Feb. 26, 2010
The California Golden Bears (17-10, 11-5 Pac-10) look to extend their winning streak to six games on Saturday, Feb. 27 with a 2 p.m. (Pacific Time) game in Tempe against the Arizona State Sun Devils (16-10, 8-7 Pac-10).
Cal is in sole possession of third place in the Pac-10 standings. Cal holds a 1.5 game advantage over the USC Trojans, who are currently 9-6 in Conference play. USC has three games remaining. They take on Oregon State Saturday and then close against the Arizona schools in Los Angeles next weekend. Cal has two games remaining, closing out their season next Saturday, March 6 at home against Stanford.
In the event that Cal and USC tie for third place, the Trojans would have the third seed for the tournament via a tiebreaker.
Cal has been guaranteed a first round bye in the Pac-10 tournament as they have secured at least a six-seed. The No. 1-6 seeds play their first games on Friday, March 12. If Cal does retain the No. 3 seed, they will take on the No. 6 seed on Friday at 5 p.m. in the quarterfinals. Only the semifinals, played on Saturday, March 13 (at 2:30 and 5:30 p.m.), and the Championships game, played on Sunday, March 14 (at 3:00 p.m.) will be televised on Fox Sports (and carried locally on Comcast Bay Area).
Cal is riding a five-game win streak, matching their previous season-high of five consecutive victories (1/14-28). Their last five-game win streak was snapped by a loss to ASU (1/30). They have also won 11 of their last 13 games.
Freshman forward Gennifer Brandon has posted ddouble-doubles in her last two games. She had 11 points with 11 rebounds against Oregon and 15 points with 14 rebounds against Arizona on Thursday night. She has 35 rebounds in her last three games. She is averaging 9.4 rebounds per game during Cal's win streak. Brandon narrowly missed a double-double in the first meeting of the season against Arizona State. She scored a career-high 18 points with 9 rebounds.
Cal's bench scored 31 of the team's 58 points against Arizona and had 18 of their 40 rebounds with 5 of their 9 assists.
PAC-10 SCORING RACE Alexis Gray-Lawson moved back into the lead in the Pac-10 scoring title race. Gray-Lawson is averaging 18.2 points per game with Nnemkadi Ogwumike at 18.1, Gray-Lawson has scored two more points this season, with 492 to Ogwumike's 490. In Conference games, Gray-Lawson averages a full point per game more than the second highest scorer. Gray-Lawson is averaging 20.9 ppg to Oregon's Taylor Lilley's 19.9.
500 POINTS Alexis Gray-Lawson comes into the game five points shy of scoring 500 points this season. She needs 13 points for her 2009-10 season to move into the Cal record book in the top-10 for points in a single season. Eliza Sokolowska (1994-95) is currently in 10th place with 507 points.
REBOUNDING Cal has been big on the boards recently. They won the rebounding last weekend, outrebounding Oregon State by eight (34-26) and Oregon by 23 (51-28). In the season series against the Ducks, Cal has outrebounded them 104-59. Cal outrebound Arizona by ten. Gennifer Brandon has been Cal's leading rebounder in eight of the last ten games.
BATTLE OF THE BAY Next weekend's showdown against Stanford has been picked up for TV broadcast. The Saturday, March 6 game at Haas Pavilion, which tips at 12:30 p.m., will be broadcast nationally on Fox Sports Net and carried locally on Comcast Bay Area. The Cal/Stanford game in Berkeley has drawn over 10,000 fans each of the last two years. Tickets are onsale right now through the Cal box office, including the $1 Cal Kids Day General Admission tickets for all youth 12th grade and younger.
TUCSON/TEMPE TIES Junior guard Rachelle Federico group up in Tucson, attending Flowing Wells High School. Gennifer Brandon's sister, Kimberly, is a starting guard for Arizona State. Senior guard Alexis Gray-Lawson played for Coach Charli Turner-Thorne as a member of Team USA at the World University Games in Belgrade, where both earned gold medals.
A LOOK AT ARIZONA STATE (16-9, 8-6) Arizona State leads the all-time series, 28-27. Arizona State won the last two meetings: a 63-41 victory over a slumping Cal team in the last weekend of the regular season at Haas and the 63-61 earlier this season at Haas. Cal had won four straight games prior to that including a 54-53 victory at the buzzer in Tempe in Cal's second Pac-10 game of the 2008-09 season.