Dec. 28, 2004
BERKELEY, Calif. -
A LOOK AT THE GOLDEN BEARS
California (6-4, 0-1) looks to salvage a road split in the first week of Pac-10 action as the Golden Bears travel to Oregon State (4-6, 0-1) Wednesday, Dec. 29 at 7 p.m.
Cal and Oregon State each lost big Monday on the opening day of conference play, with the Bears falling to No. 24 Oregon, 81-50, and the Beavers dropping an 83-45 decision to No. 5 Stanford.
On a positive note, Cal has a history of shaking off bad losses to Oregon. In 2001-02, the Bears suffered a 76-43 setback in Eugene but rebounded in the next game to beat Washington State, 76-63, in Berkeley.
Monday's game against the Ducks started off promising for the Bears, as Cal grabbed a 19-14 lead with 9:20 to play in the first half. After that, Oregon played tough defense and Cal struggled to get into its offensive sets, posting its fewest points of the season and shooting its worst percentage of 2004-05 from the field (36.4 percent).The loss snapped Cal's five-game winning streak.
Senior forward Kiki Williams led Cal with 15 points and was 3-for-5 from three-point range in her first start of the season. Last year, the San Rafael, Calif., product started 25 of the 27 games she played in. Williams is averaging a career- best 10.5 ppg (3rd on the team) and is shooting career highs from everywhere on the floor - FG% (47.7), 3FG% (48.4) and FT% (93.3).
Oregon State leads the all-time series with Cal, 27-20, with the teams each winning once the last two years. In 2003-04, Cal lost to Oregon State at home, 70-67, but rebounded to claim a 66-57 triumph in Corvallis. Leigh Gregory paced Cal in each game - posting 18 points and 11 rebounds for her first career double-double in Berkeley and 18 points and eight boards on the road.
Gregory, a senior forward, continues to lead the Bears in scoring this season at 12.8 ppg after posting eight points against the Ducks. Senior guard Kristin Iwanaga is second on the team at 11.8 ppg despite recording only two points at Oregon from two free throws. She didn't take any shots from the floor. Cal needs to get the Santa Clara, Calif., native her shots as she shoots 60.4 percent from the floor and a nation's-best 75.0 percent from beyond the arc. Iwanaga also is the country's top free throw shooter at 97.1 percent (33-34) and has made her last 24 attempts. Williams was tied for 14th nationally in free throw percentage as of the last NCAA report (Dec. 20) and hasn't missed a free throw since to improve to 93.3 percent (28-30).
Cal was the top three-point shooting team in the country as of Dec. 20, and may still be there at 51.4 percent (57-111).