December 23, 2015

Second rout in a row

After coasting to a wide margin of victory over Cornell three days earlier, the Stanford women’s basketball team staged a near-repeat performance by defeating Cal State Bakersfield 83-41 at home on Dec. 22.

The unique aspect of this game was that the Roadrunners are coached by Greg McCall, father of junior forward Erica “Bird” McCall.

Father and daughter had some moments in front of the crowd and Bird’s teammates before the game. Greg and head coach Tara VanDerveer presented her with a USA Basketball plaque honoring her performance in the World University Games in South Korea during the summer.

Bird holds the plaque presented by her father, Greg, and Tara.

Bird was co-captain of the gold-winning USA team, aiding its efforts by averaging 15.2 points and 8.5 rebounds per game.

By the time the final buzzer sounded against her dad’s team, she had led her Stanford team with 15 points and 10 rebounds, her eighth double-double of the season. In 22 minutes on the court, she also had a team-high four blocks along with one steal. One noteworthy aspect of her scoring is that she made some mid-range jumpers, a relatively new addition to her repertoire.

Bench players contribute 42 points

As has been true in recent games, Bird was in the starting lineup along with the team’s other four juniors: forward Kailee Johnson and guards Lili Thompson, Briana Roberson and Karlie Samuelson. Together they accounted for 41 points. Bench players added 42.

Coming off the bench first were the other four players in the usual rotation: guards Marta Sniezek, freshman, and Brittany McPhee, sophomore; and forwards Alanna Smith, freshman, and Kaylee Johnson, sophomore.

As a team, everyone played at least five minutes, and no one played more than Karlie’s 25.

The score was 18-12 after the first quarter, 42-18 at the half and 62-33 after the third. All of the starters were on the bench with slightly more than 3 minutes to go in the third.

Everyone except freshman guard Alexa Romano scored at least 1 point, but she had one block in her 5 minutes.

Alanna, Karlie, Kaylee in double figures with Bird

Close behind Bird in scoring was Alanna with 14 points plus three rebounds and two blocks. Also in double figures were Karlie with 13, plus five rebounds, two assists and a block; and Kaylee with 11, plus seven rebounds and an assist. This was Kaylee’s third consecutive game with at least 10 points.

Karlie made three of the team’s six 3-pointers, followed by Alanna with two and Lili with one.

Stanford dominated on the boards with 61 rebounds, compared with CSB’s 36. For the game, Stanford shot 50.8 percent, CSB 19.1 percent.

The team had 12 blocks, tying for second with three other games in Stanford single-game history. The record is 13, tallied against Arizona State in 1989.

Main rotation players cheer for bench players like Tess.

Tess has 4 points, 6 rebounds, 3 blocks in 7 minutes

Blocking was led by Bird’s four and senior forward/center Tess Picknell’s three in her 7 minutes. Tess, who doesn’t always get much playing time, also scored 4 points and had six rebounds. When she made her first basket at the 5:17 mark of the fourth quarter, the crowd and her teammates erupted into cheers.

While Stanford dominated in nearly every statistical category, two stats were less impressive. One was the 14 turnovers, compared with CSB’s 11.

The second was free throws. CSB made 10 of 12, or 83.3 percent. Stanford made 13 of 33, or 39.4 percent. Freshman forward/center Shannon Coffee made only two of her 10 shots at the line, but she had 4 points and four rebounds in 5 minutes.

After tossing the victory balls and showering, the players were free to begin their short holiday break. They’ll be back at Maples to take on Chattanooga at 7 p.m. Dec. 28 to complete the non-conference schedule.

Photos by Stanford Athletics

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