California Plays WNIT Second Round Game at Colorado
Courtesy: Cal Athletics  
Release:  03/19/2011

March 19, 2011


Monday, March 21: California at Colorado, 7:05 p.m.
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The California Golden Bears (18-15, 7-11 Pac-10) have advanced to the second round of the Women's National Invitation Tournament (WNIT) where they will take on the Colorado Buffaloes (16-15, 6-10 Big 12) in Boulder on Monday, March 21. The game will tip at 7 p.m. Mountain Time (6 p.m. Pacific Time).

The Bears are in their sixth consecutive post-season tournament, with back-to-back stints in the WNIT following four straight NCAA berths.

The Bears advanced to the second round of the tournament with a 74-60 victory at Cal Poly. The Bears trailed Cal Poly by six points in the first half. It was the second largest deficit the Bears have overcome this season in games they have gone on to win. Cal trailed Oregon State by 9 points, their largest deficit of the season, going on to win by 9. The Bears also trailed Rutgers by six in the season-opener, going on to win by 9.

The Bears have been the comeback kids of late. In each of their last four victories, Cal has trailed by at least five points. They have gone on to win those games by an average margin of victory of 9.5 points.

Cal's bench, which is averaging 12.4 ppg, has scored 49 points in the last two games (24.5 ppg). Freshman guard Afure Jemerigbe has been a huge contributor. Jemerigbe had 15 of the Cal bench's 20 points against Cal Poly. In her last four games, she is averaging 12.25 ppg and has two of her three double-digit efforts of the season against UCLA and Cal Poly.

Sophomore forward Talia Caldwell had 17 rebounds against Cal Poly, picking up her eighth double double of the season. She is averaging 11.75 rebounds per game in the four games of the Pac-10 and WNIT tournaments. Caldwell had eight offensive rebounds against Cal Poly, the fifth time this season she has had eight or more O-boards in a game.

Sophomore guard Layshia Clarendon scored 20 points with six assists in the Cal Poly game. Clarendon has scored 20 or more points in two of her last three games. She also now leads the team in double-digit scoring performances with 25 this season.

Sophomore guard Eliza Pierre came within one point and one rebound of tying career highs against Cal Poly, with 12 points and 9 boards. After getting a tournament-high 9 steals in the Pac-10 tourney, she had none against Cal Poly.

The Bears will now take on future Pac-12 opponent Colorado in the second round of the WNIT. The Bears have never beaten the Buffs, holding an 0-4 record against them. The two teams last met Nov. 29, 2003 when Cal fell 74-63 in Boulder at the Colorado Coors Classic tournament.

Cal in the WNIT This is Cal's second consecutive appearance in the Women's National Invitation Tournament (WNIT) and second overall appearance since the WNIT returned in 1998. The Bears made four appearances in the "old" WNIT (from 1969-1996). The Bears return to the tournament as the defending champions, going 6-0 in the tournament last season to win the title with a 73-61 victory over Miami.

Joanne Boyle has made the post season in all nine of her seasons as a head coach. She made two WNIT appearances with Richmond, making it to the quarterfinals in 2003 and the semifinals in 2004, and an NCAA tourney appearance in 2005. Boyle went to the NCAA's in her first four years at Cal (2006-09), leading the 2009 team to a Sweet-16 appearance.

Cal is 12-7 in WNIT games (7-0 since 1998). Boyle is 12-2 in WNIT games.

Scoring DeNesha Stallworth ended the regular season averaging 14.0 points per game, ranking her in the top-10 in the Pac-10. Stallworth has led the team in scoring 12 times this season and has 24 double-digit performances. She had scored in every game she has played in at Cal until she went scoreless in the regular-season finale at Stanford.

Layshia Clarendon is right behind her on the points list with 13.0 ppg, 25 double digit scoring efforts, and had led the team 11 times. Clarendon led Cal in the Pac-10 Tournament, averaging 13.3 points per game.

Leading Scorers All nine Cal players have led the team in scoring at least once this season. The final holdout, Rachelle Federico, scored a team-high 16 points against Stanford in the regular-season finale.

Rebounding (Team) The Bears fell to third in the Pac-10 in rebounding margin, grabbing an average of 5.9 more rebounds per game than their opponents ranking them 24th in the nation. Cal has now outrebounded their opponents in 22 of its 33 games this season but has lost all ten of the games in which they have been outrebounded.

The Bears had a season-high 64 rebounds against Yale, setting a Cal team record for most rebounds in a single game. It was one of five games this season in which Cal had 50 or more rebounds in a game. It was also one of five time the Bears have outrebounded an opponent by 20 or more in a single game.

Rebounding (Individuals) Talia Caldwell is second in the conference in rebounding, averaging 8.6 rebounds per game. She is one of just three Pac-10 players to have a 20 or more rebound game this season (20, vs. Oregon, 2/24). It was the eighth time in program history that a Cal player had 20 or more rebounds in a game. Caldwell also had an 18 rebound game against Arizona (1/8).

Caldwell is averaging 4.2 offensive rebounds per game, tops in the Pac-10. She has nearly as many offensive rebounds (139) as defensive (146).

Steals Eliza Pierre is currently averaging 2.7 steals per game, which leads the Pac-10. Her average ranks 35th among all NCAA Division I players. She has ranked as high as second in the NCAA this season in this stat.

Pierre began the season with a streak of 13 consecutive games in which she had at least one steal. She had a season-high 8 steals at New Mexico (second highest single game total by a Pac-10 player this season) and a seven-steal performance at UCLA.

Pierre currently has 89 steals, which ranks her tied for fourth on Cal's all-time list for steals in a single season. She had 71 steals last season (in 37 games). The single-season record is 100 steals by Eliza Sokolowska in 1994-95.

Three Pointers Lindsay Sherbert leads the Bears with 47 made three-pointers, eighth on the Cal single-season top-10 list for made-threes.

Sherbert had 14 games this season in which she hit more than one three-point shot. Her best performance was draining six (in eight attempts) against Arizona (1/8). Her six makes tied for the second most in a game by a Pac-10 player this season.

Layshia Clarendon has 28 made-threes this season. She netted 27 last season (in 37 games).

Mikayla Lyles has made 29 baskets this season, 23 of them are threes.

Opponent Threes The Bears are still among the nation's best in three-point defense. Opponents are only making 27.6 percent of the long range shots they are attempting against the Cal defense. This leads the Pac-10 and is ranked No. 21 among all NCAA Division I teams.

All-Pac-10 Team Sophomore forward DeNesha Stallworth was named to the All-Pac-10 team in honors announced by the conference. Stallworth was an honorbale mention as a freshman last season and a member of the All-Freshman team. Sophomore guard Eliza Pierre was named to the All-Defensive Team, the second time she has earned the honor. Guard Lindsay Sherbert earned a spot on the All-Freshman team, the second year in a row Cal had a player earn All-Freshman honors.

Sophomore center Talia Caldwell and sophomore guard Layshia Clarendon were honorable mentions for All-Pac-10 honors.

The All-Pac-10 Team are the official conference honors, as voted by the Pac-10 coaches. There is a 15-member All-Pac-10 team, a five-member All-Defensive Team, and a five-member All-Freshman team with each of the three honors also listing honorable mentions.

Pac-10 Media All-Pac-10 Team Sophomore forwards DeNesha Stallworth and Talia Caldwell were named to the Pac-10 Media All-Pac-10 Team in honors announced by the conference. Sophomore guard Eliza Pierre was named to the Pac-10 Media

All-Defensive Team. A panel of Pac-10 women's basketball media members who cover the league voted for a 15-member All-Pac-10 team, a five member All-Defensive Team, and a five-member All-Freshman team.

Carol Eckman Award California head coach Joanne Boyle is the winner of the 2011 Carol Eckman Award, as announced by the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA). The Carol Eckman Award is presented annually to an active WBCA coach who exemplifies Eckman's spirit, integrity and character through sportsmanship, commitment to the student-athlete, honesty, ethical behavior, courage and dedication to purpose. The award is named in honor of the late Carol Eckman, the former West Chester State College coach who is considered the "Mother of the Women's Collegiate Basketball Championship." Eckman organized the first women's basketball championship at West Chester in 1969 and continued to garner recognition and support for the women's game until her death from cancer in 1985.

Gatorade Player of the Year Cal recruit Erika Johnson has been named the Gatroade Washington Girls Basketball Player of the Year. The 6-foot-1 senior guard and forward from Holy Names Academy led the Cougars to a 29-0 record and the Class 3A state championship this past season. A two-time returning Class 3A First Team All-State selection as named by The Associated Press, Johnson averaged 16.7 points, 11.4 rebounds, 4.8 assists, 4.0 steals and 2.4 blocks per game. She shot 54 percent from the field and 37 percent from 3-point range. Also a Seattle Times All-Area honoree, Johnson produced 13 rebounds, 10 assists and six points in the 57-48, state title-clinching victory against Prairie, earning All-Tournament Team recognition. Her 71 rebounds in the state tournament set the state's single-season postseason record.

High School All-American Cal recruit Reshanda Gray has been named a McDonald's All-American. This is the third straight year that a Joanne Boyle recruit has earned a trip to the McDonalds game.

Gray, a 6-3 forward from Washington Prep in Los Angeles, will play for the West team. The game will be played on March 30, 6:30 p.m. (Central) at the United Center in Chicago, Ill., and broadcast live on ESPNU.

Last season, both Afure Jemerigbe and Lindsay Sherbert earned McDonald's All-American honors. In 2009, Tierra Rogers, Gennifer Brandon, Eliza Pierre, and DeNesha Stallworth were named McDonalds All-Americans.