Oct. 30, 2007
Buy Cal Women's Basketball Tickets
BERKELEY, Calif. - Coming off one of the best seasons in school history, the seventh-ranked California women's basketball team tips off the 2007-08 season with an exhibition game against DT3 Wednesday, Oct. 31, at 7 p.m. at Haas Pavilion. The Bears close out their exhibition slate with a home game against Loyola New Orleans Sunday, Nov. 4, at 2 p.m. Admission is free for all fans for both exhibition games.
Cal opens the regular season at Fresno State Saturday, Nov. 10, at 1 p.m. The Bears then return to Berkeley for their home opener against New Mexico Sunday, Nov. 18, at 1 p.m.
After posting a 23-9 overall record last season and earning consecutive NCAA Tournament bids, expectations are high for Cal again this year. The Bears are ranked as high as seventh in CSTV.com's preseason poll and eighth by Athlon Sports magazine. Other rankings for the Bears include No. 11 by Women's Basketball Magazine and No. 15 by Lindy's and The Sporting News.
The Pac-10 coaches and the media have tabbed Cal to place third in the conference this season, marking the Bears highest prediction in the history of either poll. Last season, Cal set a program-record with a third-place showing and equaled the 1991-92 team for the Bears' best Pac-10 record at 12-6. Junior Devanei Hampton (F/C) and Ashley Walker (F/C) were both chosen to the 2007-08 five-member preseason All-Pac-10 team. Hampton became the first Cal women's basketball player to garner the Pac-10 Player of the Year award last year, and Walker joined Hampton as first-team All-Pac-10 honorees.
Joanne Boyle, the 2006-07 Pac-10 Coach of the Year, is in her third season as head coach at Cal. She owns a 41-21 record in Berkeley, and her 66.1 winning percentage is the best by any coach in Cal women's basketball history.
Cal returns eight letterwinners, including four of its top five scorers, and welcomes two newcomers in 2007-08. Freshman guard/forward Kelsey Adrian, a member of Canada's national team, and guard Rachelle Federico, a three-time Street & Smith's honorable mention All-American, look to make immediate contributions for the Bears. Forward Krista Foster is the lone senior on the team and joins Walker and sophomore Lauren Greif as the Bears' captains.
Other Preseason Accolades
Hampton, who was an honorable mention Kodak/WBCA and Associated Press All-American as a sophomore, was selected a second-team preseason All-American by The Sporting News and a third-team honoree by CSTV.com. She is also on the State Farm/Wade Trophy Watch List.
Walker, who earned honorable mention AP All-America distinction in 2006-07, received honorable mention preseason All-America recognition by CSTV.com. Junior guard Alexis Gray-Lawson, who missed 23 games last season with an ACL tear, is also an honorable mention choice by CSTV.com. Gray-Lawson became the first Cal women's basketball player to be selected the Pac-10 Freshman of the Year in 2005-06.
Looking at the Opponents
DT3, which stands for Daily Training, is comprised of nine former college players. The team includes forward Aisha Hollans, a Berkeley product who played three seasons at USC before finishing her college career at Long Beach State, and forward Kendra Wecker, a two-time Kodak/WBCA and Associated Press All-American at Kansas State. Former Arizona star Natalie Jones is also on the team. Cal assistant coach Kevin Morrison was the co-director of the team before being hired by the Bears in June.
Cal is the first stop on DT3's exhibition schedule, which also includes Georgia, Vanderbilt, George Washington and Mississippi State.
Loyola New Orleans, which posted a 25-9 overall record last season and a 16-2 mark in the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference, will face Saint Mary's on Saturday, Nov. 3, before playing Cal. The Gulf Coast Athletic Conference named Loyola's Kiely Schork and Trenese Smith to the preseason all-conference team. Schork, a 5-3 senior guard from the Pinewood School in Burlingame, Calif., scored 11.2 ppg last season and led the conference with 96 three-pointers. Smith, a 5-8 sophomore guard/forward, led the conference in scoring (17.6 ppg) and three-point percentage (43.7%).