No. 4/4 Stanford Cardinal (14-1, 3-0 Pac-12)
No. 17/18 Colorado Buffaloes (11-3, 1-2 Pac-12)
Sunday, January 12, 2014 – 2 p.m. PT
Coors Event Center (11,064) – Boulder, Colo.
Series History: Stanford leads 10-4
Last Meeting: March 9, 2013 (Stanford 61, Colorado 47) – Seattle, Wash.
TV: Pac-12 Network (P-x-P: Anne Marie Anderson, Analyst: Mary Murphy)
Webcast: Pac-12 Network Online (http://www.pac-12.com/live)
Radio: 90.1 KZSU
STANFORD, Calif. - Two of the Pac-12’s nationally-ranked teams square off Sunday at 2 p.m. PT in Boulder as No. 4/4 Stanford and No. 17/18 Colorado meet for the only time this regular season. Sunday’s matchup will be broadcast live on the Pac-12 Network with Anne Marie Anderson and Mary Murphy on the call. The contest can also be heard on 90.1 KZSU and online at http://kzsulive.stanford.edu.
Last Time Out
The Cardinal opened hot and stayed hot in Salt Lake City Friday night, hitting seven of their first nine attempts from the field and shooting 57.4 percent overall to race past Utah, 87-61. Chiney Ogwumike led the scoring charge with 30 points on 13-for-17 shooting while Amber Orrange scored 14 with six assists. Stanford hit eight of its 14 3-point attempts led by two apiece from Orrange and Sara James, and forward Mikaela Ruef matched her career high with 14 rebounds and chipped in eight points. The Cardinal opened the game on a 15-4 run, and in the middle of the first half broke the game open with a 14-0 stretch in which it hit four 3-pointers and upped its lead to 35-13.
Heading into Sunday Colorado has dropped three of its last five games after opening the season 9-0. The Buffaloes split the opening weekend of Pac-12 play in Los Angeles, and opened this weekend with a 57-55 loss to California. With Linda Lappe in her XXth season at the helm, Colorado is led by the play of Arielle Roberson (12.8 ppg, 8.3 rpg), Jen Reese (12.2 ppg, 5.8 rpg) and Brittany Wilson (10.1 ppg, 3.8 rpg).
All-Time Against Colorado
Stanford has won 10 of the 14 all-time meetings with Colorado and is on a five-game winning streak against the Buffaloes. The teams had a 10-year gap between meetings from 2002 until the Buffaloes joined the Pac-12 in 2011-12. Last year, Stanford defeated Colorado three times, the final time a 61-47 victory in the Pac-12 Tournament semifinals.
In The Pac-12 Stat Rankings
Through Jan. 10 Stanford ranks in the top three of 10 categories: scoring margin (+19.6 - first), field-goal percentage (47.9 - first), 3-point field-goal percentage (39.9 - first), field-goal percentage defense (33.7 - first), assists (19.67 apg - first), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.58 - first), scoring offense (79.1 - second), scoring defense (59.5 - second), blocked shots (4.13 bpg - second) and turnover margin (+2.0 - third). The Cardinal also ranks fourth in rebounding margin (+7.7), 3-pointers made per game (6.9) and defensive rebounding (30.3 drpg). Individually, Chiney Ogwumike leads the Pac-12 in scoring (26.9 ppg) and field-goal percentage (63.5), and is second in rebounding (11.5 rpg) and blocked shots (1.93 bpg). Mikaela Ruef is fifth in rebounding (9.3 rpg) and sixth in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.89), while Amber Orrange leads the loop in 3-point field-goal percentage (47.1) and assist-to-turnover ratio (3.23), is fifth in assists (4.73 apg), seventh in field-goal percentage (50.0) and eighth in steals (1.93 spg).
Another 30-Point Game
Chiney Ogwumike scored 30 points in Friday’s 87-61 win at Utah, marking her fifth 30-point performance over Stanford’s past six games. At the 15-game mark of the campaign, not even halfway through the season, Ogwumike has already posted seven 30-point games, the most by a Stanford player in a single season, passing older sister Nnemkadi Ogwumike’s mark of six set in 2011-12. Chiney also now boasts nine career 30-point games, fourth all-time behind leader Candice Wiggins (12), Nneka (10) and Jeanne Ruark Hoff (10).
Ruef Controls The Boards
Stanford may boast the Pac-12’s all-time leading rebounder in Chiney Ogwumike, but redshirt senior Mikaela Ruef has established herself as one of the Pac-12’s top rebounders over the past season and a half. Friday night at Utah Ruef matched her career high with 14 rebounds to lead all players in addition to scoring eight points. Through 15 games this year she ranks in the Pac-12 top 10 in rebounding (9.3 rpg - fifth) and assist-to-turnover ratio (1.89 - sixth), while ranking 11th with 3.53 assists per game, leading all Pac-12 posts in the latter two categories. With her 14-rebound effort Friday, Ruef has now pulled down double-digit rebounds in seven games this season, and her eight points brought her scoring average up to 7.3 points per game despite not being one of the Cardinal’s main offensive targets.
The 3s Keep Falling
Stanford struggled with its 3-point shooting the past two seasons, putting up a program-low 31.1 percent in 2011-12 and the second-lowest figure in 2012-13 at just 31.9 percent. But this season the Cardinal has greatly improved its accuracy from behind the arc, as the team is shooting a Pac-12-best 39.9 percent from downtown. That upward trend has been due in large part to the performance of the past seven games as Stanford is 59-for-122 (48.4 percent) from behind the arc since returning on Dec. 14 from its annual two-week break for final exams. Bonnie Samuelson leads the Cardinal with 14 3-pointers over that stretch, followed by Taylor Greenfield (13) and freshman Lili Thompson (nine).
Taking The Point
Junior point guard Amber Orrange, the soft-spoken conductor of the Stanford offense, posted yet another solid performance in her typically quiet way Friday night. Orrange scored 14 points and passed out six assists, the fourth time over the last five games that she has had at least six assists. Orrange has also become more comfortable taking the initiative on the scoring side to complement her set-up play, leading the Pac-12 with a 47.1 3-point field-goal percentage sitting seventh with an overall field-goal percentage of 50.0, tops amongst the conference’s guards. Her passing remains stellar, as Orrange leads the loop with a 3.23 assist-to-turnover ratio and is fifth with 4.73 assists per game.