Feb. 8, 2010
No. 2 Stanford Up Next For Huskies In Seattle
The University of Washington women's basketball team is back to Bank of America Arena after three straight on the road. But home is not as comforting when the No. 2 team in the country comes to visit. The Huskies (9-12, 4-7 Pac-10) will face off against Stanford (21-1, 11-0) in a test against the best the conference has to offer. Washington has lost six of its last seven games, including the road sweep at the Arizona schools on their recent trip to the desert.
Entering his 11th season, Steve Sandmeyer will handle all play-by-play duties for the Washington Huskies - both home and away - on KKNW 1150AM. During home games, he will also be joined by former women's basketball letter-winner Elise (Niemela) Woodward, who will provide color commentary. Dan Giuliani calls home games for GoHuskies.com, part of a joint venture with Comcast On-Demand.
Coach Tia Jackson's weekly press conference will be replayed on UWTV (Husky Hoops Talk) on Tuesday evenings at 6:30 p.m.
Live stats for the game will be available on GameTracker.
About the Huskies
Sami Whitcomb leads Washington in scoring with 14.6 points and 6.0 rebounds per contest. The senior has also compiled a team-high four double-doubles this season. She scored 26 combined points against the Arizona schools over the weekend.
The Huskies are 4-3 at home this season, and 2-2 in Pac-10 games played at Bank of America Arena. Washington has lost its last two after a home sweep by the Los Angeles schools.
Washington's bench was outscored by Arizona 18-6. The Huskies remain a plus-12 in reserve scoring against their opponents.
Regina Rogers left last Thursday's game against Arizona State after bumping knees with a Sun Devils' defender. Rogers missed the game on Saturday against Arizona and was later diagnosed with a bone bruise.
UW is third in the Pac-10 in blocks per game, averaging 4.0 over 21 contests. Regina Rogers and Mackenzie Argens are 10th and 11th in the Pac-10 in blocks with 1.1 and 1.0 per game. Kristi Kingma and Whitcomb are seventh and 13th in the league, respectively in steals (1.9 and 1.5).
Whitcomb is second in the conference in free-throw percentage, with 79 made in 90 attempts for a .878 average.
Charting Washington's Results
The Arizona trip ended on a sour note after an 80-50 loss to U of A led to a weekend sweep. The Huskies had also lost, in overtime, to ASU to begin the trip.
Before heading to the desert, UW ran its win streak over rival Washington State to 29 straight with a 76-70 OT win over the Cougars in Pullman.
The win over WSU came after a pair of tough losses by the same 69-65 score to UCLA and USC at Bank of America Arena, despite the Huskies holding halftime leads in both games. The pair of defeats added up to a four-game skid after a sweep in the previous series at Cal and Stanford.
UW led the Bears 25-24 at halftime before struggling with turnover issues in the second half in a 60-43 defeat. Against the Cardinal, the Huskies could not overcome a slow start in a 66-51 defeat in Palo Alto.
The Cal loss snapped the Huskies' three-game win streak. It was first time since 2008 that UW had taken Pac-10 games in a row, which they accomplished after sweeping Arizona and Arizona State and a road split of the Oregon schools, culminating in a 69-64 victory at Oregon State in Corvallis. The Huskies shook off a limited Sami Whitcomb (foul trouble) to defeat the Beavers, who were 9-2 going into the game. This helped take the sting off a tough 82-71 loss to Oregon, where a second-half UW rally fell short.
The Huskies came away with a split of their two games in Michigan, falling to then-nationally ranked Michigan State 69-52 in East Lansing in the first contest before toppling Mid-American Conference foe Western Michigan, 71-63, in nearby Kalamazoo.
A trip to Florida earned the squad a split against USF and UCF, and then Washington returned to the Northwest to grit out a 58-53 win over city rival Seattle University. The Huskies started the year with a late loss at Portland State when Vikings forward Kelli Valentine hit a 15-footer with .3 seconds remaining to give PSU a 67-66 win. Washington rebounded with a win over Brigham Young, which featured a gutsy performance from Whitcomb, who scored the last 12 points of the game and hit a late 3 with 4.0 seconds remaining to propel UW.
But the Huskies could not sustain the momentum on the road, falling 81-52 to Gonzaga in Spokane on Nov. 22. The team then responded with a 64-46 win over Eastern Washington in the first round of the Husky Classic before losing in the tournament finale to Sacramento State.
Stanford is coached by Tara VanDerveer, who is in her 24th year at the Palo Alto school. The two-time NCAA Championship winning coach has showed no signs of slowing down either, having assembled the Pac-10's most impressive team so far. VanDerveer is a member of the women's basketball Hall of Fame and has taken the Cardinal to the last two Final Fours.
The Cardinal are coming off a 35-4 season which saw them fall to eventual champions UConn in the national semifinals in St. Louis.
Stanford has lost just one game this season, an 80-68 defeat at Connecticut in Hartford. Otherwise, the Cardinal have put out a clean sheet. The only other test came when Stanford was tested at UCLA before prevailing at Pauley Pavilion, 65-61.
Thirteen players return for Stanford, including every key component from their Final Four run last season.
This includes Jayne Appel (13.1 ppg and 9.6 rpg), Kayla Pedersen (17.2 ppg and 9.4 rpg) and Nnemkadi Ogwumike (19.0 ppg and 10.2 rpg), who has won the Pac-10 Player of the Week honors three times already this season.
Stanford is winning by an average of 22 points a game, while also out-rebounging their opponents by 13.7 boards per contest.
The Cardinal are 8-1 away from Maples Pavilion, and 4-0 on the road in Pac-10 games.
Series Record: As tough an out as Stanford is in the Pac-10, the Huskies have played the Cardinal tough in Seattle. Stanford has a 14-9 advantage against Washington in the Pacific Northwest, and has won its last three at Bank of America Arena. The last time the Huskies beat the Cardinal came at home in 2005, when UW managed a 77-72 win.
Washington is 45-118 all-time against Top-25 teams.
In their previous matchup this year on Jan. 16, the Huskies frustrated the Cardinal in a 66-51 loss at Maples Pavilion.
Noteworthy: Washington forward Laura McLellan played on the same AAU team as Stanford star Jayne Appel. McLellan is from the Bay Area (Campbell) ... Teams shared one common non-conference opponent - Gonzaga. The Cardinal beat the Bulldogs, 105-74, at Maples on Nov. 29.
Up Next For The Huskies The Huskies are back on the road for their final regular-season road trip of the season. This time, the Huskies will head down to Los Angeles to take on UCLA (Feb. 18) and USC (Feb. 20). In their initial series earlier this year, the Huskies were swept at home by the LA schools by identical 69-65 scores