No. 25 Bears Advance To Pac-10 Semifinals, 63-51, Over Ducks
March 3, 2007
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - Devanei Hampton had 21 points and nine rebounds and No. 25 California moved into the Pac-10 tournament semifinals with a 63-51 victory against Oregon on Saturday.
With the win, the Golden Bears (23-7) matched their second-most victories in a season - trailing only the 24 by the 1983-84 team.
Hampton, named conference player of the year on Thursday, shot 9-for-16, Natasha Vital scored 16 points and Ashley Walker added 12 points, 10 rebounds and three assists for Cal. The third-seeded Bears will play either second-seeded Arizona State or UCLA in Sunday's first semifinal.
Carolyn Ganes scored 19 points, Tamika Nurse 12 and Cicely Oaks 11 for the cold-shooting Ducks (16-13), who had won six of the previous nine meetings against Cal. The teams split their two regular-season matchups with each winning at home.
Keanna Levy hit a key 3-pointer from the left wing with 9:26 to play to give Cal a 44-38 lead, and the Bears pulled away from there to win their fourth straight and fifth in six games. They won their final three conference games with second-half comebacks, one in double overtime at Oregon State and an overtime victory at home against Southern California.
Oregon's 6-foot-6 senior Jessie Shetters, the Ducks' top rebounder who has played in three of her team's last four games, has been bothered by a sore back and could not provide the imposing inside presence she usually does. Shetters had two points, a rebound and two fouls in 11 minutes.
The sixth-seeded Ducks, who along with Cal earned a bye into Saturday's quarterfinal round, missed their first five shots and began the game 2-of-14 but Cal committed four turnovers in the initial 4 minutes. Oregon shot 34.5 percent for the game and 8-for-19 from 3-point range.
Hampton gave Cal a scare when she fell hard to the court with 13 minutes left in the opening half and grabbed at her back, but stayed in the game. After jumping out to a quick lead, Cal held a 27-26 edge at the break.
Oregon still has a strong chance to be invited to the Women's NIT.