Dec. 3, 2006
BERKELEY, Calif. - Sophomore forward/center Ashley Walker posted a career-high 27 points and grabbed eight rebounds to lead No. 16 California to an 81-62 victory over Arkansas State Sunday evening in the championship game of the third-annual Contra Costa Times Classic at Haas Pavilion. The Golden Bears improved to 6-1 with their third straight Contra Costa Times Classic title, while the Lady Indians fell to 5-4.
Walker, who also dished off five assists and had four steals, earned tournament MVP honors, adding to her MVP award at the Timeout for HIV/AIDS Classic. Cal sophomore guard Alexis Gray-Lawson tallied 17 points and three steals. Senior guard Keanna Levy earned a spot on the Contra Costa Times Classic all-tournament team, as she posted a career-high 12 points in each game this weekend.
Arkansas State led 6-4 behind two three-pointers from Rudy Sims before Cal went on an 11-0 run.
Cal continued to utilize its post combination of sophomore forward/center Devanei Hampton and Walker to build a 21-9 advantage with 14:18 to play until halftime. Walker posted 11 points and Hampton added all eight of her points today to help the Bears claim a 29-17 edge.
The Lady Indians' leading scorer, Adrianne Davie, picked up her second foul with 15:12 to play in the first half and sat out for about four minutes. Davie, who had 28 points against San Jose State, entered the game averaging 20.4 ppg. She left the game for the remainder of the first half, having scored only four points, when she picked up her third foul with 5:45 on the clock.
Gray-Lawson extended the Bears' lead to 39-24 with a three-pointer, and Levy later sank two free throws to give Cal its biggest lead of the game at that point at 45-29 with under two minutes to go in the half. Sims, who led Arkansas State with 19 points, tallied the final five points of the half.
After Cal led 45-34 at the break, the Lady Indians utilized their press to cut the Bears' margin to 51-42 with 15:42 left in the game. Walker answered with consecutive baskets to get the Bears' back on track. Davie hit a jumper to bring her team back to within 11, but that's as close as the Lady Indians could get.
Over the next seven minutes, 12 seconds, Cal reeled off a 19-8 run to secure its largest lead of the game at 74-52 with 6:19 to go. The spurt began with a three-pointer from freshman guard Lauren Greif and included six points each from Walker and Gray-Lawson.
Davie, who fouled out of the game with 4:55 to play, registered 14 points and joined Sims on the all-tournament squad.
All nine dressed players for the Bears saw action and scored at least two points.
Behind Walker's 10-of-13 effort, Cal shot 48.3 percent for the game and held Arkansas State to a 42.0 percent clip. The Bears, who have held a rebounding edge in all seven games this year, outrebounded the Lady Indians, 41-28. Cal also posted a season-high 14 steals on ASU's 24 turnovers.
Harvard (1-6) won the consolation game with an 83-62 decision over San Jose State earlier today. Niki Finelli, who was named to the all-tournament team, led the Crimson with 22 points. Brittany Helm, an all-tournament choice, paced the Spartans (0-8) with 17 points.
Cal next hosts Fresno State Thursday, Dec. 7, at 7 p.m. at Haas Pavilion.