Wednesday, February 24, 2021

STRANGE THINGS ARE HAPPENING IN BERKELEY! CHARMIN'S BUNCH OF TEENAGERS ARE GETTIN IT TOGETHER!!

What's going on with Cal? Delayah Daniels hits from deep. 

Dalayah Daniels Shooting vs No. 10 Arizona 2.19.21

When was the last time you saw the Cal Bears wearing red? And the new color isn't all. Last Friday evening they took Arizona down to the final buzzer before losing to the #10 team in the nation by eight. The Bears were ahead in the middle of the fourth quarter and were down two with two minutes to play. The final score was 58 to 50, but it's a clear case of the Wildcats pulling off a narrow escape from an 0 and 11 team. The PAC12 basement dweller almost got'em. They out- rebounded the Cats 40 to 26 and held them to 37% shooting. Delayah Daniels, a 6'-3" freshman, had 24 points and 10 rebounds. Michelle Onyiah, another 6'-3" freshman, had 13 points and 10 rebounds. 

And then on Senior Night on Sunday they beat ASU 67 to 55. The Bears shot 49% and held the Devils to 29% shooting. Leilani McIntosh, a 5'-5" guard, got 21 points for the Bears, including 4 for 4 3-pointers. Mia Mastrov and Evelien Lutje-Schipholt both had 12 points.

So, from here on out, anyone who takes Cal lightly is going to have a shocking red experience. All these young athletic women can play - it's just taken the whole season for them to learn to play together. Now they can and do. So be warned Cardinal - the last game of the regular season on Sunday will take your best to avoid a similar fate. These young unknowns have laid down a marker and they're comin to shock you. 

CARDINAL WARNING!! YOU'LL NEED YOUR BEST GAME ON SUNDAY!!

And did you happen to see the the Maryland/Iowa game? Iowa is the nation's second highest scoring team and scored 93 points. They hit 17 threes (of 33). Caitlin Clark hit 9 - 3's and scored 34 points in a losing effort. Four or five of her 3's were from about 24 feet. 

Maryland (the nation's highest scoring team) beat them by 18 points, hit 15 of 22 - 3's (69%), had three players over 20 (24, 27, and 29) and one at 19. Katie Benson went 9 for 10 three pointers and Diamond Miller was 4 for 5. Ashley Owusu, their point guard, is 6' tall and weighs about 170 - is quick, fast, agile, strong and fires hard accurate passes to open shooters. I decided to review this game because Charlie Creme has us in the same bracket with the Terrapins. They also press full court for forty minutes. Check out the game on YouTube.     


Thursday, February 18, 2021

THE SUN DEVILS ARE NEXT. LET'S BEAT'EM BIG!!

On Friday we play the Sun Devils at 7PM. They're having a tough year, but they always play great against us. When we played them down in the desert, they cut the margin to four before losing by eight.

This game looks like a prime candidate for an off game when our scorers don't show up and we're fighting for our lives with a minute left.  The NCAA Selection Committee would immediately remove us from the One Seed line of the bracket.

Instead, let's play hard for forty minutes and win by 30 or 40. We've got three games left in the regular season and we haven't won the regular season championship since Chiney averaged 26 points for her senior season in 2014. That was seven years ago. Let's finish this season strong!

LET'S WIN THIS THING GOIN AWAY!! GO STANFORD!! 

ON MONDAY WE HAVE ANOTHER PRIME OPPORTUNITY TO SHOW THE EASTERN WBB ESTABLISHMENT WHAT WE HAVE GOIN ON OUT HERE IN THE WEST!!!

Last Monday during the halftime of our game against Oregon on ESPN, the pundits went through the latest "reveal" from the NCAA Tournament Selection Committee. It was a "snapshot" of the top sixteen seeds as they were prematurely selected at that moment in time.  It was a "teaser" to get the fans thinking about the tournament next month and (as was made abundantly clear) those seedings would probably change considerably between then and Selection Monday on March 15th.

The overwhelmingly righteous (almost holy) selection was the new number one overall seeding of the UConn Huskies. You could almost hear the great sigh of relief that coursed through the breasts of the eastern sportswriters and pundits. Geno was back on top where he belongs and all is right with the world of WBB. 

But the same committee that put His Highness back on top made a most egregious blunder. The blasphemous replacement of N.C. State as a number one seed by . . . who? No! Are you kidding? Stanford??? But . . . But . . . the AP (eastern) sportswriters had just confirmed in their rankings that very day that Stanford was a lowly two seed - ranked number six! And they ranked the Wolfpack (a beloved eastern member of Tobacco Road basketball aristocracy) as a number one seed - number four overall! How could this committee of easterners make such a blunder?  

See what we're up against folks? And do you see what that means about our game on Monday evening on nationwide television? It's the same situation I described last week when urging us on to new heights of power and excellence against the Ducks! So pardon me if I copy a portion of that blog - since it applies equally to our game Monday against the Wildcats. We have to come out smokin!! So the eastern sportswriters will have no ammo to use against us with the Selection Committee. We need to keep Aari, Rees, and Sam under 15 each and . . . Let's light up the night with some scintillating bball!  

How about an 18-swish 3-point barrage! Kiana, Lexie, Anna, Ashton, and Hannah catch fire! While Haley torches them in the middle - whirling and dishing and hitting from everywhere. Then, Fran throws down a breakaway dunk! And Kiana, Lexie, and Anna turn steals into a fast break fest! While at the other end, our defense smunches the Cats and Cam has a block party in the paint.  

This game can be a great teaser preview for the NCAA Tournament next month. Thousands of new fans around the country will tune in to watch us win our way to the top in San Antonio. This Monday night we can give the east coast writers a good look at what goes on out here in the PAC12.

LET'S SHOW THE PEOPLE WHAT WE'RE ALL ABOUT!! THIS IS A GREAT OPPORTUNITY.  GO STANFORD!!      

Monday, February 8, 2021

HAVE YOU EVER SEEN THE STUMP LEFT BEHIND BY A BEAVER? WE DON'T WANT TO LOOK ANYTHING LIKE THAT AFTER SATURDAY NIGHT!!

On Friday we get the Beavers and I'm expecting fireworks. They've been struggling mightily with Covid "pauses", cancellations, and postponements. Oregon State has losses to Utah, Oregon, Arizona, and two to Washington State, which puts them in seventh place in the PAC12. 

Add to that equation that they have the tallest team in America (2@6'-9", 1@6'-6", 2@6'4", and 2@6'-3") + they've watched our games against Colorado six times + their next game is against Stanford - and what do you figure we can expect? I agree completely. They're going to stomp into Gill Coliseum ready to fight - like the angriest, meanest toughest bunch of beavers in the west. Why? Because right now they're on the outside - looking in - NCAA Tournament-wise.

After us (#5), they play Cal, USC, UCLA (#8) and Oregon (#11). So obviously, the plan is to beat us and then win out - and viola - they get an invitation to the dance.

The big question is - WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO ABOUT IT? We're going to hit at least ten threes and twelve mid-range jumpers! Kiana, Haley, Lexie, and Anna will do most of this damage - with Lacie and Hannah chipping in. Cameron, Fran, and Ashton will have their hands full playing masterful defense in the paint and rebounding like mad. (And scoring here and there over their bigs.)

Our patented defense will be called on to stop their shooters - Goodman, Goforth, and von Oelhoffen who average about 50 points per game - as well as their post players who average about 20.

Be ready for a tough fight! And outshoot'em.

GO CARDINAL!! LET'S PLAY OUR BEST GAME YET!!


THEN ON MONDAY WE PLAY THE DUCKS AT 6PM ON NATIONWIDE TELEVISION!!  

We should make the most of this opportunity. There will be a lot of folks watching ESPN2 at 9PM on the east coast. This calls for the best game of the season. They've heard about us - but, they probably haven't seen us play. Let's light up their night with some scintillating bball!  

How about an 18-swish 3-point barrage! Kiana, Lexie, Anna, Ashton, and Hannah catch fire! While Haley torches the Ducks in the middle - whirling and dishing and hitting from everywhere. Then, Fran throws down a breakaway dunk! And Kiana, Lexie, and Anna turn steals into a fast break fest! While at the other end, our defense smunches the quackers and Cam has a block party in the paint.  

This game can be a great teaser preview for the NCAA Tournament next month. Thousands of new fans around the country will tune in to watch us win our way to the top in San Antonio. This Monday night we can give the east coast writers a good look at what goes on out here in the PAC12.

LET'S SHOW THE PEOPLE WHAT WE'RE ALL ABOUT!! THIS IS A GREAT OPPORTUNITY.  GO STANFORD!! 

 

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

FRIDAY NIGHT REDEMPTION. STANFORD WILL PLAY LIKE PAC12 CHAMPS!!

The Colorado Buffalos think they can beat us. You can't blame them. We went into Boulder and played like a weary bunch of Covid refugees - ripe for picking off. Mya Hollingshed played like a star and Frida Formann got hot. 

The only way to change their mindset is to show them on Friday that that game three weeks ago was a one time thing and they can forget about ever beating us again. Intensity!! Everyone in white in Maples Friday night needs to play like Anna in Pullman! Mya and Frida meet Maple Intensity!!  

GO STANFORD!!  



Monday, January 25, 2021

THE WEDNESDAY AND FRIDAY GAMES IN PULLMAN PROVIDE A GREAT OPPORTUNITY TO SHOW THE HEART AND SOUL OF A PAC12 CHAMPION!

If you haven't, I recommend you watch one of the Cougar's recent games on YouTube to get a sense of this surprising bunch of ballers. They've come from the four corners of the earth - New Zealand, Australia, Rwanda, Hawaii, Israel, Estonia, Canada, Turkey, and Nebraska. They play with purpose and humungous effort. 

They're led by a pair of 5'-9" Leger-Walker sisters from Waikato, New Zealand, a remote Hobbit-land kind of place on the northwest corner of the North Island. The smaller-built one is the senior point guard, Krystal, and the stouter one is the freshman, Charlisse. To say they play hard would be a understatement. Against Oregon State the two of them had 45 points and 11 rebounds - which is a typical outing for them. They won in Corvallis in double overtime. 

The post player, Bella Murekatete, is a 6'-3" scrapper and rebounder from Rwanda. Against the Beavers she had 10 points and 9 rebounds. The Beavers have a post player who is 6" taller and half again as wide.

Those three had 70% of the Coug's points against OSU. 20% of the scoring came from Cherilyn Molina, a 5'-6" troublemaker from Hawaii. Johanna Teder hits 3's when she's left open.  

Beating this bunch requires an absolute determination to win - the kind of determination that outfights tough players for rebounds and loose balls. The determination that gets points in the paint off offensive rebounds and putbacks. The floor burn determination that gets loose balls and tie-ups. 

Going into Pullman this week with anything less will result in disappointments on Wednesday and Friday. Tara has described "getting slugged in the mouth" in prior losses or poor starts. The "nice girls of Stanford" hogwash won't cut it in Pullman. We need the level of toughness and determination the Cardinal played with when we beat UConn in front of 7500 in Maples:


Stanford Ends UConn's Streak - Final 
6:20 (David Lombardi PxP, Kevin Zhang Color) - KZSU)

These two games in Pullman are massively important. We need to come out of there not only with two "W's", but with our team determined to be the toughest grittiest team in the PAC12 from here on out. We have something to prove this week. Stanford is going into the Cougar's lair Wednesday and Friday night to out-tough and out-fight the home team. 14 threes will help. And a dozen mid-range jumpers will, as well. It's time to emerge as the best team in the west. Washington State provides that opportunity. 

GO STANFORD!! WE CAN DO THIS!!   

  

   

Thursday, January 21, 2021

THINK THIS GAME FRIDAY EVENING AGAINST UCLA IN Santa Cruz IS IMPORTANT? YOU BET YOUR SWEET PATOODY IT IS!!

On Friday we have an opportunity to rejoin the national contenders - or not. If we play defense like we did in Boulder, the Bruins will demolish us. Their offense is coming on strong. They've found their third scorer in Natalie Chou, who joined Charisma and Michaela in double figures last weekend when they defeated the Cougs in a titanic battle.

UCLA wins tough games. They beat Oregon by two and WSU in overtime after one of the sisters forced an overtime with a  semi-miraculous shot at the buzzer. 

We need to start playing like we mean it, or we could lose three or four of the next four games. In my last blog column, I mentioned that USC got three key players off the injured list and is playing like a tournament team. And after the Trojans, we get to play the Cougars twice in three days in Pullman. The Cougs play like their lives depend on it. 

Have we got what it takes to win the next four games?

When this team is cookin,  I mean reallllly cooookin,  we look like national championship material. And we haven't played nearly our best game yet. We need Kiana, and Lexie, and Anna, and Ashten, and Hanna hitting three, or four, or five threes - each. 

https://twitter.com/stanfordwbb/status/1350515408512692225?s=21

We need Haley and Fran and Lexie, and Kiana driving and finishing consistently. Our defense has to get back on track. Charisma, Michaela, and Natalie have to be shut down with the kind of swarming help defense that basically ruins their day on Friday. 

HELL YES WE'VE GOT WHAT IT TAKES!!

GO CARDINAL! LET'S ROLL OVER THE BRUINS ON FRIDAY! 

STRANGE THINGS ARE HAPPENING IN BERKELEY! CHARMIN'S BUNCH OF TEENAGERS ARE GETTIN IT TOGETHER!!

What's going on with Cal? Delayah Daniels hits from deep.   When was the last time you saw the Cal Bears wearing red? And the new color ...