Jan. 2, 2002
WHAT'S HAPPENING: The University of Arizona women's basketball team (5-6 overall, 1-2 Pac-10) will look to get back on track this week with a pair of games in Oregon. The Wildcats play at Oregon on Friday, Jan. 4, at 7 p.m. PST, then they take on Oregon State on Sunday, Jan. 6, at 2 p.m. PST in Corvallis. Arizona is in the midst of a stretch that will see it play seven of ten games on the road.
ARIZONA'S PROBABLE STARTERS:
35 - Krista Warren (F/G, 6-2, Jr., Cloverdale, CA) - 7.7 ppg, 8.2 rpg, 1.6 apg
45 - Elizabeth Pickney (F, 6-4, Sr., Houston, TX) - 17.6 ppg, 8.3 rpg, 1.5 bpg
50 - LaKeisha Taylor (C, 6-4, Sr., Houston, TX) - 10.6 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 1.1 spg
11 - Dee-Dee Wheeler (G, 5-6, Fr., Chicago, IL) - 13.3 ppg, 3.9 rpg, 3.5 apg
13 - Aimee Grzyb (G, 5-7, So., San Jose, CA) - 8.9 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 2.5 apg
OFF THE BENCH:
20 - Julie Brase (G, 5-10, Jr., Tucson, AZ) - 3.9 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 2.8 apg
31 - Robin Roberson (G/F, 6-0, Fr., Berkeley, CA) - 5.2 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 1.0 apg
44 - Danielle Adefeso (F, 6-3, Fr., Los Angeles, CA) - 0.9 ppg, 0.8 rpg, 0.1 bpg
24 - Michelle Tibbetts (G/F, 6-0, Fr., Burnsville, MN) - 0.5 ppg, 0.5 rpg
4 - Candice Allen (INJ) (G, 5-10, So., Ontario, CA) - 9.0 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 3.4 spg
SCOUTING ARIZONA: An 87-64 loss at Arizona State last Sunday dropped the Wildcats down to 5-6 overall and 1-2 in Pac-10 play. The 5-6 record is the program's worst start since the 1994-95 team began that season 5-7. The Wildcats have lost 11 of their last 12 road games, dating back to last season.
With 17.6 points and 8.3 rebounds per game, senior forward Elizabeth Pickney leads Arizona in both categories. Freshman guard Dee-Dee Wheeler is the second-leading scorer with 13.3 ppg, followed by senior center LaKeisha Taylor's 10.6 ppg.
Junior wing Krista Warren is the second-leading rebounder, grabbing an average of 8.2 per game. Taylor is third in rebounding, averaging 5.2 per game.
PUT UP SOME POINTS: The Cats are 4-0 this season when Elizabeth Pickney scores 20 points or more.
SCOUTING OREGON: Winners of six of their last eight games, the Ducks are 8-5 overall and 3-1 in Pac-10 action after sweeping Washington (69-56) and Washington State (76-47) at home last weekend.
Oregon has only two players averaging in double digits in scoring, but seven total Ducks are scoring four points or better per game. Junior guard Shaquala Williams is Oregon's top scorer, with 15.8 points per game, followed by senior guard Edniesha Curry with 12.1 ppg. Senior forward Alyssa Fredrick and sophomore forward Cathrine Kraayeveld are tied for the team lead in rebounding, averaging 5.2 rpg apiece.
First-year head coach Beverly Smith (Oregon, 1982) has an 8-5 record at the helm of her alma mater's program.
THE SERIES vs. OREGON: Oregon has a solid 21-11 lead in the series with Arizona, although the Wildcats have a small 6-5 edge over the last 11 games. The two squads split last season's matchups, with Arizona winning, 88-76, at home and Oregon winning, 83-78, on its own home court.
LAST MEETING WITH OREGON: The Wildcats ended their 2001 regular season road slate on a seven-game losing skid after suffering an 83-78 loss at Oregon on Mar. 3.
Oregon out-scored the Wildcats, 19-12, over the first nine minutes of the contest, then Arizona went on an 18-10 run to take a one-point (30-29) advantage into halftime.
The first 10 minutes of the second half were tight, with five ties and three lead changes. Then the Ducks put on a 16-6 run to take a 10-point (69-59) lead, its largest of the game, at 5:50. The Wildcats were able to cut it down to four (73-69) three minutes later, but that was the closest they would come as Oregon held on for the win.
SCOUTING OREGON STATE: The Beavers have had an up-and-down season so far, being unable to string together more than two wins at a time. OSU went to 6-7 overall and 2-2 in Pac-10 play after beating Washington State (57-33) and falling to Washington (74-58) at home last weekend. Oregon State will entertain Arizona State on Friday before taking on the Wildcats on Sunday.
Averaging 21.2 points per game, senior guard Felicia Ragland leads Oregon State and the Pac-10 in scoring. She is OSU's second-leading rebounder, averaging 6.2 rpg. Sophomore forward Hollye Chapman is second in scoring, with an 11.0 ppg average, and senior center Ericka Cook is the team's top rebounder, pulling down 6.6 per game.
In her seventh season at the helm of her alma mater's program, head coach Judy Spoelstra (Oregon State, 1983) has an 84-97 mark with the Beavers. She has a career record of 182-165 in 13 seasons.
THE SERIES vs. OREGON STATE: The series between Arizona and Oregon State is tied at 16-16. Arizona had won eight in a row over the Beavers until a loss in Corvallis during last year's second meeting. The Wildcats took last year's first game with OSU, 83-73, in Tucson, then lost the second game, 67-66, in Corvallis.
LAST MEETING WITH OREGON STATE: Another 20-plus-turnovers game caused the Wildcats to see the end of an eight-game win streak over Oregon State, when the UA lost to the Beavers, 67-66, in Corvallis on Mar. 1, 2001.
Arizona seemed to control the first half of play, leading by as many as five three different times through the first 10 minutes. Then Oregon State scored nine unanswered points to take its own five-point (27-22) lead with 5:32 remaining in the first half. The Wildcats closed the half with their own 12-3 run to take a four-point (34-30) lead into the break.
The Wildcats stretched their lead to five early in the second half, then the Beavers went on a 14-2 run to gain a seven-point (49-42) lead at 11:29. The Cats fought back to take a three-point (61-58) lead at 4:50 but couldn't hang on as OSU out-scored them, 9-6, over the remainder of the game. Seven of Arizona's final nine possessions of the game resulted in turnovers.
Elizabeth Pickney shot 11-for-14 from the floor on her way to game highs of 24 points and 10 rebounds. Candice Allen contributed eight points and four assists, and Krista Warren and LaKeisha Taylor notched six points and four rebounds apiece.
ARIZONA'S LAST TIME OUT: Arizona's road woes continued on Dec. 30, as the Wildcats fell to rival Arizona State, 87-64, in Tempe. It was the Cats' worst loss to the Sun Devils since 1981.
With eight turnovers and nine missed shots in their first 20 possessions of the game, the Wildcats found themselves down by seven (14-7) midway through the first half. Arizona cut the lead down to one three times, then ASU scored nine unanswered points to take a 10-point (28-18) lead at 6:19. The two teams traded buckets through the remainder of the half, and the Sun Devils held an 11-point (41-30) lead at the break.
ASU pushed its lead to 19 (60-41) with 11:17 left in the game, but the Wildcats made an 11-2 surge to chop the deficit to only 10 (62-52) at 9:04. The Sun Devils stopped the Wildcat run with a three-pointer just seconds later, and Arizona never recovered as ASU out-scored the Cats, 22-12, down the stretch to claim its third straight win over the UA.
Freshman Dee-Dee Wheeler led Arizona with 17 points, five rebounds, five assists and a trio of steals. Junior wing Krista Warren added 14 points and five rebounds, while senior forward Elizabeth Pickney had 13 points and a team-high nine rebounds. Sophomore guard Aimee Grzyb contributed nine points, as did senior center LaKeisha Taylor.
INJURY REPORT: Sophomore guard Candice Allen suffered a grade-three concussion against Holy Cross on Nov. 30 and began non-contact workouts again on Dec. 28. She should be cleared for full contact on Saturday, Jan. 5, provided she remains asymptomatic.
Freshman guard Katrina Lindner tore her right ACL during the Cats' annual Red & Blue Game on Oct. 30, and sophomore guard Jenn Chesney also tore her right ACL during preseason workouts in September. Both players will be redshirting this year.
HEAD COACH JOAN BONVICINI: The winningest coach in Arizona women's basketball history, Joan Bonvicini has nurtured the Wildcat program into an upward-rising powerhouse. In 11 seasons at the helm of the Arizona program, Bonvicini has guided the Wildcats to six straight postseason appearances, including four NCAA tournament berths and two in the WNIT.
In her 11th season with the Wildcats, Bonvicini holds a 184-123 (.599) mark at Arizona and is 509-194 (.724) in 23 years as a head coach. She is 23-14 in NCAA tournament play and has never lost a first-round game in 13 appearances.
Prior to taking over at the UA, Bonvicini led Long Beach State to 10 consecutive NCAA appearances, including two trips to the Final Four. She registered a 325-71 mark in 12 seasons with the 49ers.
DID YOU KNOW: Since Joan Bonvicini took over the Arizona program in 1991, the Wildcats have gone 95-87 against Pac-10 teams, although they have a 61-32 league mark over the last six seasons combined.
THE REST OF THE STAFF: Awarded the title of associate head coach in 1998, Denise Dove Ianello (Northern Illinois, 1992) is in her 10th year at the UA, functioning as both the team's recruiting coordinator and a perimeter coach. In his third year at the UA, assistant coach Curtis Loyd (Southern Utah, 1994) is involved with scouting and with coaching the post players and is the director of the Joan Bonvicini Hoop Camp. The Cats are currently in the process of searching for a new assistant coach to replace Karen Caires, who resigned on Dec. 21.
NEW WILDCAT ON THE WAY: Associate head coach Denise Dove Ianello and her husband Rob, who is the UA football recruiting coordinator and wide receivers coach, are expecting their first child in April 2002.
HOME GAME TIME CHANGED: The game time for the Wildcats' home contest against Oregon on Saturday, Feb. 2, has been moved to 4 p.m. to accomodate television broadcast. The game, which had originally been slated for a 2 p.m. tip, will be aired live in Tucson on KWBA channel 58 and in Prescott and Phoenix on KUSK at 4 p.m. MST.
CLEANING THE GLASS: Junior wing Krista Warren has had three double-digit rebounding performances already this year. Over the last four games, she has averaged 11.0 rebounds per contest, including performances of 18 boards on Dec. 16 and 15 rebounds on Dec. 21.
Teammate Elizabeth Pickney has been hitting the boards lately too. She has averaged 11.0 boards per game over the last three contests, including a career-high 13 rebounds against Stanford on Dec. 19.
GOTTA REBOUND: After being out-rebounded by an average of 7.7 boards per game over the first six contests of the year, the Wildcats have out-rebounded their last five opponents by an average of 6.2 per game.
FREE THROWS AND TURNOVERS TELL THE TALE: The Cats have been getting to the free throw line often enough during this season's games, but it's only when they shoot well, really well, from the stripe that they win. Arizona has shot 83.2 percent (94-113) from the line in the season's five victories. In the Cats' six losses, they hit only 69.4 percent (84-121) from the stripe. Arizona is also averaging 4.8 more free throws made per game in its wins than its losses.
Arizona needs to take care of the ball to win too. In their wins, the Cats have averaged only 19.6 turnovers per game, but in their losses, they committed 24.5 turnovers per game.
CLOSE BUT...: Eight of Arizona's 11 games this season have been decided by nine points or less, with five of those being decided by five points or less.
LOOKING AHEAD: The Wildcats return home for a trio of games next weekend. Arizona plays Washington State on Thursday, Jan. 10, at 7 p.m., then faces Washington on Saturday, Jan. 12, at 12 p.m. The Cats wrap up that homestand against UC Santa Barbara on Monday, Jan. 14, at 7 p.m.
Arizona faces a four-game road swing after that, playing in L.A. during the third weekend of January and then in the Bay Area on Jan. 24 and 26.
MOVIN' ON UP: Senior forward Elizabeth Pickney recently moved up into the No. 2 spot on Arizona's all-time scoring list, now with 1363 career points. She will finish her career as the second-leading scorer in Arizona history. It would be impossible for her to catch Arizona's all-time leading scorer, Adia Barnes (1995-98), who racked up 2237 career points.
PERIMETER DEFENSE?: After allowing opponents to hit only 26 three-pointers over the first five games of the season, the Cats have struggled with their perimeter defense lately, giving up 45 treys in over the last six games.
STRONG SCHEDULE: Four of the 18 opponents on the Cats' 2001-02 schedule were either ranked or receiving votes for ranking in the most recent polls.
In this week's Associated Press Poll, Stanford is the only opponent ranked, standing at No. 5. Arizona State, New Mexico and Notre Dame all received votes for ranking.
In the USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll, Stanford is ranked at No. 6. Arizona State and Notre Dame were among the teams receiving votes for ranking.
CHECKING THE RECORD BOOK: Wildcat senior Elizabeth Pickney is among the Arizona career leaders in 15 different statistical categories. She recently became Arizona's career leader in blocked shots, now with 129. Pickney is second in career scoring (1363), second in free throws made (383), second in free throws attempted (507), tied for third in career rebounding average (5.8 rpg), fourth in scoring average (13.1 ppg), fourth in field goals made (487), fourth in total rebounds (604) and fourth in games started (95).
Junior guard Julie Brase is fourth in career three-point percentage (.355), is tied for eighth in career three-pointers made (59) and is 10th in three-pointers attempted (166). Only a sophomore, guard Aimee Grzyb is already third in three-point percentage (.366), tied for sixth in three-pointers made (67) and is eighth in three-pointers attempted (183).
THERE'S NO PLACE LIKE HOME: The Wildcats have won 24 of their last 30 home games and are 46-11 on their home court over the last four seasons combined. During Joan Bonvicini's 11 seasons at Arizona, the Wildcats have posted a 111-46 mark in McKale Center. Arizona has a record of 177-154 on its home court since the 1976-77 season.
80 IS THE MAGIC NUMBER: It seems that the 80-point mark almost always means adding another to the "win" column for the Wildcats. In the 30-year history of UA women's basketball, the Cats have posted a 136-19 record when scoring 80 points or more in a game. Under Bonvicini, the Wildcats have gone 96-12 when topping that 80-point plateau.
BY THE NUMBERS: The Cats have hit four or more 3-pointers in eight of this season's 11 games... Arizona has had 15 or more assists in five games... The Cats have had 10 or more steals in five games... Arizona has forced its opponent into 20 or more turnovers in five contests... The UA has scored 80 points or better in two games.
KEYS TO THE WIN: This season, Arizona is... 3-0 when shooting 80% or better from the line... 3-0 when forcing more turnovers than it commits... 3-1 when leading at halftime... 4-2 when scoring 70 points or more... 4-1 when shooting better than its opponent from the free throw line... 5-2 when holding its opponent to 77 points or less.
BUT ON THE LOSING END...: The Cats are... 1-5 when shooting worse from the free throw line than the opponent... 1-4 when trailing at halftime... 2-5 when committing more turnovers than the opponent... 1-4 when making fewer three-pointers than the opponent... 2-6 when shooting less than 80% from the line... 3-5 when scoring 74 points or less... 2-4 when three or fewer players reach double digits in scoring.
CAT SCRATCHES: The Arizona women's basketball program has a 343-411 (.455) all-time record, however it is 147-75 (.662) from 1994 to present... Joan Bonvicini has a 185-100 career record against Pac-10 teams.
ON LOCATION: This year, Arizona is 4-3 at home, 1-3 on the road and 0-0 in neutral games. Last season, the Wildcats were 15-2 at home, 4-9 in road games and 1-1 in neutral contests.