LOS ANGELES – The No. 25 UCLA women’s basketball team (0-1) hosts the Pepperdine Waves (1-0) in the home opener on Nov. 11 in Pauley Pavilion. Tip-off is slated for 2:05 p.m. The game will not be televised, but you can listen to audio on uclabruins.com or watch the game via a live stream on Pac-12.com.
PARKING AND TRAFFIC ADVISORY
Fans should note that the Sunset Blvd. exit from the 405 Freeway is closed until December. To access the north side of Pauley Pavilion, exit Wilshire Blvd. East, turn left on Veteran Blvd., then right on Sunset Blvd. From the south side of Pauley Pavilion, fans are encouraged to park in Lot 8 (west side of Westwood Blvd.). From the north side of Pauley Pavilion, fans can park in either Lot 4 or turn right to Charles E. Young Drive North and enter Lot 7. More information about parking at UCLA can be viewed by clicking here. Please note, Lot 6 has been demolished. For a campus map with parking locations click here.
UCLA VS. PEPPERDINE
The UCLA Bruins lead the all-time series with Pepperdine, 15-3. Last year (Dec. 28), Nirra Fields scored 19 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to lead No. 17/18 UCLA to a 77-46 win at Pepperdine. In addition to her first career double-double, Fields added career-highs in assists (six) and steals (six). Atonye Nyingifa had a season-high 12 rebounds to go with eight points while Markel Walker had 11 points, nine rebounds and four steals for the Bruins. UCLA led 34-17 at halftime and never trailed in the game. UCLA had 34 points off 24 Pepperdine turnovers and got 44 points from its bench. The Bruins shot 44 percent from the field for the game, while the Waves shot 34.7 percent. UCLA also outrebounded the Waves, 52-28. Jade McNorton led the Waves with 12 points. She was the only Wave to reach double figures.
UCLA is ranked No. 25 in the pre-season USA Today/Coaches Poll. The Bruins' 2013-14 schedule is loaded with nationally-ranked teams as a total of seven of them are in the pre-season Top 25. The Bruins have three on the schedule that are ranked in the Top 10. Stanford comes in at No. 3, while Notre Dame is ranked 7th and California is ranked 9th. Also on the Bruins' schedule is No. 11 North Carolina, No. 12 Nebraska, No. 14 Oklahoma and No. 19 Colorado.
ON THE TUBE
This year UCLA will have the distinction of having the first televised conference game when they host USC on Dec. 30, 2013 (7:00 p.m.) and the last televised conference game on March 2, 2014 when they visit Utah (1:00 p.m.). The Bruins will be making a total of 18 television appearances, the most in school history, during the 2013-14 regular season.
RECAPPING LAST YEAR
UCLA posted a 26-8 overall record and a third-place finish in the competitive Pac-12 Conference (14-4) last year. A consistent team all season, the Bruins compiled four separate winning streaks of at least five games, including two streaks of six consecutive victories.
UCLA advanced to the Pac-12 Tournament title game, losing by a 51-49 margin to top-seeded Stanford, before cruising past Stetson, 66-49, in a first-round meeting of the NCAA Tournament. The Bruins’ season ended with an 85-72 setback to Oklahoma in the NCAA Tournament’s second round.
UCLA was selected to finish fifth in both the Pac-12 conference’s preseason coaches and media polls. Stanford was picked to finish first, followed by California, Colorado and Washington. After the Bruins, USC was selected to finish sixth, followed by Utah and Oregon State.
The 2013-14 UCLA women’s basketball team has once again put together a challenging non-conference schedule for its upcoming season. The Bruins finished the 2012-13 season with a strength of schedule RPI rating of 11th in the country for the entire season and that number was at No. 6 for the non-conference portion of the season.
In all, the Bruins will play eight different teams that made the NCAA Tournament a year ago, and that is up by one from last year’s tough schedule. The Bruins will face another six squads that were selected for the NIT field.
The Bruins will open the season on the road at No. 12/17 Nebraska on Nov. 8. The Cornhuskers were 25-9 last year and reached the “Sweet 16” of the NCAA Tournament. Additionally, the game in Lincoln, Neb., will be the first women’s basketball game in Nebraska’s new Pinnacle Bank Arena. Then the Bruins return to Los Angeles for their home opener with local foe Pepperdine on Nov. 11.
The Bruins then host a pair of powerhouses on back-to-back Sunday afternoons. First in town will be No. 11/12 North Carolina (Nov. 17), which went 29-7 last year before exiting in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Then comes the rubber match with No. 11/14 Oklahoma (Nov. 24), as the two teams split a pair of games last year. The Sooners lost in the “Sweet 16” a year ago, recording a 24-11 mark.
The Bruins spend the majority of December on the road. First, UCLA heads to Naples, Fla., for three games (Nov. 29-Dec. 1) in the Gulf Coast Showcase. The Bruins open with James Madison, which reach the “Elite Eight” of the postseason WNIT in 2013 (the other two games are TBD). Then UCLA will play its first of two Final Four teams from 2013 when it makes a trip on Dec. 7 to South Bend, Ind., to face No. 6/7 Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish was 35-2 a year ago and finished ranked No. 2 in the RPI. UCLA will then head to San Diego for a game with the Aztecs. San Diego State was 25-7 last year and lost in the second round of the WNIT. The Bruins will take part in a holiday tournament in Minneapolis, Minn., for two games in the Golden Gopher Classic. UCLA will square off with the hosts, Minnesota, on Dec. 20 and then face Auburn on Dec. 21. Both of the teams made the WNIT last year with Minnesota falling in the first round (18-14) and Auburn losing in the “Elite 8” (19-15).
UCLA closes out its non-conference schedule after the holiday break with a home game against NCAA Tournament participant, Cal Poly, on Dec. 28. The Mustangs, which suffered a first-round setback, were 21-11 last year.
The Bruins will face a guaranteed 18 of 28 regular season games against teams that made the postseason last year and a possibility of 20 of 30 games once the Gulf Coast Showcase pairings are determined.
Head Coach Cori Close enters her third year with the Bruins after guiding UCLA to the second round of the NCAA Tournament last year and a Pac-12 Tournament runner-up finish. She sports an overall record of 40-25 (.615).