Roundup: Stanford holds off Cal, 'Hooper Saturday' tomorrow
Crazy, crazy game on the women’s hardwood in Maples last night. The Cardinal had a 30-point lead in the second half, but Cal just wouldn’t go down without a SERIOUS fight. As it turned out, Stanford survived an epic comeback for a 70-64 victory in the Battle of the Bay opener. These two teams are back at it on Super Bowl Sunday in Berkeley, and that should be an absolute dandy.
Switching over to men’s hoops, there were a couple of juicy ones in the state of Oregon last night. In Eugene, UCLA held off Oregon in a back-and-forth road thriller. Credit Travis Wear for the game-winning shot and Kyle Anderson with the game-clinching swat.
If you thought that game was thrilling, Corvallis had one that was arguably even more nail-biting because turnover-prone Oregon State stole one in overtime from USC 76-75 after Pe’Shon Howard missed the second of two free throws with 0.9 seconds left in OT. How ‘bout that shot from Roberto Nelson to give the Beavs the lead though?
Well, no need to relive last night’s loss again, so take a look at Oregon’s Nike throwback uniforms that they will wear against Washington State on Feb. 23. But, if you are curious about the Ducks’ immediate future, history shows that the Ducks may need a dramatic 10-game run to make the NCAA tournament.
Hooper Saturday on Pac-12 Networks (five games, baby!) will be headlined by the top-ranked Wildcats’ visit to Haas Pavilion (7:30 p.m. PT), and California Golden Blogs ponders whether or not Cal can tame No. 1 Arizona. Good game preview here for the Cal side of things.
This figures to be another tough road test for the Wildcats, and while Arizona escaped Stanford with a victory, Stewart Mandel of Sports Illustrated asks “is it beneficial to be unbeaten?” Lotta pressure comes with those mounting W’s; I’m sure Cal would appreciate the Wildcats taking some of that pressure off their own backs Saturday night.
Utah is on the road at Colorado for the first game of Hooper Saturday (11 a.m. PT), and if the Runnin’ Utes want to creep back into the Pac-12 race, they will need to find a consistent third scorer. As such, the Utes are seeking help for Delon Wright and Jordan Loveridge.
That said, Colorado will be facing a new-and-improved Utah team, writes Brain Howell of BuffZone.com. Buffs need this one to stay above .500 in conference halfway through things.
USC women’s basketball is hosting the Washington schools this weekend, and Cassie Harberts has USC surpassing expectations. Cynthia Cooper’s group is all alone in second place in the Pac at 7-2.
Arizona State is right near the top of the Pac-12 women’s basketball heap, and part of that is because defense is a family affair for Promise Amukamara, whose brother Prince is a starting cornerback for the New York Giants. Charli Turner Thorne calls Promise ASU’s top defensive player.
Here’s some video of Lorenzo Romar talking about Saturday’s game at Washington State (3 p.m. PT, Pac-12 Networks). After a rough non-conference performance, the Huskies have a chance to wrap up the first half of conference play 6-3. Here is the game preview from GoHuskies.com, courtesy of Gregg Bell.
Washington State hired Steve Nugent as its new women’s soccer head coach. Nugent spent the last three years at UNC Greensboro, winning the Southern Conference regular season title in 2012. For a men’s hoops link, All Coug’d Up wonders if DaVonté Lacy should play against Washington if he’s not all the way healthy.