The week has gotten off to a positive start for Stanford women's basketball as senior forward Chiney Ogwumike and junior point guard Amber Orrange were recognized for their strong performances of late.
Ogwumike was named Pac-12 Player of the Week for the eighth time this season while Orrange was named one of 22 finalists for the Nancy Lieberman Award, given annually to the nation's top point guard.
Monday's Pac-12 Player of the Week announcement extends a pair of Ogwumike’s records, as in addition to being her eighth honor of the season it is also the 17th of her career.
Stanford swept the men’s and women’s weekly top-player honors this week, as Josh Huestis was named men’s basketball’s Pac-12 Player of the Week Monday morning. The last time that Stanford swept the honors in the same week was Feb. 4, 2013, when, again, Ogwumike and Huestis were the recipients.
The Cypress, Texas native and one of the leading candidates for national player of the year paced a pair of Stanford road comebacks in a sweep of USC and UCLA which clinched for the Cardinal its 14th straight Pac-12 regular-season title and 23rd of a possible 28. Ogwumike averaged 26.5 points, 11.0 rebounds and 4.00 blocks over the victories, which included Stanford making up a 19-point deficit Friday night at USC to defeat the Trojans, 64-59.
In that game Ogwumike scored 27 points, 24 of them coming after Stanford trailed USC 32-13 with 6:08 remaining in the first half. She also went 11-for-18 the rest of the way from that point after starting out 1-for-6 from the field. Sunday at UCLA, Ogwumike scored 26 points with 15 rebounds for her 20th double-double of the season, in the process upping her career scoring total to 2,511 and passing older sister Nnemkadi Ogwumike (2,491) for second on the Stanford career scoring list.
While already owning the Pac-12’s career-rebounding mark with 1,459 through February 23, Ogwumike is within range of adding the Pac-12’s all-time scoring mark to her bevy of records, sitting second in that category just 119 points away from eclipsing former Stanford All-American Candice Wiggins’ top mark of 2,629.
Averaging 26.5 points per game with two more regular-season contests, the Pac-12 Tournament, and the NCAA Tournament still ahead, chances are good that Ogwumike will top the Pac-12’s scoring list by the time all is said and done.
Orrange is one of two Pac-12 point guards on the list for the honor, given annually to the top point guard in the nation. California’s Brittany Boyd is also on the list. This year’s winner will be announced at the Final Four in Nashville.
Behind Orrange’s leadership at the point, Stanford has captured its 14th straight Pac-12 regular-season title following this past weekend’s sweep of USC and UCLA. The Cardinal, 26-2 overall this year, averages 77.8 points per game, second-best in the Pac-12, while Orrange leads the team with a 3.00 assist-to-turnover ratio and 4.71 assists per game. Her assist-to-turnover ratio ranked third in the country through the most recent national statistical update (Feb. 20), and leads the Pac-12 while she is second in the conference in assists per game.
The Houston native has also upped her scoring contributions to the Cardinal, averaging 9.7 points per game while hitting on nearly 35 percent of her 3-point attempts (22-for-63). Defensively, she paces the Cardinal with 46 steals as Stanford leads the Pac-12 with just 59.8 points allowed per game.
Stanford, with the Pac-12 Tournament’s top seed already in hand, finishes the regular season at Maples Pavilion this weekend, hosting Washington Thursday at 8 p.m. and Washington State Saturday at 7:30 p.m. Both games will be broadcast live on the Pac-12 Network.