Sunday, February 28, 2010

Stanford at Arizona, Second to last PAC-10 Game

Well, C and R are afraid this will not be a very good run down of the Stanford Women’s Basketball game against Arizona. It wasn’t on TV, of course, and Gametracker was down for every game, at least on our computer. We got KZSU live on the Internet, but it was hard for us to follow the action. But then luck of all luck, a fan who was there courtside sent us a first-person account of the game! Stick around for the end of this post to get an eye-witness view.

We did hear JJ Hones was a starter for Ros. We found out later that Ros Gold-Onwude was in the “black sweat suit of injury” because she took a blow to the head in the win over Arizona State two days ago. They wouldn’t’ come out and say it was a concession, but rather they were being cautious. Well, with all the uproar about t concussions in the news lately, we are glad they are being cautious.

And we did hear when Jayne Appel grabbed her fifth rebound of the game for a total of 1,215. When she did that around the 4-minute mark in the first half, she broke Lisa Leslie’s PAC-10 career rebounding record. Jayne would end up with 8 rebounds and 11 points it the game.

Arizona kept it close in the first and got within 3 in the closing minutes. Stanford had the ball last and Jayne got a lay-up in the closing seconds so we took a shaky 32-27 lead into the locker room.

Then C’s computer asked if I wanted to install updates. C absentmindedly clicked “yes”. Normally her computer installs updates in the background and she can keep working. This time the update was for stupid Windows Media Player, the device that was letting her listen to KZSU. Media Player shut down while it installed 11 updates. Several minutes later, the computer was still on one of 11 updates. (Apple computer fans, no need to write in).

Ten minutes later, C gets KZSU back online and the score is 48-37. Still relatively close. Then Kayla Pedersen hits a three. Then she hits another and now its 54-37 and it doesn’t sound so close anymore Kayla would finish with 26 points and 8 rebounds. Love hearing that Kayla is shooting and scoring, especially in front of friends and family as Kayla is from Arizona. Maybe we should fly them out to every game. Then all of a sudden it’s 64-38 us, with five minutes left and it seems we have really limited their scoring. With about two minutes left and the subs come in. The final score was Stanford 75-48

Next is our Johnny-on-the-spot reporter, who we shall call MA, with his eyewitness account. The remarks in parentheses are C and R’s.

I'm back home from the game, a 75-48 win over Arizona, and ready to give my report. I'm going to try this bullet-point style, since my memory doesn't seem to operate well in linear fashion...

  • I have to note first that player of the game goes to Kayla Pedersen. She was, as always, everywhere on the court, and with Nneka not too involved-more on that later, Kayla couldn't have been more clutch. She was hitting three-pointers, putting in a couple of key put backs, and just generally seemed to be where she needed to be throughout the game. I don't have the box score, but she accounted for at least a third of the team's points.
  • Nneka Ogwumike didn't end up being a factor at all during the first half, primarily because of foul trouble. The trouble all started with a phantom foul call within the first minute or so of the game. One of the Arizona players was coming up the court with the basketball and tripped over her own legs on her way to half-court. Nneka happened to be in the neighborhood, and even though the replay confirmed that Nneka didn't even come close to the other player, she got called for a tripping foul. Tara yanked her right away and put Joslyn Tinkle in -and our bells got to tinkling!. When Nneka went back in somewhere around the 12-minute mark, she got called for another foul pretty quickly -this one legitimate after Nneka didn't get position on a rebound- and came right back out.
  • The upside of Nneka's absence was a good deal of playing time for Joslyn during the first half -not so much during the second, when Nneka stayed in the game for most of the half. We started our bells ringing, and even had an extra set to pass to the Stanford-clad family sitting next to us. They asked whether we had started the whole bells tradition, and we of course deferred credit to the C and R blog. As it turned out, the nice folks sitting next to us were none other than the Tinkle family! Joslyn's grandmother apparently lives nearby, and her mom was there for the game, too. Mama Tinkle reads your blog, you will be happy to know, and loves the whole tinkle bell concept (Yes, C and R did know and a big shout out to Mrs. Tinkle and Family! And Grandma Tinkle, too! We gave a genuine Tinkle bell to Mr. Tinkle when he was at Stanford). I, of course, turned into a gushing fan upon learning who the family was and went on and on about how great we think Joslyn will be for our team. (Oh, aren’t we all just gushing fans?!) Joslyn, for her part, had a quiet but solid performance, getting just a few points but really playing good, active defense.
  • I can't believe I've gone this long without mentioning Jayne, who got her Pac-10-record-setting 1215th rebound during the first half. They played on for a little bit, and during the final media timeout of the first half, the stadium announcer recognized Appel for having broken Lisa Leslie's old record. That's a heck of an accomplishment, and she's not done yet. Any idea what the NCAA record is? (Career NCAA Div 1 record 2,034—Courtney Paris, Oklahoma) Appel wasn't scoring a lot of points today as she got fronted and doubled all game long, but she was still a big presence, getting attention on the offensive end and doing her usual shot-blocking and rebound-gobbling on the defensive end. And I only saw her get beat down the court once during the game, just over halfway through the first half, at which point I told my wife that Jayne was looking a little tired, and Tara apparently overheard me because she promptly subbed Jayne out for a breather.
  • My wife, E, pointed out an amusing thing during the game. One of Arizona's players, who was on Appel most of the game, would frequently supplement her defense by yelling/stuttering "B-b-b-b-b-b!" I couldn't tell whether she was trying to communicate to her teammates-if she was, complete words might have been better or just trying to distract the ball-handler. It was certainly amusing to listen to. (She was probably trying to say “ball”, and then yell “dead” if the player stopped dribbling, a common tactic to unnerve a player, but we are sure wouldn’t bother Jayne)
  • It should be noted that Ros was in pants and a t-shirt for the game today. She got knocked in the head pretty hard while scrambling for a ball Thursday at ASU, and was taken out of the game in what appeared to be a very appropriate precautionary move (we agree!). The Tinkle family told us that Ros suffered a concussion from the incident-not sure of their source, but it was a reasonable inference, so she must have been kept out of today's game to make sure that she recovers. I hope that she's feeling okay and that she's able to come back, but her health is top priority, and I'm glad to see that the team is protecting her. We'll be glad to have her back when she's ready.
  • My last note is a question: what happened to Lindy LaRocque? I haven't noticed her getting much playing time this season, but she did see a fair amount of court time in today's game, probably because of Ros's absence. Lindy used to have more of a swagger, and would shoot the ball anytime she had a little bit of space -and sometimes when she didn't. I don't think she shot the ball once in today's game, even though she had some open looks. Maybe the coaches told her to cut back on her fire-away approach and she took it too much to heart? I, for one, loved her fearlessness, and it just wasn't there today--I hope that's a fluke and not a trend.

OK, I think that about covers what stands out to me. As for the Arizona fans, they weren't a problem because they mostly weren't there. Attendance was barely over 2,000, and there were a sizeable number of Stanford fans accounting for a chunk of that total. Arizona, for their part, didn't get a whole lot done to energize their fans. They did hang around for much of the first half, but this was yet another game in the apparent pattern of Stanford starting slow and allowing teams to stay close until the second half march towards a big win. Ibekwe, their best player-I think you all called her Arizona's version of Nneka- (yes, also baby Nneka and Nneka’s twin) was pretty quiet throughout the first, and didn't start making good-looking plays until it was already too late for them to mean much to the outcome (although we did hear Ibekwe wrapped her arms around Jayne at one point and Jayne got called for the foul). But E and I had a lot of fun. And I hope that you will give a big shout-out on our behalf to the Tinkle family, who were kind enough to lend us their Joslyn's talent for a few more years to come.


More Stanford Goodies at the original C and R's Stanford Women's Basketball Blog

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