Sports

Stanford women win 77th straight at home

Nnemkadi Ogwumike had 23 points and 11 rebounds, sister Chiney Ogwumike added 18 points and seven rebounds and the second-ranked Stanford women's basketball team survived a slow start to roll past Pac-12 newcomer Colorado, 68-46, on Thursday night.

Freshman guard Amber Orrange also scored seven points, including a three-point play to highlight a 19-2 run to open the second half that propelled the Cardinal (25-1, 16-0) to its 22nd straight win and 77th in a row at Maples Pavilion - the longest active home-winning streak in the nation. Stanford hasn't lost anywhere since a 68-58 setback at Connecticut on Nov. 21.

"I think it was just kind of our mentality and our aggressiveness," Nnemkadi Ogwumike said. "We realized what we needed to do against their pressure. We started attacking the basket and I think we started running the floor."

Once Stanford started rolling, Colorado couldn't keep up.

Chucky Jeffery had 13 points and 13 rebounds and Ashley Wilson scored nine points for the Buffaloes (16-10, 5-10), who were down only eight at the half. Colorado, which started the season 12-0 for only the third time in school history, has lost three straight and six of the past seven games.

For a change, Stanford's start didn't overwhelm its opponent as Colorado hardly let the Cardinal coast the way it does so often at Maples Pavilion, hustling for loose balls and contesting every shot, even if it meant fouling back harder. The Buffaloes built a 12-11 lead, but had three players - Brittany Wilson, Rachel Hargis and Meagan Malcolm-Peck - with three fouls in the first 15 minutes, relegating each to the bench.

Stanford closed an ugly, physical first half ahead 26-18 behind Nneka Ogwumike's strong inside presence despite shooting only 31.6 percent and committing 15 turnovers - seven by point guard Toni Kokenis alone. Colorado didn't do much better, shooting 32 percent with 11 turnovers, but the sloppy play kept it close.

The Cardinal came out sprinting and showing the typical tenacity of coach Tara VanDerveer's teams following the break. The Ogwumike sisters each had a pair of high-driving layups and Orrange's three-point play with 16:29 remaining started highlighted the huge spurt that put Stanford ahead 45-20.

Stanford already has clinched the inaugural Pac-12 title, its 12th straight conference crown and 21st overall, but VanDerveer surely knows her teams can't afford any early lapses if the program wants to return to its fifth straight Final Four - much less break the trend of those tearful plane rides home.

VanDerveer can earn her 700th victory at Stanford on Saturday against Utah. She would become the seventh Division I coach to reach the milestone at one school.Tip off is 2 p.m.

Men

Freshman Chasson Randle scored 20 points and led Stanford to a 74-50 rout of cold-shooting Colorado on Thursday night, handing the host Buffaloes their first home loss in Pac-12 play.

The Cardinal (19-9, 9-7) swept the season series against the Buffaloes, whom they beat 84-64 at home before losing six of nine.

The Buffs (18-9, 10-5) had gone 7-2 since that blowout and were the only unbeaten team at home (7-0) in Pac-12 play. But they were embarrassed before a sellout crowd that streamed to the exits midway through the second half.

The Cardinal, which also got 11 points from John Gage, held the Buffs to 29 percent shooting, outrebounded them 50-26 and led by as many as 29 points early in the second half.

— Associated Press/Palo Alto Online Sports

Comments

Posted by Dave N., a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 25, 2012 at 10:41 am

But hey, it's women's basketball. So what.


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