Feb. 17, 2001
STANFORD - Senior guard Courtney Johnson scored a career-high 34 points to lead California (11-11, 7-5 Pac-10) to an 82-73 victory over Stanford Friday night at Maples Pavilion. The Golden Bears fifth-consecutive victory was their first over the Cardinal since 1993 and first at Maples Pavilion since 1986.
The Cal win snapped Stanford's seven-game winning streak and dropped their record to 14-8 and 8-4 in Pac-10 play. The Bears also have won five-straight Pac-10 games for the first time since the 1986-87 season.
"You saw a great basketball game," said Cal coach Caren Horstmeyer. "You've seen our team come a long way since the first time we played Stanford. I thought that our composure in the last five minutes wasn't great the last time. (Today) I thought our composure was very good in the last five minutes. I'm really excited for our seniors who had the opportunity within their careers to beat Stanford. Courtney Johnson was unbelievable tonight. She was not going to let Stanford beat us."
Cal trailed by as many as eight points in the first half before grabbing a 38-37 lead at the break on a layup by Johnson with four seconds on the clock. Senior guard Kenya Corley led Cal with 11 of her 22 points in the first half.
After Stanford took a 42-38 lead with 18:28 left in the game, Johnson scored five-straight points to key a 9-0 run, putting Cal up five at 47-42 with 15:49 to play. The Cardinal would tie the game on three occasions but never regained the lead. Stanford's Lindsey Yamasaki scored two of her team-high 21 points to tie the game for the final time at 63-63 with 7:09 on the clock.
After losing to Stanford in the last several minutes in Berkeley, 63-56, on Jan. 20, Cal was determined to not let history repeat itself. The Bears went on a 14-7 run over the next 4:19 behind five points from Corley to secure its then-biggest lead of the game at 74-67 with 2:50 remaining. Corley and Amber White each had a steal during this all-important run. Stanford wouldn't get any closer than four points the rest of the way.
Johnson put an exclamation point on Cal's victory by stealing a bad pass by Yamasaki and taking the ball all the way to the hoop for a layup with two ticks left. The celebration ensued shortly thereafter at center court with Johnson at the center of the pile.
"I've been visualizing this game all week long," said Johnson. "Every year we've been talking about it. This year, we're showing people how good we are and how good we can be. We're going to keep moving ahead and keep working hard every day and keep breaking more barriers and keep beating more teams."
"This game feels so good," said Corley. "I don't even want to leave here tonight. I just want to sleep here."
Johnson also had five assists and six steals. White led the Bears off the bench with nine points. Sarah Dimson was the only other Cardinal player with double-figure points with 14.
The Bears shot 51.9 percent from the floor to match their season-best performance. Their 82 points surpassed their previous season-high of 79.
Cal, which is in a tie for fourth place in the conference with Arizona, looks to continue its red-hot play next week when it travels to Washington on Thursday and Washington State on Saturday.