This Week in Pac-10 Women's Basketball

Feb. 20, 2006

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**Through all games of Sat., Feb. 18**

2005-06 STANDINGS1. Stanford (13-3, .813; 19-6, .760)2. Arizona State (13-4, .765; 22-5, .815)3. Washington (11-5, .688; 18-7, .720)4. USC (10-6, .625; 16-9, .640) UCLA (10-6, .625; 15-10, .600)6. California (8-8, .500; 16-10, .615)7. Oregon State (6-10, .375; 12-12, .500)8. Oregon (5-11, .313; 14-12, .538)9. Arizona (3-14, .176; 7-20, .259)10.Washington State (2-14, .125; 8-17, .320)

Thurs., Feb. 16CALIFORNIA 73, ARIZONA 56Wright-13 pts/9 reb; Foster-13 pts/7 rebHollingsworth-13 pts/4 reb; Whisonant-13 pts/4 reb

(15/17) ARIZONA STATE 62, (11/12) STANFORD 59January-13 pts/6 ast; Johnson-10 pts/7 rebWiggins-28 pts/5 reb; Newlin-11 pts/6 reb

WASHINGTON 61, OREGON 55Bell-18 pts/10 reb; Plouffe-13 ptsRichards-20 pts/11 reb; Haring-8 pts

OREGON STATE 59, WASHINGTON STATE 50Butler-18 pts/8-10 FT; Nash-13 pts/14 rebMoore-14 pts/6 reb; Benz-13 pts/10 reb

Sat., Feb. 18(11/12) STANFORD 87, ARIZONA 76Wiggins-24 pts/4-8 3-PT FG; Smith-22 pts/7rebJones-27 pts/14 reb; Hollingsworth-12 pts/6 reb

(15/17) ARIZONA STATE 62, CALIFORNIA 43Kovesdy-14 pts/7 reb; Noe-9 pts/4 rebWalker-11 pts/4 reb; Gray-Lawson-10 pts/4 reb

USC 77, UCLA 73Kerr-21 pts/9-12 FG; Murphy-14 pts/10 rebQuinn-28 pts/11 reb; Blue-10 pts/11 ast

WASHINGTON STATE 68, OREGON 53Benz-17 pts/12 reb; Blue-17 pts/4 rebGanes-11 pts/4 reb; Nurse-9 pts/6-8 FT

WASHINGTON 66, OREGON STATE 51O'Neill-17-pts/7 reb; Banks-14 pts/7 rebButler-20 pts/9 reb; Close-15 pts/5 ast

THIS WEEK'S SCHEDULEThurs., Feb. 23*USC at OREGON, 7 p.m.Series: 24-15 (USC) Last Meeting: 72-48 (USC)*UCLA at OREGON STATE, 7 p.m.Series: 25-14 (UCLA) Last Meeting: 79-64 (UCLA)*WASHINGTON STATE at CALIFORNIA, 7 p.m.Series: 21-19 (CAL) Last Meeting: 53-47 (CAL)*WASHINGTON at STANFORD, 7 p.m.Series: 28-12 (STAN) Last Meeting: 77-72 (WASH)

Sat., Feb. 25*ARIZONA at ARIZONA STATE, 4 p.m. (KAZ-TV)Series: 23-16 (ARIZ) Last Meeting: 83-59 (ASU)*USC at OREGON STATE, 7 p.m.Series: 27-13 (USC) Last Meeting: 72-62 (USC)*UCLA at OREGON, 3 p.m.Series: 20-20 Last Meeting: 82-63 (UCLA)*WASHINGTON at CALIFORNIA, 3 p.m. (FSN)Series: 33-6 (WASH) Last Meeting: 62-55 (WASH)*WASHINGTON STATE at STANFORD, 2 p.m.Series: 39-0 (STAN) Last Meeting: 76-56 (STAN)

Mon., Feb. 27Texas Pan-American at OREGON STATE, 7 p.m.

*Conference gameAll times are local to site

CONFERENCE WEEKLY NOTES (2/20)

TITLE WEEKEND: A few different scenarios could play out this week as the battle to crown the 2005-06 Pac-10 champion comes down to this last regular season weekend in February ... STANFORD controls its own destiny and with two wins would claim the Pac-10 title outright ... ARIZONA STATE is hoping for a Cardinal split, at the very least, and a win over traditional rival, ARIZONA for a share of the Conference championship ... WASHINGTON is also in the mix, but would need to win both road games this weekend and have both the Cardinal and Sun Devils lose their games to share the regular season title with both teams ... All 10 teams will then vie for the Pac-10 Tournament title, March 3-6, at the HP Pavilion at San Jose, the winner receiving the league's automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament.

TOURNAMENT SEEDS: As teams at the top are hoping to position themselves for a 2005-06 championship, others are looking to better their Tournament seeds for the showdown in San Jose ... Much will be decided this weekend as a shake-up could affect teams, top to bottom ... The Pac-10 Tournament's Friday night play-in game will feature the No. 7 seed vs. No. 10 and No. 8 seed vs. No. 9 ... Saturday will see the No. 3 seed vs. No. 6, game one winner vs. No. 2 seed, game two winner vs. No. 1 seed and the No. 4 seed vs. No. 5 seed.

TIE-BREAKING FORMULA: Seedings and pairings will be determined following the final Conference regular season games on Saturday, Feb. 25. The won-lost percentage record of the teams in regular season conference play will determine tournament seedings. Tie breaking procedures for determining all tournament seeding will be as follows:

1. Two-team tiea. Results of head-to-head competition during the regular season.b. Each team's record vs. the team occupying the highest position in the final regular season standings, and then continuing down through the standings until one team gains an advantage.When arriving at another group of tied teams while comparing records, use each team's record against the collective tied teams as a group (prior to that group's own tie-breaking procedure), rather than the performance against individual tied teams.c. Won-lost percentage against all Division I opponents.d. Coin toss conducted by the Commissioner or designee.

2. Multiple-team tiea. Results of collective head-to-head competition during the regular season among the tied teams.b. If two or more teams are still tied, each of the tied team's record vs. the team occupying the highest position in the final regular season standings, and then continuing down through the standings until one team gains an advantage.When arriving at another group of tied teams while comparing records, use each team's record against the collective tied teams as a group (prior to that group's own tie-breaking procedure), rather than the performance against individual tied teams.c. Won-lost percentage against all Division I opponents.d. Coin toss conducted by the Commissioner or designee.

WHO'S GOT THE HOT HANDS: This week's look at who's hot: USC, winners of three straight over UCLA, got solid help from JR C Chloé Kerr last Saturday as she scored a career-high 21 points, hitting 9-of-12 (.750) from the field ... Kerr was instrumental down the stretch, hitting two big free throws to lead the Women of Troy to the eventual 77-73 win ... Bruin JR G Noelle Quinn was just as influential, recording her 18th double-double of the season, with 28 points scored and 11 rebounds off the glass ... Quinn has now scored 20 or more points 26 times in her career ... Washington JR F Jill Bell guided the Huskies to a pair of wins last week, picking up her first double-double of the season in an 18-point, 10-rebound effort against OREGON ... Bell's 18 points were a career-high, while her 10 boards were a season-high.

NAISMITH MID-SEASON LIST: Three Pac-10 players were named to the Naismith Trophy Mid-Season watch list, including UCLA's SR G Nikki Blue and JR G Noelle Quinn, as well as Stanford SO G Candice Wiggins ... The Naismith Trophy is the most prestigious national award presented annually to the men's and women's players of the year ... Four finalists will be narrowed down and made eligible for the March ballot ... Other Pac-10 players receiving votes were fellow Bruin and Cardinal teammates, SR G Lisa Willis and JR C Brooke Smith.

TEAM-BY-TEAM NOTES (2/20)

ARIZONA (7-20, 3-14): Despite a valiant effort, Arizona could not pick up a win this weekend, losing 73-56 to California on Thurs., Feb. 16 and 87-76 to Stanford on Sat., Feb. 18 ... SR G Natalie Jones, playing in her last regular season home game on Saturday, scored 27 points to lead all players, and grabbed 14 rebounds for her fourth double-double of the season ... Three other Wildcats scored in double-digits as JR G Joy Hollingsworth (12), SO G Ashley Whisonant (10) and FR G Kelsey Burns (10) all chipped in ... The Wildcats continue to heat up the floor from beyond the arc, hitting 16-of-47 (.340) on the weekend ... UA ranks seventh in the Conference in 3-point field goal percentages, having a season percentage of .317 ... Hollingsworth ranks fourth in the league in 3-point field goals made (60), while teammate Burns ranks eighth in 3-point field goal percentage (.381) ... The Wildcats will next take on in-state rival, Arizona State on Sat., Feb. 25 in Tempe.

ARIZONA STATE (22-5, 13-4): Arizona State picked up two huge wins over the weekend, defeating 11th-ranked Stanford, 62-59, on Thurs., Feb. 16, as well as California, 62-43, on Sat., Feb. 18 ... The Sun Devils are in second place in the Conference, with a chance to either tie for the league title, or claim it outright, depending on how the final weekend plays out ... Regardless, ASU, with its 22 wins on the year has now won 20 or more games four times in the last six seasons ... SR F Kristen Kovesdy scored 14 points on 7-of-10 shooting against the Bears on Saturday ... She averaged 11 points on the weekend and improved her field goal percentage to .596 (137-of-230), which ranks first in the Pac-10 ... Arizona State now owns an eight-game win streak headed into its final weekend of play, taking on traditional rival, Arizona on Sat., Feb. 25 at Wells Fargo Arena ... In first-round action, the Sun Devils claimed an 83-59 win over the Wildcats.

CALIFORNIA (16-10, 8-8): California split its road series with the Arizona schools, picking up a 73-56 win over Arizona on Thurs., Feb. 16, before succumbing to Arizona State, 62-43, on Sat., Feb. 18 to see its record to 8-8 in league play, 16-10 overall ... The Bears currently own sixth place in the Pac-10 with one weekend left to better their Tournament seeding ... Cal will host Washington State on Thurs., Feb. 23, as well as Washington on Sat., Feb. 25 ... The game against the Huskies will be televised on FSN, tip at 3 p.m. PT ... SR G Reneé Wright tied for the team-high with 13 points against the Wildcats on Thursday ... Wright went 6-for-6 from the free throw line, a good sign as the team has struggled in this area this season ... Two of Cal's `Fab Four' freshman class rank in the Top-10 in the Pac-10 scoring in Devanei Hampton (7th, 15.2 ppg) and Alexis Gray-Lawson (10th, 14.5 ppg) ... Hampton also ranks second in the league in rebounding (7.9), while Gray-Lawson is sixth in 3-point field goal percentage (.402) ... Further, three of the Top-10 rebounders in the Conference sport the blue and gold - Hampton (2nd, 7.9), FR F Ashley Walker (3rd, 7.7) and Wright (10th, 6.7).

OREGON (14-12, 5-11): Without the services of top-shooter SR G Chelsea Wagner, Oregon could not come away with a 'w' from its road trip, losing 61-55 to Washington on Thurs., Feb. 16 and 68-53 to Washington State on Sat., Feb. 18 ... SO C Gabrielle Richards notched her fifth double-double on the season in a 20-point, 11-rebound game against the Huskies ... The Ducks close out the 2005-06 season without a Conference road win, their last such victory coming on Feb. 26, 2005 against Cal ... JR F Carolyn Ganes came off the bench to score 11 points on 3-of-6 shooting against WSU on Saturday ... She also grabbed four boards and two blocks in 19 minutes played ... The Ducks return home for their final regular season homestand, as they will take on USC on Thurs., Feb. 23 and UCLA on Sat., Feb. 25 ... The last time either LA squad won at Mac Court was in 2003-04 when both teams earned victories in the tough Oregon arena.

OREGON STATE (12-12, 6-10): Oregon State, which came into the season picked to finish last by both the coaches and media, has surpassed all outside expectations, splitting its road series with the Washington schools last weekend, en route to its 12th win on the year ... The Beavers claimed a 59-50 win over Washington State on Thurs., Feb. 16, but could not sustain the momentum, losing 66-51 to Washington two days later ... OSU is 6-10 in Conference, 12-12 overall and in sole possession of seventh place in the Pac-10 ... JR G Casey Nash recorded 13 points and 14 rebounds for her second double-double of the season and fifth of her career, in the nine-point win over WSU ... Three other players scored in double-digits as SR G Mandy Close (12), SR G Anita Rivera (10) and SR F Kim Butler (18) all contributed ... Rivera, dropping three treys on the weekend, ranks ninth in the league in 3-point field goals made (1.71) ... The Beavers will host the LA schools this week, facing UCLA on Thurs., Feb. 23 and USC on Sat., Feb. 25, as well as Texas Pan-American on Mon., Feb. 27.

STANFORD (19-6, 13-3): Stanford controls its own destiny as it can claim the 2005-06 Pac-10 title this weekend with two outright wins, or a shared crown with a split and wins from teams below in the standings ... The Cardinal went 1-1 on the road last weekend, losing to Arizona State, 62-59, on Thurs., Feb. 16, before claiming an 87-76 win over Arizona on Sat., Feb. 18 to see its record to 13-3 in the Pac-10, 19-6 overall ... SO G Candice Wiggins scored back-to-back 20-point games, leading all players with 28 points in Thursday's game and scoring 24 against UA on Saturday ... Wiggins is averaging 21.4 ppg to lead all Pac-10 players, and coming into the week, ranked ninth in the nation ... SR G Krista Rappahahn went 3-for-7 from beyond the arc this past week, now owning a .443 3-point field goal percentage to rank third in the Conference, while her 2.80 treys per game rank atop the league ... The Cardinal are ranked first in the Pac-10 in assist/turnover ratio (1.18), averaging just over 14 turnovers per game, fewest in the league ... Next up, Stanford will return home for its final regular season series, taking on Washington on Thurs., Feb. 23 and Washington State on Sat., Feb. 25.

UCLA (15-10, 10-6): Despite a game-high 28 points from JR G Noelle Quinn, UCLA could not hang on for the win, losing 77-73 to USC on Sat., Feb. 18 ... The Bruins are now 10-6 in the Conference, 15-10 overall and tied for fourth place headed into the last weekend of regular season play ... Quinn recorded her seventh double-double of the season and 18th of her career when she scored 28 and pulled down 11 rebounds ... She also added six assists and zero turnovers ... SR G Nikki Blue was one rebound shy of her first career triple-double, scoring 10 points, dishing out 11 assists and recording nine rebounds in Saturday's game with the Women of Troy ... Blue moved past Hall of Famer Ann Meyers into second place on UCLA's career charts for assists with 533 and counting ... Blue also moved into a tie for second place on the Pac-10 career steals chart with 309 ... She and SR G Lisa Willis should finish their careers ranked 1-2 in the Conference all-time in steals ... UCLA heads North this weekend to take on Oregon State on Thurs., Feb. 23, as well as Oregon on Sat., Feb. 25.

USC (16-9, 10-6): USC completed the season sweep over UCLA, picking up the 77-73 victory over the Bruins on Sat., Feb. 18 to improve to 10-6 in Conference, 16-9 overall ... JR C Chloé Kerr scored a career-high 21 points on 9-of-12 shooting from the floor, 3-of-4 from the free throw line as the Women of Troy defeated the Bruins for the third consecutive game ... It was the fifth consecutive LA-matchup in which the game was decided by four points or less ... JR G Shay Murphy recorded her fourth double-double of the season as she scored 14 points and grabbed 10 rebounds ... SR G Meghan Gnekow and JR G Allison Jaskowiak both scored in double-figures with 13 and 11 points, respectively ... USC was hot from downtown, hitting 50 percent of its 3-point attempts (7-of-14), including two a piece from Murphy, Jaskowiak and JR G Jamie Hagiya ... The team paces the Conference in 3-point field goals made, making over seven a game, while ranking fourth in 3-point field goal percentages with a season clip of .329 ... USC takes to the road one final time in regular season play, facing Oregon on Thurs., Feb. 23 and Oregon State on Sat., Feb. 25.

WASHINGTON (18-7, 11-5): Washington secured two more wins on its season, notching a 61-55 win over Oregon on Thurs., Feb. 16, as well as a 66-51 victory over Oregon State on Sat., Feb. 18 to improve to 11-5 in the Conference, 18-7 overall ... The Huskies are in sole possession of third place in the league, with an opportunity to tie for the Pac-10 crown if they win out and both Stanford and Arizona State lose out ... UW hits the road this week to take on the Bay Area schools, Thursday's action against Stanford, as well as a Sat., Feb. 25 contest with California ... JR F Jill Bell led Washington in scoring (11.0 ppg) and rebounds (7.0 rpg) in the weekend sweep of the Oregon's ... Bell scored a career-high 18 points to go along with a season-high 10 rebounds and two blocked shots against the Ducks ... Bell alone erased an 11-point Oregon lead with 11 minutes of play, scoring 10 straight points, grabbing four rebounds and blocking one shot in a three-minute span to bring UW within one, 47-46, with 7:45 left in the game ... SR G Kristen O'Neill scored 17 points in the win over the Beavers, hitting 5-of-12 shots, as well as going 7-of-8 from the free throw line.

WASHINGTON STATE (8-17, 2-14): Washington State picked up its second Conference win this season with a 68-53 victory over Oregon on Sat., Feb. 18 ... It was the Cougars first win over the Ducks since the 2001 season ... WSU was defeated by Oregon State, 59-50, on Thurs., Feb. 16, but with the weekend split, improved to 2-14 in the Pac-10 and 8-17 overall ... JR F Kate Benz was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week after averaging a double-double of 15 points and 11 rebounds ... The Player of the Week honor is the first for Benz, and the first for Washington State since Jan. 27, 1997 when Jade Hyett earned the award ... It is the 10th all-time selection for WSU ... Despite WSU's height disadvantage against UO, Benz nearly pulled down as many rebounds in the first half (8) as the entire Ducks team did during the opening 20 minutes of play (10) ... The Cougars outrebounded the Ducks in the game, 49-20 ... Playing the final home game of their collegiate careers, SR G Crystal Blue and SR F Keisha Moore went out in style as each scored in double figures - Blue matching Benz's game-high point total of 17 points while Moore added 12 ... The Cougars will next travel to the Bay Area to take on California on Thurs., Feb. 23 and Stanford on Sat., Feb. 25.

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