This Week In Pac-10 Men's Basketball

Feb. 23, 2009

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HUSKIES HOLD SLIM LEAD

With two weeks remaining in the regular season, WASHINGTON holds a a half game lead over surging ARIZONA STATE, which has won five in a row. Those two teams meet Thursday in Seattle... CALIFORNIA and UCLA remain one and one-half games back with the Bears and Bruins set to meet Saturday in Berkeley... The Conference is 92-29 (.760) in non-league play this season... This week's Top 25 rankings include ARIZONA STATE (No. 14 AP/No. 11 ESPN/USA Today), WASHINGTON (No. 21/No. 21), and UCLA (No. 22/No. 19).

THIS WEEK'S SCHEDULE

Thurs., Feb. 26
Arizona at Washington State, 6 p.m. FSN NW/AZ
Series: ARIZ leads, 51-13. Streak: ARIZ 3
No. 14 Arizona State at No. 21 Washington, 8 p.m. FSN NW/AZ
Series: ASU leads, 34-32. Streak: WASH 1
USC at California, 7:30 p.m. CSN W
Series: CAL leads, 125-117. Streak: USC 2
No. 22 UCLA at Stanford, 7:30 p.m. FSN PT/CSN BA
Series: UCLA leads, 130-89. Streak: UCLA 5

Sat., Feb. 28
Arizona at No. 21 Washington, 12 noon FSN
Series: ARIZ leads, 42-22. Streak: ARIZ 1
No. 14 Arizona State at Washington State, 2 p.m. FSN NW/AZ
Series: Series tied, 32-32. Streak: WSU 5
USC at Stanford, 5 p.m.
Series: USC leads, 122-112. Streak: USC 2
UCLA at California, 6 p.m. ESPN
Series: UCLA leads, 129-95. Streak: UCLA 4

Sun., Mar. 1
Oregon State at Oregon, 7 p.m. FSN
Series: OSU leads, 181-149. Streak: OSU 1

Tip times are local to site. Associated Press Rankings.

Around the league... ARIZONA junior F Chase Budinger has excelled the last eight games, averaging 19.5 points, 8.1 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 2.0 steals during that span. Over the last four games, Arizona is shooting 39-of-77 (.506) from three-point range to increase its season percentage to 40 percent. That ranks third in the Pac-10, 11th nationally. Only in four other seasons did Arizona shoot 40 percent or better from beyond the arc (1988, 1989, 1995, 2005)... ARIZONA STATE has now won four straight over Arizona. It's the longest streak for the Sun Devils over the Wildcats since winning nine straight from 1980-83. The Sun Devils are riding a five-game winning streak. The last time ASU won five straight in Pac-10 play (within the same season) was during its Sweet Sixteen season in 1994-95. The last time it had a longer streak was during the 1980-81 season when it won 11 consecutive Pac-10 games. Over the last six games, senior F Jeff Pendergraph is averaging 15.2 points and 10.2 rebounds. During that span, he's shooting 34-of-49 (.694) from the field and 23-of-30 (.767) from the free throw line... CALIFORNIA posted its first 20-win season since 2005-06. Junior F Jamal Boykin tallied his fourth double-double of the season with 11 points and a career-high matching 14 rebounds in the win at Oregon. He's ninth in the league in rebounds, averaging 6.6 rebounds per game. He's also contributing at the free throw line where he's made 16 of his last 18 attempts (.889). The Bears continue to lead the nation in three-point accuracy, shooting 44.2 percent... OREGON snapped its 14-game losing streak with a 68-60 win over Stanford. The Ducks look to post back-to-back league wins as Oregon State visits on Saturday. Oregon has won the last 15 meetings with the Beavers at Mac Court. The last Oregon State victory in Eugene was a 54-48 decision during the 1992-93 season... At 7-8 in Pac-10 play, OREGON STATE has posted its most wins in league play since 2004-05 when it finished in fifth place at 8-10. The Beavers swept the season series with both Stanford and California for the first time since the 1989-90 season. Over the weekend, the Oregon State defense held Stanford's leading scorer Anthony Goods (16.4 ppg) scoreless and California's leading scorer Jerome Randle (18.4 ppg) to three points... STANFORD junior F Landry Fields is shooting 33-of-55 (.600) from the field over the last five games, averaging 16.8 points and 7.0 rebounds. With 488 career assists, senior G Mitch Johnson needs three more to move into third all-time in the Stanford record book. Only two Stanford players have posted 500 or more assists in their careers - Brevin Knight (780 assists, 1993-97) and Keith Ramee (513 assists, 1982-86)... UCLA senior C Alfred Aboya, who missed two days of practice last week with the flu, responded with a pair of double-doubles as he posted an identical 13 points and 11 rebounds against Washington and Washington State. Junior F Nikola Dragović is shooting 38-of-81 (.469) from three-point range in Pac-10 play. Since elevated to a starter at USC (Jan. 11), he's hit 36-of-73 (.493) from long range. Senior G Darren Collison is averaging 21.0 points and 5.0 assists over the last three games, while shooting 24-of-43 (.558) from the field. With the win over Washington, the Bruins posted their 45th 20-win season in school history... USC junior guards Daniel Hackett and Dwight Lewis are piling up the minutes played. Over the last four games, each has played 154 minutes (38.5 minutes per game). They rank fourth and fifth in the league, averaging 36.5 and 35.6 minutes, respectively... WASHINGTON junior F Quincy Pondexter has scored in double figures in each of the last six games. Over that span, he's shooting 40-of-66 (.606) to average 17.7 points, while posting 6.2 rebounds per game. He needs nine points to reach 1,000 points for his career. He'd become the third Husky on the squad with 1,000 or more points, joining seniors Jon Brockman (1,679) and Justin Dentmon (1,368)... WASHINGTON STATE senior F Caleb Forrest scored 12 points on 6-of-8 shooting in the win at UCLA. In two games vs. the Bruins this season, Forrest is shooting 14-of-17 (.824) from the field and averaging 15.5 points. For the year, he's averaging 6.4 points per game and shooting 50.4 percent. With 58 three-pointers this season, freshman G Klay Thompson needs four more to match the WSU freshman record of 62 set by Bennie Seltzer in 1990. With the 82-81 win at UCLA, it was just the fourth time in 181 games over the last six seasons that WSU allowed more than 80 points in regulation, but this marks the first time the Cougars were on the winning end. In the 2002-03 season, the year before the arrival of the Bennetts, the Cougars were 0-12 in games in which their opponent scored 80 or more points in regulation.

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