Leading from the opening tipoff 'til the final buzzer, the Stanford women’s basketball team upset visiting UCLA 76-65 to start the conference season on Dec. 29.
Senior guard Brittany McPhee, returning for only her second game after missing nine with an injury, made the first basket and went on to lead the way with a game-high 26 points. She also had seven rebounds and four assists in 27 minutes.
Junior forward Alanna Smith had a double-double with 14 points and 13 rebounds to go with three blocks in 36 minutes. Sophomore forward Nadia Fingall chipped in 10 points, six rebounds, three assists, a block and a steal in 25 minutes.
DiJonai contributes in return
The team was at full strength with sophomore guard DiJonai Carrington back after an injury. She was another spark plug with seven points, five rebounds and one assist in only 10 minutes.
|Marta takes the ball upcourt to start a new offensive set..|
Starters were Brit, Alanna, Marta, freshman forward Maya Dodson and freshman guard Kiana Williams. After Kiana, a San Antonio resident, had made four free throws to help ice the game, the band played “Deep in the Heart of Texas.”
Along with the Tree, the band had just returned from San Antonio, where it played for the football team’s 39-37 loss to TCU in the Alamo Bowl the day before.
Stanford prevails in rebounds, assists, shooting percentage
Stanford outplayed No. 11 UCLA in several categories, including rebounds, 48-33; assists, 16-11; and shooting, 51.9-31.1 percent.
On the negative side, the Cardinal had 20 turnovers to UCLA’s nine. Many of the turnovers came from UCLA’s proclivity to steal, 11 in all.
It wasn’t an easy game. It seemed that every time Stanford opened a fairly comfortable lead, UCLA would come back, but never enough to go ahead or win.
Among the crowd of 3,102 was Erica “Bird” McCall, ’17, showing her smooth moves during the Dance Cam in the third quarter. Now a member of the WNBA’s Indiana Fever and playing professionally in Hungary during the off-season, she joined the team in the locker room after the game.
Also on hand for part of the game was Brian Agler, coach of the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks, apparently scouting the talent on both teams.
|Provost Persis Drell congratulates head coach Tara VanDerveer after the win.|
The victory marked Stanford’s first over a ranked team after five losses to teams in the top 10 during the nonconference season. It also marked what is hoped to be a return to the rankings after dropping out in the latest poll following losses to Tennessee and unranked Western Illinois.
Another test awaits the Cardinal when the team hosts USC at 1 p.m. Dec. 31.
(Photos by Richard Ersted/ISIPhotos.com)