Saturday, February 16, 2013

Cardinal triumphs over Trojans

By Wally Mersereau

Los Angeles provided traditional Southern California winter weather today with blue skies and a high temperature in the upper 70s. The San Gabriel Mountains were clearly visible from my hotel window. I watched the first half of the 6 pm Cal-UCLA game on my computer before heading for Stanford’s 8 pm Galen Center match-up. Cal was having an easy time with the Bruins. The final score in Westwood was known just before tip-off at Galen with Cal winning 79-51.

When USC came to Maples on January 20 Stanford led by 13 points at the half, but was outscored by the Trojans in the second half, with the winning margin down to 9 and a narrow 5-point lead with 3 minutes to play.

Tonight’s game at Galen resulted in a stronger win for the Cardinal. Stanford again led by 13 at the half, but won by 24, without a serious USC challenge in the second half. This was despite markedly more spirited and aggressive play by the Trojans in the last half. Stanford handled the USC efforts with poise and several times took advantage of Trojan players being left behind down court because of ineffectual defensive efforts.

USC has lost some close games in the Pac-12. This wasn’t one of them. There was no doubt as to the superior team or the outcome tonight.

Chiney had only 8 points in the first half, but then let loose in the second to get her 20th double-double, including 26 points, 15 rebounds and a block in 37 minutes. She did have 6 of Stanford’s 13 turnovers.

Jos also had a double-double with 17 points, 11 rebounds and 3 blocks in 38 minutes. Mikaela continued her excellent play on both sides of the ball, ending with 12 points, 8 rebounds and a block in 30 minutes. Amber scored 10 points and had a rebound. She had 5 assists and only one turnover in 29 minutes. Jasmine also did well at the point while scoring 4 points.

USC had two players with double-digit points: Harberts with 13 and Valoletama with 14. Crook was held to 6 points.

Stanford out-shot USC 46% to 27% and out-rebounded 43 to 26. Stanford 3- point shooting was only 28.6% (6 of 21), despite the first two Cardinal baskets being threes by Mikaela and Bonnie.

Toni made the trip, but was not suited up. Jeanette and Cindy Pohlen attended. Tara invited Jeanette into the locker room after the game. There was a respectable Stanford fan turnout within Galen’s total attendance of 844.

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