Bears Travel to USF, Host Saint Mary's
Wed. Dec. 3 at USF, Memorial Gym, San Francisco, CA. 7:00 p.m.
BEARS PLAY TWO: The California women's basketball team (2-3) plays its fifth straight road game in a two-week span, as they travel to USF (2-2) on Wednesday, Dec. 3 for a 7:00 p.m. tipoff. The Bears then return home to Kaiser Arena to host Saint Mary's (2-1) on Friday, Dec. 5 at 7:30 p.m., before taking a two-week break for final exams.
SERIES HISTORY: Cal leads the series with USF, 21-8, with the teams splitting the last six meetings. Last year, USF posted a 68-44 victory in Memorial Gym, while Cal's last win was an 89-84 overtime thriller in Harmon Gym in 1995. Cal's last win at USF was a 70-64 victory on December 1, 1992. Cal leads the series with Saint Mary's, 9-2, although the Gaels have won the last two meetings. Saint Mary's posted its first-ever win over the Bears in 1995, as the Gaels overcame a 17-point deficit and sank a last-second basket to steal a 77-76 win in Harmon Gym. Last season, Saint Mary's defeated Cal, 70-61, in Moraga.
ABOUT THE OPPONENTS: USF is 2-2 on the season, including a 2-1 record at home. The Lady Dons won their first two games of the season over Nevada (72-60) and Valparaiso (79-67), and then dropped a road game at Stanford (101-54) and lost a double overtime game at home to Illinois State (78-75). USF returns seven letterwinners and two starters from last season's team that finished 25-6 and lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Saint Mary's is 2-1 on the season, all at home, with wins over UCLA (83-63) and Alabama-Birmingham (74-55) and a loss to Virginia Tech (68-59). The Gaels return 10 letterwinners and three starters from last year's team that posted a 16-12 record.
CALIFORNIA PROBABLE STARTERS PTS REB NOTES Amber Lacey F 6-0 Sr 12.2 8.4 Shooting 53.1% from the field Paige Bowie F 5-11 So 11.2 4.2 Season-high 19 points vs. Marshall Jennie Leander C 6-3 Jr 9.2 6.0 3-game totals of 34 pts, 21 rebs in Hawaii Masa Radovic G 6-1 Fr 10.0 3.0 Averaging 4.2 assists per game Courtney Johnson G 5-8 Fr 6.2 5.8 First in steals (2.4), 2nd in assists (2.6)
HEAD COACH MARIANNE STANLEY (Immaculata '76): One of the most successful coaches in the history of women's basketball, Marianne Stanley is 8-24 in her second season at Cal. Her overall record in 19 seasons as a collegiate head coach is 388-173 (.692), including stops at Stanford (1996), USC (1990-93), Penn (1988-89) and Old Dominion (1978-87). Stanley won three national titles at Old Dominion (1979, 1980, 1985), took USC to three NCAA Tournaments, and was named National Co-Coach of the Year in 1995-96 at Stanford, helping lead the Cardinal to the Final Four. As a two-time All-America point guard, she led Immaculata College to a pair of national titles (1973-74). In her 22 seasons as a player and coach, she has made 17 postseason appearances, and competed in 10 Final Fours. Stanley ranks 27th in victories among active NCAA Division I coaches, and sometime this season, she should become one of the youngest coaches in history to hit the 400-victory plateau. She was the sixth-youngest coach to win 300 games, accomplishing the feat at age 37 while head coach at USC in 1992. Stanley's staff at Cal includes associate head coach Barbara Thaxton and assistant coaches Carol Alfano and Milica Vukadinovic.
1997-98 California Notes
RAINBOW WAHINE CLASSIC: Cal posted a 1-2 record at the Rainbow Wahine Classic in Honolulu, HI, Nov. 28-30. The Bears lost in the first round to host Hawaii, 69-40, and missed a potential game-winner at the buzzer against Wisconsin-Green Bay to fall 59-58. The Bears roared back on the final day to claim a 66-59 win over Marshall University, marking Cal's first road win in nearly two seasons. Sophomore wing Paige Bowie led the Bears with 19 points against UWGB and 16 points against Marshall, while junior center Jennie Leander added 16 points and 8 rebounds against UWGB and 14 points against Marshall. Senior forward Amber Lacey posted her second double-double of the season with 11 points and 11 rebounds against Hawaii. Iowa State won the championship with a two-point victory over Hawaii, while Alabama claimed third place with a win over Indiana.
CAL AT UOP: Cal lost a heartbreaker at UOP on Nov. 24, as Martha Yarbrough sank a short jumper with 2.3 seconds remaining to give UOP a 64-63 victory in Stockton. Freshman Masa Radovic's pair of free throws had given the Bears the lead with 11 seconds left, 63-62, but UOP was able to move the ball up the court and get Yarbrough open for the game-winner. The Bears inbounded the ball and called timeout, but a desperation 3-point attempt by Radovic at the buzzer bounced off the rim. Radovic led the Bears with a career-high 19 points and dished out four assists, while senior Amber Lacey worked the inside for 16 points and five rebounds.
SEASON OPENER: Cal posted a solid 94-58 victory over Cal Poly SLO in the season and home opener on Nov. 20 in Kaiser Arena. The victory marked the Bears 18th consecutive victory in home openers, dating back to the 1980-81 season. Senior Amber Lacey, a transfer from Alabama, led the Bears with a career-high 19 points and 13 rebounds, while freshman Kenya Corley came off the bench to contribute 18 points and eight rebounds in just 18 minutes. Freshman guard Courtney Johnson made the first start of her career, and responded with 12 points, six rebounds and five assists, while sophomore Paige Bowie tossed in 12 points. The Bears shot an outstanding 50 percent from the field for the game (36-for-72), and outrebounded Cal Poly SLO, 51-33.
THE THREE IS GONE: When the Bears went 0-for-4 from three-point range against Wisconsin-Green Bay, it snapped a streak of 53 consecutive games with at least one three-pointer made. The streak spanned nearly two years, beginning Dec. 8, 1995. The Bears are just 5-for-45 from three-point land (.111) this season, after averaging five three-pointers made per game last year and shooting 29 percent from long range.
A ROAD WIN: With the Bears 66-59 victory over Marshall University at the Rainbow Wahine Classic, Cal posted its first road victory since Feb. 24, 1996 (91-83 over WSU), snapping a 17-game losing streak on the road.
STAT STUFF: The Bears are showing a marked improvement in several statistical areas this season, particularly on defense. After being ranked last in the Pac-10 in rebounding margin last season, the Bears are outrebounding their opponents by nearly seven rebounds per game this year, and have limited the opponents to just 38 percent field goal shooting. Cal has twice as many blocked shots as its opponents, and has reduced its own turnover rate by nearly four turnovers per game.
NEW HOME COURT: The Cal women's basketball team will play its home games for the 1997-98 season in the Kaiser Arena (4,685), part of the Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center in downtown Oakland. The construction of the new $40 million, 12,000-seat Walter A. Haas Jr. Pavilion has begun on campus, and completion of the project is expected in January, 1999. The Pavilion is named for Walter and Evelyn Haas Jr., who donated a lead gift of $10 million.
PACIFIC-10 CONFERENCE STANDINGS (as of 12/1/97) Washington 3-0 Arizona 1-0 USC 1-0 Oregon 2-1 Washington State 2-1 Oregon State 3-2 California 2-3 Arizona State 1-2 Stanford 1-3 UCLA 0-3
CAL ON THE RADIO: For the 16th consecutive season, KALX (90.7 FM) will broadcast all California games, home and away. Each broadcast begins five minutes prior to tip-off.
CAL ON THE INTERNET: All Cal releases, results, statistics, box scores, schedules and coach and players information, as well as historical data, can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.calbears.com. Stats and results are updated after each game.
CAL RELEASES ON FAXBACK: All Cal basketball releases are available to the media on the Pac-10's FaxBack service. Using this system, you can obtain releases, statistics, rosters and the latest box scores for all conference teams at your convenience. For more information, contact the Pac-10 office at 510-932-4411.
BEARS ON TV: Cal will make six television appearances this season: Jan. 4 vs. Oregon State (Fox Sports), Jan. 9 vs. Stanford (Fox Bay Area), Feb. 6 at Stanford (Fox Bay Area), Feb. 12 vs. USC (Fox Bay Area), Feb. 21 at Washington (Fox Sports), Feb. 28 vs. Arizona State (Fox Bay Area).