Key matchups headline Pac-12 Women's Basketball slate
For the second-straight week, key matchups highlight the Pac-12 women’s basketball slate, including a pair of top-20 clashes on Pac-12 Network. No. 8 UCLA puts its 29-game home win streak on the line when No. 3 Baylor visits Pauley Pavilion. Both teams have the ability to put up big numbers, each averaging over 100 points per game after the opening weekend ... On Sunday, No. 18 OREGON STATE hosts No. 6 Notre Dame. The Pac-12 leader in scoring defense last year, the Beavers will have to tame the UND offense that scored 121 points in its season-opener ... No. 10 OREGON is in the semifinal of the Preseason WNIT. The Ducks travel to No. 19 Texas A&M to play for a spot in the championship game on Sunday. Pac-12 Player of the Week Sabrina Ionescu is eyeing the Conference’s triple-doubles career record after posting her fifth in her short career last week. Her teammate Satou Sabally was named the Pac-12 Freshman of the Week ... No. 20 CALIFORNIA also hits the road for a tough matchup, facing No. 1 Connecticut on Friday ... The first of the national player of the year award watch lists was released and six from the Pac-12 were among the 30 candidates for the John R. Wooden Award: Cal’s Kristine Anigwe, UCLA’s Monique Billings and Jordin Canada, Oregon’s Ruthy Hebard and Ionescu, and Stanford’s Brittany McPhee ... Five Pac-12 teams are ranked in this week’s Associated Press poll with two teams in the top 10 and three in the top 15. STANFORD is coming in at No. 14 and ARIZONA STATE is receiving votes ... The Cardinal’s home opener vs. UC Riverside will also be televised on Pac-12 Network.
Picking up where Pac-12 women’s basketball left off last year with chasing down records. OREGON’s Sabrina Ionescu kicked off the 2017-18 campaign posting a triple-double. Just one game into her sophomore campaign, she has five triple-doubles to her credit, one away from the Pac-12 career record and two from the NCAA record.
NCAA CAREER TRIPLE-DOUBLES
1. Suzie McConnell, Penn State (1985-88) - 7
2. Louella Tomlinson, Saint Mary’s (2008-11) - 7
3. Nicole Powell, Stanford (2001-04) - 6*
Danielle Carson, Youngstown State (1982-86) - 6
Alyssa Thomas, Maryland (2011-14) - 6
Samantha Logic, Iowa (2012-15) - 6
7. SABRINA IONESCU, OREGON (2016-present) - 5
Joskeen Garner, Northwestern State (1993-96) - 5
Shalee Lehning, Kansas State (2006-09) - 5
Brittney Griner, Baylor (2010-13) - 5
* Pac-12 career record holder
NCAA Active Leaders
Four Pac-12 players can be found among the NCAA’s active career leaders. UCLA’s Jordin Canada has proven herself to be one of the top point guards in the nation. She currently ranks second in career assists (594) among active players. She is also looking to become just the 10th player in Conference history to dish out 600 assists. She is also fourth among active leaders with 246 steals.
Teammate Monique Billings is fourth among current players in the country with 843 players. CALIFORNIA’s Kristine Anigwe currently has the third-best career scoring average among players in the country at 20.7 points per game, while OREGON’s Lexi Bando’s 46.0 career three-point percentage is second-best in the nation.
Triple Doubles Galore
OREGON’s Sabrina Ionescu, who is chasing the NCAA and Pac-12 records, and UCLA’s Jordin Canada have started the season with a triple-double each, giving the Conference 31 instances all-time. Since the start of last season, there have been a total of nine triple-doubles achieved.
Triple-doubles were a rare occurence in the Pac-12 prior to the 2012-13 campaign. From Feb. 1996-Feb. 4, 2012, only two players had achieved the feat with former Stanford standout Nicole Powell accounting for six instances from Feb. 2001-Mar. 2002 and former UCLA great Noelle Quinn had one triple-double to her credit in Feb. 2004. Since Feb. 2012, there has been at least one triple-double each year.
Pac-12 women’s basketball is coming off back-to-back historic seasons, sending two teams to the NCAA Women’s Final Four for the first time ever in 2015-16 and following up with a Conference-record seven teams earning NCAA Tournament bids. At least one Pac-12 team has reached the national semifinal round in nine of the last 10 years. League teams have not lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament the last two years, combining for a 12-0 record. Additionally, the Conference has set records for the number of league teams advancing to the Sweet Sixteen and Elite Eight, with a combined nine teams reaching the round of 16. The Pac-12 has also boasted the top conference RPI in the country the last two seasons.
In addition to the overall success of league teams last year, it was a special campaign following Washington’s Kelsey Plum break the all-time NCAA scoring record and celebrating Stanford’s Tara VanDerveer’s 1,000th-career win, a feat only one other Division women’s basketball head coach had achieved and only two men’s or women’s Division I head coach.
Nine of the 15 All-Pac-12 honorees return this season, including four of the Conference’s top-five scorers and three of the top-five rebounders. UCLA’s Monique Billings was one of just two players last season to average a double-double, ranking fifth in scoring (16.7) and second in rebounding (10.5). The last two USBWA National Freshmen of the Year are among the all-star returnees, with CALIFORNIA’s Kristine Anigwe earning the honor in 2016 and OREGON’s Sabrina Ionescu picking up the award in 2017. The Pac-12’s assist and assist-to-turnover leader UCLA’s Jordin Canada also returns.
Other All-Pac-12 honorees on team rosters this season are Oregon’s Ruthy Hebard, Oregon State’s Marie Gulich, Colorado’s Kennedy Leonard, Stanford’s Brittany McPhee and USC’s Kristen Simon.
New Faces & Familiar Faces
The Pac-12 welcomes a pair of new coaches to the sidelines this season. USC’s Mark Trakh returns for his second stint as head coach of the Trojans. He spent 2005-2009 in Los Angeles, leading USC to a pair of NCAA Tournament appearances. Most recently, he was coach at New Mexico State where the team earned three-consecutive NCAA Tournament berths. Jody Wynn takes over at Washington after spending the last eight years as head coach at Long Beach State where she led the team to three-consecutive 20-win campaigns and a NCAA Tournament berth.
Road to Columbus
Teams across the country will be focused on getting to Columbus this season, the site of the 2018 NCAA Women’s Final Four. To get to Columbus, Ohio, teams will have to go through regional sites at Lexington, Ky., Albany, N.Y., Kansas City, Mo., and Spokane, Wash. The first and second round of the tournament will take place on 16 campus sites with the top-16 seeds hosting.
|Wednesday, Nov. 15|
|ARIZONA STATE at Fresno State||3 p.m. PT|
|Florida Atlantic at COLORADO||Live Stream||6 p.m. PT|
|Utah Valley at #18 OREGON STATE||6 p.m. PT|
|BYU at WASHINGTON||Live Stream||7 p.m. PT|
|WASHINGTON STATE at San Francisco||7 p.m. PT|
|Thursday, Nov. 16|
|#10 OREGON vs. #19 Texas A&M||5 p.m. PT|
|Friday, Nov. 17|
|#20 CALIFORNIA at #1 Connecticut||ESPN3||4 p.m. PT|
|ARIZONA at Utah State||MWN||6 p.m. PT|
|UTAH at Weber State||6 p.m. PT|
|UC Riverside at #4 STANFORD||P12B||7 p.m. PT|
|USC at Santa Clara||Live Stream||7 p.m. PT|
|Saturday, Nov. 18|
|Miami at COLORADO||Live Stream||12 p.m. PT|
|Sacramento State at ARIZONA STATE||Live Stream||1 p.m. PT|
|#3 Baylor at #8 UCLA||P12LA||1 p.m. PT|
|Sunday, Nov. 19|
|WASHINGTON at 9# Ohio State||8 a.m. PT|
|#20 CALIFORNIA at Brown||9 a.m. PT|
|#6 Notre Dame at #18 OREGON STATE||P12N||11 a.m. PT|
|#10 OREGON vs. TBD||TBD|
|Kentucky at WASHINGTON STATE||P12W||1 p.m. PT|
|Colgate at ARIZONA STATE||Live Stream||2 p.m. PT|
|CSU Bakersfield at #4 STANFORD||Live Stream||2 p.m. PT|
|Thursday, Nov. 16|
|Purdue at UTAH||P12N||6 p.m. PT|
|Long Beach State at USC||Live Stream||7 p.m. PT|
|Player of the Week||Freshman of the Week|
|Nov. 13||Sabrina Ionescu, ORE||Satou Sabally, ORE|
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