Cal Opens Season with 87-55 Victory over Navy

Nov. 21, 2004

BERKELEY, Calif. - Senior guard Kristin Iwanaga tallied 15 points and four assists to lead California to an 87-55 season-opening win over Navy Sunday afternoon at Haas Pavilion. The Golden Bears (1-0) set a school record for three-point shooting percentage in a game, converting 8-of-10 shots from long range, eclipsing the previous record of 72.7 (8-11).

'To build up heading into the Hawaii trip, this was a good game to get started with playing at home,' Cal head coach Caren Horstmeyer said. 'It showed our depth, which I thought was key, and we played against a team that was pretty disciplined that executed some things we needed to fix, even during the game, which we did in the second half. Our players made a great adjustment.'

Iwanaga, who tallied 13 of her points after halftime, posted a perfect shooting performance - sinking all three of her treys and all six of her free throws. Senior forward Kiki Williams and freshman center Jessica Lawson added 11 points for Cal, and senior forward Leigh Gregory had 10 points. Lawson paced the Bears with eight rebounds and four steals

'They went to the zone in the second half, which opened me up,' Iwanaga said.

'Everyone gets fired up when K.I. gets into her shooting position,' Horstmeyer said. 'We try to get them to go get the rebound when she shoots, but they think that she's going to make it, so they start running back.'

Navy (0-2) jumped out to an 8-3 lead less than five minutes into the game, but Cal reclaimed the lead for good with a 12-0 burst keyed by three-pointers from freshman guard Seda Erdogan and junior forward Renee Wright.

With under nine minutes left in the first half, Williams scored a three-pointer and then followed that play with a fast-break layup after a Navy turnover to propel the Bears to a 24-12 lead.

The Bears led 37-26 at the break with both team's shooting well from the floor - 52.0 percent for Navy and 48.3 percent for Cal.

The Midshipmen cut the Bears' lead to eight points with a three-pointer by Ashley Pelzek to start the second half, but that was as close as they would get the rest of the contest. Cal stepped up its defensive intensity and kept shooting at a torrid pace. The Bears shot 52.5 percent for the game after hitting 56.7 percent over the final 20 minutes, while the Midshipmen finished the game at 43.4 percent following a 35.7-percent second half.

Following a layup from Gregory with 6:56 left on the clock, Cal extended its lead to 65-44. Another layup from freshman forward Krista Foster with 1:27 to play gave the Bears a 30-point advantage at 82-52.

A balanced attack led to the Bears' 87 points, which were the most they have scored since a 90-67 triumph over San Jose State Nov. 25, 2003 in Berkeley. Wright notched nine points, and senior center Khadijah Coakley added a career-high eight points. Freshman guard Brio Rode saw her first game action of the season, posting eight points, including 2-of-2 from beyond the arc, over the final five minutes of the contest.

Sophomore guard Sarah Pool tied her career high of six assists, as Cal finished the game with 24 assists on its 31 baskets.

Carly Meyer led Navy with 17 points off the bench, while Pelzek added 12 points.

Cal next faces one of its toughest stretches of games Thanksgiving weekend at the Rainbow Wahine Classic in Honolulu, Hawaii. The Bears open the three-day tournament Friday, Nov. 26 against TCU, a 2004 NCAA Tournament team, at 3:40 p.m. PT. The game can be heard live on KALX (90.7 FM).