By Rick Eymer
Palo Alto Online Sports
The Stanford men's and women's basketball teams shake off the rust of a two-week finals break and return to the court Sunday with a day-night (sort of) nonconference doubleheader.
The Cardinal men (4-2) host UC Riverside (3-4) at 5 p.m. while the third-ranked Stanford women (5-0) host Fresno State (6-2 entering Wednesday night's game at Cal State Bakersfield) at 1 p.m.
The men won't be at too much of a disadvantage as the Highlanders also took a two-week break from their basketball schedule for finals.
Stanford returns after a physically exhausting trip to the Anaheim Convention Center, where the Cardinal dropped two of three games. The team finished on a strange note, beating DePaul in overtime and than having junior guard Jeremy Green collapse soon after from dehydration and exhaustion.
Green, who was having some health issues, was fine after a visit to the local hospital and joined his teammates for the trip home.
Green is Stanford's leading scorer, averaging 15.3 points per game. He's a 43.2 percent shooter from three-point range.
The Highlanders enter the game coming off a 82-75 win over UT San Antonio. Junior Phil Martin continues to lead the UC Riverside offensive attack upping his scoring average to 16.6 after a 22-point effort vs. the Roadrunners.
The Cardinal also hosts North Carolina AT&T on Wednesday night at 7 p.m., while the women go on the road.
Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer, already a Hall of Fame member, may be the story for the next few days.
Only the seventh women's coach to reach 700 victories, she is on the verge of becoming just the fifth to record 800 or more. Of course, even should she win No. 799 Sunday against Fresno State, she's still fifth all-time.
Career victory No. 800 could come as early as next Thursday at DePaul. And the 801st win might come against one of the four coaches who own more victories than VanDerveer: Tennessee's Pat Summit.
(This could go on and on, of course, as Stanford travels to USF, coached by Stanford grad and All-American guard Jennifer Azzi, and returns home to host Xavier and Connecticut to finish the calendar year).
Sunday's contest between Stanford and Fresno State will be the 25th all-time. The Cardinal holds an 18-6 edge in the series and has won the past six meetings.
Junior forward Nnemkadi Ogwumike leads Stanford and the Pac-10 with an 18.3 scoring average and a 9.3 rebounding average.
Three other players also average double figures in scoring: Jeanette Pohlen (13.4), Kayla Pedersen (12.8) and Chiney Ogwumike (10.0). Pohlen needs three points to reach 1,000 and will join 31 previous players who have surpassed that mark.
Pedersen has a team-high 39 rebounds, good for a 7.8 average. She also leads the team with 5.5 assists a contest. She has a 3.4-1 assist to turnover ratio.
Chiney Ogwumike pulls down 6.6 rebounds a game and leads the team, with Sarah Boothe, with five blocked shots.
Fresno State, which reached the NCAA tournament last year, is currently riding a three-game winning streak.
Senior 6-foot-1 guard Hayley Munro, who played with the Australian national team program, leads the Bulldogs with a 14.0 scoring average and 7.5 rebounds a game. Senior guard Jalessa Ross scores at a 13.0 clip.
Stanford senior forward Christen Press was named as the Pac-10 Conference's Scholar-Athlete of the Year for women's soccer.
Press, who already earned Pac-10 Player of the Year honors, became the second consecutive Stanford player to win the Scholar-Athlete award, following Ali Riley in 2009.
Press carried a cumulative grade-point average of 3.61 in communications and combined that with a 26-goal, 8-assist performance that helped take Stanford to its second consecutive Pac-10 title and NCAA College Cup final.
A first-team All-America and Hermann Trophy semifinalist, Press led the nation in scoring and finished her collegiate career as Stanford's all-time leading scorer, with 71 goals, 41 assists, and 183 points.
The Pac-10 named the Scholar-Athletes of the Year, presented by Toyo Tires, to honor collegiate student-athletes that are standouts both academically and in their sports discipline.
In order to be eligible for the Pac-10 Scholar-Athlete of the Year award, student-athletes must be a senior (in athletics eligibility) on track to receive a degree, have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher, participate in at least 50 percent of the scheduled contests in the sport and have a minimum of one year in residence at the institution.
Scholar-Athletes of the Year in each sport will receive a commemorative award. Toyo will donate $1,000 to the scholarship funds of the institution's athletic department of each winner in recognition of their accomplishments.
The Pac-10 Scholar-Athletes for fall include:
Elliott Heath, Stanford - Men's cross country, 3.57 - engineering
Bobby Warshaw, Stanford - Men's soccer, 3.57 - political science