No. 6 Stanford Cruises Past USF

Nov 26, 2003

STANFORD, Calif. (AP) - Just call Stanford's Nicole Powell a 'journey woman.' She's capable of playing any position on the court and creates matchup problems wherever she is.

'She's so versatile she can do anything she puts her mind to,' said Cardinal coach Tara VanDerveer after No. 6 Stanford beat San Francisco 75-50 on Tuesday night. 'I feel like wherever we need her she can fill in. She's like a journey woman.'

Powell scored 28 points and Stanford extended its winning streak against San Francisco to 12 games.

'Every year it seems to be something different,' said Powell. 'It doesn't matter which position I play as long as I play hard and contribute.'

Powell is playing a forward position while two other starters remain out with foot injuries. She was a point guard as a freshman and usually plays on the perimeter.

'She's a tough matchup inside because a big post player can't guard her and a perimeter player can't guard her,' said VanDerveer. 'She gives them problems. But that's what makes great players great; they are versatile.'

Kelley Suminski added 11 points for the Cardinal (3-0), who won at home for the 28th time in 29 games. Krista Rappahahn had 10 points and Kristen Newlin grabbed 10 rebounds.

Mary Jane Krueger scored 12 points for San Francisco (1-1), and Joy Hollingsworth added 11.

San Francisco's last victory over the Cardinal came on Dec. 9, 1983, two years before VanDerveer was named coach at Stanford.

USF coach Mary Hile-Nepfel, in her 17th year, has never beaten Stanford as a coach. The former All-American was 7-2 against the Cardinal as a player with the Lady Dons, however, when the two schools played in the same conference.

'Stanford is a every good team even with a couple players missing,' said Hile-Nepfel. 'When you have a player like Nicole Powell who can step in, it makes a difference.'

Stanford won last year's game 59-57 without Powell, who was recovering from a back problem. That's as close as the Lady Dons have been in 20 years.

'We didn't have an answer for her,' said Hile-Nepfel. 'She can play inside and out and hurt you both ways. She doesn't have to score to make her team better; she makes everybody else better.'

Stanford held its largest lead at 58-30 with 10:09 remaining to play. The Lady Dons never got closer than 20 the rest of the way.

The Cardinal took the mystery out of the game early, grabbing a double-digit advantage before the first half was 10 minutes old. Powell was 6-of-7 in the first half and Stanford shot nearly 52 percent as a team while USF was limited to just under 32 percent, and committed 14 turnovers.

Stanford opened a 20-point edge in the final two minutes of the first half before the Lady Dons scored seven of the final nine points to draw within 30-25 at halftime.

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