Feb. 16, 2013
No. 4/5 Stanford Cardinal (23-2, 12-1 Pac-12)
- at -
No. 15/16 UCLA Bruins (20-4, 10-3 Pac-12)
Sunday, Feb. 17, 2013 - 12:30 p.m. PT
Pauley Pavilion (13,800) - Los Angeles, Calif.
Series History: Stanford leads 52-22
Last Meeting: Jan. 18, 2013 (Stanford 75, UCLA 49) - Stanford, Calif.
TV: ESPNU (P-x-P: Rich Cellini, Analyst: Rosalyn Gold-Onwude)
Radio: 90.1 KZSU (P-x-P: Preston Chin)
Game Notes vs. UCLA
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - No. 4/5 Stanford concludes its sole trip to sunny Southern California Sunday afternoon, visiting No. 15/16 UCLA in a showdown of two of the Pac-12's ranked teams. Sunday's contest will be televised on ESPNU and webcast on ESPN3.com with Rich Cellini and Rosalyn Gold-Onwude on the call, and on the radio at 90.1 KZSU and http://kzsulive.stanford.edu with Preston Chin calling the action.
Last Time Out
Stanford opened its trip south on a winning note, routing USC 79-55 Friday night. Consensus national player of the year candidate Chiney Ogwumike scored 26 points with 15 rebounds for the 50th double-double of her career and 20th this season, eclipsing the Stanford single-season record she shared with older sister Nnemkadi from last season. Joslyn Tinkle posted her second straight double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds while blocking three shots, and moved to within 14 points of becoming Stanford's 34th member of its 1,000-Point Club. Mikaela Ruef scored a career-high 12 points with eight rebounds and four assists while sophomore point guard Amber Orrange added 10 points with five assists and a pair of steals to a fine all-around performance by the Cardinal.
UCLA (20-4, 10-3 Pac-12) had its six-game winning streak snapped Friday night in a 79-51 loss to California in Westwood. The Bruins, with head coach Cori Close in her second year at the helm, will aim to avoid being swept by the Cardinal this season and are led by the play of posts Atonye Nyingifa (11.6 ppg, 7.3 rpg) and Alyssia Brewer (11.5 ppg, 8.0 rpg), and guard Markel Walker (10.7 ppg, 7.6 rpg).
Stanford leads the all-time series with UCLA by a 52-22 margin and has won 14 in a row over the Bruins, including the first meeting of this season, a 75-49 decision on Jan. 18.
In The Pac-12 Statistics
Through Feb. 15, Stanford ranked in the top three of 14 statistical categories amongst Pac-12 schools: scoring defense (52.4 ppg - first), scoring margin (+18.3 - first), field-goal percentage (46.5 - first), field-goal percentage defense (32.2 - first), 3-point field-goal percentage defense (23.8 - first), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.17 - first), scoring offense (70.7 ppg - second), free-throw percentage (71.0 - second), assists (14.20 apg - second), blocked shots (4.68 bpg - second), defensive rebounds (29.7 drpg - second), 3-point field-goal percentage (32.1 - third), rebounding defense (33.6 rpg - third) and rebounding margin (+8.4 - third). Individually, Chiney Ogwumike leads the conference in scoring (22.5 ppg), rebounding (12.5 rpg) and double-doubles (20), is second in field-goal percentage (58.8), and fourth with a 79.5 free-throw percentage and 1.40 blocks per game. Senior forward Joslyn Tinkle is sixth in the conference with a 50.6 field-goal percentage, second with 1.88 blocks per game and third with a 3-point field-goal percentage of 36.4. Amber Orrange is second in the Pac-12 with a 1.55 assist-to-turnover ratio and fourth with 4.16 assists per game.
Ogwumike Sets Stanford's Single-Season Double-Double Record
Consensus national player of the year candidate Chiney Ogwumike was dominant yet again this Friday night at USC, scoring 26 points with 15 rebounds in Stanford's 79-55 win. The Cypress, Texas native's performance was also her 20th double-double of this season, eclipsing the year-old Stanford single-season mark of 19 she shared with older sister Nnemkadi Ogwumike. Friday's double-double, ahem, "doubled" as the 50th of her career, leaving her just one back of Nnemkadi's (2008-12) career Stanford record of 51.
Tinkle At The Doorstep Of Joining 1,000-Point Club
Senior forward Joslyn Tinkle posted her second straight double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds Friday night at USC, and more importantly brought herself just 14 points away from becoming Stanford's 34th member of the 1,000-Point Club. Tinkle has brought herself to the precipice of the mark thanks in part to her recent run of form as she is averaging 14.0 points over Stanford's last nine games. After a breakout junior year in 2011-12, Tinkle has enjoyed a career year in 2012-13, starting all 25 games and averaging career bests of 12.7 points, 6.1 rebounds and 1.88 blocks per game.
The Road Warriors Stay Perfect Away From Home
Friday's 79-55 win at USC kept the Cardinal perfect this year away from Maples Pavilion, upping its road record to 14-0. Following Friday night's win, Stanford leads the NCAA with 14 victories away from home (12 true road wins plus a pair of neutral-court victories in Honolulu over then-No. 1/1 Baylor on Nov. 16 and Tennessee-Martin on Nov. 18) and leads the nation with 12 true road wins. Stanford's 14 wins away from home, out of which five have come against Top-25 teams, entering Sunday's game at No. 15/16 UCLA gives the Cardinal a chance to eclipse the program record of 20 (Pac-12/Pac-10 Tournament and NCAA Tournament games included) set in 2007-08.
Pac-12 Tournament Seeding Outlook
Stanford can clinch a first-round bye at the Pac-12 Tournament one of two ways this Sunday: with a win over UCLA or a Colorado loss at Arizona State. Friday's win at USC dropped Stanford's magic number to one to clinch a first-round bye at the event, set to be held at Seattle's Key Arena from March 7-10. The top four teams on the Pac-12 table earn byes into March 8's quarterfinal round, and entering Sunday Stanford and California, tied atop the table with matching 12-1 records, are four games ahead of fifth-place Colorado (8-5) and each own the head-to-head tiebreaker against the Buffaloes. Any additional Stanford win or Colorado loss over the final five games of the Pac-12 slate clinches a bye for Stanford.
Should Stanford and California each win out and finish tied atop the Pac-12 table at 17-1, Stanford would earn the tournament's No. 1 seed based on its higher overall winning percentage.
Ogwumike Thrives Against Top-25 Competition
Sunday's matchup with No. 15/16 UCLA will be the 10th of the season for Stanford against a Top-25 team. So far this season, the Cardinal is 7-2 in its prior games against a team ranked in the Top 25 as of the date of the meeting, thanks in part to the performance of consensus national player of the year candidate Chiney Ogwumike. The junior forward, who is the only player in the nation ranked in the NCAA's top six in scoring, rebounding, field-goal percentage and double-doubles entering this week, has turned up her performance over this season's nine games against Top-25 teams, averaging 20.8 points and 11.8 rebounds while shooting 54.0 percent.
Ruef With Another Blue-Collar Effort
Redshirt junior forward Mikaela Ruef has enjoyed a breakout year of her own in 2012-13 following her return from a foot injury that limited her to three games last year. The Beavercreek, Ohio native's play has mirrored the dogged, blue-collar traits of her home state as she has started 18 games this year and continually powered and slugged her way to an average of 6.0 rebounds a game and 46 assists, second-best on the team. Although she is averaging just 3.2 points per game, Ruef has developed a scoring touch as of late, matching her previous career high with 11 points Feb. 8 against Arizona State then going for a new career high of 12 points in Friday's win at USC.
Winning The Battle Of The Boards
Since being out-rebounded in consecutive games against Colorado (Jan. 27) and at Oregon (Feb. 1), Stanford has re-dedicated itself to aggressive play on the glass, out-rebounding its past four opponents by an average margin of 13.5 rebounds a game. Friday night at USC, the Cardinal out-rebounded the Trojans by a 46-33 margin, thanks in part to heavy contributions by Chiney Ogwumike (15 rebounds), Joslyn Tinkle (11) and Mikaela Ruef (eight). Over the past four games, Stanford has posted its third-highest rebounding total of the season twice (47 against both Oregon State and Arizona) and its fifth-highest mark (46 at USC Friday).
Orrange Turning It Up
Sophomore point guard Amber Orrange continued her in-form run of late with a 10-point, five-assist effort at USC Friday. Over her last six games Orrange has averaged 8.5 points and 5.00 assists, encouraging many with her uptick in assists. After passing out just nine assists over the six games previous to this current six-game stretch, Orrange has handed out 30, topping out with nine at Oregon on Feb. 1 and eight at Oregon State on Feb. 3. She has also limited her turnovers, averaging just 2.0 per game during this current six-game stretch for an assist-to-turnover ratio of 2.50.
Keep February Unblemished
In the month dedicated to Valentine's Day and other things related to love, what Stanford loves in February is winning. Friday night's 79-55 win at USC brought the Cardinal's winning streak in the month of February to 51 games. The last time Stanford lost a game in February was a 72-57 loss to California on Feb. 4, 2007.
Stanford's Success Against Top-25 Teams
Sunday's matchup with No. 15/16 UCLA will be Stanford's 10th meeting with a Top-25 team this season, and first since a 69-56 victory over No. 20/23 Colorado on Jan. 27. The contest at UCLA will equal the highest amount of Top-25 teams Stanford has faced in a regular season (excluding NCAA Tournament games), last facing 10 ranked foes during each of the 1997-98 and 1998-99 campaigns. The Cardinal, which is 7-2 against Top-25 opponents this year, went 6-4 against those 10 ranked teams in 1997-98 then posted a record of 4-6 the following season.
Stanford will more than likely will face at least one of the Pac-12's other three ranked teams (California, UCLA, Colorado) at the Pac-12 Tournament from March 7-10, and depending on its NCAA Tournament draw, could potentially face more from around the country.