This Week In Pac-10 Women's Basketball

Dec. 9, 2002

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USC-Tennessee Matchup Features Alumni Gathering

The Pac-10 is coming off a week in which Conference teams knocked off four ranked opponents in an eight-day span from Nov. 30-Dec. 8, including three in three days... The league leads the nation in Conference RPI for the second straight week, according to the WBCA/Summerville Report, while the Pac-10 posts a .625 winning percentage (35-21) against non-conference competition at this juncture... The Conference is 5-7 against teams ranked in the Top-25 and 2-5 versus Top-10 teams this season... Following a week off, STANFORD, the Pac-10's lone remaining undefeated team, is back in action when it travels to Pacific for a Dec. 14 matchup, the Cardinal's final game before a Dec. 18 date at Tennessee... However, the Lady Vols will meet another Pac-10 opponent this weekend, when USC hosts Tennessee Saturday, Dec. 14 at 1:30 p.m... The game will be broadcast live on Fox Sports Net... USC will honor members of its 1983 and 1984 NCAA Championship teams - including former players Cheryl Miller, Cynthia Cooper, Pam and Paula McGee, Rhonda Windham and former head coach Linda Sharp - during a pregame luncheon and halftime presentation.


Mon., Dec. 9
Denver at ARIZONA STATE, 6 p.m.

Wed., Dec. 11
WASHINGTON STATE at Gonzaga, 7 p.m.

Sat., Dec. 14
UCLA at Pepperdine, 5 p.m.
Tennessee at USC, 1:30 p.m. (Fox Sports Net) (1)
STANFORD at Pacific, 5 p.m.
WASHINGTON STATE at Montana, 6:35 p.m.

Sun., Dec. 15
ARIZONA at Ohio State, 2 p.m. (Ohio News Network)
Santa Clara at OREGON, 1 p.m.

Neutral Site
(1) Great Western Forum, Inglewood, Calif.

All game times local to site.


Sat., Dec. 14 - Tennessee at USC, 1:30 p.m. (FSN)
Sun., Dec. 15 - ARIZONA at Ohio State, 2 p.m. (Ohio News Network)
Fri., Dec. 27 - ARIZONA STATE at STANFORD, 7 p.m. (FSN)

Mar. 7-10, 2003, HP Pavilion at San Jose
* Visit for tickets, special packages, fan hotels and information on San Jose.

PAC-10 MEDIA SERVICES: All Pac-10 press releases can be found online by accessing Statistical information and standings are also available on the site, as well as Pac-10 Player of the Week and 2003 Pac-10 Tournament information.

WEEKLY E-MAIL LIST: If you would like to receive the weekly Pac-10 women's basketball release via e-mail, provide Julie Reuvers of the Pac-10 office with your e-mail address.

PAC-10 HOLIDAY SCHEDULE: Complete Pac-10 women's basketball releases, including statistics, will be produced on Mon., Dec. 16 and Sun., Dec. 29 (through games played as of Dec. 29). An abbreviated Pac-10 report, including standings, statistics and Player of the Week, will be distributed on Sun., Dec. 22 (through games played as of Dec. 22). The Conference Office will be open on Mon., Dec. 23, Thu., Dec. 26 and Fri., Dec. 27. The offices will be closed Dec. 24-25 and Dec. 31-Jan. 1.

ONLINE COLUMNS: Visit for weekly columns on Pac-10 women's basketball by long-time women's basketball writer Dick Rockne of the Seattle-Post Intelligencer and Fox Sports Net color analyst Mary Murphy. The schedule for the online column is: Nov. 6, Dec. 18 and every Wednesday afternoon from Jan. 8-Mar. 12.

CALLING ALL COACHES: Pac-10 head women's basketball coaches will be available on a media teleconference each week during Conference play, with an additional preseason call scheduled in December. Each coach is scheduled to be on the line for five minutes with the calls starting at 9:30 a.m. PST. In addition, a taped replay will be available at 4 p.m. PST following the call and will be available until the next call. Media members may call the Pac-10 office to receive the media-only number for both the live teleconference and taped replay. Teleconferences are scheduled for: Dec. 17, Jan. 7, Jan. 14, Jan. 21, Jan. 28, Feb. 4, Feb. 11, Feb. 18, Feb. 25, Mon., Mar. 3.

Call Schedule (PST)
9:30 a.m. Moderator opens call
9:35 a.m. Charli Turner Thorne, Arizona St.
9:40 a.m. Joan Bonvicini, Arizona
9:45 a.m. Sherri Murrell, Washington State
9:50 a.m. June Daugherty, Washington
9:55 a.m. Chris Gobrecht, USC
10:00 a.m. Kathy Olivier, UCLA
10:05 a.m. Judy Spoelstra, Oregon State
10:10 a.m. Bev Smith, Oregon
10:15 a.m. Caren Horstmeyer, California
10:20 a.m. Tara VanDerveer, Stanford


WASHINGTON junior guard Giuliana Mendiola has been named the Pac-10 Women's Basketball Player of the Week for Dec. 2-8.

Mendiola, from Lake Forest, Calif., led Washington to three straight wins, including two in North Carolina State's GlaxoSmithKline Invitational as the Huskies captured the team title. Mendiola averaged 14.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and 6.0 assists as UW defeated Wisconsin at home (81-69), then knocked off the host Wolfpack (88-78) and Houston (76-65) to take the tournament title.

At North Carolina State on Dec. 6, Mendiola posted 20 points, 12 rebounds and six assists, then followed with 13 points, six rebounds and four assists the next day against Houston. Against the Badgers Dec. 2 in Seattle, Mendiola scored 11 points, posted a career-high eight assists and grabbed four rebounds.

The Player of the Week honor is the second of Mendiola's career and the 19th all-time selection for Washington.

The Huskies (6-1 overall), off to their second-best start under Coach June Daugherty, are idle until hosting San Francisco on Fri., Dec. 20.

ALSO NOMINATED: Shawntinice Polk, ARIZ; Jill Noe, ASU; Cathrine Kraayeveld, ORE; Nikki Blue, UCLA; Ebony Hoffman, USC.

2002-03 PAC-10 PLAYERS OF THE WEEK: Dec. 2- Shawntinice Polk, ARIZ; Dec. 9- Giuliana Mendiola, WASH.

WINS OVER RANKED TEAMS: Pac-10 teams have knocked off five ranked opponents this season, including three in a three-day span from Nov. 30-Dec. 2, and four in eight days from Nov. 30-Dec. 8. Conference teams are 5-7 against teams ranked in the Top-25 and 2-5 versus Top-10 teams. In the three-day stretch, then-No. 7 Stanford defeated then-No. 2 Kansas State, 63-57 on Nov. 30. That same day, then-unranked Arizona upset then-No. 7 Georgia, 70-49. On Dec. 2, unranked Arizona State downed the Bulldogs, then-No. 14, 74-70. The Pac-10's other wins over ranked opponents came Dec. 8, as unranked Oregon defeated No. 19/22 BYU and on Nov. 17, when USC won at No. 18/19 Colorado State in the Preseason NIT.

CONFERENCE RPI: Through games as of Dec. 8, 2002, the WBCA/Summerville RPI lists the Pac-10 as the top-ranked Conference in the nation. The current WBCA/Summerville RPI lists the top eight Conferences as follows: 1. Pac-10, 2. ACC 3. SEC, 4. Big Ten, 5. Atlantic-10, 6. Big East, 7. Mountain West, 8. Big 12.

USC ALUMNI TO GATHER AT TENNESSEE GAME: USC will honor members of its 1983 and 1984 NCAA Championship teams - including former players Cheryl Miller, Cynthia Cooper, Pam and Paula McGee, Rhonda Windham and former head coach Linda Sharp - during a pregame luncheon and halftime presentation at the USC-Tennessee game on Saturday, Dec. 14.

The game will be played at the legendary Forum in Inglewood.

Between them, the two programs have won eight national championships - USC owns two (1983, 1984) and Tennessee claims six (1987, 1989, 1991, 1996, 1997, 1998).

In celebration of the 20th anniversary of USC's first women's basketball national title (1983), players from both championship squads have been invited to join the Dec. 14 celebration. Confirmed guests include: the McGee sisters, Miller, Cooper, Windham, Sharp, Tracy (Longo) Rath, Yolanda Fletcher, Timi (Pitzer) Pikard, Melissa Ward, Jamaiia Bond, Amy (Alkek) Crain, Kathy Doyle, Juliette Robinson, Dr. LeeAnne Sera and assistant coach Fred Williams and graduate assistant coach Kathy (Hammond) Cotton.

FRESHMEN MAKING A HUGE IMPACT: Freshmen have wasted little time making themselves known in the Pacific-10 Conference this season, with six earning starting roles on four different teams. Five of those roles belong to true freshmen. Off the bench, seven more freshmen are averaging 13 minutes or more per game.

At Arizona, RS freshman Shawntinice Polk has started all five games for the Wildcats, reeling off five straight double-doubles. Polk also leads the league in rebounding (13.8 rpg). True FR teammate Natalie Jones, a 5-10 G, averages more then 20 minutes off the bench.

A pair of true freshmen -- 5-10 G Jill Noe and 6-1 F Amy Denson -- has started all six games for Arizona State, while 6-3 F Kristen Kovesdy is contributing 26.5 minutes off the bench. The trio comprises the team's top three scorers, with Noe leading the way (14.0 ppg). Denson is the team's leading rebounder (5.8 rpg).

California 5-7 G Sarah Pool is averaging 13.0 minutes on a roster loaded with 15 available players.

At Oregon, 6-3 C Carolyn Ganes is contributing 7.5 points and 3.7 rebounds in 15.7 minutes per game. Ganes has played in all six of the Ducks' games, with a career-high 25 points in Oregon's Dec. 8 win over 19th-ranked BYU.

Oregon State 5-11 G Mandy Close has started the Beavers' last four games, while 6-0 G Casey Bunn is averaging nearly 14 minutes off the bench.

Down on The Farm, 5-11 G Krista Rappahahn and 5-8 G Clare Bodensteiner have played in all four of Stanford's games, averaging 11.0 and 7.0 minutes, respectively, although both played at least 20 minutes in the 63-57 win over then-No. 2 Kansas State Nov. 30. It was Rappahahn who drained four free throws in the final 43 seconds to help clinch the win over the Wildcats.

UCLA's dynamic freshman duo of 5-8 G Nikki Blue and 6-2 F Julia Pitts has started all six games for the Bruins. Either Pitts or Blue has led UCLA in scoring in three of the team's last five games, including Pitts' team-high 20 points at then-No. 14 Georgia Dec. 6. In addition, 5-11 G/F Lisa Willis averages nearly 13 minutes.

Through seven games, USC's Meghan Gnekow, a 5-11 F, is averaging 23.9 minutes off the bench. Gnekow scored a season-high 12 points in 25 minutes in the Women of Troy's 73-61 loss to then-No. 3 Kansas State Nov. 20.

COACHING MILESTONES: USC Coach Chris Gobrecht notched her 400th career victory (400-284) Dec. 4 in USC's 64-63 win over Pepperdine. Gobrecht is the third active Pac-10 coach to have eclipsed the 400-win plateau, behind Stanford's Tara VanDerveer (552-156) and Arizona's Joan Bonvicini (521-203). VanDerveer captured her 400th win at Stanford Nov. 30, 2002, with a 63-57 victory over then-No. 2 Kansas State. Here's a rundown of other Pac-10 coaches nearing milestones: Bonvicini is four wins away from No. 200 at UA; ASU Coach Charli Turner Thorne is five wins away from her 100th victory in Tempe; Cal's Caren Horstmeyer needs seven wins for career victory No. 250; Oregon State's Judy Spoelstra is one win shy of No. 100 at OSU and three away from career victory No. 200.

NON-CONFERENCE SLATE: Pac-10 teams post a 35-21 record (.625) against non-conference foes in 2002-03. The league finished 61-46 last year (.570), its best non-conference record since going 66-42 (.611) in 1998-99. The league won a record 84 non-conference games in 1991-92 and posted a Pac-10 record .765 non-conference winning percentage (75-23) in 1990-91. Here's a year-by-year breakdown of the Pac-10's non-conference records:

PAYNE CONTINUES CLIMB UP PAC-10 CAREER CHART: With 14 treys last week, Washington SR G Loree Payne continues her steady climb up the Pac-10's career 3-point field goals made list. One of the most prolific 3-point shooters in Conference history, Payne currently ranks fourth with 206 career treys and needs just six more to surpass former teammate Megan Franza (`98-01) and move into the No. 2 spot. Payne, who has 21 3-pointers in seven games this season, is 79 treys away from tying all-time leader, former Arizona player Lisa Griffith (`97-00). Payne drained 72 from long range 2001-02, a season in which the Huskies lost in their Pac-10 tournament opener and went 2-1 in the Postseason NIT. Here's a look at the Pac-10's career 3-pointers list:

1. Lisa Griffith, ARIZ (`97-00) 285
2. Megan Franza, WASH (`98-01) 211
3. Vanessa Nygaard, STAN (`95-98) 210
4. Loree Payne, WASH (`99-pres.) 206

ARIZONA: RS FR Shawntinice Polk averaged 20.5 points, 13.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.5 blocks while leading Arizona to the title of its own Fiesta Bowl Classic last weekend. Polk garnered Tournament MVP honors, with 18 points and 16 rebounds in the Dec. 7 win over UC Riverside and 23 points and 11 rebounds in the championship game win over Illinois. The Wildcats' current four-game win streak is its longest since putting together seven straight wins early in 2000-01. The 4-1 start also qualifies as the team's best since a 7-1 start in 2000-01. SO G Dee-Dee Wheeler drained 8-of-10 3-pointers during the Cats' two tournament games.

ARIZONA STATE: The Sun Devils' loss to No. 9 Notre Dame on Dec. 7 snapped their school-record 13-game home winning streak. However, a new attendance record was set at Wells Fargo Arena during the AstraZeneca Hoops for the Cure Classic, as 7,274 were on hand for the women's double-header which also featured No. 8 Vanderbilt versus No. 6 Purdue. FR G Jill Noe averaged 19.5 points in ASU's two games against Top-25 opponents last week, with a career-high 20 points against then-No. 14 Georgia and 19 points against the Fighting Irish.

CALIFORNIA: JR C Timea Ivanyi averaged 12.5 points in two games as Cal took second place in its own Oakland Tribune Classic last week. The Bears defeated Pennsylvania 82-62, then fell to 2002 NCAA Elite Eight team Colorado, 66-47 in the championship game. Ivanyi shot 7-of-11 from the field and had 15 points against Penn, while JR G LaTasha O'Keith paced the Bears against CU with 12 points. JR G Nihan Anaz, a transfer (South Carolina and Weatherford CC) who hails from Istanbul, Turkey, made her Cal debut against Colorado, finishing with seven points and four steals. After playing its first six games at home, California returns to action Dec. 21 at nearby Saint Mary's.

OREGON: The Ducks snapped their three-game losing skid in the best possible way -- by winning back to back games, including one against a Top-25 opponent. Oregon defeated No. 19/22 BYU 80-77 on Dec. 8, handing the Cougars their first loss on the season. It was the highest-ranked opponent the Ducks had beaten in two seasons. JR F Cathrine Kraayeveld posted a pair of double-doubles last week, averaging 20.0 points, 12.0 rebounds and 2.0 blocks. She notched a career-high 26 points and added 12 rebounds against BYU. FR C Carolyn Ganes added a career-high 25 points, as UO led by as many as seven in the first half. Oregon played with out SR G Shaquala Williams last week, following her suspension for disciplinary reasons. Williams' suspension is indefinite. The Ducks next take on Santa Clara Sunday, Dec. 15 at McArthur Court.

OREGON STATE: Head coach Judy Spoelstra is one win shy of victory No. 100 at Oregon State, and gets her next opportunity Saturday, Dec. 14, when the Beavers host Florida. OSU went 1-1 last week, falling on the road to San Jose State and defeating Portland State in Corvallis. It was OSU's sixth straight win over the Vikings. JR G Leilani Estavan paced all scorers with 18 points and a game-high six assists. Oregon State leads the Pac-10 with 26 blocked shots on the season (4.33 bpg). JR F Hollye Chapman ranks second on the team with 17 assists and has notched a career-high four assists three times this season.

STANFORD: Idle last week, the Cardinal is at Pacific Saturday, Dec. 14, before traveling to Tennessee for a Dec. 18 showdown. Stanford's last action was its 63-57 win over then-No. 2 Kansas State on Nov. 30 to capture the team title at the Stanford Tournament. With the victory, Tara VanDerveer's 400th on The Farm, the Cardinal extended its home winning streak to 15 games. The second-ranked Wildcats were the highest-ranked opponent Stanford defeated since upsetting then-No. 1 Purdue on Nov. 22, 1998. Stanford attempted a Pac-10 record 37 3-point field goals in the win over Kansas State. SO F Azella Perryman averaged 12.5 points and 12.5 rebounds in the Stanford Tournament. Perryman ranks second in the Pac-10 in rebounding.

UCLA: Despite outscoring then-No. 14 Georgia 59-47 in the second half, time ran out on the Bruins and they fell 91-83 in Athens on Dec. 6. FR F Julia Pitts led UCLA with 20 points, while SR G Michelle Greco notched a team high eight rebounds and four assists to go along with 12 points. FR G Nikki Blue scored all 24 of her game-high total in the second half as UCLA defeated Saint Mary's Dec. 3. Blue was 9-of-14 from the field and 5-of-6 from the line. Either Blue or Pitts have paced the Bruins in scoring in three of the last five games. The Bruins travel to Pepperdine Saturday, Dec. 14, then face Baylor Dec. 19.

USC: JR F Ebony Hoffman posted two double-doubles last week, as USC downed Pepperdine and lost on the road to No. 3 Connecticut. Hoffman averaged 21.0 points, 14.5 rebounds and 3.0 blocks, including 4 blocks against the Waves and a 22-point, 14-rebound performance at UConn. With the win at Pepperdine, USC remains undefeated (15-0) in the all-time series against the crosstown school. The Women of Troy's 44 points at Connecticut were the second-lowest in school history, while the 12 total field goals and 18.2 FG percentage (12-of-66) were the lowest-ever for a USC team. All three of USC's losses have come at the hands of ranked opponents, all Top-10 teams: then-No. 3/4 Kansas State, then-No. 9 Notre Dame and the third-ranked Huskies. USC hosts Tennessee Saturday, Dec. 14, a live telecast on Fox Sports Net, 1:30 p.m. PT.

WASHINGTON: Winners of three in a row, the Huskies are off to their second-best start (6-1) under Coach June Daugherty. UW won its second tournament title of the season last week and is idle until hosting San Francisco Dec. 20. JR G Giuliana Mendiola averaged 14.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and 6.0 assists last week, as UW defeated Wisconsin (81-69), then knocked off host North Carolina State (88-78) and Houston (76-65) to capture the team title at the Wolfpack's GlaxoSmithKline Invitational. Washington outrebounded North Carolina State and Houston by a combined 89-60 margin. The Huskies traveled 3,000 miles and endured flight delays of nearly 36 hours, then switched hotels following an ice storm which caused a power outage. SR G Loree Payne drained 14 treys last week to move into sole possession of fourth place (206) on the Pac-10 career chart. Payne needs four 3-pointers to tie former Stanford player Vanessa Nygaard (`95-98) at 210, while five more ties her with former Husky Megan Franza (`98-01).

WASHINGTON STATE: The Cougars fell to Eastern Washington in their only action last week and have a pair of road games on tap -- at Gonzaga Dec. 11 and at Montana Dec. 14. Washington State is searching for its first win of the season as well as first-year coach Sherri Murrell's first as WSU mentor. Through five games, JR F Bianca McCall leads the team and is averaging close to a double-double with 12.0 points and 9.4 rebounds. JR C Candice Fields averages a team second-best 6.8 boards per game while JR G Lindsey Egeland is second in scoring at 9.4 points per game.

Mar. 7-10, 2003 * HP Pavilion at San Jose
Fresh off its inaugural run and gaining in popularity, the 2003 State Farm Pac-10 Women's Basketball Tournament moves to San Jose, Calif. HP Pavilion at San Jose will serve as home to the five-session, nine-game event.

Eugene, Ore., was the site of the first-ever Pac-10 tournament in 2002, setting the stage for the league's premier women's sporting event. The total tournament attendance was 27,415 for an average of 5,483 per session. All 10 Pac-10 teams participate in the tournament, with the winner receiving the Conference's automatic bid to the 2003 NCAA Tournament. The tournament seeds and Conference Champion will be determined by the 18-game regular-season Pac-10 schedule.

Tickets for the 2003 State Farm Pac-10 Tournament are available now at, or by calling (800) 650-0122 or (408) 924-7434.

Fri., Mar. 7
Game 1: No. 7 Seed vs. No. 10 Seed, TBA
Game 2: No. 8 Seed vs. No. 9 Seed, TBA

Sat., Mar. 8
Game 3: No. 2 Seed vs. Winner 7/10, 11 a.m.
Game 4: No. 3 Seed vs. No. 6 Seed, 1:15 p.m.
Game 5: No. 1 Seed vs. Winner 8/9, 5 p.m.
Game 6: No. 4 Seed vs. No. 5 Seed, 7:15 p.m.

Sun., Mar. 9
Game 7: Game 3 win vs. 3/6 win, 12:30 p.m. (Fox Sports Net)
Game 8: Game 5 win vs. 4/5 win, 3 p.m. (Fox Sports Net)

Mon., Mar. 10
Game 9: Championship Game, 7:30 p.m. (Fox Sports Net)

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