Women's Hoops Hosts Oregon In Regular Season Finale Saturday
Feb. 23, 2007
Saturday, February 24, 2007
Oregon (16-11, 8-9 Pac-10) at Washington (17-11, 10-7 Pac-10) 3 p.m.
Bank of America Arena Seattle, Wash.
Radio - KKNW AM 1150 Live TV - KONG-TV
Washington women's basketball (17-11, 10-7 Pac-10) will host Oregon (16-11, 8-9 Pac-10) in its regular season home finale, Saturday, Feb. 24, at 3 p.m. at Bank of America Arena. The contest will be televised on KONG-TV in the Seattle Area, and on the Oregon Sports Network in Oregon. The Huskies will honor their seven-member senior class - including student-assistant coach Angie Jones - prior to the contest. UW's six seniors on the roster - Jill Bell, Cheri Craddock, Cameo Hicks, Maggie O'Hara, Erica Schelly and Breanne Watson - will be making their final regular season home appearance at Bank of America Arena. The group will be honored in a special pre-game ceremony following the National Anthem. After defeating Oregon State on Thursday (70-59), the Huskies moved into a fourth-place tie with USC in the Pac-10 standings. Depending on the outcomes of Saturday's and Sunday's games, UW could still finish anywhere from tied for third to fifth. Oregon, which won at Washington State on Thursday (51-34) has a virtual lock on sixth place, win or lose versus Washington. The Huskies have won four of their last five games and are 11-3 when playing at home this season. The Ducks are on an upswing of their own, winning six of their last eight games after losing four-straight.
Saturday's game with the Ducks will be televised live on KONG-TV in the Seattle area, and on the Oregon Sports Network in the state of Oregon. Joe Giansante and Elise Woodward will call the action from Bank of America Arena.
All Husky women's basketball games can be heard live on the radio at KKNW 1150 AM. Steve Sandmeyer, in his eighth season as the voice of UW women's hoops, calls the play-by-play. Former Husky Elise (Niemela) Woodward joins Sandmeyer as the color commentator for home broadcasts. Fan can also listen to games on the internet at www.gohuskies.com.
Washington did not receive votes in either of this week's Associated Press or USA Today/WBCA/ESPN Coaches' polls for the sixth-straight week. UW received votes in both polls for four-straight weeks from Dec. 18-Jan. 8. The Huskies have been ranked as high as No. 23 in the coaches' poll (Nov. 13) this season after earning a No. 25 preseason billing.
Scouting The Huskies:
Washington is down to just its last regular season game when it hosts Oregon, Saturday. After notching the series sweep versus the Beavers with a 70-59 victory over Oregon State, Thursday, UW will look to do the same against Oregon. Washington edged the Ducks by four points (56-60) in these teams' earlier season meeting back on Dec. 21. Washington has won four of its last five games but has definitely endured a 'roller coaster' season. After opening the season 0-2, UW won 12 of its next 14 games including nine in a row. Then the Huskies lost six of seven until their recent upswing. Leading the way for UW is senior guard Cameo Hicks, averaging team-highs of 17.3 points and 5.4 rebounds per game. Hicks has tallied double-digit scoring numbers in 22 of the last 23 games and 26 overall this season. She had her 20-game double-figure scoring streak come to an end at Stanford (Feb. 10), after scoring 25 points vs. Arizona (Feb. 3) and 27 points at Cal (Feb. 8) the previous two games. In all she has eight 20-point scoring games this season. Junior point guard Emily Florence continues to lead the Huskies in assists (110) and steals (65), and is second in rebounding (5.3). She has even tallied double-figure scoring efforts twice in the last four games. Florence has grabbed at least five rebounds in 15 of the last 21 games including a career-high 11 versus USC (Dec. 29). The smallest Husky, she is tied for the team rebounding lead in Pac-10 play with 5.6 boards per outing. Also scoring in double-figures is junior center Andrea Plouffe with 10.2 points per game. Senior forward/center Jill Bell is third on the squad with 7.2 points and 4.3 rebounds per game, and has tallied a team-high 19 blocked shots. Senior forward Breanne Watson is coming off a good game versus the Beavers, Thursday, sharing team-high scoring honors with Hicks (13 points) on 4-of-7 shooting. She also grabbed five rebounds.
RPI/Strength Of Schedule:
With Selection Monday only weeks away, the eyes of the college basketball world are already looking at RPI numbers. Heading into this week, Washington's strength of schedule is ranked 21st according to Collegiate Basketball News - which also leads the Pac-10. Stanford (33rd) and Arizona (41st) are the only other teams with strength of schedule rankings in the Top-50 (Arizona State is 53rd). Washington also owns an RPI ranking of 30th according to Sagarin and 41st according to Collegiate Basketball News. Washington's RPI rankings are fourth highest in the Pac-10 behind Stanford (8-Sagarin, 11-CBN), Arizona State (10-Sagarin, 16-CBN), and California (24-Sagarin, 34-CBN). Of Washington's 11 losses this season, seven have come to opponents currently ranked in this week's Associated Press Top-25: #5 Ohio State, #8 Stanford (twice), #10 Arizona State (twice), #15 Purdue, and #19 Marquette.
Washington's six-woman senior class, as well as student-assistant coach Angie Jones, will be honored prior to the Huskies' regular season home finale versus Oregon on Saturday. Jill Bell, Cheri Craddock, Cameo Hicks, Maggie O'Hara, Erica Schelly and Breanne Watson will all be playing their final home game versus the Ducks. Bell, Jones and Schelly are fifth-year seniors, while Craddock, Hicks, O'Hara and Watson are wrapping up their UW careers in four years.
What To Watch:
Senior Jill Bell is currently tied for third on Washington's all-time career list for blocked shots with Karen Deden (94). She needs just seven more blocks to surpass her former teammate, Andrea Lalum (100), to move into second-place.
After losing six of seven games that included a four-game skid, the Ducks have stormed back, winning six of their last eight contests. Oregon pulled big upset over then-No. 22 California, Feb. 15, defeating the nationally ranked Golden Bears by 20 points (62-42). Oregon ended up splitting its final regular season homestand, falling to Stanford (56-74). The Ducks rebounded with their loss at Stanford to defeat Washington State, 51-34. Cicely Oaks led the team with 12 points while Eleanor Haring tallied 11 points, five rebounds, two assists and one block. Haring leads the team with 13.2 points and 5.0 rebounds per game.
All-Time Series Versus Oregon:
The all-time series between Washington and Oregon is tied at 36 games apiece dating back to 1974-75. UW has won the last two, including the earlier season meeting in Eugene (60-56). The Huskies own a 19-11 advantage over Oregon when playing in Seattle and have won the last five straight at Bank of America Arena dating back to 2002.
Earlier Season Meeting Recap - UW 60, Oregon 56:
Senior guard Cameo Hicks scored a team-high 18 points, including 11 in the final five minutes of the game, to lead Washington over Oregon, 60-56, in both teams' Pac-10 opener at McArthur Court in Eugene, Ore., Dec. 21. The win was the fifth-straight for Washington. The Ducks suffered a rare home setback and lost their second-straight game. Hicks sparked the Huskies down the stretch. After leading by as many as eight points four minutes into the second-half, the UW advantage fell to just one point, 43-42, with 6:13 remaining. After junior center Andrea Plouffe sank the first of two free-throws to give the Huskies a two-point cushion, Hicks took over scoring 11 of UW's last 16 points. With 5:16 left in the game, Hicks drove through traffic for a layin and on the Ducks' next possession stole the ball and dribbled the length of the court for another layin, giving Washington a four-point lead, 48-42. After Oregon closed the gap to within two, senior forward Maggie O'Hara drained a pair of free-throws and senior guard Cheri Craddock sank a huge three-pointer to extend the Husky lead to seven (53-46) with 2:09 remaining. The Ducks answered with a three-pointer from Kaela Chapadelaine, but Hicks responded with a trey of her own with 37.6 seconds left as UW regained its seven-point advantage (56-49). Oregon was forced to finish the game fouling the Huskies, and Hicks went to the line all three times, hitting four of the six free-throw attempts to sustain the UW lead. The high-paced second-half followed a lackluster offensive performance for both teams in the first half. UW shot just 25 percent from the field in the opening 20 minutes, with the Ducks not much better with a 33.3 percent clip. The Huskies didn't reach double-digits until there were just over six minutes until halftime. Oregon led for most of the first-half, including by as much as seven points with 7:09 left. But the Huskies finally found their stride, finishing the half on a 14-3 run. The run was sparked by junior guard Dominique Banks, playing in her first game of the season since undergoing surgery on both of her legs in September. Banks scored all seven of her points during a 9-0 run to end the first-half, including a three-pointer. Craddock made her first start of the season, contributing eight points. O'Hara led the Huskies on the boards, grabbing a season-high nine rebounds as UW outrebounded Oregon, 45-38. Hicks added eight boards and junior point guard Emily Florence grabbed six. O'Hara also finished with nine points on 3-of-5 shooting and a 3-for-3 mark from the charity stripe. Eleanor Haring led the Ducks with 17 points, and Jessie Shetters grabbed a game-high 10 boards. Tamika Nurse added 11 points for Oregon.
Last Game Recap - UW 70, OSU 59:
Seniors Cameo Hicks and Breanne Watson each scored 13 points, leading Washington to a 70-59 victory over Oregon State in Pac-10 women's basketball action at Bank of America Arena, Thursday. The victory improved Washington's overall record to 17-11 and 10-7 in the conference, while the Beavers fell to 8-18, 3-14 in the Pac-10. Coupled with USC's overtime loss at California, the Huskies moved into a tie for fourth place in the Pac-10 standings with just one more game left on the regular season docket. The Huskies have now won four of their last five games. Hicks and Watson led a balanced scoring attack for Washington, with eight Huskies scoring five or more points including eight points by junior center Andrea Plouffe and eight by redshirt-sophomore guard Stefanie Clark. Junior point guard Emily Florence tallied team-highs in rebounds (six), assists (four) and steals (three), to go along with seven points. Senior forward Maggie O'Hara also contributed five points, five rebounds and two assists. The Huskies held OSU senior and the Pac-10's leading scorer, Casey Nash, to 13 points on 4-of-16 shooting. Nash, who missed a portion of the game after a collision with UW's Maggie O'Hara while diving on the floor after a loose ball, went into the week averaging 20.0 points per game. Forward Judie Lomax notched a double-double for OSU with 13 points and 12 rebounds, while Mercedes Fox-Griffin scored 17 points and added five assists. Washington edged Oregon State by just four points in overtime in the teams' earlier sea son meeting back in December and after a close first-half it looked like this game might come down to the wire as well. The Huskies biggest lead of the half was eight points (22-14) until OSU closed the final 6:17 with a 15-4 run. The Beavers led by two (28-26) at halftime. The Huskies scored the first two buckets following the intermission and after leading by just one (35-34) at 16:27, UW went on a 10-0 run and then later tallied an 8-0 run to take as much as a 19-point lead (58-39) with 8:22 remaining in the game.
Home Sweet Home:
Washington has a long-standing tradition of playing well on its home floor, boasting an 11-3 record this season after going 12-2 last year. The Huskies had their 11-game home winning streak snapped on Jan. 11 by Stanford, before suffering a second loss to Cal on Jan. 13. UW finished 2005-06 winning its last three games on its home floor before winning its first eight this season. The streak ranked seventh in UW history, and was the longest since a 13-game winning streak from Jan. 2, 1988 through Dec. 19, 1988. Washington has an all-time record of 304-73 (80.6 winning percentage) at Bank of America Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavilion.
With its loss at then-No. 11 Stanford, Feb. 10, UW fell to 3-7 against Top-25 foes this season (counting teams ranked in either the AP or coaches polls). Two of the three wins came at home - versus then-No. 15 Texas A&M and then-No. 23 Florida State. The third was an overtime thriller at No. 20 Cal in which the Huskies came back from as much as a 19-point deficit midway through the second-half. Washington is 42-108 all-time against Top-25 opponents, including a 13-75 mark on the road (4-47 away, 1-15 neutral). These records reflect only teams ranked in the AP poll; Florida State was only ranked in the coaches poll at the time of their meeting in December. Eight of Washington's opponents this season were ranked in the preseason polls (AP/WBCA Coaches' Poll): Stanford (4/4), Ohio State (7/7), Purdue (11/13), Arizona State (13/12), Texas A&M (14/14), California (21/21), USC (22/22), and UCLA (23/23).
Top Rebounding Dawgs:
Like it has all season long, Washington leads the Pac-10 in offensive rebounding with 17.04 offensive boards per game. The Huskies own a 477-343 advantage over their opponents in offensive rebounds.
Washington also ranks second in the Pac-10 lead in steals (10.14), second in turnover margin (+4.71), third in assist/turnover ratio (0.83), third in scoring offense (72.0) and third in 3-PT FG made (4.57)...Cameo Hicks ranks fourth in the Pac-10 in scoring (17.3 ppg)...She also ranks fifth in 3-PT field goal percentage (.377) and ninth in steals (1.68)...Junior point guard Emily Florence leads the Pac-10 in steals (2.32), is second in assist-turnover ratio (2.39) and fifth in assists (3.93)...Senior guard Cheri Craddock ranks eighth in three-point FG percentage (.333).
Huskies Shuffle Lineup:
UW head coach June Daugherty used her seventh different starting lineup of the season in the Huskies' last three games. The latest starting five combination is junior point guard Emily Florence, junior guard Dominique Banks, senior guard Cameo Hicks, senior forward Maggie O'Hara and junior forward/center Andrea Plouffe. Ten different players have been inserted into the starting lineup in 2006-07, but the mainstays have been Hicks and Florence. Both Huskies have started all 28 games.
A Little Help From Their Friends:
Depth has been a key factor in UW's success this season. The Huskies rotate nearly their entire bench into each game. Ten players are averaging at least 12.4 minutes of playing time and eight players are averaging 4.8 or more points per outing.