March 5, 2012
Since the start of the Pac-12 Tournament during the 2001-02 season, the Wildcats are 10-10 in their 10 previous appearances. The Cats have advanced to the championship game twice, losing to Stanford both times. No. 12 Arizona is set to face No. 5 UCLA in the opening round of play on Wednesday. The Wildcats and the Bruins will meet for the first time in the tournament on Wednesday. Arizona has been knocked out of the tournament by the Cardinal six times. The only team UA has not played in the tournament is California.
Arizona and UCLA will meet for the 69th time on Wednesday and UCLA holds a 48-20 advantage over UA. The Bruins have won 11 of the last 13 match-ups. The Wildcats won the match-up between the two teams, 74-66, earlier this season in Tucson, and UCLA won the late-season contest, 72-58, in Los Angeles.
Arizona is 14-16 overall and 3-15 in Pac-12 play on the season. The Wildcats are paced by junior guard Davellyn Whyte's 17.0 points, 6.9 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.5 steals per game. She is backed up by sophomore forward Erica Barnes' 11.3 points and 7.5 rebounds per game and 11.5 points from sophomore guard Candice Warthen. Senior guard Shanita Arnold hands out 4.6 assists per game. The Wildcats are shooting 39.1 percent from the field, 35.2 percent from three-point range and 70.9 percent from the free throw line.
Among the Pac-12 teams, Arizona ranks in the top three in free throw percentage (.709), three-point field goal percentage (.352) and three-point field goals per game (6.3). Individually, Whyte ranks No. 2 in scoring (17.0), No. 10 in assists (3.3), No. 7 in free throw percentage (.757), No. 2 in steals (2.5) and No. 2 in three pointers per game (2.1). Barnes is No. 19 in scoring (11.3), No. 8 in rebounds (7.5) and No. 9 in field goal percentage (.476). Arnold is No. 3 in assists (4.6) and No. 2 in assist/turnover ratio (1.7). Freshman center Aley Rohde is No. 7 in blocked shots (1.3) and freshman guard Erin Butler is No. 1 in three-point field goal percentage (.429).
Nationally, Arizona ranks No. 23 in three-point field goal percentage (.352) and No. 50 in three-point field goals per game (6.3). Individually on the national scene, Whyte ranks No. 64 in points with 17.0.
UCLA is 14-15 overall and 9-9 in Pac-12 play. The Bruins are paced by 15.7 points and 6.4 rebounds per game by senior forward Rebekah Gardner. Junior forward Markel Walker averages 14.6 points and 11.0 rebounds each contest. UCLA is shooting 39.1 percent from the field, 29.2 percent from three-point range and 67.1 percent from the free throw line.
Among the Pac-12 teams, UCLA ranks in the top five in three-point field goal percentage defense (.282), steals (8.7), turnover margin (+1.2), offensive rebounds (14.5) and offensive rebound percentage (.368). Individually, junior forward Markel Walker ranks No. 8 in scoring (14.6) and No. 1 in rebounds (11.0). Senior forward Rebekah Gardner is No. 6 in scoring (15.7) and No. 20 in rebounding (6.4).
First- and second-round contests of the Pacific Life Pac-12 Tournament will be streamed live on YouTube.com. Arizona women's basketball games can be heard live on KTUC AM 1400 in Tucson. All broadcasts will start 15 minutes prior to tip-off for the pregame show. Derrick Palmer (play-by-play) and Molly O'Mara (color) will call the action this season. Visit ArizonaWildcats.com for all of your live stats and video needs.
The winner of the UA/UCLA contest will move on to face the No. 4 seed Arizona State on Thurs., March 8, at 2:15 p.m. PT/3:15 p.m. MT, also at the Galen Center.