Defending The Crown: No. 2/2 Stanford Seeks Seventh Pac-10 Tournament Title Beginning Friday
March 9, 2010
2010 Pac-10 Tournament
No. 2/2 Stanford Cardinal (28-1, 18-0 Pac-10)
Arizona Wildcats (13-16, 6-12 Pac-10) OR Washington State Cougars (8-21, 3-15 Pac-10)
vs. Washington State - Feb. 14, 2010 (Stanford 98, Washington State 67) - Pullman, Wash.
STANFORD, Calif. - Stanford will go for its seventh Pac-10 Tournament title this weekend as it heads to Los Angeles for the 2010 edition of the event. The Cardinal, once again the top seed in the draw, have earned a bye into Friday's quarterfinal round, where at 1:15 p.m. it will face the winner of Thursday's Arizona-Washington State play-in game. Friday's contest will be broadcast 90.1 KZSU with David Lombardi on the call. Friday's contest will also be streamed live at www.pac-10.org & www.10teams1trophy.com.
Last Time Out
The Cardinal capped a perfect 18-0 Pac-10 season last Saturday with a 63-48 victory over cross-Bay rival California in Berkeley. Despite missing All-America center Jayne Appel due to a sprained right ankle, the Cardinal still excelled as forwards Nnemkadi Ogwumike (10-for-15 shooting, 22 points, 14 rebounds) and Kayla Pedersen (9-for-15 shooting, 23 points, 10 rebounds) teamed up to score 45 of the team's 63 points. Freshman forward Joslyn Tinkle made her first collegiate start and did not disappoint, hitting a pair of triples while scoring eight points and grabbing nine rebounds. Tinkle also handed out two assists and was a significant presence on the defensive end, blocking a game-high three shots. As a result of the victory, the Cardinal secured its fifth perfect Pac-10 season in program history (1989, `96, `97, `02, `09).
Scouting The Quarterfinal Opponents
Stanford's potential quarterfinal opponents, Arizona (13-16, 6-12 Pac-10) and Washington State (8-21, 3-15 Pac-10), enter Thursday's play-in game from somewhat different directions. The Wildcats enter the tournament on a five-game losing streak after a stretch of four wins in five games over the first half of February, while the Cougars, after dropping 12 of its first 13 Pac-10 games, have managed impressive victories over USC and Oregon over its final five games heading into Thursday.
All-Time Against Arizona And Washington State
Stanford leads the all-time series against Arizona, 52-12, as well as Washington State, 50-0. The Cardinal swept the season series against both the Wildcats and Cougars.
A Look At The National Rankings
After finishing the Pac-10 regular season 18-0, Stanford remained No. 2 in this week's Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN Coaches' Polls.
National Stat Rankings
Through March 7, Stanford is ranked in the national top 20 in the following categories: rebound margin (+12.4 - second), scoring margin (+23.3 - second), field-goal percentage (47.9 - third), field-goal percentage defense (33.9 - third), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.24 - fourth), three-point field goal defense (26.1 - sixth), fouls per game (13.3 - seventh), assists (17.93 apg - seventh), scoring (78.0 - ninth), scoring defense (54.7 - 13th) and turnovers per game (14.4 - 16th). Nnemkadi Ogwumike is fourth in the nation with a 63.8 shooting percentage.
Pac-10 Stat Rankings
Through March 7, Stanford leads the conference in 13 statistical categories: scoring margin (+23.3), scoring defense (54.9), field-goal percentage (47.9), field-goal percentage defense (33.9), rebounding (45.1 rpg), rebounding margin (+12.4), three-point field-goal percentage defense (26.1), free throw percentage (73.5), defensive rebounding (30.8), defensive rebound percentage (70.7), assists (17.93), assist-to-turnover margin (1.24) and blocked shots (4.62).
Individually, Nnemkadi Ogwumike leads the Pac-10 with a 63.8 shooting percentage, is second with 18.2 points per game and is third with 9.4 rebounds per game. Kayla Pedersen is fourth with 9.0 rebounds a game. Jayne Appel is second with 9.9 rebounds per game and 1.89 blocks per game. Jeanette Pohlen is second in the conference with 4.54 assists per game and leads the loop with an assist-to-turnover ratio of 1.95.
Stanford At The Pac-10 Tournament
Stanford enters this weekend's Pac-10 Tournament seeking its seventh title in the nine-year history of the event (2003-05, 07-09). Thanks to its perfect 18-0 Pac-10 record this season, the Cardinal has now been the tournament's top seed in all nine editions of the event. In reaching the championship game in every edition of the tournament, Stanford has played the most Pac-10 Tournament games out of all conference teams with 24, and has posted a remarkable 22-2 record in those contests.
The Cardinal Players Shine At The Pac-10 Tournament
Stanford's roster knows it is time to step things up once March rolls around, and the Pac-10 Tournament always offers the Cardinal players their first chance to kick it into postseason gear. That extra effort that the Cardinal puts in at the tournament shows in the all-time All-Pac-10 Tournament Teams and Most Outstanding Player lists. Over the previous eight editions of the event, Stanford has had a whopping 18 players named to the All-Pac-10 Tournament Team, and has captured the Most Outstanding Player honor seven times. Nicole Powell (2002-04) and Candice Wiggins (2005, 07-08) have each captured the award three times, while Kayla Pedersen is the reigning MOP, having won it at last year's tournament.
Unbeaten And Unblemished
Last Saturday's 63-48 victory over California clinched for Stanford a perfect 18-0 Pac-10 record, the program's fifth overall and first since 2002. Stanford had previously gone 18-0 in conference play in 1989, `96-97 and in 2002. The Cardinal is currently the only team in the conference to ever post a perfect 18-0 record and this weekend it will have yet another chance to make history, attempting to become the first conference team to ever go 18-0 in Pac-10 play and capture the Pac-10 Tournament title.
Ogwumike Headlines The Pac-10 Media Awards
Forward Nnemkadi Ogwumike took home her first piece of hardware this postseason, being named Pac-10 Player of the Year by the conference's women's basketball writers as the Pac-10 media awards were announced by the conference on Tuesday. Ogwumike headlined the field as the leading vote-getter, while fellow starters Jayne Appel, Kayla Pedersen and Jeanette Pohlen joined her on the media's All-Pac-10 Team. The fifth member of the starting five, redshirt senior guard Rosalyn Gold-Onwude, was named to the media's All-Defensive Team.
Seize The Moment
With Jayne Appel sitting out last Saturday's regular-season finale at California due to a sprained right ankle, fellow standouts Nnemkadi Ogwumike and Kayla Pedersen took full advantage of the chance to cement their status as elite performers. The duo teamed up to carry the Cardinal's offensive load, combining to score 45 of the team's 63 points in the 63-48 victory in Berkeley. Ogwumike went 10-for-15 from the field, scoring 22 points and pulled down a game-high 14 rebounds, making a strong final statement in her case to become Stanford's 14th Pac-10 Player of the Year. Pedersen, though, presented a convincing appeal of her own, going 9-for-15 from the field for a game-high 23 points and grabbing 10 rebounds for her 10th double-double of the year, matching Ogwumike's total. Overall, the towering duo's performance showed that Stanford's frontcourt will be in good hands not only for the 2010 postseason, but also for next season, following Appel's graduation.
Memorable First Start
Freshman center Joslyn Tinkle got the call for her first collegiate start Saturday at California, due to Jayne Appel's sprained ankle, and responded with a solid line in the Cardinal's 63-48 win. The Missoula, Mont. native played a season-high 34 minutes in the win, hitting a pair of three-pointers in her 3-for-8 day form the field while scoring eight points and grabbing nine rebounds. Tinkle also made her presence felt in the defensive paint, turning away three California shots to lead all players.