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Road to the Final FourRosterThe benchAbout the schoolFSU coach Sue Semrau says?

Meet the Stanford women's basketball team

Date Opponent Result

Nov. 9 at Yale W 100-44

Nov. 11 at No. 3 Rutgers W 60-58

Nov. 18 at Utah W 81-77

Nov. 22 at No. 2 Connecticut L 66-54

Nov. 24 Old Dominion W 69-61

Nov. 25 Temple W 63-54

Nov. 28 San Francisco W 96-61

Dec. 2 UC Davis W 62-41

Dec. 16 No. 10 Baylor W 87-63

Dec. 18 at New Mexico W 73-54

Dec. 22 No. 1 Tennessee W 73-69

Dec. 28 Washington State W 105-47

Dec. 30 Washington W 77-42

Jan. 4 at UCLA L 69-56

Jan. 6 at USC L 73-72

Jan. 10 Oregon State W 81-45

Jan. 12 Oregon W 83-49

Jan. 17 at Arizona W 89-64

Jan. 20 at No. 25 Arizona State W 60-56

Jan. 26 No. 8 California W 72-52

Jan. 31 USC W 77-51

Feb. 2 UCLA W 75-62

Feb. 5 at Santa Clara W 96-74

Feb. 7 at Oregon W 72-43

Feb. 9 at Oregon State W 69-59

Feb. 14 Arizona W 69-46

Feb. 16 Arizona State W 79-57

Feb. 23 at No. 8 California W 60-58

Feb. 29 at Washington W 73-53

March 2 at Washington State W 74-52

March 8 Oregon State W 64-41

March 9 UCLA W 78-45

March 10 No. 9 California W 56-35

NCAA Tournament

March 22 Cleveland State W 85-47

March 24 No. 25 UTEP W 88-54

March 29 Pittsburgh W 72-53

March 31 at No. 6 Maryland W 98-87

No. Player Pos GP Min Pts Reb Ast

2 Jayne Appel C 37 28.7 15.0 8.9 2.7

10 J.J. Hones G 36 24.6 6.5 1.8 3.1

11 Candice Wiggins G 37 31.3 20.2 4.6 3.1

13 Cissy Pierce G 34 12.1 2.8 1.1 0.6

14 Kayla Pedersen F 37 30.0 12.6 8.4 1.6

20 Hannah Donaghe G 23 5.9 2.0 0.9 0.4

21 Rosalyn Gold-Onwude G 37 21.9 5.1 2.5 2.3

23 Jeanette Pohlen G 37 19.7 4.8 3.0 2.0

24 Ashley Cimino F 16 5.3 1.0 1.0 0.3

31 Morgan Clyburn F/C 34 10.1 1.9 2.0 0.4

33 Jillian Harmon F 30 22.2 6.2 4.9 1.6

Early season injuries to guard Melanie Murphy and forward Michelle Harrison have hurt Stanford's depth, and the Cardinal has essentially used seven players in the tournament. Jillian Harmon and Jeanette Pohlen have nearly gotten starters' minutes as the top reserves at forward and guard, with the rest primarily playing in lopsided wins.

Location: Stanford, Calif.

Enrollment: 13,198

Famous alumni: President Herbert Hoover, investment banker Charles Schwab, broadcaster Ted Koppel

Tara VanDerveer has been something of an institution at Stanford, having led the Cardinal to 21 straight NCAA Tournament appearances. Stanford had won five and nine games in the two seasons before her hiring in 1985, but five years later, she led the Cardinal to the first of two national titles, with the second coming in 1992.

She's one of eight coaches all-time to reach 700 career wins, and only Tennessee's Pat Summitt needed fewer games to reach the milestone. No program went to more Final Fours in the 1990s than Stanford's six appearances, and after a decade without a Final Four appearance, including three straight region final losses from 2004-06, VanDerveer is back with a potent lineup.

VanDerveer continues to show a talent for recruiting elite players to one of the nation's most respected universities. Senior guard Candice Wiggins has led the Cardinal this season, but Stanford will have two standouts to build around next season in sophomore center Jayne Appel and freshman forward Kayla Pedersen. Wiggins is the only senior among the top seven scorers.

VanDerveer has proved herself on an international level as well, leading Team USA to a gold medal at the Atlanta Olympics in 1996. The 54-year-old coach, a 1975 Indiana graduate, was inducted into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002.

Stanford is here representing not just the Pac-10 but the western half of the United States, as the first team west of Austin, Texas, to reach a Final Four in 11 years. The Cardinal was able to overcome the "West Coast bias" that had it a No. 2 seed under Maryland, with senior Candice Wiggins getting her second 40-point game of the tournament in the region final.

Why they will win: Guard Candice Wiggins is having one of the best NCAA Tournaments in history, and Jayne Appel and Kayla Pedersen are an imposing frontcourt who can rebound with anyone. Everyone but Wiggins is back next season, so Stanford will be in strong position to return to next year's Final Four.

Why they won't: Overall youth could catch up with the Cardinal, as the players are Final Four novices, but the same can be said for semifinal opponent Connecticut. Stanford has to be able to find a way to contain Maya Moore, which nobody has figured out yet.

Kayla Pedersen

Forward, freshman

At 6 feet 4, the Pac-10 freshman of the year has created a "Twin Towers" frontcourt, giving the Cardinal a third scoring threat. She went for 15 points and 16 rebounds in her second college game, against Rutgers, and has had six 20-point games this season, including 28 in a loss to UCLA.

J.J. Hones

Guard, sophomore

She is coming off a torn ACL last season, which ended her freshman year in February 2007. After not scoring in double figures in any of the first 17 games, the 5-foot-10 player has done it eight times since, including a career-best 23 in the region final win against Maryland.

Candice Wiggins

Guard, senior

The four-time All-American has taken her game to another level in the last two weeks, going for 44 points against UTEP and 41 against Maryland. Connecticut coach Geno Auriemma joked that he may have to use a box-and-one defense and put the box on the 5-foot-11 Wiggins, leaving one player to guard Stanford's other four.

Rosalyn Gold-Onwude

Guard, sophomore

The 5-foot-10 point guard from Queens has made a solid recovery after missing last season with a knee injury. Has stepped up in big games, scoring nine of Stanford's 10 in overtime to beat Tennessee in December. She also had 15 points and six rebounds in the region semifinal win against Pittsburgh.

Jayne Appel

Center, sophomore

Overshadowed by Wiggins, she has had an outstanding tournament, averaging 21.5 points and 9.8 rebounds, including a 33-point game in the opening round against Cleveland State. At 6 feet 4, she broke the school's single-season blocks record, which she set as a freshman. Led team in fouls, so staying out of foul trouble is key against other elite centers.

"The thing that makes them so effective is they have more of a true point guard this year. Rosalyn (Gold-Onwude) is just doing a great job of running the show. Offensively, I think they're as good as anybody in the tournament. They put up (98 against Maryland). That's unheard of."

Meet the Stanford women's basketball team 04/05/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, April 8, 2008 1:33pm]
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