Archive for the 'Stanford' Category
Before boarding my fight home…
To play Connecticut on the road in November in the week before Thanksgiving is less about winning than information gathering for Stanford.
But, and that’s a big but, winning would be good too.
Winning would mean you are farther than you thought you were, matching up with a team that could very well again be the best team in the nation by the time the season’s over.
Winning could mean that you’ve executed well the things you’ve been practicing over the last month and a half.
Winning would have been cool.
Stanford will have to leave Connecticut this morning with the consolation prize that Monday night’s 68-58 loss to UConn was a winnable game.
The Cardinal could have silenced the crowd at the XL Center, could have knocked the Huskies back. Could have. But they didn’t.
And maybe the valuable lessons on Monday night are ultimately more valuable.
Lesson No. 1 – Turnovers will cost you. Should be an obvious one, and there was a portend for this in Stanford’s game against Gonzaga more than a week ago when the Cardinal struggled to take care of the ball in the first half against the Zags, but did a better job in the second.
But 16 turnovers against the Huskies translated into 16 lost opportunities to score. Can’t do that against Geno’s team.
It was a rough night for guard Toni Kokenis, who had three turnovers. It was even rougher for Chiney Ogwumike, who turned the ball over five times. And neither could make up for mistakes with offense, combining to shoot 5 of 25 from the floor.
Lesson No. 2 – Foul trouble will cost you too. Grouse about the officiating if you’d like, but Nneka picking up her second foul trying to take a charge was a high risk choice on her part and it led to her spending 14 minutes on the bench in the first half. Minutes that Stanford needed her on the floor.
Lesson No. 3 – Defense needs some shoring up. Connecticut missed a lot of shots, but they weren’t bad shots. The Huskies might not have taken advantage of every opportunity, but there were a lot of them. It would sound like holding the Huskies to 35.7 percent shooting would be a win. But it’s a deceiving number.
Ok on the positive side…
Bright spots – Sarah Boothe. Boothe had her best game in a very long time. She was 4 of 5 for eight points in 19 minutes on the floor and did good, physical defensive work on Connecticut’s Stefanie Dolson, who ended up hitting just two shots from the floor.
Jasmine Camp. The freshman guard was the Cardinal’s most productive backcourt player. She scored 14 points on 5 of 9 shooting and dished out three assists with no turnovers. She was poised and played well under pressure.
Next up is a Xavier team that is frankly a shell of its former self with the departure of coach Kevin McGuff and the graduation of Ta’Shia Phillips and Amber Harris.
Time to start applying lessons.
Join me tonight a 6:45 p.m. for a live blog of Stanford vs. Old Dominion from Maples Pavilion. It is the Cardinal’s last game before they head east for Monday’s showdown against Connecticut.
- Stanford– The Cardinal will be young in the backcourt, dominant in the frontcourt and the biggest question will be how long does it take the freshmen to play at a Stanford-like level? Stanford might not get through the Pac-12 unbeaten this season.
- USC – The Trojans have considerable experience and talent and right now they look like a team that belongs in the NCAA Tournament. But USC can’t afford bad late-season losses. And in the last few years, they haven’t been able to avoid them.
- Cal. The Bears get a fresh start under head coach Lindsay Gottlieb and have experience all over the court, and some great young talent coming in. If this team underachieved last season – and they did – they are setting themselves up to be a potential spoiler in the Pac-12 race.
- Gonzaga. Time to move on without Courtney Vandersloot. The Zags still look like the class of the WCC. The Nov. 13 game at Stanford will be telling for Kelly Graves’ team.
- Arizona State. The Sun Devils, playing this season under Joseph Anders, needs offense to keep up with the best teams in the Pac-12. You probably can’t stop Stanford or USC from scoring, so you better keep up.
- UCLA. Jasmine Dixon’s injury, paired with a head coaching change (from Nikki Caldwell to Cory Close) threatens to break the momentum that’s been gained in the past few seasons.
- Arizona. How to replace the post presence of Ify Ibekwe? Niya Butts’ team has the backcourt covered with Davellyn Whyte and Shanita Arnold, but questions inside.
- Utah. The Utes return four starters from a team that went to the NCAA Tournament last season and they are young with only one senior. They will be in the mix in the top half of the conference standings.
- San Diego State. The Aztecs are back to playing “95 feet” of basketball says coach Beth Burns. Not a lot of size, but a lot of quickness and athleticism in the backcourt.
- Cal Poly. Kristina Santiago, out last season with an ACL injury, is back.
Close to the 10…
UC Santa Barbara
Picked to win by the coaches
The Pac-12 –Stanford
The WCC – Not released yet
The MWC – TCU
The Big West – Cal Poly
The WAC – Louisiana Tech
The second installment of the Stanford series…
Working on league preview for the Pac-12 and endeavoring to get schedule reviews done this week.
The release courtesy of Stanford Athletics.
Stanford Women’s Basketball Announces 2011-12 Schedule
Cardinal non-conference slate includes trips to Connecticut, Xavier; hosting Tennessee, Gonzaga
STANFORD, Calif. – Stanford’s Setsuko Ishiyama Director of Women’s Basketball, Tara VanDerveer, announced the Cardinal’s 2011-12 schedule Monday morning.
• Stanford Women’s Basketball 2011-12 Schedule - http://www.gostanford.com/sports/w-baskbl/sched/stan-w-baskbl-sched.html
The Cardinal’s ledger, which features contests against 11 teams that reached the NCAA Tournament last season, includes matchups with 2011 NCAA regional finalists Gonzaga (Nov. 13) and Tennessee (Dec. 20) that highlight a 15-game home regular-season slate.
“A big reason for this program’s regular season and postseason success is that we face a tough and challenging schedule every season, and 2011-12 is no exception,” VanDerveer said. “Playing NCAA Tournament-caliber teams early on and throughout the year prepares us for new challenges in the Pac-12 and in the high-pressure contests in the postseason.”
Along with the Lady Volunteers and the Zags, four more 2011 NCAA Tournament participants will visit Maples Pavilion in 2011-12. After the Nov. 13 home opener against Gonzaga at Maples Pavilion, where Stanford has won a program-record 63 straight games, the Cardinal will host last year’s first-round opponent, UC Davis, on Nov. 30, Princeton on Dec. 17, UCLA on Feb. 9 and Pac-12 newcomer Utah on Feb. 25.
The Cardinal will also host Old Dominion (Nov. 17), CS Bakersfield (Dec. 22) and Seattle University (Feb. 29) in non-conference play.
Road trips during the non-conference season include trips to Texas for the season opener on Nov. 11, a Thanksgiving Week trip back east for games at Connecticut (Nov. 21) and Xavier (Nov. 25), and a bus ride into The Valley to visit Fresno State on Dec. 4.
Stanford will open things up with a pair of exhibition contests at Maples Pavilion the first week of November. UC San Diego visits for a 7 p.m. contest on Wednesday, Nov. 2, and the exhibition slate concludes against Vanguard on the afternoon of Nov. 5.
After a three-game non-conference homestand from Dec. 17-22, the Cardinal will make the first of two trips this season to Los Angeles to open play in the expanded and renamed Pac-12.
The conference slate will still feature 18 games. However, teams will play eight opponents twice in the traditional home-and-home setup, but will only play four teams once. Two of those schools will be played at home, and two on the road. The four schools that a team plays just once a year will rotate every third year. In 2011-12, the two schools that Stanford will play just once are Arizona and Arizona State at home, and Washington and Washington State on the road. Next season (2012-13), Stanford will still play those schools just once during the regular season, but the locations will be switched.
Stanford opens Pac-12 play with the first of two trips to Los Angeles. The Cardinal will take on 2011 WNIT runner-up USC on Thursday, Dec. 29 before closing the weekend with a New Year’s Eve visit to UCLA.
Once the New Year rolls around, Stanford will play home weekends against Oregon and Oregon State (Jan. 5 and 7), Washington State and Washington (Jan. 19 and 21), California (Jan. 28), UCLA and USC (Feb. 9 and 11) and Pac-12 newcomers Colorado and Utah (Feb. 23 and 25).
Stanford’s conference road trips, after the late December run to Los Angeles, include: at Utah and Colorado (Jan. 12 and 14), at Arizona State and Arizona (Feb. 2 and 4), at Oregon State and Oregon (Feb. 16 and 18) and at California to close out the regular season on March 3.
The Cardinal will return to Los Angeles for the 2012 Pac-12 Tournament, set to be held March 7-10. The preliminary rounds will be held at USC’s Galen Center before moving to Staples Center for the semifinals and championship game on March 9 and 10.
The 2012 NCAA Tournament is set to begin with first-round games taking place on March 17 and 18 at pre-determined sites. The Final Four is scheduled for April 1 and 3, 2012 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colo.
Times and dates on the Cardinal’s 2011-12 schedule are subject to change. The Pac-10 will be announcing the 2011-12 women’s basketball TV schedule in September. Please visit the women’s basketball home page on www.gostanford.com to check on continuing updates.