No. 25 UCLA Welcomes Arizona Schools
March 3, 2010
****GAME #28: Thu., Mar 4, 2010
OPPONENT: Arizona State
SITE: Pauley Pavilion
TIP-OFF: 7:00 p.m.
TALENT: Dave Marcus and Michael Sondheimer
***GAME #29: Sat., Mar 6, 2010
SITE: Pauley Pavilion
TIP-OFF: 12:30 p.m.
AUDIO: 1150 am / uclabruins.com
TALENT: Dave Marcus and Michael Sondheimer
Bruins Host ASU, Arizona
UCLA (20-7, 13-3) has now won 10 of its last 11 games (a season-high six in a row - the Bruins won seven in a row last year) after posting a pair of wins last week in Oregon. Sophomore Jasmine Dixon was named Pac-10 Player of the Week for her exploits in the two victories.
UCLA will host Arizona State (17-10, 9-7) on Thursday at 7 p.m. and Arizona (13-14, 6-10), on Senior Day, on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. in the regular season finale in Pauley Pavilion.
The Votes Are in - No. 25 Bruins
The Bruins have received votes in the two major Top-25 polls in each of the last three weeks (2/15-3/1). For those counting, UCLA was tabbed as the No. 25 team in the ESPN/ USA Today Coaches Poll and received 27 votes in this week's AP Poll (28th). This is UCLA's first listing in the poll since it was ranked No. 19 in the Nov. 20, 2006 ESPN/USA Today poll.
UCLA Clinches 2nd in Pac-10
UCLA has clinched second-place in the Pac-10 regular season standings and will play its first game in the Conference Tournament at 7:15 p.m. on Friday, March 12 over at the Galen Center. The Bruins, the #2 seed, will face the winner of the #7 seed-#10 seed game to be played on Thursday, March 11th at 6 p.m.. The #2 seed is UCLA's highest ever for the tournament, which began in 2001-02.
The second-place finish is UCLA's best since it captured a share of first-place in the 1998-99 season, which is the Bruins' lone Pac-10 title. UCLA has finished second (tied) in the Pac-10 conference, once before, in 1997-98.
Strong Pac-10 Start
UCLA's 13 -3 start to the conference schedule is its best in the Pac-10 since the 1998-99 team won 13 of its first 15 conference games on the way to a 15-3 finish.
The Bruins' 7-2 first half Pac-10 start was the team's best since it began the 1999-00 conference season with six consecutive wins and also finished with a 7-2 mark. In 1998-99, UCLA opened with nine straight wins in Pac-10 play. The Bruins have had only three previous Pac-10 first half results with seven or more wins (7-2 in 1999-00; 9-0 in 1998-99; 7-2 in 1997-98; note -- first Pac-10 season was 1986-87).
The Bruins are now 6-1 in the second-half of Pac-10 conference play. UCLA has won as many as seven Pac-10 second-half games on three previous occasions, each with a 7-2 record, and all three have helped put them into the NCAA Tournament (2005-06, 2003-04, 1997-98).
Home Sweet Home
Under second-year head coach Nikki Caldwell, the Bruins have posted an 23-5 record (.821) on their home court of Pauley Pavilion. Three of those five losses have been by four points or less.
About The Opponents
The Bruins hold a 42-25 edge in the series with Arizona State. UCLA captured the first meeting of the season between the schools to snap a seven-game Sun Devil series win streak, which includes the last three contests played in Pauley.
The Bruins own a 44-19 advantage in the series with the Wildcats. UCLA has won the last five meetings. The 'Cats feature one of the nation's top freshman scorers in guard Davellyn White (16.1 - sixth in Pac-10) and the Pac-10 top rebounder in Ify Ibekwe (11.6 rpg).
Last Time Vs. The Sun Devils
Jan. 3, 2010 in Tempe, AZ --- UCLA led from start to finish, forced 27 ASU turnovers, and used 24 points from Markel Walker and 21 from Jasmine Dixon to run past then #19/17-ranked Arizona State. The win completed the first sweep of the Arizona schools since the 1999-2000 season. It was UCLA's first win over ASU in Tempe since Jan. 2003 and snapped a seven-game Sun Devil win streak in the series.
Last Time Vs. The Wildcats
Jan. 1, 2010 in Tucson, AZ --- UCLA used Doreena Campbell's 16 second-half points to help rally past Arizona 67-58 in the Pac-10 opener. The Bruins trailed 28-23 at the half after the Wildcats put together a 19-0 run. UCLA then utilized a decisive 12-0 run a little over midway through the second half to move past the Wildcats. Darxia Morris added 18 points for the Bruins.
Dixon Sees 30/20
Sophomore Jasmine Dixon tallied 31 points and 20 rebounds in the win at Oregon (2/27). Only one other time in UCLA women's history has a player reached the 30/20 levels - Natalie Williams with 32/25 in a 1994 game against Arizona State.
Dixon's 20 points in the win over Oregon earlier this season in Pauley was her third-straight game of 20 or more points at the time. Noelle Quinn (now with the Sparks) was the last Bruin to reach 20 points in three or more consecutive games (six straight in 2005-06). Dixon has scored in double digits in 14 of the last 16 games. The Bruins own a record of 16-4 in her 19 games.
Nine in Top 55 In NCAA Stats
The Bruin team began the week listed in the Top 55 of the latest NCAA national rankings (from Feb. 28) in nine categories - 13th in rebound margin (7.3), 28th in field goal% (44.1), 30th in scoring margin (12.3), 31st in steals/g (10.6), 32nd in scoring defense (56.7), 43rd in fg% defense (36.6), 44th in turnover ratio (3.0), 54th in 3-point fg defense (29.3), 55th in assists/g (14.8). (Note-332 teams ranked).
This And That ...
The Bruins are 16-0 this season when scoring at least 64 points in a game and have won their last 19 straight games under Coach Nikki Caldwell when hitting the 64-point mark ... UCLA is 16-4 this season since transfer Jasmine Dixon made her UCLA debut on Dec. 15 ... The Bruins shot 55.2% at Oregon State and have now shot better than 50% in nine games this season, all wins ... The Bruins are now 30-3 under Coach Caldwell in games in which they have held the opponent to 60 points or less ... UCLA has finished with more than 13 Pac-10 conference wins in two seasons--- 1998-99 (15 - T1st), in 1997-98 (14 - T2nd) when Maylana Martin was the leading scorer on both teams, averaging ove 18 ppg... UCLA has finished with 20 wins or more in four previous seasons since Pac-10 play began in 1986-87--- 2005-06 (21), 1998-99 (26), 1997-98 (20), 1991-92 (21) and has advanced to the NCAA Tournament in each of those seasons --- note: UCLA also had 20-win seasons in 1984-85 (20), 1980-81(29), 1978-79 (24), 1977-78 (27), 1976-77 (20).
The Bruins have held opponents in 24 of 27 games to 70 points or less, 23 opponents to 65 points or less and 19 to 60 points or less. UCLA held eight straight opponents to less than 60 points earlier this season, one shy of the school record stretch of nine set in the 1974-75 season.
In addition, the Bruins have limited the last 32 opponents to less than 50% shooting. Opponents are shooting .366 against the Bruins. Eighteen opponents have shot less than 40% this season and just one has shot over 44% (at UW - 46%). Opponents are scoring 56.7 ppg. Both opponent marks - shooting % and scoring defense - approach or would set the school record totals of .355 in 1976-77 for shooting % and 59.7 ppg in 1976-77.
The 21.7 fg% shot by Cal (2/6) was an opponent season-low and the fourth time this season the Bruins have held an opponent to less than 30% shooting (at Cal, at WSU, Cal, Utah).
In Coach Caldwell's two seasons at the helm, her Bruin teams have held 33 opponents to 60 points or less, 11 opponents to 50 points or less and four to 40 points or less. UCLA has held two opponents to sub-40 scoring games this season - Cal with 32 and Utah with 33.
A Look On the Other Side
The combined record of the six teams the Bruins have lost to this season is 124-41 (75% --Stanford 27-1, @Tennessee 27-2, Illinois State 22-5, @Kansas 15-12, Texas Tech 17-10, @USC 16-11. Records as of 3/1). The seven losses have been by a combined total of 58 points (average of 8.3 points).
The sweep of the Oregon schools marked the third time in school history that UCLA has swept three Pac-10 road series (at Arizona, at Washington, at Oregon schools, (also 1991-92 and 1987-88). The wins improved the Bruin conference road win total to seven on the year. That matches the most games a Bruin team has ever won on the road in Pac-10 play (also in 1998-99, 1997-98).
Crowd Takes The Fifth
The attendance at this year's USC game of 8,006 ranked as the fifth-largest in UCLA women's history and the fourth time the Bruins have drawn at least 8,000 fans for a game with USC.
For the second year in a row, and just the fourth time in school history, the Bruins have achieved the 14-victory plateau by Feb. 1 on the calendar. The only other times, in addition to last season (14), were in 1998-99 (17) and 1980-81 (19).
Forward Jasmine Dixon was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week (2/22) for her performance against the Oregon schools. The sophomore transfer recorded a 31-point, 20-rebound effort at Oregon to help the Bruins overcome a 16-point second-half deficit and take home a 91-75 win. It was the second game in UCLA history in which a Bruin player has reached the 30 point /20 rebound levels in a game -- Natalie Williams scored 32 and grabbed 25 boards versus Arizona State in 1994. Earlier in the week, Dixon added a 17 -point, five steal performance at Oregon State, in which she played just 16 minutes due to foul trouble.