June 29, 2011

Tara is top coach of Pac-10 era

Greg Hansen, sports columnist for the Arizona Daily Star, has written a series of articles looking back at the Pac-10 as it transitions to the Pac-12.

Today's article is about his picks for the top 10 coaches in the 33-season history of the conference.

Tara heads the list.

June 19, 2011

Summer basketball

We drove to the city on Saturday and watched South Bay lose a close game to Mission Recreation Center, 66-71.

As expected, no current Stanford players were there, since the summer quarter doesn't start until tomorrow. The only Stanford rep was "Keesh", Markisha Coleman '07. South Bay was so short-handed they had to borrow a player from the other team (Gina Giomanetti) and also got Amber White and Mia Greco from the Bay City team, who had already played a full game half an hour earlier, to make up five. Amber White had been the high scorer in that prior game, but playing her second game of the day, she missed a lot of shots presumably from fatigue.

Even so, the five South Bay players kept at least ten on the Mission Rec side close, rarely trailing by more than 4 until the last quarter. One reason was Brittany Spears, a 2011 graduate of the University of Colorado and their all-time leading scorer, who ran up 36 points and a ton of rebounds. The other reason was that Mission Rec, despite being led by Toni Russell (USF '05) and playing together often, played very poorly.

Russell hasn't slowed down noticeably since being named the WCC 2002 Freshman of the Year and the 2004 Defender of the Year. She is still an adroit ball thief and an aggressive shooter. She was Mission Rec's top scorer, by far.

Keesh still has her sweet shot and scored a dozen or so points for South Bay. She too is an aggressive player, but had to hold back a bit — fouling out would have left South Bay with just four players.

June 10, 2011

Getting to know Alex, Amber, Bonnie, Erica, Jasmine & Taylor

You have six freshmen to "learn" next season — Alex Green, Amber Orrange, Bonnie Samuelson, Erica Payne, Jasmine Camp and Taylor Greenfield.

Get a head start by watching them play at Kezar Pavilion this summer. All of them except Alex (who tore her ACL last November) have signed up for the San Francisco Bay Area Pro-Am Summer Basketball League, along with Chiney, Joslyn and '07 alum Markisha Coleman.

Play begins in a week, on Saturday June 18th, and continues each Saturday until July 30th, ending with championship games on Saturday August 6th, Sunday August 7th and, if necessary, Saturday August 13th. Note that the Stanford summer quarter begins on June 20, so the freshmen may not appear untilJune 25th.

I'm surprised each summer at how few Cardinal fans come to watch the games. It's not great basketball, but it is basketball, played by competitive young women, and well worth watching.

Don't let parking worries keep you from attending. You won't find on-street parking unless your parking karma account is overflowing, but there's a public parking lot next door to Kezar Pavilion on Stanyan at Beulah. Last summer, they charged a flat fee of $5.00. There's always plenty of space unless there's a special event at Kezar Stadium. In that case, the fall-back option is the public garage at UCSF Medical Center on Parnassus at 3rd They charge #3.00 an hour. It's just a short (½ mile), but steep, walk between the garage and Kezar.

Here are more inducements for a trip to the City. Kezar Pavilion is at the southeast corner of Golden Gate Park. The DeYoung Museum of Art, the Academy of Sciences, the Japanese Tea Garden, the Conservatory of Flowers and Strybing Aboretum are all within a mile's walk of Kezar. The tea garden and arboretum open at 9:00 on summer Saturdays, the museums at 9:30 and the conservatory at 10:00. Come early before the crowds, then head back to Kezar for the first game at 12:00, the second at 2:00 or the third at 4:00.

If you live south of San Francisco, take a detour to Twin Peaks on your way home, especially if you haven't been up there in a long time or if you're new to the Bay Area. The fog has usually cleared by late afternoon (no guarantees), and the views are spectacular.

Here is more information:


Stanford awards for Jeanette, Kayla, Nneka and Chiney

The Stanford Athletic Board held its annual award luncheon yesterday. Among the honorees were:
Jeanette Pohlen
received a Stanford Athletic Board Award for outstanding female senior.
Associated Press All-America First Team pick ... also earned spots on USBWA and John R. Wooden Award All-America Teams ... Pac-10 Player of the Year ... All-Pac-10 Team honoree ... named Pac-10 All-Academic Honorable Mention ... ranked second on the team with 14.5 points per game ... led team with 96 3-pointers and 171 assists ... scored career-high 31 points, grabbed nine rebounds and passed out six assists in Stanford's upset of No. 1 Connecticut, ending the Huskies' NCAA-record 90-game winning streak ... knocked down a single-season school record 96 three-pointers ... ended career tied for most games played (150).
Kayla Pedersen
received a Pam Strathairn Award for the best competitive attitude – female senior.
Associated Press All-America Honorable Mention ... Wade Trophy finalist ... Lowe's Senior CLASS Award finalist ... Toyo Tires Pac-10 Scholar-Athlete of the Year ... Pac-10 All-Academic First Team ... All-Pac-10 honoree ... averaged 12.6 points per game and ranked second on team with 8.0 rebounds per game ... only player to rank in team's top three in scoring, rebounding, assists, steals and blocks ... became Stanford's and the Pac- 10's all-time leading rebounder, ending her career with 1,266 boards ... Stanford's career leader in games played (150), games started (150), and minutes played (4,762) ... averaged 10.4 points and 8.6 rebounds per game during Stanford's postseason run to the Final Four.
Nnemkadi Ogwumike
received a Block "S" Outstanding Female Junior Award
State Farm Coaches' All-American for the second straight year ... earned spots on USBWA and John R. Wooden Award All-America Teams ... Associated Press All-American Second Team ... finalist for Wade Trophy, John R. Wooden Award and Naismith Trophy ... Most Outstanding Player of both Spokane Regional and Pac-10 Tournament ... named to All-Pac-10 and Pac-10 All-Defensive Teams ... Pac-10 All-Academic Honorable Mention ... led team in scoring (17.6 ppg) and shooting percentage (58.6) ... ranked third in rebounding at 7.6 per game ... averaged 23.4 points and 6.6 rebounds per game while shooting 62.5 percent during Stanford's postseason run to the Final Four.
Chiney Ogwumike
received a Block "S" Outstanding Female Freshman Award
Pac-10 Freshman of the Year ... named to All-Pac-10 Team and Pac-10 All-Freshman Team ... Pac-10 All-Defensive Team Honorable Mention choice ... also named to Spokane All-Regional Team and Pac-10 All-Tournament Team ... averaged 11.7 points and 8.0 rebounds per game ... shot 57.4 percent from the field, second-best on the team ... tallied team-best 11 double-doubles ... averaged 12.2 points and 9.4 rebounds per game while shooting 54.2 percent during Stanford's postseason run to the Final Four.
Here is a list of all the award winners from Stanford Athletics.