UCLA Women's Basketball Travels East To Face ODU, Ohio State

Dec. 12, 2000

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Next Up -- The Bruins will travel East for a pre-Christmas trip to face Old Dominion (2-3) on Dec. 18 and Ohio State (6-0) on Dec. 21.

ODU leads the series with the Bruins, 7-4, but UCLA has won the last two meetings in the series which dates back to 1977, including a 82-76 decision last year in Pauley Pavilion. Hamchetou Maiga, a 6-1 senior forward, leads three Monarchs in double- figure scoring, averaging 18.6 points. ODU was ranked in the Top 25 to begin the season but has lost pre-season All-America and last year's leading scorer Lucienne Berthieu to injury. ODU bested St. John's 65-52 in their last game on Dec. 7.

Ohio State is off to a 6-0 start. LaToya Turner, the 2000 Big 10 Freshman of the Year, is one of the nation' top young talents. The 6-4 sophomore center averages over 19 points and eight rebounds per game. The Buckeyes have games to play with Bowling Green (Dec. 12), Arkansas-Pine Bluff (Dec. 16) and Akron (Dec. 19) before meeting the Bruins. OSU leads the series, 3-1, and won the last meeting, 91-80, in a game played in Columbus in 1992.

Radio -- There will be no UCLA radio broadcast of these two road games.

Greco Atop Pac-10 Conference In Scoring -- Junior guard Michelle Greco took over the Pac-10 Conference scoring lead after her 34-point performance against Long Beach State. Greco leads all conference players with a scoring average of 20.1. She also ranks third in free throw percentage (.864, 19-22) and fourth in three-point field goals made (1.71 per game). Nationally, Greco ranks 27th in scoring.

Porter Expected To Join Team At ODU, Jones Sees First Action vs. LBSU -- Two of UCLA's finest athletes will suit up for the Bruins during this East Coast-swing - three-sport standout Kristee Porter and two-sport athlete Whitney Jones. Porter is a star player on the UCLA volleyball team, earning all-district and all-conference honors her first two seasons and All-America honors in 1999. She has set numerous UCLA and Pac-10 records in just three seasons. Porter also competes in the triple jump for the UCLA women's track and field team and qualified for the Pac-10 Championships in that event. Jones, a starting midfielder for the UCLA women's soccer team, just ended her season two weeks ago in the NCAA championship game, which the Bruins lost, 2-1, to reigning champ North Carolina. She saw her first action for the basketball team on Dec. 10 against Long Beach State and scored two points and grabbed three rebounds.

Bruins Face One of Nation's Toughest Schedules in 2000-2001 -- Seven non-conference games (Duke, Utah, BYU, San Diego, Old Dominion, Pepperdine and Georgia) will be played against teams which earned bids to the 2000 NCAA tournament. The Bruins will face NCAA tournament teams from the Pac-10 in Oregon, Arizona and Stanford, as well as WNIT teams from New Mexico, Long Beach St., Arizona St. and USC. Trips to Colorado and Ohio St. are also on tap.

Bruins Picked To Finish Fifth In Pac-10 -- The Pac-10 women's basketball media picked UCLA to finish fifth in the conference in a pre-season poll. Stanford was the media's No. 1 choice, followed by Oregon, USC, Arizona, UCLA, Arizona State, Washington, California, Oregon State and Washington State.

A Look at UCLA -- Five letterwinners, including two who have earned All-Pac-10 honors in past seasons return. Guards LaCresha Flannigan (All-Conf. in 1999) and Michelle Greco (hon. mention All-Conf. in 2000) offer the most experience of the returners for the Bruins. Sophomore guard Natalie Nakase came off the bench in 11 games last season. Forward Natalie Jarrett missed the start of the 2000 season while recovering from knee surgery and appeared in eight games overall. Guard Jalina Bradley, who missed 12 games with a stress fracture of the foot, saw limited action in nine games. Volleyball All-American Kristee Porter will also return to the team after redshirting last season.
Newcomers include three freshmen and three players from the Texas junior college ranks. Shalada Allen (Kilgore College) and Malika Leatham (Blinn College) will help solidify the Bruin post position. Stacy Robertson (Kilgore College) is a very capable perimeter shooter. Freshmen Jamila Veasley (Valley Christian HS) and Whitney Jones (San Clemente HS) will see action in the Bruin frontcourt. Gennifer Arranaga is a guard from Centennial HS in Corona, CA.

Head Coach Kathy Olivier -- Having just completed her seventh season (entered the 2000-01 season with a 115-85 overall record) as UCLA head coach, Kathy Olivier has steadily built the program to reflect her own positive, upbeat and outgoing personality. In 2000, she saw her team reach the NCAA tournament for a third-straight season, a school record. The squad also set a school home attendance record by averaging over 3,700 fans. Maylana Martin became just the third player to ever earn All-Pac-10 honors in four straight seasons. Olivier became just the second coach at UCLA and the 11th in the Pac-10 to earn victory number 100, which came against San Diego State.
In 1999, she led her Bruin team to the school's first ever Pac-10 conference title and an unprecedented second consecutive NCAA tournament appearance for the program. The team totaled the most wins (26) since the 1981 season and advanced further in the NCAA tournament (Regional final) than any previous UCLA team. The team put together back-to-back 20-win seasons for the first time since the 1970's. In addition, the 1999 Bruin team finished with its highest ranking ever (No. 7) in the USA Today poll.
In 1998, she guided UCLA to what was then its best finish ever (tie for second) in the Pac-10, its best winning percentage in the last 17 seasons and the first 20-win season since 1992.

The 1999-00 Bruins Highlights --
*The Bruins advanced to the NCAA tournament for a school record third straight time
*The Bruins won at least 18 games in back-to-back-to back seasons for the first time since they did it in the 1979 (24)-80 (18)-81 (29) seasons.
*The team set a home attendance record by averaging over 3,700 fans per game
*Maylana Martin became the second-leading scorer in school history
* Janae Hubbard and Marie Philman joined the 1,000-point club
* Martin became just the third player in Pac-10 history to be named all-conference in four straight seasons

UCLA Finishes 2000 with 18-11 Record and School's Third Straight NCAA Appearance -- Coach Kathy Olivier's UCLA women's basketball team advanced to the NCAA tournament for a third straight year last season, a first for the Bruin program, and its seventh overall trip to the Big Dance. The 18 wins also marked the first time the Bruin program had won as many as 18 games in three straight seasons (26 in 1999, 20 in 1998) since the 1979 (24), 1980 (18) and 1981 (29) seasons.

Player Bio Updates

#1 Natalie Nakase -- Ranks fourth in the Pac-10 in assists with an average of 4.57 ...Also ranks eighth in steals (2.0 per game) ...Starter in all seven games ... Recorded career-highs in points (seven) and assists (seven) at Colorado and matched the exact totals in the next game vs. Long Beach ...Made a career-best six steals vs. Long Beach ... Handed out six assists at BYU ... Made her first career starts in the Women's Sports Foundation Classic against Duke and New Mexico ... Saw action for 31 minutes against both teams ... Had five assists against New Mexico ... Added three assists versus Duke ... Matched her then-career high with three points in each contest ...Saw action in 11 games off the bench last season ... Knows the system well. Career Highs: Points - 7, last vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Rebounds - 2, last vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Assists - 7, last vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Steals - 6, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00.

#4 Kristee Porter -- Volleyball All-American who is expected to join the team in time for the Old Dominion game ... Saw action in four games during the 1999 season and redshirted last year ... Also a member of the track team and has scored at the Conference championship meet in the triple jump. Career Highs: Points - 7, vs. Pepperdine, 12-30-98, Rebounds - 7, vs. Pepperdine, 12-30-98, Blocks - 1, last vs. Pepperdine, 12-30-98, Steals - 1, vs. ASU, 1-5-99.

#5 Melissa Maurin -- Second-year student who walked on to the team ... Has seen action in three games ... Played at Don Lugo High School in Chino, CA ... Came off the bench in the New Mexico game to see her first action, but did not score in five minutes of play ... Did not score in two minutes against Utah ... Younger brother Ty is a midfielder on the UCLA men's soccer team.

#10 Whitney Jones -- Starting midfielder on the soccer team who began practice on Dec. 6 and played for the first time vs. Long Beach State (2 points, 3 rebounds) ... Helped lead the Bruin soccer team to the NCAA Championship game for the first time in school history ...League Player of the Year last season at San Clemente High School ... Holds the school record for points in a game, steals in a season and single-season field goal percentage ... Team advanced to the CIF finals her junior season. Career Highs: Points - 2, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Rebounds - 3, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Steals - 2, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00.

#13 Gennifer Arranaga -- Ranks third on the team in scoring with a 7.1 average ...Rated fourth in the conference in steals (2.43 average) and fifth in free throw percentage (.824) ... Has appeared in all seven games off the bench ... Pulled down a career-high five rebounds and scored 11 points with two steals at Colorado ...Poured in a career-high 13 points vs. USD ... Had six points and four rebounds at BYU ... Scored nine points with four steals and three rebounds against Utah ...Had seven points and three steals off the bench in the opener against Duke in her first game action as a Bruin ... Outstanding athlete who helped her Centennial High School team to a pair of league titles ... Served as team captain her last two prep seasons ... Advanced to the finals of the 100-meter event at the CIF meet as a prep freshman. Career Highs: Points - 13, vs. San Diego, 11-28-00, Rebounds - 5, at Colorado, 12-2-00, Assists - 2, at BYU, 11-25-00, Steals - 4, vs. Utah, 11-17-00.

#14 Natalie Jarrett -- Starter in five games ... Ranked in the Top 20 in the Pac-10 in rebounding (4.9 average) ...Had nine points and five boards in 20 minutes of play against Utah ... Came off the bench to grab a team-leading seven rebounds against New Mexico ... In the opener against Duke, she had a team-high and career-best seven rebounds ...Appeared in eight games last season ... Saw her first action on Dec. 17 at Cal State Fullerton ... Missed the first six games of the 1999-2000 season while recovering from off-season knee surgery ... Had best of six points vs. Washington last season. Career Highs: Points - 9, vs. Utah, 11-17-00, Rebounds - 7, last at UNM, 11-11-00, Blocks - 1, last vs. OSU, 1-27-00, Steals - 2, last vs. San Diego, 11-28-00.

#20 Michelle Greco -- Leading scorer for UCLA and the Pac-10 with a 20.1 average ...Scored a career-high 34 points to key the Bruin win over Long Beach, including 25 in the second half ... Led UCLA with 15 points and recorded a season-high five assists at Colorado ... Had 18 points vs. San Diego ... Had 22 points and five steals in the season opener against Duke ... Named to the all-tournament team of the Women's Sports Foundation Classic in New Mexico ...Scored a then career-high 28 points against New Mexico despite leaving the game with a sprained right ankle with over five minutes to play ... Re-aggravated the ankle five minutes into the contest with Utah and did not score in 17 minutes of play ...Returned to action at BYU and scored a team-high 24 points ... Matched her career-best with eight boards at BYU ... Has now scored an average of 16.8 points in her 16 career starts (269 points) ... Last year, she was selected to the honorable mention all-conference team ... Starter in six games last season and for a total of nine for her career entering the current season ... Third in the Pac-10 last season in steals (2.2) and hit 86% of her free throws ... Ranked second on the team in assists in each of her first two seasons ... Scored a then career-best 26 points at Stanford last year. Career Highs: Points - 34, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00 Rebounds - 8, last at BYU, 11-25-00, Assists - 7, last vs. WSU, 1-9-00, Steals - 7, last at Stanford, 2-3-00.

#21 Jalina Bradley -- Starter in all seven games ... Had seven points and a career-high three steals in the win over Long Beach ... Scored 10 points on 4-6 shooting and had career-highs in rebounds (five) and steals (two) at Colorado ... Led the Bruins against Utah with career-highs in points (12) and assists (five) ...Made her first career start in the season opener against Duke and scored eight points ...Played in nine games last season ... Missed 12 games in mid-season after fracturing her right foot ... Had a high game of four points vs. Washington ... Hit all four of her free throws last season. Career Highs: Points - 12, vs. Utah, 11-17-00, Rebounds - 5, at Colorado, 12-2-00, Assists - 5, vs. Utah, 11-17-00, Steals - 3, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00.

#30 Kelly Tiao -- Freshman who walked on to the team ... Played in high school at Cerritos (CA) High School.

#32 Malika Leatham -- Starter in all seven games ... Ranks amongst the Top 20 in the conference in rebounding (5.3 average) and in the Top 10 in blocked shots (0.86 average) ... Scored a career-high 16 points and blocked a career-best five shots in the win over Long Beach ... Also matched her career-high in rebounds with eight vs. the Beach ... Posted then career-bests in points (12) and rebounds (8) vs. San Diego ... Pulled down a team-best six boards at Colorado ... Scored seven points and grabbed three rebounds at BYU before fouling out ...Had eight points and five rebounds against Utah ...Started both games in the Women's Sports Foundation Classic, battling foul trouble in both contests ... Transfer from Blinn Junior College in Texas ... Ranked eighth in Region XIV in rebounding last season ... Second on her team with 46 blocked shots ... Scored a career-best 20 points vs. Western Texas as a freshman. UCLA Career Highs: Points - 16, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Rebounds - 8, last vs. LBSU, 12-10-00 Blocks - 5, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Steals - 3, vs. Duke, 11-10-00.

#33 Shalada Allen -- Pulled down a career-high seven rebounds vs. Long Beach State ... Recorded a UCLA-high 14 points with three boards and two steals at Colorado ...Did not play against Utah due to a sprained thumb ...Returned to action at BYU and came off the bench for two points and three rebounds ... Scored six and had two rebounds before fouling out in a starting role against New Mexico ... Came off the bench to scored six points and grab five rebounds versus Duke ... Scored eight points with five boards and had a team-high three steals vs. Slovakia ...Transfer from Kilgore Junior College in Texas ... Ranked 10th last season in Region XIV in both scoring and rebounding ... Scored a career-best 36 points against TVCC. UCLA Career Highs: Points - 14, at Colorado, 12-2-00, Rebounds - 7, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Assists - 1, at UNM, 11-11-00, Steals - 3, vs. Duke, 11-10-00.

#35 Jamila Veasley -- Matched her season-best with six points and had a career-best eight rebounds, including five offensive boards, vs. Long Beach ... Had a season-best six points at BYU, including a perfect 4-4 from the free throw line ... Had four rebounds against Utah ...Came off the bench in both games in the Women's Sports Foundation Classic ... Grabbed six rebounds vs. New Mexico ... Four-time all-league selection in high school ... First-team all-CIF the last two seasons ... Named co-MVP of her league ... Her sister, Aisha, played at UCLA from 1995-98. Career Highs: Points - 6, at BYU, 11-25-00, Rebounds - 8, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Assists - 1, last vs. Utah, 11-17-00, Steals - 2, last vs. LBSU, 12-10-00.

#42 Stacy Robertson -- Hit her first three-pointer of the season vs. San Diego and scored a career-high six points ... Was 4-5 from three-point range and scored 15 points with nine rebounds against Love and Basketball ...Came off the bench to score three points vs. New Mexico ... Started the Duke game but was held scoreless ... Transfer from Kilgore Junior College in Texas ... Named to the 10-player JC All-Region XIV and all-conference teams last season ... Ranked third in the Region in three-point shooting ... Ranked 12th in the Region in scoring. Career Highs: Points - 6, vs. San Diego, 11-28-00, Rebounds - 3, vs. San Diego, 11-28-00, Assists - 1, last vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Steals - 2, at BYU, 11-25-00.

#45 LaCresha Flannigan -- Academically ineligible for the first quarter and could rejoin the Bruin team in mid-December ... Has 28 career starts ... 1999 All-Conference selection. Career Highs: Points - 27, at ASU, 1-5-99, Rebounds - 8, vs. OSU, 1-27-00, Assists - 4, vs. ASU, 3-4-99, Steals - 5, vs. UW, 1-28-99.


Bruins Defeat Long Beach -- The Bruins used a 10-0 run midway through the first half to turn a 13-16 disadvantage into a 23-16 advantage and gain a lead which they would not relinquish. Michelle Greco paced the Bruins with a career-high 34 points. Malika Leatham added a career-best 16 points and five blocked shots. Leatham also tied her career best with eight rebounds.

Bruins Dropped at Colorado -- Colorado pulled away late in the first half and turned a 44-31 halftime edge to an 88-63 victory. Michelle Greco led four Bruins in double-figures with 15 points. Shalada Allen had a UCLA-best 14 points, while Gennifer Arranaga and Jalina Bradley contributed 11 and 10, respectively. Natalie Nakase had career-highs in both points (seven) and assists (seven).

San Diego Tops Bruins -- The visiting Toreros broke open a close game late in the first half and led 41-33 at the break. San Diego upped the advantage to 55-39 at the 15:55 mark of the second half and never looked back. Michelle Greco led UCLA with 18 points. Gennifer Arranaga and Malika Leatham each added career-high point totals with 13 and 12, respectively.

BYU Bests the Bruins -- Host BYU scored the first seven points of the second half to improve on its 33-28 halftime lead and went on to post a 68-53 decision in Provo, UT. Michelle Greco scored a game-high 24 points and also matched her career-best with eight rebounds.

UCLA Falls to Utah -- Utah used a 17-0 run early in the second half to put away UCLA, 65-42 in the Bruins' home opener. Jalina Bradley led the Bruins with 12 points and five assists. Injuries played a key role in the game, as UCLA leading scorer Michelle Greco re-aggravated a sprained ankle and was limited to 17 minutes of play.

Bruins Lose at New Mexico -- The Bruins dropped a 75-54 decision to the host team in the Women's Sports Foundation Classic consolation game. Michelle Greco led all scorers with a career-high 28 points and was named to the six player all-tournament squad.

Bruins Drop Season Opener to #5 Duke -- The Bruins lost their regular season opener, 80-52, in the first round of the Women's Sports Foundation Classic in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Michelle Greco led UCLA with a game-high 22 points. Stacy Robertson, Malika Leatham, Natalie Nakase and Jalina Bradley each made their first career starts for the Bruins.

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