Jan. 29, 2011
EUGENE, Ore. -
The California Golden Bears ended the first half of the Pac-10 season with a 81-65 road victory over the Oregon Ducks. Talia Caldwell had a double double with 17 points and 11 rebounds.
The Bears and Ducks battled through the first half, with the lead changing hands eight times in the first 20 minutes.
The Ducks started the game going 4-for-4 from the three point line with Amanda Johnson scoring their first 11 points. Cal spread their scoring across the roster with all five starters scoring within the first five minutes. It was a pair of three pointers from freshman guard Lindsay Sherbert that gave Cal their first true lead of the game, 21-16, with just over 11 minutes left in the half. Another Sherbert three extended their advantage to 28-22 with six minutes left in the period.
The Ducks chipped away at the Cal lead and after the fourth lead change of the period, Cal overcame a 31-30 deficit with a pair of Sherbert free throws. Sophomore center Talia Caldwell battled her way through three defenders to get a hard-fought layup to put Cal up 34-31 with 1:56 remaining. The Bears couldn't hold onto the lead with a pair of Bear turnovers converting to a 35-34 Duck lead. Caldwell battled for an offensive rebound and putback with 18 seconds, putting Cal in a position to go to the locker room with a 36-35 advantage. Five seconds later, however, Oregon's Johnson drained her fourth three of the period to put Cal down 38-36 at the break.
Cal started the second half tying the game on a Layshia Clarendon jumper. After an Oregon turnover, DeNesha Stallworth got a layup to put Cal back ahead 40-38. Oregon tied the game ten seconds later, and the see saw battle resumed. The Bears pulled ahead on a layup by Talia Caldwell with 12 minutes to play. The Bears built a six-point lead on a nearly length-of-the-floor pass from sophomore guard Eliza Pierre to a fast-breaking Stallworth, the layup putting Cal up 52-46, with 14:10 left in the game.
Cal took its first double digit lead of the game with just over six minutes to play. Clarendon missed a jumper in the paint right below the basket, got her own rebound and jumped it back in to give Cal a 68-57 lead, the middle of a 13-2 Cal run. Holding a 77-61 lead with three minutes remaining, the Bears held on for the 81-65 victory.
The Bears, one of the top defenders of three-point shooting in the nation, clamped down on the Ducks in the second half, holding Oregon to 0-for-11 shooting from long range in the final 20 minutes.
"I thought we had a great game," said head coach Joanne Boyle. "Oregon came out and they were hot. I don't think we did a great job defending their stuff. We really made some adjustments at halftime and I think we did a much better job in the second half getting on the boards and really taking away the three from them."
The five starters scored all of Cal's points and took all but one of the shots. Each ended the game in double figures. Talia Caldwell had her second straight double double with 17 points and 11 rebounds. Caldwell also led the team with 5 assists. It was the first time in her career she had double doubles in back-to-back games. Lindsay Sherbert had her second double double of her career with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Layshia Clarendon led the team with 19 points. Eliza Pierre tied a career high with 13 points. DeNesha Stallworth scored 15.
With the victory, the Bears finish the first run through the Pac-10 teams with a 5-4 record. They improve to 13-7 overall. Oregon falls to 12-8 and 3-6 in the Pac-10.
"This keeps us in the hunt," said Clarendon. "It keeps us right there. We really needed these two wins. W e have the Arizonas next week, so we are going to be focused on them now."
The Bears are back on the road next week, heading to Arizona where they will take on the Arizona Wildcats on Thursday, Feb. 3. They close out the week at Arizona State on Saturday, Feb. 5.