March 7, 2013
UCLA Game Notes
2013 Pac-12 Tournament Quarterfinals
Friday, Mar. 8
2:36 p.m. PT
No. 13/14 UCLA (23-6, 14-4) vs. winner of No. 6 Utah/No. 11 Arizona
Live Stats | Internet Audio | Television: Pac-12 Networks
TV Talent: Anne Marie Anderson (play-by-play), Tammy Blackburn (analyst), Krista Blunk (sideline)
Audio Talent: Dave Marcus (play-by-play), Michael Sondheimer (analyst)
No. 13/14 UCLA (23-6, 14-4 Pac-12) heads to the 2013 Pac-12 Tournament as the No. 3 seed and will await the winner of the No. 6 Utah/No. 11 Arizona contest in a quarterfinal game, which will take place on Friday, March 8 at 2:36 p.m. on the Pac-12 Networks. UCLA swept Arizona during the regular season and defeated Utah in Los Angeles in the team's only meeting.
While UCLA is 23-6 overall on the year and 14-4 (finished third place in the Pac-12), all four conference losses and five of the six defeats this season have been to Top 7 teams in the country. UCLA has lost to No. 4 Stanford, No. 5 Notre Dame, @ No. 6 Stanford, No. 6 California and @ No. 7 California. The Bruins have won at No. 11 Oklahoma, vs. No. 12 Texas (neutral) and at home vs. No. 22 Colorado (3-5 vs. ranked teams). It is the most ranked teams UCLA has faced in one season since 2006-07. That year, the Bruins faced 10 Top 25 teams (1-9 vs. ranked teams).
After completing a road sweep of the Arizona schools last week, the UCLA Bruins three spots to No. 14 in the AP Top 25 Poll and also three spots to No. 13 in the USA Today Coaches Poll. UCLA improved four spots to No. 13 in the NCAA Women's Basketball RPI (NCAA.com). UCLA has been ranked at least one week in both polls in each of the past four seasons.
While UCLA is 12-10 all-time in the Pac-12 Tournament, the Bruins are 3-0 all-time as the No. 3 seed. The only time UCLA was seeded third was in 2006, and the Bruins pulled off back-to-back upsets to win the title. UCLA opened with an 80-63 win over #3 California in the quarterfinals and then beat #2 Arizona State, 60-59, in the semifinals. UCLA defeated #1 Stanford, 85-76 in overtime, to win its only Pac-12 Tournament title.
PAC-12 TOURNAMENT MOVES TO SEATTLE
With its new partnership with Force 10 Sports Marketing, LLC, the Seattle Sports Commission and Seattle Center, the Pac-12 Conference will bring the Pac-12 Women's Basketball Tournament to KeyArena in Seattle in 2013. The new agreement, which runs through 2015, moves the tournament to the first full week in March to strengthen television windows and maximize national exposure. ESPN2 will televise the championship game, while all other games will be carried nationally on the Pac-12 Networks.
Seniors Markel Walker and Alyssia Brewer and junior Atonye Nyingifa were all named All-Pac-12 by both the Pac-12 coaches and media. Additionally, freshmen Kari Korver and Nirra Fields were both chosen as honorable mention selections to the All-Freshmen Team by the league's head coaches. Markel Walker was also named to the five-member Pac-12 All-Defensive Team by both the media and the coaches.
UCLA IN STATISTICAL RANKINGS
UCLA is 3rd in the Pac-12 in scoring (68.4 ppg) and is 4th in the Pac-12 and 25th in the country in rebounding margin (+7.3). The Bruins lead the Pac-12 and rank 13th in the nation in assists (16.8) and also lead the league in steals (10.8). UCLA is also 3rd in the Pac-12 in rebounds per game (43.0), offensive rebounds (15.8), field goal percentage (.427) and three-point field goal percentage (.313).
CLOSE CALLS ... BRUINS IN OVERTIME
The UCLA Bruins improved to 3-0 under Head Coach Cori Close in overtime games in her two seasons with last week's 53-52 win in overtime at St. John's (Dec. 16). Last season, the Bruins posted back-to-back overtime wins at Colorado (62-54 on Jan. 29, 2012) and at home versus Washington (79-73 on Feb. 2, 2012).
Alyssia Brewer has seven double-doubles in her first 28 games, which ranks seventh in the Pac-12. Markel Walker has five double-doubles this season, which ranks 10th in the Pac-12. Additionally, the two Bruins have had double-doubles in the same game three times this season. Walker had 17 points and 10 rebounds in the 86-66 win over Loyola Marymount (Dec. 2) while Brewer had 14 points and 11 rebounds against the Lions. Walker later had 15 points and 12 rebounds in the 76-62 win over Saint Mary's (Dec. 15) as Brewer chipped in 12 points and 10 boards against the Gaels. In the loss to Cal State Northridge (Dec. 20), Brewer had 14 points and 12 rebounds with Walker adding 12 points and 12 boards.
MISSING IN ACTION
Only three of the 13 Bruins have played in all 29 games this season and nobody has started in more than 24 contests, forcing Head Coach Cori Close to go with 11 different starting lineups. Rhema Gardner had knee surgery before the season began and will redshirt the season. Thea Lemberger missed the Notre Dame (Nov. 23) and Princeton (Nov. 25) games due to a knee sprain and the Arizona game (Mar. 3) with a sprained left elbow and is listed as day-to-day. Lauren Holiday (25 games) and Corinne Costa (23 games) have both missed contests with head injuries and have been shut down for the season and will seek medical hardships. Kacy Swain missed both of the games in New York with a back injury. Nirra Fields missed the upset win at Oklahoma (Nov. 14) due to personal reasons. Jasmine Dixon missed two games (Princeton on Nov. 25 and Loyola Marymount on Dec. 2) with a left knee sprain. She has played in all other contests, but is only playing 19.7 minutes per game as she is still suffering from pain in her knee and has occasional swelling. Alyssia Brewer missed most (only played three minutes) of the Pepperdine game (Dec. 28) and missed the entire Saint Joseph's game (Dec. 31) with a right ankle sprain. Most recently, Markel Walker missed the Arizona game (Jan. 25) with back spasms, but returned on Sunday for the Arizona State game (Jan. 27). The Bruins have already used 193 different combinations of players on the court this season. In a total of 1,165 minutes of game action, the leading combination on the floor in terms of minutes played together is Thea Lemberger, Mariah Williams, Atonye Nyingifa, Markel Walker and Alyssia Brewer for a total of 70:05.