Mountain View HS)
Hones (5-10, G, Portland, OR/Southridge HS)
Murphy (5-9, G, Brooklyn, NY/Midwood HS)

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