Media Predict Stanford, Arizona Will Share Pac-10 Women's Basketball Title

Oct. 26, 2004

WALNUT CREEK, Calif.-- Duplicating last year's Pac-10 finish, STANFORD and ARIZONA have been picked to tie for first place in the 2004-05 Conference race, according to a poll of media members who regularly cover the league.

The Cardinal and Wildcats finished with identical 14-4 records last season to share the Pacific-10 Conference women's basketball title. Stanford grabbed a share of its fourth straight Pac-10 crown, while Arizona earned a portion of its first ever Pac-10 Championship.

The Cardinal garnered eight first-place votes in the poll, while the Wildcats received the remaining seven. Both teams totaled 140 points. It marks the first time there has been a tie for the first-place spot since the poll's inception in 1997-98. In fact, the poll's top two teams had never been separated by fewer than 17 points.

Coming off its best Conference finish (tie for third) since winning the Pac-10 title in 1998-99, UCLA was tabbed to finish third with 122 points. ARIZONA STATE, which returns all five starters after making a fifth consecutive postseason appearance, was picked fourth with 100 points.

Stanford is coming off a second straight Pac-10 Tournament title and NCAA Elite Eight run. The Cardinal return three starters (11 letterwinners) to The Farm. Arizona, the 2004 Pac-10 Tournament runner-up, earned a second consecutive NCAA Tournament berth and returns four starters (nine letterwinners). UCLA made its return to the NCAA Tournament in 2004 following a three-year absence and scored 81 points against eventual Final Four participant Minnesota in first-round action.

This is the fourth straight year Stanford has been picked by the media as a Conference preseason favorite and marks the first time Arizona has been tabbed No. 1. The Wildcats' highest previous projection was second in 1997-98. The Pac-10 media poll has correctly predicted the Conference champion in six of the last seven seasons.

The five players named to the media's Preseason All-Pac-10 Team are: UCLA junior guard Nikki Blue (two-time All-Pac-10), Arizona junior center Shawntinice Polk (two-time All-Pac-10), UCLA sophomore guard Noelle Quinn (2004 Pac-10 Freshman of the Year, All-Pac-10), Stanford senior guard Kelley Suminski and Arizona senior guard Dee-Dee Wheeler (two-time All-Pac-10).

First-place votes in parentheses

		Team	Pts.	1.	Stanford (8)	140		Arizona (7)	140	3.	UCLA	122	4.	Arizona State	100	5.	Washington	83	6.	Oregon	78	7.	USC	61	8.	Oregon State	45	9.	California	34	10.	Washington State	22


	Name	School	Pos	Yr	Ht	Hometown	Nikki Blue	UCLA	G	Jr.	5-8	Bakersfield, Calif.	Shawntinice Polk	Arizona	C	Jr.	6-5	Hanford, Calif.	Noelle Quinn	UCLA	G	So.	6-0	Los Angeles, Calif.	Kelley Suminski	Stanford	G	Sr.	5-9	Chester, N.J.	Dee-Dee Wheeler	Arizona	G	Sr.	5-6	Chicago, Ill.
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