December 18, 2013

Chiney joins exclusive group of Stanford greats

Barely a minute and a half had elapsed when Chiney Ogwumike scored her fifth point of the New Mexico game on a free throw. Thus the senior forward became only the fifth Stanford women’s basketball player in history to score at least 2,000 points and make at least 1,000 rebounds in her career.

By the time the Dec. 16 home game was over, she had scored a total of 32 points and led the Cardinal to a 75-41 victory. Playing only 23 minutes, she also had seven rebounds and four blocks.

Besides Chiney, the 2,000/1,000 club includes Chiney’s sister Nneka, ’12; Jayne Appel, ’10; Nicole Powell,’04; and Val Whiting, ’93.

During her time in the game, Chiney scored almost at will as her teammates repeatedly passed the ball to her near the basket. The Lobos couldn’t stop her.

No other double figures

No one else managed to score in double figures. The closest were junior forwards Taylor Greenfield and Bonnie Samuelson, who had 8 points each off the bench

Two consecutive 3’s in the second half boosted Taylor’s total. Playing in only her second game this season after recovering from an injury, Taylor looked more confident than she had in some games in the latter part of the 2012-13 season.

Bonnie’s point total included one 3. Also scoring once each from behind the arc were redshirt sophomore guards Alex Green and Jasmine Camp. Alex finished with 6 points, while Jasmine had 3.

Redshirt senior forward Mikaela Ruef had a team-high 10 rebounds plus 2 points.

Blocking, stealing help with defense

One statistic of note is that the team blocked 12 shots. Chiney led the way with four, followed by Mikaela with three and freshman forward Erica McCall with two. Junior guard Amber Orrange, freshman guard Lili Thompson and freshman forward Kailee Johnson had one each.

The team also had six steals, with one each by Mikaela, Lili, Amber, Alex, Kailee and junior forward Erica Payne, also playing in only her second game this season.

For the game, the team shot 50.8 percent with 29.4 percent on 3’s and 75 percent on free throws. Offensive rebounding proved to be somewhat problematic with Stanford snaring 12 and New Mexico 20.

The three of the five starters – Chiney, Mikaela and Amber – combined for 40 points, and the bench contributed 35. Starters Lili and senior guard Sara James had no points.

From the start, the game was never in doubt thanks to Chiney, a stout defense and an injury-depleted opponent. The halftime score was 40-21.

With victory assured about halfway through the second half, head coach Tara VanDerveer had the luxury of leaving Chiney on the bench. Thus the coach gave the team’s best player a chance to rest and avoid injury while other post players got more playing time.

These factors are important because the Cardinal, ranked No. 6 in the latest AP poll, will face a far more formidable opponent, No. 3 Tennessee, at home at 1:30 p.m. Dec. 21.

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