Women's Basketball Travels to Arizona, ASU
Feb. 13, 2001
Next Up -- UCLA (3-18, 2-8) will play at Arizona (16-7, 6-5) on Thursday at 7 p.m. MT and at Arizona State (16-7, 8-3) on Saturday at 7 p.m. MT.
The Bruins lead the series with Arizona, which dates back to 1977, 34-11. The Bruins have won the last five meetings in the series, including a 59-56 win in overtime earlier this season in Pauley, and have won two in a row at the McKale Center. The Wildcats are led in scoring and rebounding by Elizabeth Pickney, who averages 15.7 points per game and 6.5 rebounds per game. Reshea Bristol is close behind scoring-wise with a 14.7 average and leads the Pac-10 in assists (7.0 per game) and steals (3.04 per game).
UCLA leads the series with Arizona State by a 35-10 count and has won the last three games at Wells Fargo Arena. ASU won the first meeting of the season in Pauley by a score of 78-68. The loss snapped a seven-game winning streak in the series by the Bruins. The Sun Devils are tied with Washington and Stanford for the Pac-10 lead. Amanda Levens is fifth in the Pac-10 in scoring with a 14.7 per game average, while Melody Johnson ranks seventh in scoring (14.7) and fifth in rebounding (6.9).
Both Arizona and Arizona State are ranked in the Top 25. Arizona checks in at No. 24 on the AP poll, while ASU is 23rd on the ESPN/USA Today coaches' poll. The Sun Devils are ranked for the second consecutive week for the first time in 18 years.
Radio/TV -- Both games in Arizona will be broadcast live on KACD 850am and on the internet at www.uclabruins.com.
Last Time Against Arizona -- Michelle Greco hit two free throws with five seconds left in overtime to help secure UCLA's 59-56 win over Arizona. Greco, who led UCLA with 29 points, was fouled after rebounding her own missed shot. A long shot by Arizona fell short just before the buzzer sounded to end the game. Kristee Porter had a career-high 16 rebounds to go along with 11 points.
Last Time Against ASU -- ASU recorded a 78-68 win over UCLA in Pauley on Jan. 18. UCLA, which trailed by as many as 15 in the first half, rallied to take a one-point lead on three occasions in the second half only to see ASU convert down the stretch and gain the win. Michelle Greco led UCLA with 22 points. Kristee Porter added career highs in points (13) and rebounds (14) despite playing just 20 minutes due to foul trouble. Whitney Jones added a career-high tying 11 points.
Looking Ahead -- UCLA returns home to host the Oregon schools. UCLA meets Oregon on Friday, Feb. 23 at 7 p.m. and Oregon State on Sunday, Feb. 25 at 2 p.m.
This Week's Headlines -- Kristee Porter was selected Feb. 2 as the ASICS/ Volleyball Magazine Player of the Year for 2000 ... She set a Pac-10 and UCLA record with 741 kills last season ... Porter has 25 blocked shots on the season and has blocked at least one shot in the last eight games ... She has scored in double figures in each of the last three games ... Earlier this season, she had doubles-doubles in back-to-back games against ASU (13 pt, 14 rb) and Arizona (11 pt, 16 rb) ... Michelle Greco scored 26 points at USC to record her 11th game this season of at least 20 points. It was the 14th 20-point game of her career ... Natalie Nakase has 13 steals in the last three games ... UCLA entered the week leading the league in steals (11.33 spg) and was listed first in the Pac-10 in turnover margin (+3.52).
Greco Atop Pac-10 Conference In Scoring, Foul Shooting -- Junior guard Michelle Greco entered the week leading the Pac-10 Conference in scoring with a 19.9 points per game average. She also ranked first in free throw percentage with a .873 mark (55-63), sixth in steals (2.10 per game) and sixth in three-point field goals made (1.70 per game).
Bruins Nab Conference Lead In Steals -- The Bruins entered the week leading the Pac-10 Conference in steals with an average of 11.33 picks per game (238 total). Michelle Greco (42 in 20 games) and Natalie Nakase (43 in 21 games) are tied for sixth and seventh with averages of 2.10 and 2.05, respectively. Freshman Whitney Jones (1.80) ranks tied for ninth.
Bruin Defense Stepping Up -- UCLA has stepped up its defense in Pac-10 games. In conference games, UCLA ranks high in several defensive categories - steals (1st, 11.6 per game), turnovers forced (1st, 23.0), scoring defense (2nd, 63.8 points allowed per game), 3-pt. field goal percentage defense (3rd, .317), field goal percentage defense (4th, .415) and blocked shots (5th, 3.0 per game). The Bruins have held six teams under 40% shooting from the field this season and won three times. Against USC, the defense held the Women of Troy scoreless for almost five minutes midway through the second half as they sliced an 11-point USC to just one. In the game against Cal, the Bruin defense held the Golden Bears without a point for almost six minutes of the second half while rallying back from a 15-point deficit to take the lead. The previous week, the Bruins rallied in the game's last minute against Oregon after holding the Ducks without a basket for the final 6:42 of the contest.
Greco Moving Up Bruin Career Charts -- In her third season as a Bruin, Michelle Greco has moved into a tie for eighth place on the all-time school made three-point shot list with 48 for her career (8th is Michelle Palmisano-48, 7th is Nikki Hilbert-54). She has made all of her three-pointers in the last two years after having attempted just one as a freshman. On the single-season list, Greco is currently 10th for made threes with 34 (ninth is DeDe Mosman-35, tied for seventh are Nicole Kaczmarski and Mosman-36).
Porter, Jones Become Two-Sport Starters -- Volleyball All-American Kristee Porter and soccer standout Whitney Jones became two-sport starters in January when they were inserted into the UCLA women's basketball starting lineup. Porter, who also competes for the track and field team, made her first hoops appearance Dec. 18 against Old Dominion and contributed 10 points, nine rebounds and five blocked shots. She made her first career start against fourth-ranked Georgia, scoring 11 points and grabbing eight boards. Jones joined the team a few days after playing in the NCAA Soccer championship game and saw her first action in the Bruins' win over Long Beach State Dec. 10. In her basketball debut, she scored two points and grabbed three boards. She made her first start of the year at Washington St. and scored eight points with four rebounds and four steals.
Bruins Face One of Nation's Toughest Schedules -- Seven non-conference games (Duke, Utah, BYU, San Diego, Old Dominion, Pepperdine and Georgia) were played against teams which earned bids to the 2000 NCAA tournament, and another two were played against WNIT teams (New Mexico, Long Beach State). In Pac-10 play, the Bruins will face NCAA tournament teams Oregon, Arizona and Stanford, as well as WNIT teams from Arizona St. and USC. UCLA currently has the 17th-toughest schedule in the nation.
Head Coach Kathy Olivier -- Having completed seven seasons (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.
Player Bio Updates
#1 Natalie Nakase -- Entered the week fifth (tied) in the Pac-10 in assists (4.0 average) and seventh in steals (2.05) ...Starter in all 21 games ... Had six assists and three steals at USC ... Matched her career-high with six steals vs. Cal and also scored nine points ... Limited to a season-low 22 minutes by foul trouble at Oregon ... Grabbed a career-high four rebounds at Oregon State ... Handed out seven assists in the win over Arizona to tie her career best ... Had six points and six assists versus ASU ... Tied her career best with 11 points in the win over USC ... Added five assists and three steals vs. the Trojans. ... Set a career-high with 11 points at Washington State, playing all 40 minutes ... Grabbed a career-high tying three rebounds at Washington ...Recorded then career-highs in points (seven) and assists (seven) at Colorado and matched the exact totals in the next game vs. Long Beach ...Bested the scoring total with nine points against Old Dominion ...Also set a career high in rebounds at ODU with three ... 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 ... Had five assists against New Mexico ... Added three assists versus Duke ...Saw action in 11 games off the bench last season. Career Highs: Points - 11, last vs. USC, 1-14-01, Rebounds - 4, at OSU, 1-25-01, Assists - 7, last vs. Arizona, 1-20-01, Steals - 6, last vs. Cal, 2-05-01.
#4 Kristee Porter -- Named the ASICS / Volleyball Magazine Player of the Year for 2000 ... Volleyball first-team All-American who saw her first action with the 2000-01 Bruin hoopsters at Old Dominion Dec. 18 ... Has now seen action in 14 games ... Entering the week, her rebound average of 7.6 would have ranked fourth in the conference (she must play in one more game to qualify for the Pac-10 rankings) ... She would also rank first in blocked shots with a 1.79 average ...Had 11 points, three assists (career high), three steals, two blocks and seven rebounds in a career-high 39 minutes of action at USC ... Had 12 points and six rebounds vs. Cal ... Matched her career-best in points with a team-high 13 against Stanford ... Saw a season-low 15 minutes of action due to foul trouble at Oregon ... Pulled down a career-best 16 rebounds in the win over Arizona to go along with 11 points ... Had a career-high in points (13) and a then career-best in rebounds (14) in the ASU game despite playing just 20 minutes due to foul trouble ... Had eight points and seven rebounds in the win over USC ... Credited with a career-best four steals at Washington State ... Had 12 points in the Pac-10 opener at Washington ... Scored 11 points versus fourth-ranked Georgia and grabbed eight rebounds in her first career start ... Recorded 10 points, nine rebounds and five blocked shots in her season debut at ODU, all career-highs at the time ...Scored nine with four boards at Ohio State ...Led the team in rebounding against Pepperdine, pulling down eight boards and scoring nine points with three blocked shots ...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 - 13, v. Stanford, 2-2-01, Rebounds - 16, v. Arizona, 1-20-01, Assists - 3, at USC, 2-10-01, Blocks - 5, at ODU, 12-18-00 , Steals - 4, at Wash. State, 1-6-01.
#5 Melissa Maurin -- Second-year student who walked on to the team ... Has seen action in four 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) ... In just her second game, she scored 11 points on 3-4 fg shooting at ODU ...Had three boards at Ohio State and against Pepperdine ...Recorded a career-best three steals vs. Pepperdine and scored six points ...Pulled down a then career-best six rebounds in just 14 minutes of play in the Pac-10 opener at Washington ... Started her first game at Washington State and had eight points, four steals and four rebounds ... Made her second career start in the win over USC and grabbed five boards ... Tied her career-high with 11 points in the ASU game ... Pulled down a career-best nine rebounds in the win over Arizona and tied her career-best in points (11) and assists (2) ... Had seven points and rebounds at Oregon ... Tied her career-high with 11 points against Stanford ... Had a career-best three assists vs. Cal ... Ranks tied for ninth in the Pac-10 in steals (1.8) ... 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 - 11, last v. Stanford, 2-2-01, Rebounds - 9, vs. Arizona, 1-20-01, Assists - 3, vs. Cal, 2-05-01, Steals - 4, at Wash. State, 1-06-01.
#13 Gennifer Arranaga -- Has appeared in all 21 games off the bench ... Had three points and four rebounds vs. Cal ... Tied her career-best with five rebounds at Oregon ... Scored six points in 10 minutes of play at Oregon State ...Credited with a career-high six steals versus Georgia ... 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 ... 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, last at Oregon, 1-27-01, Assists - 2, at BYU, 11-25-00, Steals - 6, vs. Georgia, 12-30-00.
#14 Natalie Jarrett -- Starter in 10 games, played in 17 ... Recorded a career-high tying nine points and grabbed four rebounds vs. Pepperdine ...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, last vs. Pepperdine, 12-28-00, Rebounds - 7, last at UNM, 11-11-00, Blocks - 1, last vs. Pepperdine, 12-28-00, Steals - 2, last vs. Pepperdine, 12-28-00.
#20 Michelle Greco -- Entered the week as the leading scorer in the Pac-10 (19.9 ppg) ... Also rated first in the conference in free throw percentage (.873, 55-63) ...Was sixth in the conference in steals with a 2.010 per game mark and sixth in three-point FG made (1.70 average) ... Has led UCLA in scoring in 18 of its 21 games (in two of those three games in which she did not lead, she injured an ankle early in the first half against Utah and she did not play due to illness at Wash. State) ...Her 26 points at USC marked the 11th game this season in which she has scored at least 20 points ... Recorded a game-high 25 points at OSU for a fourth consecutive 20-point game at the time ...Scored 29 points in the win over Arizona ... Hit for 22 points in the ASU game ... Scored 23 points vs. USC, including 15 in the second half, to go along with four assists and three steals ... Had 19 points, all in the second half, at Washington in the Pac-10 opener ... Scored 22 points versus fourth-ranked Georgia and also grabbed six boards ... Scored 20 at Ohio St. ...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 ... Last year, she was selected to the honorable mention all-conference team ... Starter in six games in 1999-2000 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 11 games, played in all 21 ... Recorded six points and a career-high tying five boards at OSU ...Scored seven points vs. ASU ... Had a team-best 11 points in a starting role at Washington State ... Scored nine points at Ohio State ...Recorded 10 points against Old Dominion ...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) 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. Career Highs: Points - 12, vs. Utah, 11-17-00, Rebounds - 5, last at OSU, 1-25-01, Assists - 5, vs. Utah, 11-17-00, Steals - 3, last at WSU, 1-06-01.
#32 Malika Leatham -- Starter in all 21 games ... Entered the week ranked 15th in the Pac-10 in rebounding with a 5.7 average ... Had 11 points and six boards at USC ... Tied for the team lead in rebounds at OSU (six) and Oregon (seven) ...Matched her career-high with nine rebounds in the win over Arizona ... Totaled 13 points and a career-best nine rebounds in the win over USC ... Scored 10 points in the conference opener at Washington ... Had nine points and six rebounds against Pepperdine ...Pulled down a team-high five rebounds and scored six points at Ohio State ...Had four points and seven boards in just 14 minutes while battling foul trouble at ODU ...Scored a career-high 16 points and blocked a career-best five shots in the win over Long Beach ... Also had eight rebounds 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 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 - 9, last vs. Arizona, 1-20-01, Blocks - 5, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Steals - 3, vs. Duke, 11-10-00.
#33 Shalada Allen -- Has seen action in 18 games ...Had four points and five rebounds at Washington State ... Recorded six rebounds in just 12 minutes of play at ODU ...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 ... Scored six and had two rebounds before fouling out in a starting role against New Mexico ... Came off the bench to score six points and grab five rebounds versus Duke ...Transfer from Kilgore Junior College in Texas ... Ranked 10th last season in Region XIV in both scoring and rebounding. UCLA Career Highs: Points - 14, at Colorado, 12-2-00, Rebounds - 7, vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Assists - 2, at Washington, 1-4-01, Steals - 3, vs. Duke, 11-10-00.
#35 Jamila Veasley -- Has seen action in all 21 games off the bench ... Had six boards at Oregon ... Pulled down five rebounds at OSU ...Had four points and four rebounds in 25 minutes of play in the win over USC ... 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 -- Tied her career-high with two steals vs. ASU ... Matched her career-high in rebounds with three vs. Pepperdine ...Scored five points in just seven minutes at Ohio State ...Hit her first three-pointer of the season vs. San Diego and scored a career-high six points ...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 and 12th in scoring. Career Highs: Points - 6, vs. San Diego, 11-28-00, Rebounds - 3, last vs. Pepperdine, 12-28-00, Assists - 1, last vs. LBSU, 12-10-00, Steals - 2, last v. ASU, 1-18-01.
Trojans Hold Off Bruins -- The Women of Troy held off the Bruins to win 61-56. USC led 34-26 at the half and built their lead to 47-36 with 12:23 to play. The Bruins went on a 10-0 run to close the gap, but could not take the lead. Michelle Greco led UCLA with 26 points.
Cal's Last-Second Shot Edges Bruins -- Cal scored a basket with 3.5 seconds to play to edge the Bruins, 58-57. Kristee Porter's running shot from just outside the free throw line hit the rim and bounced off as the buzzer sounded to end the game. Michelle Greco led UCLA with 18 points.
Bruin Rally Falls Short -- Stanford held on for a 60-52 win over the Bruins. UCLA rallied back from a 16-point halftime deficit (34-18) to close to within one point (45-44) with 5:46 to play, but could never take the lead. Kristee Porter led three Bruins in double figures with a career-tying 13 points. Michelle Greco had 12 and Whitney Jones added 11 more.
TOMORROW | 12:00pm PTLive