Feb. 13, 2007
BERKELEY, Calif. -
A LOOK AT THE GOLDEN BEARS
After surpassing last season's win total with a 72-45 triumph over Washington State, No. 22/22 California travels to the state of Oregon for its final Pac-10 road trip of the season. The Golden Bears (19-6, 9-5 Pac-10, T3rd) visit Oregon (14-10, 6-8, 7th) Thursday, Feb. 15, at 7 p.m., before battling Oregon State (8-15, 3-11, 8th) Saturday, Feb. 17, at 7 p.m. Cal's 19 wins are the most the program has posted since 1992-93 (19-10).
The Golden Bears are off to their second-best start in school history, with the only the 1983-84 squad having a better record through 25 games at 20-5. Cal's 9-5 Pac-10 record is also its second best in school history through 14 games. The 1991-92 began 10-4 en route to a program-best 12-6 Pac-10 mark. This year's Cal team is also on pace with the 1991-92 squad (T3rd) for the best Pac-10 finish in school history.
Sophomore center Devanei Hampton has been red hot of late, leading the Bears in scoring for five straight games, averaging 22.2 ppg and 10.8 rpg and posting three of her six double-doubles on the season. Sophomore forward Ashley Walker teams with Hampton to form one of the most formidable post tandems in the country. Walker paces the Bears in scoring (17.5 ppg, 4th Pac-10) and in rebounding (8.7 rpg, 1st Pac-10) and is tied for the Pac-10 lead with nine double-doubles this season.
Cal's starting guard trio began the season with little collegiate experience but has matured into a veteran unit. Freshman point guard Natasha Vital assumed the starting reins nine games into the season after sophomore Alexis Gray-Lawson suffered a season-ending ACL injury. Vital is averaging 7.9 ppg, 3.4 rpg and 4.9 apg as a starter over the last 16 contests and ranks ninth in the conference in assists for all games (3.60 apg).
Freshman guard Lauren Greif has started all 25 games at shooting guard, contributing 8.7 ppg and 5.7 rpg. Greif leads the Bears with 42 three-pointers (1.68 pg, 6th Pac-10). A Portland, Ore., product, Greif posted a career-high 19 points the first time the Bears faced Oregon this season. Senior guard Keanna Levy contributes 7.6 ppg and 4.1 rpg in her first season as a starter.
Freshman forward/center Rama N'diaye (5.4 ppg and 3.3 rpg) provides a versatile offensive and defensive presence. Junior forward Krista Foster gave a spark off the bench in the Washington State win, tallying 10 points and five rebounds.