Game #20 No. 21/19 California (14-5, 6-2 Pac-12) at No. 4/4 Stanford (19-1, 8-0 Pac-12) Maples Pavilion • Stanford, Calif. Thursday, Jan. 30 • 8 p.m. PT Series Record: Stanford leads, 61-18 Last: Cal 67, Stanford 55 (Jan. 13, 2013 in Palo Alto) TV: Pac-12 Networks (Krista Blunk pxp, Mary Murphy analyst, Ros Gold-Onwude sideline)
BERKELEY – The “Battle of the Bay” Part I takes place this Thursday night at Maples Pavilion when No. 21/19 California travels to the peninsula to take on No. 4/4 Stanford in the first of two games in four days between the Bay Area rivals.
Tip-off between the Bears (14-5, 6-2 Pac-12) and Cardinal (19-1, 8-0 Pac-12) is scheduled for 8 p.m. PT and will air live on the Pac-12 Networks with Krista Blunk (play-by-play) and Mary Murphy (analyst) on the call with Ros Gold-Onwude reporting from the sidelines.
California head coach Lindsay Gottlieb is the only active coach in the Pac-12 to lead her team to a road victory at Stanford’s Maples Pavilion - a feat she achieved last season with a 67-55 win on Jan. 13, 2013, that ended Stanford’s 81-game conference winning streak and provided the Golden Bears with the opportunity it needed to win the first Pac-12 title in program history.
Gottlieb will look to rekindle that magic Thursday night against a Stanford team that has won its first eight conference games by an average margin of 25 points. The Bears are coming off a dominating 69-53 win over UCLA while Stanford knocked off USC by a hefty 86-59 margin. The Cardinal have had an easy run to start conference play with an 87-77 win at then-No. 17 Colorado the closest an opponent has come.
A CALIFORNIA WIN OVER STANFORD WOULD: * Give California back-to-back wins at Maples Pavilion for the first time since California won four straight in Palo Alto spanning the 1980-81 to the 1985-86 seasons. * Also mark the first time that the Bears won consecutive games - regardless of location - against Stanford since a six-game winning streak spanning from 1980-81 to 1984-85. * End Stanford’s conference-best 25-game winning streak against Pac-12 foes (regular season and postseason) - the last loss coming at the hands of California at Maples Pavilion * Be the second win over an AP Top 5 program in Lindsay Gottlieb’s tenure * Be California’s second road win over a ranked opponent this season * Move Lindsay Gottlieb to 37-8 in ALL Pac-12 regular season games at California
A LOOK AT NO. 4 STANFORD (19-1, 8-0 PAC-12): Stanford enters the matchup with a 19-1 overall record, the lone loss coming at the hands of No. 1 Connecticut (76-57). The Cardinal are led by senior Chiney Ogwumike’s 27.1 points and 12.2 rebounds per game.
CALIFORNIA-STANFORD SERIES HISTORY: Stanford leads the all-time series 61-18 and hold a 26-11 advantage in Berkeley. The teams split the 2012-13 season series with Stanford claiming a 62-53 win in Berkeley and California taking a 67-55 win at Maples Pavilion to end Stanford’s 81-game conference winning streak. Three of Cal’s last four wins over Stanford have come at Maples (2000-01, 2006-07, 2012-13). California’s last two-game season sweep over the Cardinal came in the 1981-82 season when the Bears took an 80-69 win in Palo Alto and a 96-65 win in Berkeley. Those two victories came in the middle of a program-best six-game winning streak over the Cardinal stretching from 1980-81 to 1984-85.
GAME RECAP (California 69, UCLA 53):Reshanda Gray scored 32 points, on 12-of-18 shooting, and pulled down 15 rebounds as No. 19 California beat UCLA 69-53. Brittany Boyd added 18 points, five rebounds and six assists as the Golden Bears knocked off UCLA for the third consecutive season in Berkeley.
GOTTLIEB VS THE PAC-12: California head coach Lindsay Gottlieb has solidified her mark as one of the sport’s brightest young coaches since taking over the California women’s basketball program prior to the 2011-12 season. Gottlieb is 31-1 against Pac-12 schools not from the state of California and is 8-9 against California-based Pac-12 schools in regular season and postseason action.
GIVE IT TO GRAY: Junior forward Reshanda Gray currently is second in the Pac-12 in field goal percentage at .598 through 19 games and ranks 11th nationally in the category. Gray’s production will be a note to watch throughout the season with the California single-season record currently set at .624 (78-of-125) by Sophie von Saldern in the 1992-93 season.
THE 1,000 CLUB: Earlier this season, Gennifer Brandon became the 24th (vs Oregon) and Brittany Boyd (at ASU) became the 25th members of the California 1,000-point club. Junior Reshanda Gray (969 pts) is just 31 points shy of becoming the 26th member of the club, and with an average of 17 points per game is on pace to break the barrier in one of this week’s two matchups against the Cardinal. Once Gray hits the plateau, California will be the only team in the Pac-12 with three 1,000-point scorers on their current roster. The last time the Bears had three concurrent 1,000-point scorers was at the end of the 2009 season when Alexis Gray-Lawson, Ashley Walker and Devanei Hampton all were at the mark.
BEARS FINDING THEIR STROKE: California began the season with an offensive output towards the lower end of the conference and as a result on the season are averaging 69.1 points (8th in Pac-12) while shooting .394 from the field (9th), .244 from beyond the arc (12th) and .675 from the free throw line (7th). However, since the start of conference play, the Bears have been one of the league’s better-shooting teams. In Pac-12 play, Cal is averaging 71.9 points per game (3rd) while shooting .425 (3rd), .272 (10th) and .681 (6th), respectively.
BOYD’S THEFTS: Junior Brittany Boyd has always been on track to take over the California record for career steals after already holding the single-game record of 10 thefts - a feat she has achieved twice in her first two seasons. Boyd is currently just 53 steals shy of tying Mazetta Grant’s Cal record of 295, and the Berkeley native is well on her way with an average of 3.2 steals per game that ranks No. 5 in the NCAA and is tops in the Pac-12 this season.
With 61 steals on the season, Boyd is poised to make a run at the California single-season steals record of 100 set by Eliza Sokolowska in the 1994-95 season. With 10 regular season games and at least one Pac-12 Tournament game remaining, Boyd is on pace to grab 35 steals - which would bring her total to 96. The junior already has the No. 3 (92, 2012-13) and No. 6 marks (89, 2011-12) in program-history.
GRAY’S 30 POINT PARTY: All-American candidate Reshanda Gray posted her first 30+-point outing against Oregon with her 33-point, 13-rebound effort - besting her previous career-high by nine points (24pts vs George Washington, 11/15/13) - before once again hitting the 30-point plateau with her 32-point, 15-rebound effort against UCLA. Gray is just the ninth Golden Bear to score at least 33 points in a game and her outing made her the first Golden Bear to score at least 30 points in a game since Alexis Gray-Lawson scored a California record 47 points at Oregon State on Jan. 23, 2010.