COMING UP: The Arizona women’s basketball team (15-7, 7-4) travels to Berkeley, Calif., for a 2 p.m. (PST) game at California (8-13, 2-10) this Saturday, Feb. 5. Live audio of the game is available at www.arizonaathletics.com, as well as on KJLL 1330 AM in Tucson.
A QUICK LOOK AT THE WILDCATS: Playing the first half without senior All-America candidate Dee-Dee Wheeler due to a violation of team rules, the Wildcats fell 91-74 to No. 2/4 Stanford at Maples Pavilion Thursday night. Arizona shot 48 percent from the field, 43 percent from three-point range and 81 percent the free throw line on the game, compared to the 53, 39 and 71 percent, respectively, of the Cardinal. The Wildcats out-rebounded Stanford 36 to 29, but committed 25 turnovers to the 14 of the Cardinal.
Junior center Shawntinice Polk led Arizona with a season-high 20 points. She also pulled down 10 boards for her sixth double-double of the season. Senior Danielle Adefeso added 13 points, while junior Natalie Jones finished with 12. Wheeler scored 11 points in 19 minutes of play.
On the season, the Wildcats are led by Wheeler, who averages 17.3 points, 4.9 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 2.8 steals per game. Polk adds 13.9 points, 8.3 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game. As a team, Arizona is out-shooting its opponents 45 percent to 39 percent and out-rebounding them 37.8 to 36.5.
SCOUTING THE OPPOSITION: California trailed Arizona State by only six points with under nine minutes to play, but went on to lose 76-59 Thursday night at Haas Pavilion. Renee Wright and freshman Jessica Lawson each contributed 12 points for Cal, and senior forward Leigh Gregory added 11. Prior to the game, Gregory - who moved into 13th place all-time (1,073 points) in scoring in Cal history - was honored at center court with a commemorative 1,000-point basketball. The Bears shot 49 percent for the game, including 61 percent in the second half, but 25 turnovers led to 20 Sun Devil points.
On the season, the Bears are led by Gregory, who averages 12.4 points and 4.1 rebounds per game. Lawson adds 10.4 points and 4.8 boards, while Kristin Iwanaga averages 10.1 points per game. As a team, Cal is shooting 45 percent from the field, as are its opponents. The Bears are being outscored 71.0 to 67.6 and out-rebounded 35.3 to 33.3.
SERIES SHORTS: Arizona leads the all-time series with California 28-13. The last time the two teams met, on Jan. 7, Arizona won 80-69 in Tucson. The Wildcats are 16-4 at home, 12-8 away and 0-1 at a neutral site vs. the Golden Bears.
UPCOMING PROMOTIONS: In an effort to aid victims of the devastating tsunami in Asia, the Arizona women’s basketball team will be collecting band-aids, bandages and other first aid supplies during Tsunami Relief Day presented by the UA Office of Community Relations. Fans can drop off items in front of the McKale Ticket Office prior to the 4 p.m. game next Saturday, Feb. 12, against USC.
RANKING IN THE PAC-10: As a team, Arizona leads the Pac-10 in blocks (4.0), ranks third in scoring (71.6), field goal percentage (.448), field goal percentage defense (.386) and three-point field goal percentage defense (.306), fourth in rebounding margin (1.3) and defensive rebounds (23.6), and fifth in scoring margin (6.5), three-point field goal percentage (.329), rebounding (37.8), scoring defense (65.1), rebounding defense (36.5) and assists (14.6).
Individually, Dee-Dee Wheeler ranks second in scoring (17.3) and assist/turnover ratio (1.8), third in assists (4.7), fourth in steals (2.8), and seventh in minutes played (32.6) and three-point field goals made (1.6). Shawntinice Polk leads the league in blocked shots (2.2), ranks third in field goal percentage (.602), rebounding (8.3) and defensive rebounds (5.9), eighth in scoring (13.9) and ninth in offensive rebounds (2.4). Natalie Jones ranks sixth in free throw percentage (.800) and 15th in rebounding (5.0), while Jessica Arnold ranks ninth in three-point field goal percentage (.385).
In Pac-10 games only, Wheeler leads the league in scoring (17.6), ranks second in assist/turnover ratio (1.5), third in assists (4.6), steals (2.6) and three-point field goals made (1.9), fourth in three-point field goal percentage (.429), and fifth in minutes played (32.8). Polk ranks third in rebounding (7.9), blocks (1.3) and defensive rebounds (5.6), fourth in field goal percentage (.575), tied for eighth in offensive rebounds (2.3) and ninth in scoring (13.3). Jones is eighth in free throw percentage (.780), 10th in minutes played (30.3) and tied for 16th in rebounding (5.0), while Danielle Adefeso is 10th in field goal percentage (.508) and offensive rebounds (2.3).
RANKING NATIONALLY: As a team, Arizona ranks 32nd nationally in both scoring and field goal percentage, 50th in won-lost percentage, 68th in scoring margin, 70th in blocks and 77th in assists.
Individually, senior Dee-Dee Wheeler ranks 46th in steals per game, 49th in assists per game and 50th in points per game. Junior Shawntinice Polk ranks 10th in field goal percentage and 37th in blocks per game.
WHEELER MISSES FIRST START IN TWO-PLUS YEARS: When she was held out of the Stanford game for the entire first half, it was the first time senior Dee-Dee Wheeler didn’t start a game since Nov. 25, 2002 at Pepperdine, ending a string of 83 consecutive starts.
ADEFESO STEPS IT UP: Over the last six games, Danielle Adefeso has really picked up her game. Starting five of the six games, the senior is shooting 47 percent from the field and 71 percent from the free throw line, while averaging 9.3 points and 6.0 rebounds per game. Prior to that, Adefeso was averaging 3.6 points and 2.7 rebounds per game.
POLK SURPASSES 200-BLOCK MARK: With her third block of the game against Maryland last Saturday, junior center Shawntinice Polk notched her 200th career block, becoming the first Wildcat ever to reach that mark. She now has 203 blocked shots on her career.
THE GLASS IS THE ANSWER: It seems the most telling statistic for the Arizona women’s basketball team this season is rebounding. The Wildcats are 12-1 when out-rebounding their opponents. Arizona is just 2-5 when being out-rebounded and 1-1 when pulling down the same number of boards as its opponents this season.
WILDCATS BOAST PAC’S ACTIVE SCORING LEADERS: Arizona boasts the Pac-10’s top two active career scoring leaders in All-America candidates Dee-Dee Wheeler and Shawntinice Polk. The point guard Wheeler currently has 1,783 career points, while Polk has scored 1,364 points in her three seasons at Arizona. The duo rank second and fourth all-time at Arizona in career points.
80 IS THE MAGIC NUMBER: In the program’s 33-year history, the Wildcats are almost guaranteed a win when they reach 80 points. Arizona is 171-20 (90 percent) all-time when reaching the 80-point plateau. With Joan Bonvicini at the helm, the Wildcats are 123-13 (90 percent) when scoring 80 points or more. This year alone, Arizona is 7-0 in games where it has reached 80 points in the scoring column.
WHEELER BECOMES ARIZONA’S STEAL LEADER: Senior guard Dee-Dee Wheeler tied the school record for career steals at the 10:41 mark in the first half of the game at Southern California on Jan. 14 and took sole possession of the record with 11:08 left in the game. She now has 272 steals on her career.
BONVICINI WINS 250TH GAME AT ARIZONA: Joan Bonvicini notched her 250th win as the head coach at Arizona when the Wildcats defeated then-No. 19 UCLA on the road on Jan. 16. In 14 years at the helm, she boasts a 252-153 (.622) record and is the winningest coach in Arizona women’s basketball history.
DOUBLE-DOUBLE TROUBLE: During her career, junior Shawntinice Polk has recorded 43 double-doubles (21 as a freshman, 16 as a sophomore and six as a junior). The longest streak came at the start of her career, when she opened the 2002-03 season with eight consecutive double-doubles. During her three seasons, the Wildcats are 32-11 when Polk notches a double-double.
WHEELER AND DOUBLE-DIGIT SCORING: Point guard Dee-Dee Wheeler has scored 10 or more points in 100 of her 114 career games. Her streak of 48 consecutive games in double-figure scoring came to an end at USC as the senior finished with just five points. She posted double-digit scoring in 19 of 28 games as a freshman, 28 of 31 as a sophomore, all 33 as a junior and 20 of 22 games this season.
CATS NEARLY UNBEATABLE AT HOME: Over the past three seasons, Arizona has won 37 of 39 (.949) games at McKale Center. The Cats’ 34-game home winning streak, the longest in the nation, came to an end Jan. 9 when the Wildcats fell 78-66 to Stanford.
WHEELER STARTS 100TH GAME: When she took the court against Arizona State on Jan. 3, senior Dee-Dee Wheeler was making the 100th start of her career. In doing so, she became just the sixth Wildcat ever to start 100 or more games.
CURRENT CATS ON UA CAREER LISTS: Senior guard Dee-Dee Wheeler is first in steals (275), second in scoring (1,783), field goals made (695), field goals attempted (1,517) and minutes played average (32.3), third in total minutes played (3,677), fourth in scoring average (15.6), three-point field goals made (169), three-point field goals attempted (469), three-point field goal percentage (.360) and games started (108), and seventh in assists (436).
Junior Shawntinice Polk is first in double-doubles (43), blocks (203), rebounding average (10.0) and field goal percentage (.593), second in total rebounds (839), third in scoring average (16.2), fourth in scoring (1,364) and field goals made (563), sixth in free throws attempted (420), seventh in minutes played average (28.8) and ninth in free throws made (238).
ARIZONA RANKS NATIONALLY IN ATTENDANCE: Arizona currently ranks 43rd nationally in attendance with an average attendance of 2,494. Connecticut is the leader with a 14,066 average, while Pac-10 opponents Stanford, Oregon, Washington and Arizona State rank 27th, 28th 33rd and 41st, respectively, at 3,688, 3,670, 3,148 and 2,542.
WILDCATS ON THE RADIO: All of Arizona’s games this season are broadcast on Tucson’s Jolt, KJLL 1330 AM, the radio home of Arizona women’s basketball. With Paul Johnson in his 10th year as the Wildcats’ play-by-play announcer, the Jolt will broadcast every game, home and away.
CAT TELEVISION APPEARANCES: The Wildcats have two more games this season that will be broadcast on FSN:
Saturday, Feb. 12 - 4 p.m. vs. USC
Saturday, Feb. 19 - 2 p.m. at Oregon
In addition, the Wildcats’ home game against Washington (Feb. 26) is a "wild card" game that could get picked up in the Pac-10 television package with FSN.
JOAN BONVICINI COACH’S SHOW: Hosted by Wildcat radio announcer Paul Johnson, the Joan Bonvicini Coach’s Show is broadcast live from 6-7 p.m. every Monday on KJLL 1330 AM and is held at the Varsity Clubs of America, located at Speedway and Alvernon. The show features Bonvicini with several special guests, ranging from players to staff members. Fans are invited to join the audience of the show at the Varsity Clubs each week during Pac-10 play.
UP NEXT: Arizona hosts UCLA at 2 p.m. next Thursday, Feb. 10.