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Women’s basketball eyes rivalry week

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Entering the final two weeks of regular season play, the No. 18 Stanford women’s basketball team (19-7, 11-3 Pac-12) seeks to come out with two victories in five days against rival Cal.

The Card are coming off of two much-needed victories against USC and UCLA after the team dropped matchups against ASU and Arizona two weekends ago. Four Stanford players notched double figures against the Trojans, while senior forward Bonnie Samuelson led the squad to victory with eight threes on Sunday versus UCLA.

(LJSHOTYOU/SPO) Senior forward Bonnie Samuelson (above) has been an offensive powerhouse and the Card's hot shooter as of late, hitting eight threes against UCLA.
Senior forward Bonnie Samuelson (above) has been an offensive powerhouse and the Card’s hot shooter as of late, hitting eight threes against UCLA. LJSHOTYOU/The Stanford Daily

In addition to focusing on effort, communication and rebounding — head coach Tara VanDerveer’s keys to success since the losses against the Arizona schools — Stanford will demand more from senior point guard Amber Orrange, who despite averaging 12.8 points per game only scored 2 points against UCLA. If both Samuelson sisters get into their three-point shooting groove, the paint could open up, allowing sophomore guards Lili Thompson and Briana Roberson to score off the drive. Freshman forward Kaylee Johnson, who won Pac-12 Freshman of the Week for the third time this season, will be relied upon for her rebounding

prowess, as she averages 10.3 rebounds per game.

The Bears (20-6, 11-3) were on an eight game in-conference winning streak, which included a victory against No. 10 Arizona State, before they lost to USC at home over the weekend. The team has many offensive weapons — Reshanda Gray (18.1 points per game), Brittany Boyd (13.5) and Mikayla Cowling (11.0) — whose productivity the Card will look to limit on Wednesday.

The first of the two Stanford-Cal matchups this week kicks off at Haas Pavilion Wednesday at 7 p.m.

Contact Alexa Philippou at aphil723 ‘at’ stanford.edu.

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Alexa Philippou '18 is a political science major and a former Managing Editor of The Daily's sports section. She switched from the sports section to news her junior year, where she has worked on the university/local beat since. Being from Baltimore, she is a die-hard Ravens and Orioles fan who cried when the Ravens won the Super Bowl. To contact Alexa, please email her at aphil723 'at' stanford.edu.