UW Women Travel To LA, Face Women of Troy Thursday

Feb. 7, 2006

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Thursday, Feb. 9, 2006
Washington (15-6, 8-4 Pac-10) at USC (14-8, 8-5)
Los Angeles Sports Arena • Los Angeles, Calif. • 7 p.m. PT
Radio - KKNW AM 1150

Saturday, Feb. 11, 2006
Washington (15-6, 8-4 Pac-10) at UCLA (13-9, 8-5 Pac-10)
Pauley Pavilion • Westwood, Calif. • 1 p.m. PT
Radio - KKNW AM 1150 • Live TV - FSN

Up Next:
Washington women's basketball (15-6, 8-4 Pac-10) will look to hold onto its top-three position in the Pac-10 standings when it travels to Southern California this week. The Huskies will face USC (14-8, 8-5 Pac-10) Thursday, Feb. 9, at 7 p.m. at the LA Sports Arena, before taking on UCLA (13-9, 8-5 Pac-10), Saturday, Feb. 11 at Pauley Pavilion at 1 p.m. Saturday's game against the Bruins will be televised nationally on FSN. In the conference standings, both USC and UCLA are tied for fourth and are a half game behind third-place Washington. Nearing the end of the regular season, the Huskies play four of their last six games on the road with their last two home games coming against Oregon (Feb. 16) and Oregon State (Feb. 18). UW will play its final two games at Stanford (Feb. 23) and Cal (Feb. 25).

Radio Coverage:
All Husky women's basketball games can be heard live on the radio at KKNW AM 1150. Steve Sandmeyer, in his seventh season as the voice of UW women's hoops, calls the play-by-play. Former Husky Elise (Niemela) Woodward joins Sandmeyer as the color commentator for home broadcasts. Fans can also listen to games on the internet at www.gohuskies.com with a Dawg Channel All-Access pass.

TV Coverage:
Saturday's game at UCLA will be nationally televised on FSN. It will be the second time in the last three games UW has had a nationally televised contest.

Schedule Note:
Washington's game at California, Saturday, Feb. 25, will be played at 3 p.m. PT. It was previously listed as 2 p.m. but moved due to the possibility of being picked up as a television game. It will be played at 3 p.m. regardless.

What To Watch:
UW head coach June Daugherty needs just one more victory to secure her 100th Pac-10 win, and just eight more to earn her 300th career victory. Only two other current Pac-10 coaches have reached the 300-career win mark: Stanford's Tara VanDerveer (650-175) and Arizona's Joan Bonvincini (590-247).

Scouting USC (14-8, 8-5 Pac-10):
The Women of Troy return home this week after splitting a pair of games on the road at Arizona and Arizona State. USC just got past Arizona, winning 73-72, before falling by another slim margin at Arizona State, 72-79. USC has lost three of its last four games heading into Thursday's meeting. Before that, the Women of Troy had won five-straight. In addition to the ASU loss, USC's other Pac-10 losses have come to Stanford and Cal, twice. USC has two players averaging double-figures in scoring, led by Shay Murphy with 16.6 points per game. Murphy is also the team's top rebounder with 7.3 boards per game. Camille Lenoir averages 12.6 points and 3.9 assists.

All-Time Series Versus USC:
Washington leads the all-time series with USC 25-17 but the Women of Troy have won the last three straight. In the earlier season meeting in Seattle, USC edged the Huskies 64-61. USC swept the season series last year after UW had won two of three meetings in 2003-04. Washington's last win versus USC was a 67-50 victory at the 2004 Pac-10 Tournament. The Huskies are 8-12 against USC on its home court.

Last Time Versus USC:
Washington saw its 12-game home winning streak come to a close, as the Huskies were edged by USC, 64-61, at Bank of America Arena, Saturday, Jan. 14. Washington had won its first eight-straight home games of the season until Jan. 14, after closing out 2004-05 with four straight wins. In a game that saw neither team lead by more than six points from wire to wire, the Huskies were doomed by their poor free-throw shooting down the stretch. Washington was down by just one, 62-61, with 1:30 left but missed four straight free-throws, a pair by junior Jill Bell and a pair by junior Breanne Watson. USC took advantage of their free-throw attempts in that span, going 4-for-5 in the last 1:30 including a pair by guard Camille Lenoir with 7.8 seconds remaining that sealed the 64-61 victory. In the second half, the Huskies shot 1-for-9 from the free-throw line and were outrebounded by the Women of Troy, 21-20. Overall, USC held a 40-25 advantage on the glass, including a 14-7 advantage on offensive boards. UW's 25 boards were a season low for a team that entered the game averaging 41.5 per outing. Despite a season-low 30.8 percent shooting clip from the free-throw line, the Huskies had their fourth-best field goal shooting percentage to that point - 45.5 percent. USC was led by guard Shay Murphy who recorded 19 points, eight rebounds and five assists, while Lenoir added 18 points and four assists. Husky point guard Emily Florence matched her season and career-high with 13 points on 5-for-9 shooting. Florence also led the team in rebounds (seven) and shared the team assists lead with Cameo Hicks (five). Senior guard Kristen O'Neill was the other Husky in double-figures with 10 points to go along with four assists and three steals.

Dawg Bites:
• The Huskies' 15 wins are one more than it accumulated all of last season, while its 15-6 record is its best to open a season since the 2002-03 Dawgs started 17-3.

• The Huskies have yet to lose consecutive Pac-10 games this year. Only once has UW lost back-to-back games this season, coming at then-No. 5 Baylor and at Texas A&M.

• Washington has won 10 of its last 14 games and is 20-8 in its last 28 games dating back to last year.

• The Huskies have the third-highest scoring average in the Pac-10 going into this week (71.2 ppg). The Huskies have scored at least 83 points in their last three home wins - 91 versus Arizona (Jan. 26), 96 over UCLA (Jan. 12) and 83 vs. Washington State (Feb. 5).

• Washington's shooting numbers have been on the rise as of late. The Huskies have shot at least 45 percent from the field five times in the last seven games. Included in that span was a season-high effort of 48.3 percent (29-for-60) at Oregon State (Jan. 12). In the first 14 games, Washington shot 45 percent or better on just two occasions (45.8 vs. San Diego; 46.4 vs. Rice).

• Lately when the Huskies win, they win big. UW's last four victories have come by an average of 20.5 points. Washington defeated UCLA by 21 (1/12), Oregon State by 17 (1/19), Arizona by 18 (1/26) and Washington State by 26 (2/5).

• Going into this week, Washington led the Pac-10 in offensive rebounds (17.29) and turnover margin (+4.05). UW also ranked in the conference Top-5 in scoring offense (3rd, 71.7), scoring margin (4th, +6.9), three-point FG percentage (5th, .328), rebounding offense (5th, 39.3), rebounding defense (2nd, 35.8), rebounding margin (3rd, +3.5), assists (5th, 15.29), three-point FG made (3rd, 6.33), and steals (2nd, 10.71).

• UW is 10-2 at home this season and had won 12-straight at Bank of America Arena until falling to USC on Jan. 14.

• Junior guard Cameo Hicks is the team's leader in scoring (14.5 ppg) and rebounding (5.7), and is second in assists (2.6). Hicks, selected the Pac-10 Player of the Week for the week of Dec. 19-25, has reached double-figure scoring 17 times in 21 games including four 20-point efforts.

• Sophomore forward Andrea Plouffe is not far behind Hicks when it comes to offensive numbers. On the season, Plouffe averages 10.2 points and 4.1 rebounds. She has reached double-figures in scoring 10 times in the last 13 games. Plouffe is averaging 11.7 points and 4.7 rebounds in Washington's 12 Pac-10 games thus far.

• UW set a school record with its perfect 14-for-14 (1.000) clip from the free-throw line at Baylor, Dec. 2. The Huskies surpassed the previous school record of a 93.8 percentage (15-for-16) set in 1978 versus Sacramento State and in 1985 versus Oregon.

Last Time Out:
Washington's defense forced 24 turnovers - including 13 in the opening 10 minutes of play - while shooting 47.7 percent from the field to earn a dominating 83-57 win over Washington State, Feb. 5, at Bank of America Arena. The win marked the 22nd-straight for Washington in the series, and was the fifth-largest margin of victory for either team in series history. Sophomore Andrea Plouffe scored16 points to lead five players in double-figures for Washington, which won for the 10th time in its last 14 games. Cougars freshman Amanda DuRocher led the scoring for the visitors, finishing with 20 points, including four three-pointers. Washington put the game away in the opening minutes, holding the Cougars without a field goal for more than seven minutes after the opening tip. In all, Washington State went 16 possessions before finding the basket, including 10 turnovers, four missed shots and two free-throws. By the time DuRocher ended the drought with a three-pointer, the Huskies had built a 19-5 lead it would never relinquish. UW responded to DuRocher's three by scoring the next 11-straight points, helped by four more Cougar miscues. The Huskies led 30-5 at the 9:29 mark in the first half - including 20 points of 13 WSU turnovers - and opened a lead as large as 33 points, at 47-14 with 2:14 to play, before a Cougars run cut it to 50-26 at halftime. It was much the same story in the second half, with the Huskies keeping Washington State off the scoreboard for nearly four minutes after the intermission. Plouffe scored 11 of UW's first 15 out of the breack, helping the Huskies increase their lead to 32 early on, before the Husky bench took over for the remainder of the period. Junior Cameo Hicks added a career-high six assists to her 11 points and six rebounds, while sophomore Dominique Banks matched a career-high with eight rebounds, and 11 points. Juniors Cheri Craddock (12) and Jill Bell (10) also scored in double figures off the bench for UW.

O'Neill, Craddock Stepping Up:
Senior guard Kristen O'Neill and junior guard Cheri Craddock have stepped up big for the Huskies since Kayla Burt announced her retirement, Jan. 16. Without Burt in the rotation, Craddock has taken advantage of her increased minutes and O'Neill has taken her game to another level. Both have provided the Huskies with a much needed boost to their three-point shooting, after Burt led the team in three-pointers at the time of her retirement. Craddock had not played more than nine minutes on the floor until that time, and since has played 20 minutes in two of the last three games. Craddock has drained at least three three-pointers in three of the last four games, including matching her career-high with four versus Arizona and four versus Washington State. Craddock begins the week ranked second in the Pac-10 with a 43.9 three-point FG shooting percentage. She has reached double-figures in scoring three times in the last four games as well. O'Neill has reached double-figures five times in the last seven games including a season-high 19 point output versus Arizona. Like Craddock, O'Neill has been hot from downtown. In three of the last four games, she has drained at least three three-pointers, including four versus Arizona. O'Neill is also 8-for-9 from the free-throw line in the last four games.

Ranked Opponents:
Washington is 2-3 against ranked opponents, defeating then-No. 23 Utah (Nov. 23) and then-No. 10 Stanford (Dec. 22) while falling to then-No. 5 Baylor (Dec. 2) and twice to Arizona State (Dec. 29, Jan. 28). Washington is 39-99 overall versus Top-25 opponents, including a 28-40 mark at home. UW is 2-1 at home against ranked opponents this season, and 0-2 on the road.

Kayla Burt Announces Retirement:
Washington senior Kayla Burt announced Jan. 16 that her playing career with the Husky women's basketball team has come to an end. The decision was reached through a mutual agreement between Burt, her doctors and the UW athletic department following information obtained regarding the cause for the activation of her internal heart defibrillator during Washington's game against UCLA, Jan. 12. After being admitted to the University of Washington Medical Center Thursday night and undergoing a variety of tests through Friday, it was determined that the defibrillator shocked Burt's heart due to an arrhythmia and was not caused by a malfunction or damage to the device. The defibrillator performed just as it was designed - to emit an electrical shock to the heart when an abnormality was detected. Doctors did not find any damage to Burt's heart but the dangerous rhythm she experienced raised concern due to the fact the cardiac arrest she suffered almost exactly three years ago was now not an isolated incident. Burt had the defibrillator implanted in the right side of her chest following a cardiac arrest she suffered on New Year's Eve, 2002. She was initially diagnosed with Long Q-T Syndrome but additional testing found it was unlikely she had the condition. She was then diagnosed with idiopathic ventricular fibrillation meaning doctors could not determine the cause of her arrest. With that new information, Burt expressed her desire to return to playing basketball and officially rejoined the team in August, 2004. Burt was honored for her courageous comeback, earning the 2005 V Foundation Comeback Award and being a nominee for the 2005 ESPY for Comeback of the Year. This year, Burt came off the bench in 15 games, averaging 6.9 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.9 assists. She still leads the team with 20 three-pointers made. She reached double-figures in scoring three times, including a season-high 14 points in the Husky Classic Championship versus Rice. For her career, Burt averaged 7.6 points, 3.1 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game.

As the defense goes, so go the Huskies. UW is holding its opponents to an average of 64.9 points per game and is 12-2 when holding its opponents to less than 70 points. Washington is also forcing its opponents to commit an average of 21.9 turnovers per game, including a season-high 29 by Eastern Washington (Dec. 12). The Huskies began the week ranked second in the Pac-10 with 10.71 steals per game, led by Kristen O'Neill with a team-high 40. Both O'Neill and Cameo Hicks rank in the individual Top-10 in steals, with O'Neill at eighth with 1.90 per game and Hicks in 10th with 1.67 per game.

Crashing The Boards:
Washington's increased inside presence has been reflected by its improved rebounding numbers. The Huskies are averaging 39.3 rebounds per game, up from last year's average of 37.6. In fact, the Huskies are 11-1 when outrebounding their opponent. UW's 54 rebounds vs. Utah - just the third game of the season - surpassed its season-high from all of last year (52 at Washington State, Jan. 22, 05). Washington has especially excelled on the offensive glass. The Huskies began the week leading the Pac-10 in offensive rebounds (17.29).

Most Improved Plouffe:
If her early season numbers are any indication, sophomore forward Andrea Plouffe is on track to win her second-straight Most Improved Player honors when team awards are handed out. After averaging 4.6 minutes on the floor as a freshman, with 1.6 points and 1.2 rebounds per game, Plouffe has emerged as one of the top Huskies this year and added a boost to the team's inside presence. Having started every game this year, Plouffe is second on the squad with 10.2 points per game to go along with a rebounding average of 4.1. She has reached double figures in scoring 13 times, including back-to-back then-career high efforts versus San Diego and Rice in the Husky Classic, a performance that earned her tournament MVP honors. She established a new career-high for scoring with 19 points at Oregon State, Jan. 19. Plouffe's first career double-double came at a good time, her 17 points and 10 rebounds leading UW over Rice in the Husky Classic Championship game. Her second double-double was a 10-point, 10-rebound performance in the Pac-10 opener vs. Cal. She also had team-highs in both points (14) and rebounds (8) in UW's win at Arizona (Dec. 31) and scored a team-high 16 points in both contests versus Washington State (Jan. 7 in Pullman; Feb. 5 in Seattle).

Hot Hicks:
Junior guard Cameo Hicks has emerged as the Huskies' much-needed go-to player, as no Husky averaged double-figures in scoring last year. This year, Hicks leads the team in scoring (14.5 ppg) and rebounding (5.7). Hicks has been UW's leading scorer in 12 of 21 games and the team's top rebounder in 10 (ties included). Hicks' numbers have been nothing but impressive. The Tracy, Calif., native opened the season scoring in double-figures in four-straight including three-straight 21-point games (21 vs. Florida State, 21 vs. Utah and 26 vs. San Diego). Only four times has Hicks failed to score at least 10 points, with eight versus Rice (Nov. 27), seven at Texas A&M (Dec. 4), eight at Arizona (Dec. 31) and nine versus USC (Jan. 14). Her 14.5 scoring average is a huge improvement upon her average of 9.5 ppg during her sophomore campaign. Hicks has two double-doubles this season (three in her career) with 21 points and a career-high 14 rebounds versus Utah (Nov. 23) and 17 points and 10 rebounds versus UCLA (Jan. 12). Hicks was the key to the Huskies two-point win over Florida State (Nov. 20), scoring a game-high 21 points including seven of the last 14 for UW. She had the gamewinning layin with 6.9 seconds on the clock and was 6-for-7 from the line. Hicks also led UW with 13 points and nine rebounds at Alabama (Nov. 18) and had team-highs in points (15) and assists (four) at Baylor (Dec. 2). On her 21st birthday, she also scored a team-high 16 points versus Eastern Washington (Dec. 12). Her 23-point performance versus No. 10 Stanford earned her Pac-10 Player of the Week honors for the week of Dec. 19-25.

Oh Canada:
Washington's starting frontline of forwards Breanne Watson and Andrea Plouffe both hail from Canada. Watson, a junior, is a native of Richmond, British Columbia and Plouffe, a sophomore, is from Edmonton, Alberta. Both players have spent time on Canadian national teams. Watson played for the Canadian National Women's Development Team at two World University Games - in Turkey in 2005 and in Korea in 2003. And before coming to Washington, Plouffe played for the Canadian Junior Development Team during the summer of 2003.

Home Sweet Home:
Washington has a long standing tradition of a stellar home record. UW is 284-70 all-time on its home court (80.2 winning pct.) at Bank of America Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavilion. Last season marked the first time that UW lost more than five games at home. The Huskies were 8-7 at home last year, their lowest home winning percentage (53.3) in school history, but did end the season winning their last four at Bank of America Arena. UW is 10-2 on its home court in 2005-06.

Home Winning Streak:
Washington's loss versus USC, Jan. 14, snapped its last 12-game home win streak that dated back to last season. The streak ranked seventh all-time and was the second-longest since the arena re-opened in 2001. The Huskies won 18-straight from Nov. 29, 2002 through Dec. 19, 2003.

UW Completes Impressive Non-Conference Slate:
Washington emerged from its non-conference slate with a 7-2 overall record, an impressive mark considering the Huskies faced four NCAA Tournament teams (including defending champion Baylor) and one WNIT team from last season. The Huskies' record is their best since also going 7-2 against non-conference teams two years ago (2003-04). Only two other June Daugherty coached teams have had better records. The 1997-98 team went 9-0 in the preseason, while the 2002-03 team went 8-1.

Ranked Opponents:
Four teams on Washington's schedule are ranked in either of the latest Associated Press or USA Today/ESPN/WBCA Polls: Baylor (No. 12 AP/No. 11 WBCA), Stanford (No. 14 AP/No. 14 WBCA), Arizona State (No. 16 AP/No. 17 WBCA) and Texas A&M (No. 24 AP/No. 25 WBCA).

Bell Climbing Career Blocks List:
Junior forward Jill Bell has steadily climbed up Washington's career list for blocked shots. After beginning the season ranked eighth on the list, Bell holds sole possession of seventh with a total of 69.

O'Neill Moving Up Career Three-Pointers List:
Senior guard Kristen O'Neill isn't the only Husky etching her name in the Washington record books. Twenty-one games into her senior season, O'Neill continues to move up both career lists for three-pointers made and three-pointers attempted. She is holds sole possession of seventh place in three-pointers made (130) and is sixth in three-pointers attempted (384).

The Schedule:
Washington's 2005-06 schedule features nine opponents that appeared in last year's NCAA Tournament including the defending NCAA champion Baylor Lady Bears. Baylor highlights a formidable preseason slate that includes the likes of Florida State, Utah and Rice, while Pac-10 steams Stanford (Elite Eight), Arizona State (Sweet 16), USC, Oregon and Arizona are also squads that participated in postseason play last year.

Reaching 600:
Washington's win over Utah (Nov. 23) was also the 600th in program history. UW's all-time record is 612-310, its inaugural season being 1974-75.

Head Coach June Daugherty:
June Daugherty is in her 10th season as the head coach of the Husky women's basketball team, having led Washington to the postseason seven times. She has guided UW to four NCAA Tournaments, including an Elite Eight appearance in 2000-01, and three trips to the WNIT. She was also one of 25 finalists for the prestigious Naismith Coach of the Year award in 2002-03. Twice has a Daugherty squad reached the 22-win plateau. Daugherty has compiled a UW record of 169-121, and a career record of 292-195. She coached seven seasons at Boise State before coming to Seattle. Her husband, Mike, is the Huskies' Associate Head Coach, while Janet Soderberg and Kellie Lewis-Jay are the two assistants. Mike Daugherty is in his 10th year with the team, while Soderberg begins her second season and Lewis-Jay enters her third year.

Burt Receives National Recognition For Comeback:
Following the end of last season, senior guard Kayla Burt received a pair of national honors for her comeback to basketball after suffering a cardiac arrest episode on New Year's Eve, 2002. In her first year back on the court, Burt led the Huskies in scoring (9.6 ppg), assists (2.9 apg), free-throw percentage (75.8) and free-throws made (69). In March she was named the 2005 recipient of the prestigious V Foundation Comeback Award and during the summer made a trip to Hollywood for the 2005 ESPY Awards as one of four nominees for Best Comeback. Burt was presented the V Foundation Trophy prior to the Feb. 5 game with Washington State. At the local level, Burt was also named the Everett Herald's Woman of the Year in Sports.

Watson Gains International Experience:
Junior forward Breanne Watson represented her native country as a member of the Canadian National Development Team that competed at the 2005 World University Games held in Turkey in August. A starter on the squad, Watson averaged 6.8 points and 4.5 rebounds in six games. She missed the seventh game after injuring her elbow. The Canadian team finished 11th overall with a 4-3 record. It was the second time Watson competed in the World University Games, as she was a member of the Canadian National Development Team that competed in Korea during the summer of 2003.

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