Jan. 4, 2006
Saturday, January 7, 2006
Washington (10-3, 3-1 Pac-10) at Washington State (6-7, 0-4 Pac-10)
Beasley Coliseum Pullman, Wash. 1 p.m. PT
Radio - KKNW AM 1150 Live TV - FSN Northwest
Washington women's basketball (10-3, 3-1) opens the New Year with a trip to Pullman to face cross-state rival Washington State (6-7, 0-4 Pac-10) Saturday, Jan. 7, at 1 p.m. PT at Beasley Coliseum. The game will be televised live on FSN Northwest with Cara Capuano and Cathy Nelson calling the action. The Huskies open the week in a three-way tie for second place in the Pac-10 standings with California and No. 16 Stanford. Saturday's game at WSU wraps a three-game road swing that began last week at Arizona State and Arizona. The Huskies are coming off a split versus those teams, falling to then-No. 11 ASU (51-64) and defeating Arizona (66-54). The Cougars are winless in Pac-10 play with an 0-4 mark. WSU opened the year 6-1, but since then has lost its last six straight. The Huskies have won five of their last six games and are 3-3 on the road this year.
All Husky women's basketball games can be heard live on the radio at KKNW AM 1150. Steve Sandmeyer, in his seventh season as the voice of UW women's hoops, calls the play-by-play. Former Husky Elise (Niemela) Woodward joins Sandmeyer as the color commentator for home broadcasts. Fans can also listen to games on the internet at www.gohuskies.com with a Dawg Channel All-Access pass.
Saturday's contest at WSU marks the third straight televised game by FSN Northwest. The Huskies are guaranteed two more televised games - national telecasts on FSN at home versus Washington State (Feb. 5) and at UCLA (Feb. 11). UW's games versus Oregon State (Feb. 18) and at California (Feb. 25) are FSN "wildcard dates." Those selections are made two weeks prior to the actual game.
Washington received votes in both the Associated Press Poll and the WBCA/ESPN/USA Today poll. UW has received votes in the AP Poll in five of the last six weeks and in the USA Today/ESPN/WBCA poll for the sixth-straight week. The last time UW was ranked in the AP poll was March 3, 2003 (25).
Junior forward Maggie O'Hara, who came off the bench in the first 12 games, underwent arthroscopic surgery on her right elbow Dec. 30. She missed UW's last game at Arizona (Dec. 31) and will also miss this week's contest at Washington State (Jan. 7). The surgery was conducted to removed excess scar tissue that built up after a previous surgery. O'Hara had a microfracture last March following the end of the 2004-05 season. O'Hara averages 2.9 points and 3.5 rebounds this season and is expected to be back for UW's next home game versus UCLA, Jan. 12.
Scouting Washington State:
The Cougars got off to a hot start this year, opening the season 6-1. WSU's only setback during that span was a five-point loss at Hawaii (63-68). But since then, Washington State has lost six straight, most recently a 54-57 defeat at Eastern Washington, Tuesday. The Cougars have faced some stiff competition - three teams that have been ranked in the Top-25 all season (No. 9 Arizona State, No. 15 Minnesota, No. 16 Stanford). Senior forward Keisha Moore leads the team with 10.4 points per game to go along with 6.9 rebounds. Junior forward Kate Benz averages a Pac-10 leading 11.0 rebounds per game, while averaging 9.0 points per game. As a team, WSU is shooting 36.0 percent from the field and averaging 60.2 points per game. WSU opponents are shooting 38.9 percent and averaging 62.8 points per game.
All-Time Series Versus Washington State:
Washington leads the all-time series with Washington State 50-10 and has a 20-game win streak versus the Cougars. The Huskies are 24-4 against WSU in Pullman, their last loss in the series coming in Pullman on Feb. 25, 1995 (67-72). UW has won five of the last seven meetings in Pullman by only a margin of 2-8 points. The Huskies defeated the Cougars by seven points last year (68-61), by eight in 2002-03 (77-69), by seven in 2001-02 (75-68), by eight in 1999-2000 (64-56) and by two in 1998-99 (72-70).
Huskies Split In The Desert:
Washington wrapped up 2005 with a pair of games in the desert last week, falling at then-No. 11/10 Arizona State (51-64) before regrouping to defeat Arizona (66-54). Kristen Kovesdy scored 27 points, including 23 in the second-half, to lead the Sun Devils over the Huskies, last Thursday. The loss was the first conference defeat for the Huskies, who also dropped their third straight road game. Kovesdy also paced the Sun Devils with 10 rebounds as ASU outrebounded UW 42-37. The Huskies trailed by one, 21-20, at halftime inspite of their 26.5 first half field goal shooting percentage. But the Sun Devils took control early in the second half with a 20-11 surge. Junior guard Cameo Hicks led the Huskies with 12 points and six rebounds, her 10th double-figure scoring game in 12 tries. Junior forward Breanne Watson contributed nine points and six boards, while Jill Bell tallied six points and five rebounds off the bench. Down the road in Tucson, Washington overcome a poor start to defeat the Wildcats at McKale Center for the second-straight time. Sophomore forward Andrea Plouffe had team-highs in points (14) and rebounds (eight), while junior forward Breanne Watson added a season-high 13 points. The win snapped UW's three-game road losing streak. Arizona had three players in double figures led by 14 points from Joy Hollingsworth. Whitney fields added a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds off the bench. The Huskies committed 17 first-half turnovers, including 14 in the first nine minutes. UW was also held to just one field goal through the first 11 minutes. But with 8:38 left in the opening frame, the Huskies chipped away at the Wildcats' lead and an 11-0 run in the second-half helped UW regain control of the game.
Washington's game at Washington State, Saturday, wraps the Huskies' longest road swing of the season - a three-game stint that began with a pair of contests in the desert at ASU and Arizona last week. The Huskies are 3-3 away from Seattle this season. UW opened the season with a pair of road wins over Alabama (56-52) and Florida State (71-69), and most recently defeated Arizona in Tucson on New Year's Eve (66-54).
Strong Pac-10 Start:
UW is 3-1 to open the Pac-10 schedule, its best start since opening the 2002-03 season 3-1 as well. That year, UW defeated Washington State, USC and Arizona State, while falling to UCLA.
Washington is 2-2 against ranked opponents, defeating then-No. 23 Utah (Nov. 23) and then-No. 10 Stanford (Dec. 22) while falling to then-No. 5 Baylor (Dec. 2) and No. 11 Arizona State (Dec. 29). Washington is 39-98 overall versus Top-25 opponents, including a 28-39 mark at home. UW is 2-0 at home against ranked opponents this season, but 0-2 on the road.
Washington is off to its best start since the 2002-03 season. The Huskies are 10-3 in their first 13 games, while the 2002-03 team began that year 11-2.
UW's only losses this season have come on the road, two on ranked opponents' home courts - at No. 5 Baylor (Dec. 2), Texas A&M (Dec. 4) and at No. 11 Arizona State (Dec. 29). Two of the three losses were only to ranked opponents.
Dating back to last year, the Huskies are 15-5 in their last 20 games.
Going into this week, Washington leads the Pac-10 in offensive rebounds with 18.77 per game. Cameo Hicks and Dominique Banks are both ranked in the Top-10 in the conference in offensive boards - Hicks is third (2.85) and Banks is eighth (2.69).
Washington has an 11-game home winning streak dating back to last season. The Huskies finished 2004-05 winning their last four Pac-10 home games over Cal (Jan. 29), Oregon State (Feb. 10), Oregon (Feb. 12) and Washington State (Feb. 19). UW is 7-0 at home this season. The Huskies' last home loss was to Stanford (Jan. 27, 2005).
Junior guard Cameo Hicks is the team's leader in scoring (15.6 ppg) and rebounding (6.0), and is second in assists (1.9). Hicks, selected the Pac-10 Player of the Week for the week of Dec. 19-25, has reached double-figure scoring 10 times in 13 games including four 20-point efforts.
UW set a school record with its perfect 14-for-14 (1.000) clip from the free-throw line at Baylor, Dec. 2. The Huskies surpassed the previous school record of a 93.8 percentage (15-for-16) set in 1978 versus Sacramento State and in 1985 versus Oregon.
UW's 86 points versus Rice (Nov. 27) were a season-high and the most points scored by a Husky team since the first round of last year's Husky Classic (86 vs. Wisconsin-Milwaukee). The Huskies are averaging 71.0 points, an improvement upon their 67.2 points per game last year.
UW won its 12th Husky Classic title over Thanksgiving weekend, defeating San Diego and Rice by a combined 40 points. UW's 24-point winning margin over Rice (86-62) was a season-high.
As the defense goes, so go the Huskies. UW is holding its opponents to an average 63.2 points per game and is 9-1 when holding their opponents to less than 70 points. Washington is also forcing its opponents to commit an average of 22.3 turnovers per game, including a season-high 29 by Eastern Washington (Dec. 12). The Huskies average 10.2 steals per game, led by Cameo Hicks with a team-high 23.
Crashing The Boards:
Washington's increased inside presence has been reflected by its improved rebounding numbers. The Huskies are averaging 41.5 rebounds per game, up from last year's average of 37.6. In fact, the Huskies are 6-0 when outrebounding their opponent. UW's 54 rebounds vs. Utah - just the third game of the season - surpassed its season-high from all of last year (52 at Washington State, Jan. 22, 05). Washington has especially excelled on the offensive glass. The Huskies began the week leading the Pac-10 in offensive rebounds (18.77).
Head coach June Daugherty has the luxury of going to a strong bench. In fact, all three senior co-captains have been playing in reserve roles - guards Kayla Burt, Nicole Castro and Kristen O'Neill. Burt (7.6 ppg) and O'Neill (6.9) are the 3rd and 6th leading scorers on the team, respectively. Burt and O'Neill are the Huskies' top three-point threats and among the team leaders in assists as well. In addition to Burt and O'Neill, junior forwards Jill Bell and Maggie O'Hara have been regulars in the rotation. Bell was an All-Pac-10 honorable mention selection last year but has been slowed a bit this year with knee and ankle injuries. O'Hara underwent arthroscopic surgery on her right elbow Dec. 30 and missed UW's last game at Arizona. She should be back for UW's next home game with UCLA (Jan. 12). Both Bell and O'Hara add a boost to the Huskies' inside presence created by starters Andrea Plouffe and Breanne Watson.
Most Improved Plouffe:
If her early season numbers are any indication, sophomore forward Andrea Plouffe is on track to win her second-straight Most Improved Player honors when team awards are handed out. After averaging 4.6 minutes on the floor as a freshman, with 1.6 points and 1.2 rebounds per game, Plouffe has emerged as one of the top Huskies this year and added a boost to the team's inside presence. Having started every game this year, Plouffe is second on the squad with 8.9 points per game to go along with a rebounding average of 4.5. She has reached double figures in scoring seven times, including back-to-back career high efforts versus San Diego and Rice in the Husky Classic, a performance that earned her tournament MVP honors. Plouffe's first career double-double came at a good time, her 17 points and 10 rebounds leading UW over Rice in the Husky Classic Championship game. Her second double-double was a 10-point, 10-rebound performance in the Pac-10 opener vs. Cal. She also had team-highs in both points (14) and rebounds (8) in UW's most recent at Arizona (Dec. 31). Plouffe even appears to be finding her knack for long-range shooting. After making the first three-pointer of her career at Baylor (Dec. 2), she followed that with a career-high 2 three-pointers at Texas A&M (Dec. 4) and sank another one in UW's game versus Eastern Washington (Dec. 12) and versus Stanford (Dec. 22).
Junior guard Cameo Hicks emerged as the Huskies' much-needed go-to player, as no Husky averaged double-figures in scoring last year. This year, Hicks leads the team in scoring (15.6 ppg), rebounding (6.0), field goal shooting (44.8), three-point shooting (35.3) and free-throw shooting (80.4). Hicks has been UW's leading scorer in 10 of 13 games and the team's top rebounder in seven (ties included). Hicks' early numbers have been nothing but impressive. The Tracy, Calif., native opened the season scoring in double-figures in four-straight including three-straight 21-point games (21 vs. Florida State, 21 vs. Utah and 26 vs. San Diego). Only three times has Hicks failed to score at least 10 points, with eight versus Rice (Nov. 27), seven at Texas A&M (Dec. 4) and eight at Arizona (Dec. 31). Her 15.6 scoring average is a huge improvement upon her average of 9.5 ppg during her sophomore campaign. Hicks recorded her second-career double-double with 21 points and a career-high 14 rebounds versus Utah, Nov. 23. Hicks was the key to the Huskies two-point win over Florida State (Nov. 20), scoring a game-high 21 points including seven of the last 14 for UW. She had the gamewinning layin with 6.9 seconds on the clock and was 6-for-7 from the line. Hicks also led UW with 13 points and nine rebounds at Alabama (Nov. 18) and had team-highs in points (15) and assists (four) at Baylor (Dec. 2). On her 21st birthday, she also scored a team-high 16 points versus Eastern Washington (Dec. 12). Her 23-point performence versus No. 10 Stanford earned her Pac-10 Player of the Week honors last week as well.
Cameo Hicks Named Pac-10 Player of the Week:
Washington junior guard Cameo Hicks was named the U.S. Bank Pac-10 Women's Basketball Player of the Week for Dec. 19-25. Hicks, a native of Tracy, Calif., averaged 19.5 points, four rebounds, two assists, one block and three steals in two games as the Huskies defeated California and No. 10/11 Stanford last week. On the week, she shot 46.9 percent from the field (15-of-32), 60.0 percent from beyond the arc (3-of-5) and 85.7 percent (6-of-7) from the foul line. In the 77-72 upset of 10th-ranked Stanford on Thurs., Dec. 22, Hicks shot 55.6 percent from the field (10-of-18) and made seven of her last eight shots of the game, all of which were in the second half. With Washington trailing by as many as 13 points in the second half, Hicks scored a team-high 23 points, her fourth 20-point game and ninth double-figure scoring output of the season. She also grabbed six rebounds, two steals and two blocks. In the 62-55 win over California on Tues., Dec. 20, Hicks was UW's leading scorer with 16 points, to go along with three assists and four steals, both of which tied for team-highs. The Player of the Week honor is the first for Hicks and the 24th all-time selection for Washington.
Huskies Upset No. 10 Stanford 77-72:
Cameo Hicks scored 23 points and Washington answered Stanford's 14-0 scoring run in the second half with one of their own to eventually upset the 10th-ranked Cardinal 77-72, Dec. 22. Brooke Smith scored a career-high 24 points for Stanford but missed a free-throw with 9.8 seconds left that would have cut Washington's lead to three. The Huskies' Andrea Plouffe then made two free-throws to seal the win. Washington won its 11th-straight game at Bank of America Arena. Its last home loss was Jan. 27, 2005 to Stanford, 82-60. The Huskies' only two losses this season have been on the road, against Texas A&M and national-champion Baylor. Stanford, winner of the last five Pac-10 regular-season championships, had beaten Washington four straight times. The Cardinal also split its first two games of a conference opening road trip last season - yet ended up 32-3 and in the regional finals of the NCAA tournament. The teams traded turnovers on successive possessions in the final 1:08 with Washington leading 72-70. Then Hicks tied up Stanford's Clare Bodensteiner to force a held ball and Stanford's 23rd turnover with 29.1 seconds left. Kristen O'Neill then made three of four free-throws to set up Washington's celebration following the final buzzer. Washington rallied from 11 down in the first half to take its first lead of the game with 16:16 left on Hicks' full-court drive and layin. However, Stanford answered immediately. The Cardinal scored the next 14 points to take its biggest lead of the game. Krista Rappahahn made her third and fourth 3-point baskets of the game during that span. Washington went over three minutes without scoring during the run and trailed 51-38. Yet the Huskies rallied again. Emily Florence scored five points and assisted on four more during Washington's 14-0 run that forged its second lead, 55-53, on Hicks' basket with 7:44 left.
Home Sweet Home:
Washington has a long standing tradition of a stellar home record. UW is 281-68 all-time on its home court (80.4 winning pct.) at Bank of America Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavilion. Last season marked the first time that UW lost more than five games at home. The Huskies were 8-7 at home last year, their lowest home winning percentage (53.3) in school history, but did end the season winning their last four at Bank of America Arena. UW is 7-0 on its home court in 2005-06. Home Winning Streak:
Washington has won its last 11-straight home games dating back to last season, a streak that ranks seventh all-time and is the second-longest since the arena re-opened in 2001. The Huskies won 18-straight from Nov. 29, 2002 through Dec. 19, 2003.
UW Completes Impressive Non-Conference Slate:
Washington emerged from its non-conference slate with a 7-2 overall record, an impressive mark considering the Huskies faced four NCAA Tournament teams (including defending champion Baylor) and one WNIT team from last season. The Huskies' record is their best since also going 7-2 against non-conference teams two years ago (2003-04). Only two other June Daugherty coached teams have had better records. The 1997-98 team went 9-0 in the preseason, while the 2002-03 team went 8-1.
Four teams on Washington's schedule are ranked in either of the latest Associated Press or USA Today/ESPN/WBCA Polls (Dec. 19-25): Baylor (No. 4 AP/No. 4 WBCA), Stanford (No. 16 AP/No. 16 WBCA), Arizona State (No. 9 AP/No. 9 WBCA) and Utah (No. 22 AP/No. 22 WBCA).
Bell Climbing Career Blocks List:
Junior forward Jill Bell has steadily climbed up Washington's career list for blocked shots. After beginning the season ranked eighth on the list, Bell has moved into sole possession of seventh with a total of 61.
O'Neill Moving Up Career Three-Pointers List:
Senior guard Kristen O'Neill isn't the only Husky etching her name in the Washington record books. Thirteen games into her senior season, O'Neill continues to move up both career lists for three-pointers made and three-pointers attempted. She is tied for seventh with 115 treys made and seventh with 340 three-pointers attempted.
Washington's 2005-06 schedule features nine opponents that appeared in last year's NCAA Tournament including the defending NCAA champion Baylor Lady Bears. Baylor highlights a formidable preseason slate that includes the likes of Florida State, Utah and Rice, while Pac-10 steams Stanford (Elite Eight), Arizona State (Sweet 16), USC, Oregon and Arizona are also squads that participated in postseason play last year.
Washington's win over Utah (Nov. 23) was also the 600th in program history. UW's all-time record is 607-307, its inaugural season being 1974-75.
Huskies On Television:
At least six of Washington's games have been picked up for television broadcasts by FSN including a pair of national telecasts. UW's home game with Washington State (Sunday, Feb. 5, 1 p.m.) and a road game at UCLA (Saturday, Feb. 11, 1 p.m.) will be shown to a nationwide audience. UW will have four more games televised regionally by FSN Northwest versus Eastern Washington (Dec. 12, 7 p.m.), at Arizona State (Dec. 29, 5:30 p.m. PT), at Arizona (Dec. 31, 3 p.m. PT) and at Washington State (Jan. 7, 1 p.m.). Two dates remain "wildcard" time slots national telecasts by FSN - UW's home game versus Oregon State (Feb. 18) and a road game at Cal (Feb. 25). Selections for wildcard broadcasts will be made two weeks prior to those dates.
Head Coach June Daugherty:
June Daugherty is in her 10th season as the head coach of the Husky women's basketball team, having led Washington to the postseason seven times. She has guided UW to four NCAA Tournaments, including an Elite Eight appearance in 2000-01, and three trips to the WNIT. She was also one of 25 finalists for the prestigious Naismith Coach of the Year award in 2002-03. Twice has a Daugherty squad reached the 22-win plateau. Daugherty has compiled a UW record of 164-118, and a career record of 287-192. She coached seven seasons at Boise State before coming to Seattle. Her husband, Mike, is the Huskies' Associate Head Coach, while Janet Soderberg and Kellie Lewis-Jay are the two assistants. Mike Daugherty is in his 10th year with the team, while Soderberg begins her second season and Lewis-Jay enters her third year.
Burt Receives National Recognition For Comeback:
Following the end of last season, senior guard Kayla Burt received a pair of national honors for her comeback to basketball after suffering a cardiac arrest episode on New Year's Eve, 2002. In her first year back on the court, Burt led the Huskies in scoring (9.6 ppg), assists (2.9 apg), free-throw percentage (75.8) and free-throws made (69). In March she was named the 2005 recipient of the prestigious V Foundation Comeback Award and during the summer made a trip to Hollywood for the 2005 ESPY Awards as one of four nominees for Best Comeback. Burt will be presented the V Foundation Trophy prior to the Feb. 5 game with Washington State. At the local level, Burt was also named the Everett Herald's Woman of the Year in Sports.
Watson Gains International Experience:
Junior forward Breanne Watson represented her native country as a member of the Canadian National Development Team that competed at the 2005 World University Games held in Turkey in August. A starter on the squad, Watson averaged 6.8 points and 4.5 rebounds in six games. She missed the seventh game after injuring her elbow. The Canadian team finished 11th overall with a 4-3 record. It was the second time Watson competed in the World University Games, as she was a member of the Canadian National Development Team that competed in Korea during the summer of 2003.