Stanford got two victories on Saturday afternoon, and both came with fairly comfortable margins of victory. With the PAC-10 weekend now complete, both Cardinal teams will switch directions before their next slate of games. The men will embark on their first road trip in two weeks, while the women will return to Maples Pavilion for the first time since January 22.
Men defeat Arizona State, 83-75
Stanford got its second win in its last 7 games and scored more points than it has in over two months by knocking off the last-place Sun Devils in a Saturday matinee in Maples. Jeremy Green continued his recent comeback tour (can it be a tour if both games occurred on the Farm?) by recording a season-high 23 points, and Stanford saw its best scoring distribution in weeks. Green, Josh Owens, Aaron Bright, and Jarrett Mann all scored in double digits, and Mann’s 14 points were a career high for the junior guard.
Freshman John Gage, who saw almost no playing time for the first three months of the season, has seen more and more minutes in the last few games, and scored 8 points in 15 minutes on Saturday. Josh Huestis, a fellow freshmen who has seen significant minutes only in the last handful of games, gave head coach Johnny Dawkins 23 minutes off the bench while contributing 4 points, 2 rebounds, 1 block, and one of the best interior defensive performances on the team.
But the biggest revelation for Stanford was its ability to shoot, a skill which has been sorely absent from Maples for the entire year. Stanford shot 52% from the field, 56% from three, and 74% from the line in what was easily the Card’s best shooting performance of the PAC-10 season.
Arizona State went an efficient 51% from the field, but lacked a go-to scoring option when the Sun Devils needed points. Senior guard Jamelle McMillan led Arizona State in scoring with 17 points. But Ty Abbott, the team’s second-leading scorer, put in just 3 points for Herb Sendek’s squad. Arizona State’s greatest problem, however, may have occurred on the other end of the floor. The Sun Devils drew 15 fouls against the Card, but committed 24 fouls of their own.
At the final buzzer, Stanford had shot 34 free throws to ASU’s 16.
The Sun Devils have won just one game in conference play this year (ASU beat Oregon by 5 on New Year’s Day) and will almost certainly finish the season at the very bottom of the PAC-10. But Stanford got a win–albeit a fairly unconvincing one–to help ease the pain of an unimpressive seven-game stretch.
Stanford improves to 12-10 overall and 5-6 in the PAC-10 with the win. They are now tied with Oregon (who holds the tie-breaker) for 6th place in the conference.
The Card will pick up action on Thursday at 7:00 PM against Washington State in Pullman’s Wallis Beasley Performing Arts Coliseum.
Women defeat Arizona, 91-61
The Card had little difficulty handling the struggling Wildcats in Tucson. Stanford recorded its record-tying 48th consecutive conference win during a game in which every Cardinal starter scored more than 10 points. Senior point guard Jeanette Pohlen had a team-high 17 points, while Nneka Ogwumike (13 points, 14 rebounds) collected more rebounds than points in a double-double effort. Stanford’s inside dominance has now become so prolific that it’s an anomaly when either Nneka Ogwumike, her sister Chiney, or senior forward Kayla Pedersen doesn’t record a double-double.
Arizona forward Ify Ibekwe had a game-high 19 points, but the Wildcats shot just over 30% from the field and fell victim to Stanford’s far superior rebounding. Stanford out-rebounded Arizona by 10, and Pedersen and forward/center Sarah Boothe both pulled down 7 boards.
Stanford’s interior success against Arizona should come as no surprise: Ibekwe, the tallest member of Arizona’s starting five, is just 6′ 2″, and the team’s tallest player, senior center Amanda Pierson, is only 6′ 3″. (Pierson only saw 4 minutes of play against Stanford.) 3 of Stanford’s starters are as tall or taller than Ibekwe, and 7 active Cardinal measure at 6′ 2″ or higher.
Stanford stays perfect at 11-0 in the conference and improves to 20-2 overall. Tara VanDerveer’s team will return to the Farm to host Washington State on Thursday at 7:00 PM in a special “Pink Zone” game to benefit cancer awareness.