UCLA Women Host USC Saturday

Feb. 10, 2010

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GAME #23: Sat., Feb. 13, 2010
SITE: Pauley Pavilion
TIP-OFF: 11:00 a.m.
TALENT: Jim Watson, Mary Murphy, Anne-Marie Anderson
AUDIO: uclabruins.com
TALENT: Dave Marcus, Mike Sondheimer

Bruins Host Trojans
UCLA (15-7, 8-3), which has won five of its last six games, will begin a three-game homestand with a visit from cross-town rival USC (13-9, 7-4) on Saturday at 11a.m. in Pauley Pavilion. The game will be televised live on Fox Sports Net. The Bruins will play five of the last seven games of the regular season at home.

Strong Pac-10 Start
The Bruins' 7-2 Pac-10 start was the team's best since it began the 1999-00 conference season with six consecutive wins and also finished the first half of Pac-10 play with a 7-2 mark. In 1998-99, UCLA opened with nine straight wins in Pac-10 play. The Bruins have had only three previous Pac-10 first half results (1999-00 7-2; 1998-99 9-0; 1997-98 7-2) with seven or more wins. (note -- first Pac-10 season was 1986-87).

The Bruins have won as many as seven Pac-10 second-half games on three occasions, each a 7-2 record, and all three have helped put them into the NCAA Tournament (2005-06, 2003-04, 1997-98).

Home Sweet Home
Under second-year head coach Nikki Caldwell, the Bruins have posted an 20-5 record (.800) on their home court of Pauley Pavilion. Three of those five losses have been by four points or less.

LA Sparks Day
On Saturday, the Los Angeles Sparks will be visiting Pauley Pavilion for the annual Sparks Day at UCLA. New coach Jennifer Gillom will be introduced during the game, and Sparks staff will be passing out information at lower Gate 2. For the past several years, the Bruins and Sparks have developed a thriving relationship by hosting promotional nights at a select home game in Pauley and the Staples Center respectively.

In addition, the Ole Skool Crew, which has been providing entertainment at several UCLA games this year and for the LA Sparks since 2004, will perform at the game.

About The Opponents
USC dropped both of its games in the Bay Area last week to fall into third place in the Pac-10 with a 7-4 record, a game behind the second-place Bruins. The Trojans rank first in three-point fg percentage (.370) and second in the Pac-10 in free throw shooting percentage (.742) and made three-point shots per game (6.6). Guard Ashley Corral leads the conference in assists (4.8) and ranks seventh in scoring (16.1). The Trojans lead the overall series, 43-29.

Last Time Vs. USC
Jan. 17, 2010 in Galen Center--- Free throw shooting made all the difference as USC defeated UCLA, 70-63, at the Galen Center on Sunday afternoon. The Women of Troy made 24 of 27 free throws in the game, while UCLA was just 9-of-20. USC also had a 24-11 advantage in points off turnovers. The turning point of the game came at 9:01 in the second half when Jasmine Dixon's layup was called off for an offensive foul with the Bruins up 56-49. She picked up her fourth foul less than a minute later, and USC went on an 11-1 run over the next four and a half minutes to move ahead for good, 60-57. Erica Tukiainen led the Bruins with 14 points, and Darxia Morris added 13.

Six in Top 52 In NCAA Stats
The Bruin team began the week listed in the Top 52 of the latest NCAA national rankings (from Feb. 7) in six categories - 25th in scoring defense (56.1), 31st in FG % defense (35.7), 38th in rebounding margin (5.7), 40th in 3-Pt. FG% defense (.283), 48th in scoring margin (10.1), 52nd in turnover margin (2.86). (Note-332 teams ranked).

The Bruins have opened the season by holding opponents in 20 of 22 games to 70 points or less, 19 to 65 points or less and 15 to 60 points or less. UCLA held eight straight opponents to less than 60 points earlier this season, one shy of the school record stretch of nine set in the 1974-75 season.

In addition, the Bruins have also held the last 27 opponents to less than 50% shooting from the field. Opponents this season are shooting .357 against the Bruins. Seventeen opponents have shot less than 40% this season and just one has shot over 43% (at UW - 46%). Opponents are scoring 56.1 ppg. Both opponent marks - shooting % and scoring defense - approach or would set the school record totals of .355 in 1976-77 for shooting % and 59.7 ppg in 1976-77.

The 21.7 fg% shot by Cal last Saturday was an opponent season-low and the fourth time this season the Bruins have held an opponent to less than 30% shooting (at Cal, at WSU, Cal, Utah).

In Coach Caldwell's two seasons at the helm, her Bruin teams have held 29 opponents to 60 points or less, 11 opponents to 50 points or less and four to 40 points or less. UCLA has held two opponents to sub-40 scoring games this season - Cal with 32 and Utah with 33.

A Look On the Other Side
The combined record of the six teams the Bruins have lost to this season is 97-33 (75% --Stanford 21-1, @Tennessee 20-2, Illinois State 16-5, @Kansas 14-7, Texas Tech 13-9, @USC 13-9. Records as of 2/7). The seven losses have been by a combined total of 58 points.

Bruins Shut Down Bears (game 22)
UCLA held Cal to an opponent season-low 21.7% and came away with a 44-32 win. Doreena Campbell and Nina Earl led the Bruins with nine points each. The Bruins scored the final 14 points of the first half to take a 14-8 lead at the break. The 22 combined points tied the NCAA record for fewest points in a half.

WSU Game Time Change
The Saturday, Feb. 20 game vs. Washington State will be played at 4 p.m. in Pauley Pavilion. It was previously scheduled for 8 pm in order to be considered for selection for the Pac-10 Game of the Week on FSN. Since it was not selected, the game time was moved to 4 p.m.

Road Warriors
The sweep of the Washington schools marked the second road sweep of the season for the Bruins, who also won both contests in Arizona. The last time UCLA swept two Pac-10 road series in the same season was in 1999-2000, also against the Washington and Arizona schools.

UCLA's five conference road wins to date are the most since UCLA also captured five roadies in the 2002-03 campaign. The most games a Bruin team has ever won on the road in Pac-10 play is seven (1998-99, 1997-98, when it also swept two road series).

UCLA leads the Pac-10 in conference road wins with five and is second in winning percentage in road conference games (5-2, .714).

Great Starts
For the second year in a row, and just the fourth time in school history, the Bruins have achieved the 14-victory plateau by Feb. 1 on the calendar. The only other times, in addition to last season (14), were in 1998-99 (17) and 1980-81 (19).

Dixon For 20
Sophomore Jasmine Dixon tallied 20 points in the win over Oregon, her third-straight game of 20 or more points. Noelle Quinn (now with the Sparks) was the last Bruin to reach 20 points in three or more consecutive games (six straight in 2005-06). Dixon has scored in double digits in nine of the last 11 games. The Bruins own a record of 11-4 in her 15 games.

Walker Honored
Forward Markel Walker was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week (1/25) for her performance against the Oregon schools. The freshman recorded a pair of double-doubles as UCLA swept both games. She had 17 points, a career-high tying 14 rebounds and a career-best eight assists for the Bruins in a 104-80 win over the Ducks. Walker led all players with 16 points and had 10 rebounds in a 70-44 victory over the Beavers. She shot 12-21 from the field over the two games and was 9-10 from the free throw line. Walker has a team-high six double-doubles on the year, the most by a Bruin player since Noelle Quinn had 10 in 2005-06.

Bruins Prepare To Enter The 'Pink Zone'
Join the UCLA women's basketball team on Saturday, Feb. 20 as the Bruins, in conjunction with the Women's Basketball Coaches' Association (WBCA), participate in 'Pink Zone' activities to help support and promote breast cancer awareness.During the Bruins' Feb. 20 game against Washington State (4 p.m.), both teams will take part in bringing attention to breast cancer awareness. UCLA will wear special white and pink uniforms in the game.

All fans attending the contest are encouraged to wear pink. To help aid the cause, fans can purchase a pink UCLA Breast Cancer Awareness t-shirt for $10 and receive free admission to the game. The shirts will be available for sale at the BearWear stand outside of Pauley Pavilion before the game.

Making the Grade
Five Bruins were named to the 2009 Fall Quarter UCLA Athletic Director's Honor Roll (3.0 or better gpa; at least 12 graded units) - Atonye Nyingifa, Erica Tukiainen, Allison Taka, Markel Walker, Mariah Williams.Taka was named to the first-team All-Pac-10 Academic team following the 2008-09 season. Tukiainen was a second-team all-conference academic team selection. Six members of the Bruin squad made the UCLA Athletic Director's honor roll during the 2008-09 academic year - Moniquee Alexander, Doreena Campbell, Rebekah Gardner, Darxia Morris, Allison Taka and Erica Tukiainen.

Giving Back
Before its Jan. 30 game against Oregon State, UCLA hosted a shoe drive in conjunction with Sport Chalet's partnership with Soles 4 Souls, who have committed to providing 1 million pairs of shoes to aid in the recovery and building process in Haiti. Bruin fans, as well as the entire Bruin team, donated an approximate total of 750 pairs of shoes to the cause. Other UCLA student-athletes assisted in collecting the shoe donations at the game.

Head coach Nikki Caldwell and Tennessee Assoc. Head Coach Holly Warlick have teamed up to battle cancer with their Champions for a Cause initiative. Since its inception in 2007, Champions for a Cause has raised and donated tens-of-thousands of dollars to help support the fight against breast cancer through a number of signature events: Cruisin' For A Cause - a long haul motorcycle ride, Links For The Cure - a women's golf tournament, and b3 - bikes, basketball & breast cancer.

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