No. 11/11 Cal Opens Pac-10 Play vs. Washington, WSU
Dec. 25, 2007
BERKELEY, Calif. -
Fri., Dec. 28, vs. Washington, 8:00 p.m.
Sun., Dec. 30, vs. WSU, 2:00 p.m.
Haas Pavilion, Berkeley, Calif.
Radio: 90.7 FM/linked on CalBears.com
A full release in PDF format will follow.
A LOOK AT THE GOLDEN BEARS
No. 11/11 California (9-2) opens Pac-10 play at home against Washington (5-7) Friday, Dec. 28, at 8 p.m. and versus Washington State (3-8) Sunday, Dec. 30, at 2 p.m. at Haas Pavilion. All men's basketball Golden Bear Classic ticket holders are admitted free to Friday's game. Sunday is Cal faculty and staff appreciation day.
Cal looks to win a Pac-10 opener for the first time since beating Oregon, 61-57, Dec. 27, 2003, in Berkeley.
The Bears posted a 9-2 mark during the non-conference season, including a 5-0 record at home to push their home non-conference winning streak to 29.
Cal ranks among the top two in the Pac-10 in eight statistical categories. The Bears hold top honors in scoring defense (55.4 ppg, school record), field goal percentage defense (35.4%, school record), three-point field goal percentage (37.5%), rebounding defense (31.6 rpg, school record) and rebounding margin (+10.2 rpg, school record).
Junior forward Ashley Walker (Naismith Trophy candidate) and Alexis Gray-Lawson lead Cal in scoring at 18.1 ppg and 12.5 ppg, respectively. Walker ranks third in the conference in scoring, while Gray-Lawson is 10th.Walker paces the Pac-10 in rebounding (10.4 rpg) and offensive rebounds (4.27 rpg). Gray-Lawson leads Cal and is ranked second in the league in three-point percentage at .489 (the second-best percentage in Cal history).
Gray-Lawson showed her pre-ACL tear quickness in the win over Kansas Dec. 21, pacing the Bears with a season-high 25 points.Sophomore center Rama N'diaye has done an excellent job starting in place of Devanei Hampton, who has missed nine of 11 games this season due to a knee injury. She sat out the Kansas game as a precaution due to some swelling, and the Bears are hopeful that she'll be back in the lineup for the start of Pac-10s. N'diaye averages career-bests of 9.5 ppg and 8.7 rpg (T3rd in Pac-10).
Sophomore guards Lauren Greif and Natasha Vital complete the starting lineup. Greif tallied 10 points and led Cal with nine rebounds against the Jayhawks, and Vital added a season-high 14 points. Greif averages 7.9 ppg and 4.5 rpg after contributing 9.5 rpg over the last two games. Vital contributes 7.0 ppg and is tied for sixth in the Pac-10 in assists at 3.55 apg.
Hampton, who is a State/Farm Wade Trohy, Naismith Trophy and Wooden Award candidate, missed the first eight games of the season and averaged 7.5 ppg and 3.0 rpg off the bench against Princeton and Rutgers.
Senior forward Krista Foster, junior forward Shantrell Sneed and freshman forward/guard Kelsey Adrian have been Cal's main contributors off of the bench. Foster had a career-high eight rebounds vs. Kansas.