5:00 PM ET, February 25, 2012
Maples Pavilion, Stanford, California
STANFORD, Calif. -- Tara VanDerveer barely had time to soak up her 700th career victory at Stanford before the longtime Cardinal coach was asked whether she'd be sticking around to make a run at 800."That's only three years if you can get 30 a year," VanDerveer said.The second-ranked Cardinal are certainly showing no signs of slowing down this season and are barreling toward the postseason looking for their fifth straight appearance in the Final Four.At this rate, there's no telling when VanDerveer might quit.Chiney Ogwumike scored 16 points and had 12 rebounds, older sister Nnemkadi Ogwumike added 15 points and five blocks and Stanford beat Utah 69-42 on Saturday to extend the nation's longest active home winning streak to 78 games.In doing so, the Cardinal completed the season sweep of the Utes while giving their Hall of Fame coach her milestone win."It would have happened sooner if Nneka had a clone," joked VanDerveer, who is fifth on the all-time coaching list with 852 wins. "She coached me before the game. She said, 'Tara, keep it together.' I did my best ... but you're lucky if you ever have a player like this in your career."Joslyn Tinkle had 12 points and nine rebounds for the Cardinal (26-1, 17-0 Pac-12), who led the entire way and ran their conference winning streak to 74 despite going just 2 of 12 on 3-pointers.Taryn Wicijowski scored 15 points and Iwalani Rodrigues had 12 for Utah, which has lost two straight after winning three in a row. The Utes trailed by as much as 27 and never recovered after shooting 23.8 percent in the first half."Playing a team like this, it takes a little while to get used to the size and the pace," Utah coach Anthony Levrets said. "We didn't shoot well but a lot of that has to do with how (the Cardinal) defend."VanDerveer became just the seventh coach to win 700 games at one school with Stanford's 23rd straight victory this season. She joined a list that includes Tennessee's Pat Summitt and Connecticut's Geno Auriemma.Even in the milestone victory -- which came on Senior Day at Stanford -- VanDerveer was her typical fiery self.She yelled at her players for a mistake on an inbounds play with the Cardinal leading by 17 in the second half, then later shook her head emphatically as she questioned Nneka Ogwumike during a timeout.VanDerveer was also the first to notice when the scoreboard malfunctioned with 3½ minutes remaining -- only after a Stanford basket failed to register.The crowd at Maples Pavilion rose in unison to give VanDerveer a standing ovation after the final buzzer sounded, though the veteran coach showed little emotion.Instead, she seemed more caught up in the postgame ceremony honoring Stanford's four seniors, including team captain Nneka Ogwumike, who has never lost a home game in her four years on the Farm."Defending Maples has been real important," Ogwumike said. "We've had a lot of great teams come through here and we've done a good job of getting all the young players to understand how important it is to win here."Utah (13-14, 6-10) made one run and pulled within 50-34 when Wicijowski scored on a three-point play midway through the second half but wilted down the stretch and remained winless in 14 games against Stanford.The Cardinal got their normal scoring from the Ogwumike sisters, who combined to go 12 of 23 from the floor. Stanford also got a big lift from freshman guard Amber Orrange, who had 12 points and four rebounds.Now it's just a matter of Stanford tightening up things in their bid for the postseason.The second-ranked Cardinal host Seattle University in a nonconference game Wednesday before closing out the Pac-12 slate on the road against California on March 4.Stanford had no problem scoring against Utah and rode one of its best defensive efforts of the season to the lopsided win.The Utes were called for shot clock violations on their first two possessions, made just five field goals in the first half and trailed 36-14 at the break.Utah coach Anthony Levrets, frustrated by his team's lack of offense, repeatedly yelled at officials throughout the first half and was whistled for a technical foul with 2:22 left.Tinkle, who had six points during an 18-3 run, made both free throws to give the Cardinal a 35-10 lead. The Utes never got closer than 16 the rest of the way.
Team Stat Comparison
|FG Made-Attempted||17-48 (.354)||27-60 (.450)|
|3P Made-Attempted||2-10 (.200)||2-12 (.167)|
|FT Made-Attempted||6-9 (.667)||13-16 (.813)|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||18 (0/0)||14 (0/0)|