It's No. 11 Stanford, No. 21 Washington State In Pac-10 Semis
March 14, 2008
No. 11/11 Stanford Cardinal (25-6, 13-5 Pac-10)
- VS. -
No. 21/21 Washington State (24-7, 11-7 Pac-10)
KZSU 90.1 FM (PxP: Daniel Novinson, Analyst: Ben Spielberg)
The Opening Tip
No. 11/11 Stanford (25-6, 13-5 Pac-10) shook off its first losing streak of the season with a 75-64 victory over Arizona in Thursday's quarterfinals of the Pac-10 Tournament. The Cardinal advances to tonight's semifinals and will face No. 21/21 Washington State (24-7, 11-7 Pac-10) for a berth in tomorrow's championship game.
Stanford All-Time vs. Washington State
Stanford holds the edge at 65-55 in a series that dates back to 1916-17. The Cardinal has won nine of the last 12 meetings overall. Stanford swept the season series, notching a school-record 16th home win back on Mar. 1 with a 60-53 victory and winning a 67-65 overtime thriller in Pullman on Feb. 2 with Brook Lopez and Lawrence Hill each scoring 18 points.
Stanford All-Time In Pac-10 Tournament
Stanford is now 9-9 in Pac-10 Tournament play. Thursday's win was the Cardinal's first Pac-10 Tournament victory since a 60-58 win over Washington State back on Mar. 10, 2005.
The ability to shoot at least 40-percent from the field and hold opponents to under that same mark has been a key to victory for the Cardinal. Stanford is 18-0 when connecting at a 40-percent or better rate overall while holding its foes to a percentage under 40.
Pulling Off The Trifecta
As a result of Thursday's victory and a sweep of the season series, Stanford defeated Arizona for the third time this year. It's the first time that has happened since 2003-04, when the Cardinal won three games against both Oregon and Washington State en route to a Pac-10 Tournament title.
Cardinal Finds Scoring Balance
Stanford has placed at least three different players in double-figure scoring on 18 different occasions this year. Five different players reached double-figures in last night's win over Arizona, representing the third time that has occurred this year (five against Northwestern State on Nov. 10 and five against Harvard on Nov. 9).
Tied At The Half
Last night's game against Arizona marked the first time Stanford and its opponent were tied at halftime (35-35) in more than five years. It had not happened since Feb. 20, 2003, when Stanford and USC were deadlocked at 38-38 heading into the break. The Cardinal won that game 73-68. Stanford is 20-1 when leading at intermission and 4-5 when trailing.
25 In The Books, Looking For More
Having already surpassed last year's win total (18), Stanford has established its ninth 25-win season in program history and first since a 30-2 finish in 2003-04.
Milestones In The Making
One year after establishing the freshman single-season record for blocked shots (73), Robin Lopez is climbing the charts again. With a team-best 70 swats this year, he now ranks third all-time in the Cardinal record books with 143. Next up: Curtis Borchardt (1999-02) with 146. Meanwhile, Mitch Johnson has dished out a team-best 146 assists this year to increase his career total to 347. That's good enough for eighth on the all-time list.
Stanford has been impressive on the glass, averaging 39.0 boards per game while limiting the opposition to just 30.5 per contest. Six different players are averaging at least 4.0 rebounds per game, led by an 8.5 clip from Brook Lopez. Stanford is outrebounding its opponents by an average of +8.5 and has only been outrebounded by four teams (Fresno State, California, Washington, USC). The Cardinal pulled down 50 rebounds for the second time this year in last night's win over Arizona.
Brook Lopez Carrying The Cardinal
Brook Lopez has been Stanford's primary scoring threat since being cleared to return to competition on Dec. 17. Lopez, who has played in 22 games and made 20 starts, is leading the Cardinal in scoring (18.9 ppg) and rebounding (8.5 rpg) while shooting 47.0-percent from the field and 77.7-percent from the foul line. Lopez, who poured in a career-best 31 points against Washington on Jan. 31, has scored in double-figures in 17 consecutive games and 21 overall. He has recorded seven double-doubles on the year (including each of the last three games) while leading the Cardinal in scoring 16 times and rebounding on 12 different occasions.
Robin Lopez Productive In The Post
Robin Lopez has developed into a tremendous rebounder and intimidating defensive presence. Lopez is averaging 10.0 points and 5.5 rebounds per game while connecting at a 52.5-percent rate from the field. One year after establishing the freshman single-season record for blocked shots (73), Lopez has tallied a team-high 70 swats this year and now ranks third all-time in the Cardinal record books with 143. Lopez has scored in double-figures in eight straight games and 15 overall, including a career-high 24-point performance against Yale on Nov. 20 that featured 12 rebounds and five blocked shots.
Running The Point
One of the Cardinal's most consistent performers this season, Mitch Johnson has played in every game and made 30 starts. He has established career-highs in minutes played (31.0), scoring (6.8 ppg), rebounding (4.3 rpg) and field-goal percentage (44.2). Johnson is best known for providing his teammates with scoring chances, as evidenced by a career-best 4.7 assists per game clip. Johnson has scored in double-figures seven times, poured in a career-best 16 points in a win at California on Jan. 26 and dished out at least five assists in a game on 14 different occasions.
Magic Number: 70
Stanford is now 13-0 this year when scoring at least 70 points.