Dec. 30, 2006
BERKELEY, Calif. - Senior Keanna Levy posted a career-high 17 points and sank a career-best four three-pointers to propel No. 18 California to a 65-48 victory over Arizona Saturday afternoon at Haas Pavilion. The Golden Bears improved to 10-3 overall (2-2 Pac-10) after holding the Wildcats to an opponent season low for points, while Arizona fell to 6-9 (0-3) after hittng only 34.5 percent of its field goals.
"I thought it was a great team win," said Cal head coach Joanne Boyle. "Any time you can get your whole team in there, it's always a great team win. I was really pleased with our effort from start to finish. The only stat up there that I'm disappointed in is our turnovers (25). We're a team that's trying to find our way with that in terms of identity. Overall, I was pleased with our effort and output."
Freshman guard Lauren Greif finished with 12 points -- all in the second half -- after sinking 4-of-5 three-pointers, and sophomore forward/center Devanei Hampton added 11 points. Freshman forward/center Rama N'diaye added 10 points off of the bench.
With the game tied at 11-11 at the 12:59 mark of the first half, Cal went on a 16-0 run to grab a 27-11 lead with 5:53 remaining until halftime. The stretch included seven points from Hampton, six from N'diaye and Levy's third three-pointer of the game.
Ashley Whisonant converted a transition layup with 5:16 left until halftime for Arizona's first points in over seven minutes. Whisonant tallied six of her game-high 18 points late in the first half to try to keep her team in the game. Jessica Arnold added 12 points all from three-pointers for the Wildcats.
Arizona got as close as 10 points, but Cal entered the locker room ahead 35-23 following two free throws from Levy, who finished the half with 11 points.
Consecutive three-pointers from Greif and the fourth trey by Levy keyed a 10-0 Cal run and gave the Bears a 49-27 lead with 13:42 to play in the game. The spurt was capped by a fade-away jumper from freshman guard Natasha Vital, who finished the game with five points and career highs of eight assists and seven rebounds.
Greif hit two more threes and N'diaye sank two free throws to give Cal its biggest edge at 59-32 with 8:36 on the clock.
The Bears made a season-high nine three-pointers and shot 64.3 percent from beyond the arc. Levy was 4-of-4 on her attempts.
Cal subbed liberally over the final six minutes of the game but never relinquished its double-digit lead. All 11 dressed players saw action for the Bears and eight scored. Walk-ons Natalie Nurnberg and Julia Numair, who joined the team earlier in the week, each grabbed a rebound in their first action of the season.
Bears sophomore forward/center Ashley Walker, who began the game as her team's top scorer at 19.2 ppg, tallied only six points to end a streak of 13 straight double-digit scoring games dating back to a 21-point effort in the 2006 NCAA Tournament game against St. John's.
Levy hauled in a game-high eight rebounds to lead all players. Cal held a 42-27 advantage overall and an 11-6 edge on the offensive glass.
Cal continues its four-game homestand with a brief break from conference play when the Bears face Rhode Island Jan. 2 at 6 p.m.