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Now on to the Stanford Women's Basketball Blog!
December 20- Stanford Trampled by Tennessee

The good news? The Stanford Women’s Basketball team held Tennessee to 27 first half points. The bad news? Find out what we are really talking about below the C and R’s StanfordWBBBlog Twitter Account.



December 20- Stanford Trampled by Tennessee

The good news? The Stanford Women’s Basketball team held Tennessee to 27 first half points. The bad news? Stanford only scored 15 in the same period. Stanford shot 23% in the first, making five of 21. They shot 25% for the game. To be fair, both teams struggled early on. Tennessee shot 35 % in the first before heating up in the second. How bad was it for Stanford? They were stuck on 10 points for eight minutes, from 10:24 to 2:10 left in the first. Stanford scored one basket over the last 10 minutes of the first half.

Erica McCall
Tennessee guard/forward Jaime Nared (31) and Stanford forward Erica McCall (24) get tangled up (ADAM LAU/NEWS SENTINEL)

The good news? When Stanford did score in the first, it was guards driving on high ball screens. The bad news? Tennessee finally caught on to the play and cut off drives or contested shots when the guards did make it to the blocks. Tennessee is always known to be physical, and there was contact many times without whistles, but you still have to finish. A lot of missed shots (13-51). Once that drive was cut off, Stanford once again did not have a post option to go to all game. That was coupled with Tennessee’s long bodies and athletic ability to rush Stanford at the three point line to limit good looks. Stanford made 6 out of 18 for the game from three point land.

Let’s just say Tennessee’s defense made Stanford offense look bad.

Second half was just more of the same. Both teams struggled early on and no one scored in the first 3 minutes. Then Tennessee finally got hot, and Ariel Massengale started bombing threes. She made four of them and finished the game with 18 points. When Stanford would make a shot, or even a three, they could not get a defensive stop on the other end.

The final score was Tennessee 59, Stanford 40. Both teams combined to miss 75 shots and commit 37 turnovers.

The good news
Lili Thompson scored 13 points, including two 3-pointers.
Kaylee Johnson lost a contact, continuing the Ogwumike trend. Let's hope this translates to Ogwumike rebounds and points (She was held to eight boards and four points in this one).

The bad news
No one else from Stanford was in double figures. Take out Lili’s 13 and the rest of the starting five scored 10 points. The next highest scorer for Stanford was a tie with four points. Stanford had not lost consecutive games since December 2010.  Also, it was the first time Stanford has scored below 50 points in consecutive games since 1976-77 season. Fewest points (by 8) for the Cardinal in 32 all-time games against Tennessee, and fewest points by an opponent ranked in the top 10 against Tennessee.

Stanford comes back to Maples Monday, so we hope they can get a win for Christmas and build up some confidence and better inside presence.


December 17- Stanford Can’t Score Against Chattanooga

So the Stanford Women’s Basketball Team traveled to Tennessee and played an unranked team they have never played before, and…lost. Stanford, ranked #7 lost to Chattanooga (UTC) 54-46 (and just what is a “Moc,” that school’s nickname?).

So what happened is…well, I don’t know what happened really, as my boss pulled me into an impromptu meeting at 3 PM Stanford time, just as the game was starting (and we hate these starts during work hours). When I came out, Stanford was down by 1, 29-28 at the half despite going on a 10-0 run. Talk about low scoring. Looks like UTC kept themselves in the game by making a bunch of threes (7 out of 15 in the first half).

Erica Payne
Stanford’s Erica Payne-(Billy Weeks-AP Photo)
What I did see of the second half was no presence in the post for Stanford. Stanford tried the high screens for the guards at the top of the circle, but like so many other teams that have the advantage of watching game film, UTC was on to it and cut off the guards’ drive to the basket. Then there was nowhere to go with the ball. Plus Stanford’s three ball was not working, going 4-17 for the game, and making only one in the second half. Stanford only shoot seven free throws for the game, so the lack of a drive was also not creating trips to the free throw line. Stanford was averaging something like 80 points a game, so to be held to under 50 is either good defense on UTC's part or shall we say lack of scoring on Stanford's part, or both.

Wanna hear something weird? UTC did not score a single basket in the final 11:26 of the game. That’s right, not a one. Their defense did hold Stanford to just 12 points in that same time frame. However, UTC went to the line and made 11 of 12 free throw in that basket drought. Don’t know if we have ever seen that before. Wanna hear another weird fact? For the second game in a row, the other team did not shoot a free throw in the first half. Is that a testament to Stanford’s tough defense without fouling?

Lili Thompson was the Stanford high scorer with nine, so that goes to show you no one was in double figures. The Stanford site says “It's the first time in nearly two decades that the Cardinal has not had a double-digit scorer in a game.” A #7 ranked team needs someone to step up in these games. Shout out to senior Erica Payne who played a season-high 18 minutes and went 3-4 for six points. Freshmen Kaylee Johnson continues to rebound in the double digits, grabbing 12.

Well, Stanford shouldn’t feel too bad, Chattanooga did knock off another ranked team in their last game. It was, yep, Tennessee, which was ranked #4 at the time. Stanford will meet them Saturday, maybe they can commiserate.


December 14- Stanford Beats Santa Clara After Long Lay Off

The Stanford Women’s Basketball Team shook off the rust of a two week vacation, if you call studying and taking finals at Stanford a vacation, and beat neighbor Santa Clara in a not very neighborly fashion. Although the final score was 82-43 and Stanford Head Coach Tara VanDerveer got to play everyone healthy, Stanford really did look rusty.

Stanford came out slow, and played from behind for the first four and a half minutes of the game. Stanford also did not make many threes, just going 4-9 for the game. In fact, Stanford’s three point specialist Bonnie Samuelson made the first Stanford three with about one minute to play in the first half. However Stanford did finish the first half strong, going on a 22-4 run.. Santa Clara had zero free throw attempts in the first (and went 1-4 for the game).

Kaylee Johnson
Kaylee Johnson had 22 rebounds. (Photo by Bob Drebin/stanfordphoto.com)
What was working in the first half was freshmen Kaylee Johnson. She was a rebounding fool. She has 11 boards in the first half, and finished the game with 22, which tied her career high set at New Mexico this year. She also scored nine points. In only eight games so far this season, she has two 20+ rebounding games. Quick, can you name another outstanding Stanford rebounder who had multiple 20+ rebounding games in a season? Answer, Chiney Ogwumike, who holds the Pac-12 rebounding record. Kaylee’s high school coach said she would break that record, and now we know he was not blowing smoke! But wait, there’s more. Kaylee Johnson is the only player in the whole NCAA with multiple 20-rebound games this season.

What was working for Stanford as a team in the second half was better ball movement, points off turnovers and second chances on put backs. They won the rebounding war 57-33. And Tara rested her starters to give her bench playing time.

Other career highs
Amber Orrange scored a season high 20 points and it was her 4th career game of at least 20 points. Her career high is 22, I believe set against UConn (‘remember that game?). Freshmen Brittany McPhee scored a career high 11 points (Bonnie Samuelson was the only other player besides Brittany and Amber to score in double figures. She added 11 from the bench).

So now Stanford travels back east to the land of too early games and too cold weather to play two Tennessee teams. They first play pardon me boy, is that the chattanooga choo choo (Chattanooga) and then the Tennessee Lady Vols. Pat Summit might be gone, but they physical style of play is not. Will be another big test on the road for Stanford. Hope they pass.


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C and Stanford Women's Basketball Team
You know, the one that was Candice Wiggins' last year and where she lead them to the NCAA Championship game on her charisma alone and C and R had front row seats (read how I sat on the bench and helped Tara coach). That's C above, with the 2007-2008 Stanford Women's Basketball Team! She was the only one in the gym (well, one out of two only) to bet that Hannah would make that half court shot.

Just added the 2010 UConn game. You know, the one where Stanford broke "The Streak."

R: Now this is more like it. We like Nancy Lieberman.

C: Uh, the intro is written by Pat Summit!

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