By: Joe Lami
The Stanford Cardinal hosted the New Mexico Lobos on Monday in their final tune-up before the big matchup this Saturday, where the number six-ranked team hosts the third ranked Lady Vols. They defeated the Lobos by the final score of 75-41, to move their record to 9-1. The team has also won the last 8 in a row. For the Lobos, they saw their two-game winning streak snapped and their record falls to 4-5 in the process.
The night for Stanford started great for Chiney Ogwumike, who recorded her 2,000th career point just minutes into a first half that she will never forget. The Stanford All-American Senior recorded 24 of the team’s 40 first half points.
“She’s such an anchor for us” raved VanDerveer on Ogwumike’s performance.
Ogwumike eventually would slow down the production as she finished off her night with eight in the second half ending with 32 points, only four shy of tying her career high, which is set earlier this season against Cal Poly.
The team production was something to be impressed about, as eight different players got on the scoreboard. The bench scored 32 points of their own. Bonnie Samuelson and Taylor Greenfield led the bench with eight each. Alex Green and Erica McCall were right behind them with six. McCall also added eight rebounds, tying her career high, which she set against Purdue in November. Though Mikaela Ruef only scored two points, she was outstanding on the boards, leading the team with ten.
“Mikaela got it done on the boards”praised VanDerveer on Ruef on her performance.
New Mexico was led by Guard, Bryce Owens, who scored 12 points. She was the only Lobo to get into double-digits. Brooke Allemand came off of the bench to add eight points. She was also great on the defensive side of the ball, with her only steal being a memorable one as she anticipated a pass, jumped in front of it and it led to a lay-up.
Lobos coach Yvonne Sanchez stated “it was an opportunity for us to go and play a great team” in her chance to go up against the sixth-ranked team.
The only down side for the Cardinal was that they once again gave up way too many offensive rebounds, with 20. “We have to do a lot better job of keeping teams off of the glass offensively, but that will give us something to work on between now and when we play Tennessee” said VanDerveer. The Lobos, who are ranked second in the Mountain West in rebound differential, did a great job against the Cardinal as they were out-rebounded by only two. The Cardinal won the rebound battle 43-41, however lost the offensive rebound battle 20-12.
The win for the Cardinal also marks the 750th win for VanDerveer as Stanford’s head coach.
The Stanford Cardinal have the rest of the week to prepare for what will be their toughest challenge at home yet, in number three ranked Tennessee. New Mexico will take a break for Christmas holiday and will return to the court on December 28th.