No. 7/7 Stanford Closes Home Weekend Saturday Against Oregon
Jan. 11, 2008
No. 7/7 Stanford Cardinal (13-3, 3-2 Pac-10)
- vs. -
Oregon Ducks (8-7, 2-2 Pac-10)
STANFORD, Calif. - The No. 7/7 Stanford women's basketball team concludes its weekend at home Saturday afternoon, hosting the Oregon Ducks in a 2 p.m. contest. The Cardinal look to continue their rebound from last weekend's sweep in Los Angeles, and started this weekend off in winning fashion with an 81-45 win over Oregon State Thursday night. Fans can catch Saturday's contest live on the airwaves at 90.1 KZSU, with Jake Kelman calling the action.
Last Time Out For The Cardinal
Stanford bounced back from back-to-back losses last week with a strong 81-45 victory at home Thursday night over Oregon State. Collectively, the Cardinal shot 56.1% (32-for-57) from the floor against the Beavers, with Jayne Appel leading the way with an eye-opening 12-for-13 effort for a game-high 25 points. The sophomore center also grabbed eight rebounds to lead all players. On the other end, the Cardinal stymied the Beaver offense, limiting them to just 16-of-53 shooting (30.2%), including 2-for-15 (13.3%) from beyond the arc, and forcing 25 turnovers, tying a season-high. A 42-19 halftime advantage allowed Stanford to play the entire healthy lineup, as, most notably, freshman Ashley Cimino made her collegiate debut with four points in 13 minutes.
The Ducks (8-7, 2-2 Pac-10) come into Saturday's game at Maples Pavilion having split their past four contests. Most recently, Oregon dropped a 61-52 decision at No. 9 California Thursday night. Helmed by head coach Bev Smith in her seventh season, the Ducks are led on the court by the play of guard Taylor Lilley (13.1 ppg) and center Ellyce Ironmonger (8.5 ppg, 5.5 rpg).
All-Time Against Oregon
Stanford holds a 35-8 advantage in the all-time series against Oregon heading into Saturday's contest. The Cardinal has also won five consecutive games against the Ducks, dating back to a 76-45 win at Maples Pavilion on Feb. 24, 2005.
The Cardinal In The Polls
With two losses last weekend, Stanford dropped from No. 2 to No. 7 in both the Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN Coaches Polls.
Among The National Stats Leaders
The Cardinal found itself in the National Top 50 in quite a few categories through the games of Jan. 6, including: assist-to-turnover ratio (1.16 - ninth), fewest turnovers per game (13.9 - ninth), rebounding margin (+9.8 - 15th), scoring margin (+16.6 - T-21st), scoring offense (75.2 - T-24th), assists per game (16.1 - 38th), FG percentage (44.2% - 47th), and fouls per game (15.3 - 47th). Individually, Jayne Appel's 2.1 blocks per game were tied for 48th in the nation, and her 53.1 FG percentage stood 50th. Candice Wiggins stands tied for 26th with 18.3 points per game, and freshman Kayla Pedersen is 47th in the nation with 9.1 rebounds per game.
In The Pac-10 Rankings
Through the games of Jan. 10, Stanford leads the Pac-10 in scoring offense (75.6 ppg), scoring margin (+17.8), blocked shots (69 - 4.31 per game), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.19), and is tied for first in rebounding margin (+9.4). The Cardinal also sits second in opponents' points per game (57.8 ppg), opponents' FG percentage (36.1%), free-throw percentage (71.6%), rebounding (43.2 rpg), and turnover margin (+3.19). Individually, Candice Wiggins is second in the conference in scoring (17.4 ppg), free-throw percentage (82.0%), and fourth in steals (2.25 per game). Jayne Appel leads the loop in blocks (32 - 2.00 per game), is third in rebounding (8.7 rpg), third in field-goal percentage (55.6%), and fourth in scoring (16.3 ppg). Kayla Pedersen is second in rebounding (8.8 rpg).
The 700 Club
Stanford head coach Tara VanDerveer became just the seventh member of the '700 Club' on Dec. 28, earning career win No. 700 with the 105-47 victory over Washington State. Of the seven members, VanDerveer is the second-fastest to have reached 700 wins, needing just 885 games to accomplish the feat. Tennessee head coach Pat Summitt was the fastest, reaching 700 wins in 847 total games. Following the win over the Cougars, VanDerveer was feted by the Maples Pavilion crowd, as a video tribute to her career was played and Stanford Athletic Director Bob Bowlsby presented her with a bouquet of flowers and a commemorative basketball.
And One For All
One key stat from Thursday night's win over Oregon State was Stanford's 25 assists. All 11 players that suited up and played for the Cardinal registered at least one assist, while five players had at least three, led by the five passed out by freshman Jeanette Pohlen. An encouraging note in regards to Stanford's guard play is also that, of those five players with at least three assists, four are guards. Along with Pohlen's five assists, Rosalyn Gold-Onwude, JJ Hones, and Candice Wiggins passed out three dimes apiece.
'Point'-ing The Way
Point guards Rosalyn Gold-Onwude and JJ Hones have each done some bouncing back of their own, returning from knee injuries suffered prior to and during last season to help the Cardinal to success in 2007-08. Thursday night's win over Oregon State was another example of the duo successfully platooning at point guard, with Hones scoring eight points and passing out three assists against zero turnovers, and Gold-Onwude also passing out three assists and showcasing her defensive skills with a game-high four steals.
Belated Christmas Gift
Three-time All-American guard Candice Wiggins received a late holiday gift on Jan. 10, as she was named the WBCA's Player of the Month for December. Over the final month of the calendar year, Wiggins averaged 20.5 points and 3.2 assists while leading the Cardinal to a perfect 6-0 mark, victories over No. 10/10 Baylor and No. 1/1 Tennessee, and a national No. 2 ranking.
Nothin' But Net
Stanford posted its fourth performance in which it made over half of its field-goal attempts Thursday night, shooting 56.1% (32-for-57) against Oregon State. Center Jayne Appel led the way with an incredible 12-for-13 performance from the floor, scoring 25 points, while JJ Hones (3-for-3), Hannah Donaghe (3-for-5), Jeanette Pohlen (3-for-5), and Morgan Clyburn (4-for-7) all had solid shooting nights as well.
Stanford has a tendency to rebound nicely from losses, even ones that come back-to-back. Following its first loss of the season Thanksgiving night to Connecticut, Stanford reeled off nine straight wins in response. Discounting last year's season-ending loss to Florida State in the NCAA Tournament, the Cardinal responded to its previous two losses of 2006-07 with lengthy winning streaks. After losses at No. 4/4 Tennessee and No. 8/8 Georgia on Nov. 24 & 26, 2006, the Cardinal reeled off 17 wins in a row. That streak was broken by a 72-57 loss to No. 21/21 California on Feb. 4, 2007, but the Cardinal re-energized from that hiccup with 10 consecutive wins.
What, Me Worry?
Looking ahead, despite being 3-2 in Pac-10 play, two games back of 5-0 California and 1.5 games back of 4-0 Arizona State, Stanford shouldn't have to worry about catching the two leaders if recent history has anything to say about it. With two games still to be played against each opponent, the Cardinal can point confidently to the seven wins in the last eight contests against the Sun Devils, as well as its 14 wins in the last 15 meetings with the Golden Bears.
They Don't Love L.A.
The sweep suffered at the hands of UCLA and USC last weekend marked the first time since the 1993-94 season that the Cardinal had dropped both contests of its annual Southern California Pac-10 trip. Prior to the results of last Friday and Sunday, Stanford had won six of its last seven at UCLA's Pauley Pavilion, while boasting a three-game winning streak in games at USC.
'Pierce'-d Through The Heart
Senior Cissy Pierce put up her third double-figure scoring game of the season Thursday with 10 points against Oregon State. The Littleton, Colo. native cashed in on 2-of-4 three-point attempts, and dazzled the crowd with her acrobatic layups.
Retiring The Number
Freshman Jeanette Pohlen took a detour from the L.A. trip last Saturday night to visit her alma mater, Brea Olinda High School. There, Pohlen's No. 32 jersey was retired as a testament to the career of BOHS' all-time leading scorer (2,196 points) and rebounder (1,140 rebounds).
Climbing To The Top Of The Record Books
Heading into the 2007-08 season, senior guard Candice Wiggins stands on the brink of establishing multiple career records in the Stanford women's basketball annals. Currently, Wiggins is already the all-time Stanford leader with a career mark of 18.6 points per game, and now stands second with 2,119 career points. With 35 points in the Dec. 16 win over Baylor, Wiggins became the fifth player in Stanford history to score 2,000 career points, and needs just 97 more points to take over the top spot from all-time scoring leader Kate Starbird (2,215 points). Moving beyond the arc, Wiggins hit her 211th and 212th career three-pointers against Connecticut on Nov. 22, becoming the new all-time leader and breaking the previous record of 210 held by Vanessa Nygaard. Currently, she has 235 threes in her career. Additionally, Wiggins on Dec. 18 at New Mexico passed Sebnem Kimyacioglu's all-time mark of 549 career three-point attempts, and currently holds the mark with 590 career attempts. Finally, at the charity stripe, Wiggins is third all-time with her 454 career free throws, and currently sits fourth on the all-time free-throw percentage list with an 82.3% success rate, just two percentage points behind Kelley Suminski's top mark of 84.3%.
Home Sweet Home
Tara VanDerveer's teams have compiled a 293-32 (.902) record at home during her tenure. The Cardinal is 180-12 (.938) all-time against Pac-10 foes at home. Stanford has also won 90 of its last 97 games at Maples. Stanford's last loss in Maples was on March 19, 2007 to Florida State, while the last home conference loss was on Feb. 4, 2007, when California posted a 72-57 victory over the Cardinal.
There's No Place Like Home
Nov. 28's regular-season home opener against San Francisco began what Stanford hopes will become its first undefeated home season since going 11-0 at Maples in 2004-05. Since posting undefeated home marks in each of the three seasons from 1994-97, the Cardinal has only posted one unblemished mark at home (2004-05). Currently, Stanford is 8-0 at home in 2007-08, with six regular-season contests remaining at Maples Pavilion
Gotta Stay Healthy
No matter how much talent is on any given roster, a team must stay as healthy as possible to give itself the best chance for a national title. Freshman Ashley Cimino, after missing the first 15 games of the season due to a lingering back injury, made her collegiate debut Jan. 10 against Oregon State. Sophomore forward Michelle Harrison was lost for the year in the season opener at Yale with a torn ACL and sprained MCL in her left knee, and sophomore point guard Melanie Murphy was also lost for the year with a torn ACL on Nov. 24 against Old Dominion at the Paradise Jam.
The Choice In The Pac-10...again
For the eighth year in a row, seven-time defending conference champion Stanford has been voted as the favorite to win the 2007-08 Pac-10 women's basketball title, according to both the preseason coaches and media poll. The Cardinal received eight of 10 first-place votes in the coaches poll, tallying 79 points overall, and 17 of 18 top votes in the media poll, good for 179 points. Arizona State was picked as the runner-up in each poll.
Joining The Elite
On Jan. 3, Stanford senior guard Candice Wiggins joined a distinguished list of elite basketball players as she was named USA Basketball's 2007 Female Athlete of the Year. In 2007, Wiggins was part of four USA Basketball squads, and helped those four teams to a combined record of 23-0 and three gold medals in international competition. She also became the first Stanford player to earn this national honor.