Dec. 15, 2004
UCLA At Illinois Dec. 19/At Ohio State Dec. 21: No. 16/17 UCLA (6-1), winners of six straight, will take some time off for exams (week of Dec. 13) and then head back out on the road to play at Illinois on Sunday, Dec. 19 and at No. 10/7 Ohio State on Tuesday, Dec. 21.
The Bruins won their sixth-straight game of the season on Dec. 11 at Fresno State. UCLA handed previously unbeaten Fresno State a 92-76 defeat behind 22 points from Nikki Blue, who became the 20th Bruin to score her 1,000th career point in the contest, and 21 points from Noelle Quinn, her sixth straight 20-point effort of the season. Lisa Willis added 18 points and career-best totals of 10 rebounds and seven assists.
UCLA concluded a string of four-straight games against teams which advanced to the post-season a year ago with a perfect 4-0 mark after a 70-64 win against Purdue on Dec. 5. (Texas and Purdue were in the NCAA tournament, Clemson and Pepperdine played in the NWIT). The Bruins have won seven-straight home games over the past two seasons.
Bruins In The Rankings: UCLA has moved up to No. 16 in the AP poll for the week of Dec. 13. The Bruins, who debuted at No. 20 last week in the ESPN/USA Today poll, are ranked 17 this week. UCLA moved into the AP rankings at No. 25 on Nov. 29 after the win over No. 4 Texas. It was the first time UCLA had been ranked in the AP poll since the week of Feb. 21, 2000, when the Bruins were ranked No. 22 after defeating No. 15 Arizona. UCLA was ranked as high as fourth in the 1999-2000 season.
Listen Live: UCLA will not broadcast these two games. Bruin fans may listen in on the Illinois (www.fightingillini.com) and Ohio State (www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com) web sites. The Illinois game will also have a video broadcast on the Illinois website. Fans with high-speed internet and the College Sports Pass will be able to watch the game.
Bruin Notes: Nikki Blue, now with 1,004 career points, became the 20th Bruin to reach the 1,000 point mark for her career during the second half of the Fresno State contest Š The last time the Bruins had a six-game winning streak was last season Š The last time the Bruins won more than six in a row was in the 2002-03 season, when they posted seven-straight wins (the Bruins won 10 in a row in the 1998-99 season) Š A 6-1 season start is UCLA's best beginning to a season since the 1980-81 UCLA team won its first 12 games Š With 76 points, Fresno State became the first team to score more than 65 points this season against the Bruins Š Noelle Quinn has scored in double digits in the last 28 consecutive games, including six straight games of 20 points or more Š The Bruins own a 13-0 record when Quinn scores at least 20 points in a game Š Lisa Willis needs five more made three-point shots to become the school's all-time leader Š Willis has made her last 10 free throws and is shooting .895 for the season (17-19) ŠSix players currently have more assists than turnovers this season (Quinn, Blue, Livingston, Oren, Pedersen, Willis) Š The Bruins had held the last 18 regular season opponents to 70 points or less before Fresno State totaled 76.
Scouting The Illini: Illinois is off to a 5-2 start this season, including a 71-65 win at Louisiana Tech on Dec. 4. Five-nine senior forward Angelina Williams, who scored 24 against Tech, leads the Illini in scoring with a 15.9 mark. Tiffanie Guthrie, a 5-10 senior guard also averages in double figures with a 14.7 mark. Danyel Crutcher, a 6-2 freshman, is the leading rebounder with a 7.7 average.
The Series With Illinois: Illinois leads the series, 2-1. UCLA captured last season's matchup in Pauley Pavilion on Nov. 30, 2003 by a score of 68-56. The win marked Bruin coach Kathy Olivier's 150th career victory. The Bruins used 52% shooting in the first half to take a 35-22 lead at the break. UCLA built the margin up to 50-30 before Illinois closed to 54-46 with about five minutes to play. Emma Tautolo then scored the next six points in the contest to secure the win for the Bruins. Nikki Blue had 16 points to pace UCLA.
Scouting The Buckeyes: No. 10/7 Ohio State is off to a 9-1 start this season, including a 78-45 win over Arizona on Nov. 17. The Buckeyes travel to Oregon on Dec. 18. Jessica Davenport, a 6-4 sophomore, leads OSU in scoring with a 18.0 mark and in rebounding at 7.3. Caity Matter, a 5-9 senior guard, also averages in double figures with a 14.5 mark.
The Series With Ohio State: The Buckeyes lead the series, 4-3, and have won all three previous meetings played in Columbus. UCLA captured last season's matchup on Dec. 30 in Pauley Pavilion by a score of 71-56 over the then-No. 18 Buckeyes. The Bruins shot 52% for the game. Lisa Willis led three Bruins in double figures with 17 points.
2004-05 Outlook: Coach Kathy Olivier welcomes back 11 letterwinners, including three starters, and adds three talented newcomers. The Bruin ²triple threat² returning starters are leading scorer and rebounder Noelle Quinn, assist leader and No. 2 scorer Nikki Blue, along with Pac-10 steals leader and No. 3 scorer Lisa Willis. Seven of the 11 letterwinners saw action in at least 18 games last season, including five players with starting experience from a year ago.
The team rebounded from a 4-6 Pac-10 start last season to capture seven of the last eight conference games and finish in a tie for third place. That third place finish marked the fifth time in the last seven seasons that the Bruins have wound up among the top four teams in the conference.
Bruins in the Pre-Season Polls: UCLA was ranked No. 22 by Lindy's Magazine and No. 25 by Street and Smith's, which also chose Noelle Quinn as a high honorable mention All-American and Nikki Blue as an honorable mention All-American. The Bruins opened as the "26th" team in both the AP and the USA Today pre-season polls.
Coaches and Media Pick Bruins To Finish Third In Pac-10: The Pac-10 women's basketball coaches picked UCLA to finish third in the conference, with one first-place vote, in the annual pre-season poll. Stanford, with eight first-place votes, was the solid choice to finish first. The Cardinal were followed by Arizona (one first-place vote), UCLA, Arizona St., Oregon, Washington, USC, California, Oregon St. and Washington St.
The Pac-10 media also selected UCLA to finish third (122 points). Stanford, with eight first-place votes and Arizona, with seven first-place votes, were picked to repeat as co-champions with 140 points each. Arizona State was fourth (100), followed by Washington (83), Oregon (78), USC (61), Oregon St. (45), California (34) and Washington St. (22).
Blue, Quinn Earn National Honors: Guards Nikki Blue and Noelle Quinn have been selected to several pre-season watch lists for national honors, including the pre-season Naismith Award list, the Wade Trophy Watch List and the Wooden Award All-America Watch List. Blue and Quinn were also named to the pre-season All-Pac-10 Conference team. Blue received honorable mention honors in the AP Pre-Season All-America list and first-team acclaim from Women's Basketball News Service.
Dec. 11 - UCLA Wins at Fresno State: UCLA pulled away from Fresno State in the second half and captured a 92-76 road win. The Bruins opened the second half by hitting nine of their first 10 shots from the field. During that stretch, UCLA extended a one-point halftime lead to 62-47, at the 13:49 mark. Nikki Blue became the 20th Bruin to reach the 1,000 career scoring level during the second half and led the team with 22 points. Noelle Quinn had her sixth-straight 20-point game with 21 points and added a team-best 12 rebounds. Lisa Willis totaled 18 points, six steals and career-high totals of 10 rebounds and seven assists.
Dec. 5 - Bruins Top No. 14 Purdue : UCLA used Noelle Quinn's 23-point outing to help best Purdue, 70-64. UCLA raced out to a 9-0 lead and enjoyed a 31-25 margin at half. After the Bruins built up a 50-38 advantage with 10:59 to play, the Boilermakers rallied to knot the score at 57 at the 3:28 mark. UCLA still led 63-62 with 1:07 to play when Quinn hit a jump shot for a five-point lead and then made a steal and hit one of two free throws to give UCLA a 66-62 lead with 0:27 to play. After Purdue misfired on a three-point attempt, Lisa Willis made a pair of free throws with 15 seconds remaining. Willis finished with 14 points. Lindsey Pluimer's two free throws with eight seconds to play sealed it.
Dec. 2 - Bruins Crash Waves in Malibu : Freshman forward Lindsey Pluimer scored 22 points, and sophomore Noelle Quinn added 20, to pace the Bruins to a 74-61 win at Pepperdine. UCLA led from start to finish and pulled away from the Waves midway through the second half. UCLA led 29-27 at the half but managed to build that advantage up to 58-39 at the 9:48 mark of the second half.
Trebilcock To Join Bruins In 2005-06: Guard Ashlee Trebilcock of Newhall, CA (Hart HS) has signed a national letter-of-intent with UCLA and will join the Bruins in the 2005-06 season. A 5-9 guard, Trebilcock is considered by some publications to be one of the Top 25 recruits in the nation. She led her team to the Foothill League championship in 2004 and to the final game of the CIF Southern Section Division I championship, where she scored a career-high 34 points. She is a two-time Los Angeles Daily News Player of the Year and attended the Nike All-America camp in 2003 and the USA Junior Olympic tryouts in 2004. As a junior at Hart HS, she averaged 21.9 points, 5.5 rebounds and handed out 94 assists. In her sophomore year, she averaged 16.7 points.
Player Bio Updates
#00 Ortal Oren: Totaled four points in the win at Fresno Š Had three points in the win over No. 14 Purdue Š Scored six at Pepperdine Š Had four points and a career-high four assists vs. Clemson Š Scored nine against Gardner-Webb Š Had eight points in the opener against TCU Š Saw action in 28 games last season and averaged 3.2 points and 1.5 rebounds. Career Highs: Points - 11 v. Fresno St., 12-21-03; Rebounds - 4, v. Michigan St., 12-19-03; Assists - 4 v. Clemson, 11-24-04; Steals - 3, last vs. Wash. St., 1-5-03.
#3 Shaina Zaidi: Has appeared in three games this season ŠHad four points in win over Clemson Š Scored a career-best five points in the win over Gardner-Webb Š Had 10 points in the exhibition game against West Coast All-Stars Š Saw action in nine games last season. Career Highs: Points - 5 v. Gardner-Webb, 11-21-04; Assists - 3 v. Clemson, 11-24-04; Rebs. - 1, last v. Clemson, 11-24-04.
#5 Stephanetta Bingley: Has yet to appear in a regular season game Š Saw her first action as a Bruin in the exhibition game against the West Coast All-Stars Š Walked on to the team during the pre-season and will provide additional depth in the Bruin backcourt.
#11 Julia Pitts: Expected to redshirt after undergoing knee surgery during each of her first two seasons as a Bruin Š Saw action in 18 games and was a starter in nine games last season Š Averaged 3.9 points and 2.8 rebounds per game Š Her season came to an early end when she had knee surgery on Feb. 12, 2004 to repair torn meniscus in her left knee.
#14 Lindsey Pluimer: Recorded eight points and five rebounds at Fresno ŠContributed 12 points, three steals and six rebounds in the win over No. 14 ranked Purdue Š Scored a game-high 22 points and pulled down five rebounds at Pepperdine Š Had seven points and five rebounds in the win over Texas Š Totaled 13 points and five rebounds in the win over Clemson Š Had eight points and seven rebounds versus Gardner-Webb Š Led the Bruins with nine boards and three blocks against TCU ŠMcDonald's, Parade Magazine and Street and Smith's High School All-American selection Š Led her San Clemente High School team to four straight CIF Southern Section I-A titles Š Named first-team all-state by Cal-Hi Sports Š Three-time CIF Southern Section I-A Player of the Year Š Averaged 24.6 points, 4.3 assists, 2.7 steals, 4.8 blocks and 10.3 rebounds as a senior. Career Highs: Points - 22, at Pepperdine, 12-2-04; Rebs. - 9, v. TCU, 11-19-04; Blocks - 3 v. TCU, 11-19-04; Steals - 3, last v. Purdue, 12-5-04.
#20 Lauren Pedersen: Scored two points at Fresno ŠHad three points and two steals versus Purdue Š Registered five points and three assists against Clemson Š Scored five versus Gardner-Webb Š Grabbed three rebounds against TCU ŠSecond-team all-state selection by Cal-Hi Sports Š CIF Southern Section Division II-A Player of the Year in 2004 at Brea Olinda High School Š Helped her team to the CIF Southern Section Division II-A championship as a senior Š Averaged 14.7 points as a senior. Career Highs: Points - 5, last v. Clemson, 11-24-04; Rebs. - 3, v. TCU, 11-19-04; Assists - 3 v. Clemson, 11-24-04; Steals - 2, last v. Purdue, 12-5-04.
#21 Brittany Ringel: Starter at outside hitter on the volleyball team Š Just rejoined the basketball squad this week after the completion of the volleyball season Š The Bruin volleyball team lost in the NCAA Regional final in Seattle on Dec. 11.
#22 Consuelo Lezcano : Had one rebound at Fresno State ŠScored two points in the win over Texas Š Pulled down four boards against Clemson Š Had three points and career-best five rebounds versus Gardner-Webb Š Scored four points against TCU ŠSaw action in eight games last season Š Averaged 2.0 points and 0.5 rebounds a year ago. Career Highs: Points - 6, last at Cal, 2-19-04; Rebs. - 5, v. Gardner-Webb, 11-19-04; Blocks - 1 v., Gard.-Webb, 11-19-04.
#31 Amanda Livingston : Tied her career-high with 13 points, hitting her first five shots from the field, in the win at Fresno State Š Grabbed four boards against PurdueŠ Pulled down a career-best eight rebounds (seven offensive) at Pepperdine Š Had five rebounds in win over Texas ŠGrabbed four rebounds against Clemson Š Scored 12 points and had a career-best five assists versus Gardner-Webb Š Had 10 points and three assists against TCU ŠSaw action in all 30 games last year Š Averaged 4.0 points and 2.2 rebounds last season. Career Highs: Points - 13, last at Fresno, 12-11-04; Rebs. - 8 at Pepperdine, 12-2-04; Assists - 5 v. Gardner-Webb, 11-21-04; Steals - 4 at Ariz. St., 1-15-04; Blks. - 2 at Purdue, 12-13-03.
#32 Nikki Blue : Became the 20th Bruin to reach the 1,000 point mark in the second half at Fresno State on her way to a season-best 22-point, eight rebound, six assist night Š Had 11 points, seven steals and six assists in the win over No. 14 Purdue Š Handed out four assists and scored six points at Pepperdine Š Totaled 13 points, five rebounds and four assists in the win over Texas Š Handed out four assists and scored seven points against Clemson in 21 minutes Š Had four assists and three steals versus Gardner-Webb (22 minutes) Š Handed out seven assists versus TCU ŠSat out the exhibition game against West Coast All-Stars due to an ankle injury suffered in the second week of pre-season practice ŠStarter in all 29 games last season Š Named to the pre-season Wooden Award All-American and Wade Trophy Watch Lists ŠEarned honorable mention pre-season All-America acclaim from AP and Street & Smith's Magazine ŠSelected to the All-Pac-10 first-team in 2004 for the second straight season Š Scored a school NCAA tournament best 33 points against Minnesota Š Ranked seventh in the Pac-10 in scoring, 12th in rebounding, third in assists, second in steals and sixth in assist/turnover ratio. Career Highs: Points - 35 at Washington, 2-1-03; Rebs. - 12 v. Sacramento St., 11-24-02; Assists - 11 v. Arizona, 2-12-04; Steals - 8 v. Oregon, 3-8-03.
#40 Lisa Willis : Had 18 points and career-high totals of 10 boards (her first career double-double) and seven assists at Fresno State Š Totaled 14 points, four steals and three assists against Purdue Š Moved into first on the all-time school list in three-point shots attempted (366) against Purdue Š Had 14 points and seven boards at Pepperdine Š Battled foul trouble to score eight points in the win over Texas Š Totaled 18 points, eight rebounds, six assists and eight steals (tied career high) against Clemson Š Had 16 points and eight rebounds versus Gardner-Webb Š Registered a team-high 15 points in the opener against TCU ŠOnly player to start all 30 games last season Š Her season total of 100 steals ranked third on the all-time school list Š Her average of 3.3 steals ranked 11th in the nation Š Set a school record with 70 made three-point shots Š Hon. mention All-Pac-10 Š Ranked first in the Pac-10 in steals and three-point shots made, seventh in three-point shooting percentage and defensive rebounds, 10th in scoring and 15th in rebounding. Career Highs: Points - 31 at Cal, 2-19-04; Rebs. - 10 at Fresno St., 12-4-04; Assists - 7 at Fresno St., 12-4-04; Steals - 8, last v. Clemson, 11-24-04.
#44 Emma Tautolo : Had four points at Fresno State Š Scored two points against Purdue and four at Pepperdine Š Grabbed four rebounds versus Texas Š Had four points against Clemson Š Had three points versus Gardner-Webb Š Scored two against TCU ŠAppeared in 24 games last season Š Averaged 1.9 points and 1.3 rebounds. Career Highs: Points - 10 v. Illinois, 11-30-03; Rebs. - 6 at CSUN, 12-17-03; Assists - 3 at CSUN, 12-17-03; Steals - 2 at Wash. St., 2-7-04.
#45 Noelle Quinn : Had her sixth- straight 20-point outing with 21 points at Fresno State Š She had six 20-point games in a row at one point last season and now has 13 overall for her career ŠAlso had a team-high 12 rebounds against the Bulldogs for her 10th career double-double Š Scored 23 in the win over Purdue Š Also led the team in rebounding with seven ŠScored 20 at Pepperdine Š U.S. Bank Pac-10 Player of the Week (Nov. 29-Dec. 5) for the second straight week and fourth time in her career Š Has scored in double digits in the last 28 straight games Š Tied for the team lead with eight rebounds against the Waves Š Pac-10 Player of the Week and UCLABruins.com/MET-Rx Student-Athlete of the Week for Nov. 22-28 Š Had 27 points in the win over Texas and her first double-double of the season with 11 rebounds Š Her basket with 13 seconds remaining gave UCLA a 61-60 lead over Texas and her two free throws with five seconds to play made it 63-60 Š Scored 23 against Clemson Š Added seven steals and three assists versus the Tigers Š Named to the all-tournament team at the Miami Jam Š Led the Bruins with team-high totals of 20 points, six assists and nine rebounds against Gardner-Webb ŠHad 14 points against TCU despite suffering from dehydration Š Named to the pre-season Wooden Award All-American and Wade Trophy Watch Lists ŠEarned High Honorable Mention pre-season All-America acclaim from Street & Smith's Magazine ŠPac-10 Freshman of the Year and first-team all-conference selection Š Ranked sixth in the Pac-10 in scoring, fifth in rebounding; ninth in assists and offensive rebounding, fourth in steals and defensive rebounds and seventh in assists/turnover ratio Š Set a freshman school record with six straight 20-point games Š Recorded the fourth triple-double in school history with 21 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists at California. Career Highs: Points - 31 v. Arizona, 2-12-04; Rebs. - 15, v. Oregon 1-29-04; Assists - 10, at Cal 2-19-04; Steals - 7 v. Clemson, 11-24-04; Blks. - 1, last v. Texas, 11-28-04.
# 54 Sissy Pickett : Has seen action in four games this season Š Had two points and four rebounds versus Clemson Š Had four points and two rebounds against Gardner-Webb Š Played in the opener against TCU, but did not score ŠSaw action in 11 games last season Š Averaged 1.5 points and 0.5 rebounds Š Career 77% free throw shooter. Career Highs: Points - 13, v. Wash. St., 2-1-02; Rebs. - 6, at Ariz, 2-14-02; Steals - 2, v. Wash. St., 2-1-02.
Head Coach Kathy Olivier : Entering her 12th season as UCLA head coach, Kathy Olivier has energized the program to reflect her own positive, upbeat and outgoing personality. The former standout player at Cal State Fullerton and UNLV has helped to produce two Pac-10 Players of the Year, three Pac-10 Freshman Players of the Year and a Pac-10 team championship. She is the only current Pac-10 coach to have as many as three freshmen named first-team All-Conference performers. From 1998-2000, she guided UCLA to a school-best three-straight NCAA tournament appearances and had the Bruins in the NCAA tournament again last season. Her teams have finished among the top four in the Pac-10 conference in five of the last seven seasons.
Interest in UCLA women's basketball has taken off to new levels under coach Olivier. The only six regular season crowds in school history of over 7,000 fans have come out to support the Bruins during her tenure. Her 2000 squad attracted a school record average of over 3,700 fans per game. Her 1999 Pac-10 championship squad drew a school record crowd of 9,530 for a home win over USC.
While her teams favor a running style on offense, defense has always been an Olivier strong point. Six of the all-time school top 10 marks for lowest opponent field goal percentages belong to Olivier-coached squads.