STANFORD, Calif. - No. 4/5 Stanford takes on Arizona for the only scheduled time of the season Friday night, hosting the Wildcats for a 7 p.m. tip. Friday's contest will be streamed online at http://pac-12.com/live/gostanford.aspx and available on the radio at 90.1 KZSU and http://kzsulive.stanford.edu with Preston Chin and Ashley Westhem on the call.
Last Time Out
Stanford improved to 13-0 away from home Sunday as it defeated Oregon State 65-45 to complete a sweep of its trip to the Beaver State. Chiney Ogwumike posted a career-high 32 points and grabbed 18 rebounds, one shy of her career best, to lead the way for the Cardinal, which won its 20th game of the campaign. Point guard Amber Orrange was masterful again in running the Cardinal offense, passing out eight assists to up her weekend total to 17 in addition to scoring 12 points and making three steals against the Beavers. Bonnie Samuelson posted season highs with four 3-pointers made and 12 points, while senior forward Joslyn Tinkle grabbed six rebounds to go with three steals. The Cardinal dominated the rebounding battle against the Beavers by a 47-32 margin and grabbed 18 offensive boards against just six for Oregon State.
Arizona (11-10, 3-7 Pac-12) makes its first visit to Stanford since January 2011, as the change in Pac-12 scheduling resulted in the Wildcats not making the trip to Northern California last year. With head coach Niya Butts in her fifth year at the helm, Arizona is led by the play of All-Pac-12 guard Davellyn Whyte (16.4 ppg, 4.81 apg) and Kama Griffitts (12.0 ppg, 5.4 rpg).
Stanford leads the all-time series with Arizona, 57-12, and has won 21 straight against the Wildcats dating back to a Pac-10 Tournament win on March 8, 2004.
Stanford In The National Polls
Stanford remained at No. 4 in this week's Associated Press Poll and at No. 5 in the USA Today Sports Coaches' Poll.
In The Pac-12 Statistics
Through Feb. 3, Stanford ranked in the top three of 13 statistical categories amongst Pac-12 schools: scoring defense (53.0 ppg - first), scoring margin (+17.3 - first), field-goal percentage (46.7 - first), field-goal percentage defense (32.3 - first), 3-point field-goal percentage defense (24.3 - first), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.17 - first), scoring offense (70.3 ppg - second), free-throw percentage (70.2 - second), assists (14.14 apg - second), blocked shots (4.82 bpg - second), 3-point field-goal percentage (32.9 - third), rebounding defense (34.0 rpg - third) and defensive rebounds (29.8 drpg - third). Individually, Chiney Ogwumike leads the conference in scoring (22.4 ppg), field-goal percentage (58.4) and double-doubles (17), is second in rebounding (12.3 rpg) and fourth with a 77.4 free-throw percentage and 1.55 blocks per game. Senior forward Joslyn Tinkle is sixth in the conference with a 50.4 field-goal percentage and a 34.8 3-point field-goal percentage, and third with 1.82 blocks per game. Amber Orrange is fourth in the Pac-12 with a 1.46 assist-to-turnover ratio and 4.27 assists per game, while Bonnie Samuelson is second in the conference with a 36.8 3-point field-goal percentage.
In the National Statistics
Through the latest national statistical update (through Feb. 3), Stanford ranked in the top 20 of six categories: turnovers per game (12.0 - third), field-goal percentage defense (32.3 - fourth), 3-point field-goal defense (24.3 - fourth), field-goal percentage (46.7 - seventh), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.17 - ninth) and scoring margin (+17.2 - 13th). Chiney Ogwumike is the only player to rank in the national top 10 in scoring (22.4 ppg - fifth), rebounding (12.4 rpg - seventh) and field-goal percentage (58.4 - seventh) in addition to ranking second with 17 double-doubles.
Ogwumike Nabs Record Fifth Pac-12 Player Of The Week Honor Chiney Ogwumike tied the Pac-12 single-season record Monday by earning her fifth Pac-12 Player of the Week honor, matching the mark set by USC's Cherie Nelson in 1987-88. Monday's honor is also the eighth of Ogwumike's career, putting her just one behind all-time Pac-12 and Stanford leaders (with nine apiece) Candice Wiggins (2004-08) and Jayne Appel (2006-10).
She earned this week's recognition thanks to 27.5 points and 15.5 rebounds as well as a 58.6 field-goal percentage over the Cardinal's wins at Oregon and Oregon State. Sunday at Oregon State, Ogwumike scored a career-high 32 points along with grabbing 18 rebounds, just one shy of her career high.
VanDerveer The First To 400 Conference Wins
Friday's 86-62 win at Oregon gave Stanford's Setsuko Ishiyama Director of Women's Basketball Tara VanDerveer the 400th Pac-12 win of her career, making her the first Division I head coach to reach the 400-win mark in a single conference. Sunday's 65-45 victory at Oregon State upped her Pac-12 record to 401-59. VanDerveer, who has guided Stanford to 20 conference titles, has been at Stanford's helm since the first season of Pac-10 (now Pac-12) women's basketball in 1986-87, only missing the 1995-96 season due to sabbatical while serving as head coach of the U.S. Olympic Team.
Stanford, in fact, owns a Pac-12 record of 419-59 following Sunday's win at Oregon State. Those 18 victories over VanDerveer's 401-win mark belong to associate head coach Amy Tucker and Marianne Stanley, who served as interim head coach and co-head coach, respectively, in 1995-96 while VanDerveer was on sabbatical and coaching the U.S. Olympic Team.
Keeping An Eye On The Bye
Sunday's game in Corvallis opened the second half of the 18-game Pac-12 slate. With eight games remaining until the Pac-12 Tournament, set for March 7-10 in Seattle, the Cardinal is in prime position to earn one of the opening-round byes reserved for the top four teams on the conference table. Stanford and California, tied atop the table with matching 9-1 records, are four games ahead of Colorado and USC, both tied for fifth at 5-5. This puts the Cardinal's magic number to clinch a first-round bye at the Pac-12 Tournament to five, meaning any combination of Stanford wins and USC losses adding up to five over the final eight games clinches a bye for Stanford.
Stanford Third In Latest RPI Rankings
After topping the NCAA's RPI rankings for the first four weeks of the list's release, Stanford came in at No. 3 in the new rankings Feb. 4. The Cardinal's top-three spot in the RPI rankings can be attributed to its 20-2 start to the season in the face of a challenging schedule, and chiefly to its 13-0 record away from home after this past weekend's road sweep in Oregon. Out of those 13 wins away from home, five have come against Top-25 opponents (No. 1/1 Baylor, No. 21/17 South Carolina, No. 10/11 Tennessee, No. 20/25 Colorado, No. 7/7 California).
Two More For The Road Warriors
This past weekend's sweep at Oregon and Oregon State brought the Stanford's record away from home this season to an impressive 13-0. Those 13 victories include 11 true road wins combined with a pair of neutral-court victories in Honolulu over then-No. 1/1 Baylor (Nov. 16) and Tennessee-Martin (Nov. 18). Stanford's 13 victories away from home are also tops in the nation through Feb. 4. With 13 wins away from home already in hand, Stanford has a chance to eclipse the program record of 20 (Pac-12/Pac-10 Tournament and NCAA Tournament games included) set in 2007-08.
Threading The Needle
Sophomore point guard Amber Orrange re-entered the starting five last weekend and promptly returned to form as the conductor of the Stanford offense. On a seven-game streak of not passing out more than three assists and posting an assist-to-turnover ratio of 0.71 (12 assists to 17 turnovers) entering Friday's game against Oregon, Orrange regained her passing touch, passing out a combined 17 assists against just five turnovers against the Ducks and Beavers. She nearly had her second double-double of the season Friday in Eugene, scoring nine points with nine assists in Stanford's 86-62 win, then followed up with 12 points and eight assists in Sunday's 65-45 win at Oregon State. The weekend performance bumped Orrange up to fourth in the Pac-12 in both assists per game (4.27) and assist-to-turnover ratio (1.46).
"Steal"-ing The Show
The Stanford defense, despite being tops in the Pac-12 in points allowed per game (53.0), opponent field-goal percentage (32.3) and opponent 3-point percentage (24.3), has struggled with creating steals this season but showed some hope in changing that this weekend in Oregon. Over the two wins at Oregon and Oregon State, the Cardinal defense made a combined 20 steals. Friday night against the Ducks, the Cardinal matched its season high with 11 steals and forced 17 turnovers, while making nine takeaways and forcing 14 turnovers two days later in Corvallis against the Beavers.
Bombin' Bonnie Heats Up
Sophomore forward Bonnie Samuelson has wielded the hot hand from outside the arc over the past three games, going 8-for-15 (53.3 percent) including a season-high 4-for-5, 12-point performance Sunday at Oregon State. Head coach Tara VanDerveer has urged her outside shooters to fire away and keep working behind the arc and Samuelson has responded. After going 12-for-30 (40.0 percent) over the first 11 games of the year, Samuelson hit a cold spell as Pac-12 play opened, shooting just 8.3 percent (1-for-12) over the first seven games of the conference slate. However, her recent run of form from the outside has lifted her 3-point percentage this season to 36.8 percent, good for second in the Pac-12.
Greenfield Starting To Feel It
Another of Stanford's top long-range bombers from earlier in the season, sophomore Taylor Greenfield, showed signs of breaking out of her own shooting slump over the weekend in Oregon. After going 12 games without a 3-pointer, Greenfield went 2-for-5 and scored eight points last Friday at Oregon, her first triples since going 6-for-8 at Gonzaga on Dec. 2.
Ogwumike Thrives Against Top-25 Competition
Junior forward and consensus national player of the year candidate Chiney Ogwumike played her ninth game of the season against a Top-25 team in Jan. 27's 69-56 win over No. 20/23 Colorado. So far this season, in which Ogwumike is in the national top seven in scoring, rebounding and field-goal percentage, and third with 15 double-doubles, she has turned up her performance over the nine games against Top-25 teams, averaging 20.8 points and 11.8 rebounds while shooting 54.0 percent.
Tinkle Expands Her Game
Senior forward Joslyn Tinkle performed well on both sides of the court throughout last weekend, scoring a total of 18 points and averaging 6.0 rebounds over Stanford's wins at Oregon and Oregon State. Tinkle's aggressiveness on the boards highlighted a strong defensive weekend in which 11 of her 12 rebounds came on the defensive glass, and the Missoula, Mont. native made a combined seven steals including a career-high four against the Ducks last Friday. Her 18 points last weekend also brought her career total to 941, leaving her 59 shy of becoming Stanford's 34th member of the "1,000-Point Club."
Setting Season Highs In Eugene
The wide-open style of play in last Friday's 86-62 win at Oregon led to the Cardinal updating a few of its season highs for 2012-13. Stanford set season-high marks for 3-pointers attempted with 27 while matching the mark for triples made with 10. The Cardinal had previously hit 10 3-pointers Nov. 25 against Long Beach State. Additional season highs set Friday night included field goals attempted (72) and assists (25) while another was matched with the Cardinal's 11 steals, equaling the total made at Santa Clara on Nov. 11.
Opponents Still Not Passing The 70 Barrier
Sunday's 65-45 win at Oregon was Stanford's program-record 40th straight game in which it held an opponent to under 70 points. The last Stanford opponent to break the 70-point barrier was California last Jan. 28 in the Cardinal's 74-71 overtime win at Maples Pavilion. The next longest streak of opponents not scoring 70 points in Cardinal history is 20 games, from Feb. 14, 2003 to Dec. 18, 2004. This current run is a large part of the Cardinal's 53.0 points allowed per game which is tops in the Pac-12 and on pace to break the program record of 53.9 points allowed per game set in 2009-10.
Since the advent of Pac-12 women's basketball in 1986-87, Stanford has been far and away the class of the conference in terms of victories and end-of-season awards and honors. With the 2011-12 Pac-12 title under its belt, the Cardinal has now won outright or shared the regular-season title 21 times out of a possible 26, while the next team on the list, Washington, has won the conference title just three times. Stanford has also dominated the Pac-12 Tournament, capturing nine of the 11 tournament titles since the inaugural draw in 2002. From Jan. 22, 2009 to Jan. 8, 2013 Stanford won a record 81 straight games against its Pac-12 foes (including Pac-10 and Pac-12 Tournament contests). Through Feb. 3, 2013, the team's 745-139 (.843) overall mark since 1986-87 and 419-59 (.877) mark in Pac-12 play are both by far the top marks in the conference.
On the awards and honors side of things, the Cardinal again out-paces its opponents. Following the announcement of the 2012 Pac-12 honors, a Stanford player has won or shared the conference's Player of the Year award 16 of 26 times since 1986-87, won the Freshman of the Year award eight times, Defender of the Year award twice and head coach Tara VanDerveer has been honored as the conference's Coach of the Year on 12 occasions, with current associate head coach Amy Tucker and Marianne Stanley sharing the honor in 1995-96 while VanDerveer was on sabbatical coaching the U.S. Olympic Team.
Stanford players have captured a conference-best 89 Pac-10/Pac-12 Player of the Week honors through Feb. 4, 2013. Finally, the Cardinal leads the conference with 58 All-Pac-10/All-Pac-12 first-team selections.