No. 3 Stanford Routs South Carolina 78-47
Dec. 19, 2008
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP)--Kayla Pedersen and Jayne Appel each posted double-doubles and No. 3 Stanford bounced back from its loss at Duke earlier this week with a 78-47 victory over South Carolina on Friday night.
The Cardinal (8-2) began their three-game East Coast swing with a 56-52 loss to the Blue Devils last Tuesday night. With a national championship rematch at No. 11 Tennessee pending Sunday, this seemed like the classic trap game.
Instead, it was Stanford's size and strength that was sprung on the Gamecocks.
Pedersen finished with 15 points and tied her careerr high with 16 rebounds. Appel added 15 points and 14 rebounds to send the Cardinal into the Tennessee contest back on pace.
For South Carolina (5-4), it was the 20th straight loss to a ranked opponent. The Gamecocks are 1-38 in such games since the end of the 2002-03 season
Lakeisha Sutton led South Carolina with 13 points.
Stanford didn't give the Gamecocks and first-year coach Dawn Staley a chance to pull the upset. The Cardinal outrebounded South Carolina 53-21, and held the Gamecocks to five field goals in the second half.
Appel had two baskets and Pedersen a pair of foul shots to put Stanford ahead by double-figures, 18-8. However, the Gamecocks kept scratching back against their much taller opponents.
It was Stanford's size--it used six players 6-foot-2 or taller--that kept it out front much of the way. Pedersen and Appel, both 6-4, had 17 of the Cardinal's 37 points and 19 of their 25 rebounds in the opening half.
Stanford dared South Carolina to shoot from the outside, and the Gamecocks couldn't do it with consistency. They finished 10-of-28 from the field, including a woeful 1-of-7 on mostly open 3-pointers.
The game was a reunion of several key members of the 1996 U.S. women's Olympic team. Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer led that group, which featured most of South Carolina's coaching staff in Staley and her assistants Nikki McCray and Carla McGhee.
VanDerveer hugged each of them before the game.
Also in attendance was basketball great Anne Donavan, who won Olympic gold in 1984 and 1988 and led the U.S. women to Olympic gold in Beijing. Staley, who owns three golds as a player, was an assistant for the American team.