November 23, 2010

Yale Heads West To Face WNIT Champion California

Complete Game Notes in PDF

  • Game 4 • California (2-1)
  • Nov. 23, 2010 • 10 p.m. ET
  • Haas Pavilion • Berkeley, Calif.
  • Live Stats/Audio: http://www.calbears.com/

 

The Bulldogs head west in hopes of snapping a two-game losing streak when they take on the Golden Bears in a non-conference game Tuesday night. Yale is looking to bounce back from a pair of double-digit losses, including an 83-64 loss at Boston University and, most recently, a 79-61 loss at home against Delaware. The Bulldogs opened the season with a 74-71 win at Holy Cross. Yale is meeting California for just the second time in the program's 37-year history and the first time since 1979.


Last Time Out

Sophomores Ericka von Kaeppler and Allie Messimer each scored 14 points for Yale, but Delaware's Elena Delle Donne scored 24 of her 41 points in the first half and powered the Blue Hens to a 79-61 win at John J. Lee Amphitheater Saturday night. Seniors Yoyo Greenfield and Mady Gobrecht each recorded a season-high 12 points for Yale. Delaware outrebounded Yale 40-20 and outscored the Bulldogs 32-16 in the paint.

 

California Dreaming

On Sunday, the Bulldogs head to the Golden State to take on a pair of foes that they have met only once before. Yale will face California on Tuesday, with the game slated to start at 10 p.m. ET. Following the stay in Berkeley, the Bulldogs head east to take on UC Davis, which is located just west of Sacramento. For sophomore Ericka von Kaeppler, the trip is a chance to visit home. She grew up in Palo Alto, which is located just south of Berkeley at the southern end of San Francisco Bay. Two other Bulldogs are going back to play in their home state, but still hours away from home. Captain Yoyo Greenfield is a Los Angeles native, while sophomore Aarica West is from Buena Park, just south of Los Angeles.

 

Week To Forget

The Bulldogs dropped back to back losses last week, falling at Boston University, 83-64, and at home to Delaware, 79-61. It is the first time Yale has lost back to back games by 18 or more points apiece since the 2007-08 season when it opened the season with a 56-point home loss to Stanford (100-44) on Nov. 9, 2007, and a 46-point loss at Arizona State (84-38) on Nov. 19, 2007. Yale nearly matched the undesirable trend when it lost three Ivy League games in a row in 2008-09, falling at Penn (62-46), at Cornell (80-62) and at Columbia (77-61).

 

Troubling Trends

Yale has been outrebounded in all three games by a total of 130-93 and by an average of 13.3 rebounds per game. Opponents have outshot the Bulldogs in every game. In the three games so far this season, Yale has allowed opponents to hit 96-188 shots overall, or 51.1 percent from the field, while the Bulldogs have only hit on 71-of-184 attempts, or just 38.6 percent. The Bulldogs have led at halftime in only one game, which also happened to be the only victory of the year, coming in the season-opener at Holy Cross.

 

Models of Consistency

Senior forward Mady Gobrecht and sophomore guard Allie Messimer have been one of the most consistent performers in the opening weeks of the season for the Bulldogs. Gobrecht has averaged 10.7 ppg, scoring in double figures in each of the Bulldogs' three games this season while hitting 12 of her 28 field-goal attempts and seven of her eight free-throw attempts. She has also averaged 6.0 rpg, grabbing at least five rebounds in each of the three games. She also has totaled six assists and two blocks. Messimer has also scored in double figures in every game, averaging 11.7 ppg while hitting 13 of her 29 field-goal attempts and five of her 15 3-point attempts. She also has six steals through three games.

 

Thanksgiving Still A Family Affair

Although the players and coaches will be away from their families for the Thanksgiving holiday, they will still find a way to make the holiday feast a family affair. Following Tuesday's game against California, Ericka von Kaeppler and her family will entertain her teammates at their home just outside of Palo Alto, Calif., Wednesday night for dinner. They will travel to the UC Davis on Thanksgiving morning and stage a morning practice in preparation for Friday's game against the Aggies. But in the afternoon, the players and coaches will gather together for a Thanksgiving feast with each other, celebrating the holiday as a team.

 

Every Day is Mother's Day

Senior forward Mady Gobrecht is the daughter of head coach Chris Gobrecht. They are the only current active mother-daughter, coach-player tandems in Division I women's basketball. This is the sixth time in Yale's 157-year athletic history that a head coach is mentoring his or her child in a varsity sport, and the first where the combo is mother-daughter (men's fencing: Robert & Maurice Grasson, 1936-38; baseball: Smoky Joe & Joseph Wood, 1939-41; men's basketball: Howard & David Hobson, 1952-55; men's squash: John & Jack Skillman, 1954-55; football: Jordan & Harry Olivar, 1957-59).

 

The Fab Four

Yale has bolstered its lineup for 2010-11 with four freshmen that are expected to make an immediate impact. Guard Amanda Tyson, forwards Janna Graf and Alexandra Osborn-Jones, and center Zenab Keita comprise one of the strongest freshman classes during Head Coach Chris Gobrecht's tenure.

Nice to Meet You

Non-conference games against Florida State, Delaware and Villanova will all be first-time meetings. The scheduled West Coast trip will mark just the second meeting Yale has had with California and UC Davis

 

Making the Rounds

The Bulldogs' 14 non-conference games feature opponents from nine different conferences (ACC, Big East, Pac 10, America East, Big West, Northeast Conference, Atlantic 10, Colonial Athletic Association, and the Patriot League.

 

Schedule Strength

Seven teams on the Bulldogs' 2010-11 slate participated in the postseason last spring. Florida State and Princeton earned a berth in the 2009 NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament. Five other Bulldog opponents participated in the WNIT, including WNIT champion California.

 

Hoping To Bounce Back

Brown (1-2), Harvard (2-1) and Princeton (2-1) each picked up a win last week as the Ancient Eight struggled to a combined 3-13 record in a busy non-conference slate. With 18 games in this week's Ivy schedule, all eight squads will look to boost their records, while Columbia (0-3), Cornell (0-3) and Dartmouth (0-4) will be in the hunt for that much needed first win of the season. The teams are spread about the country this week, including Princeton traveling to the Vanderbilt Tournament in Nashville. Columbia and Yale make the longest trips, each heading to the West Coast. The Lions face San Diego on Saturday while the Bulldogs take on California and UC Davis.

 

2010-11 Ivy League Preseason Poll

Voted on by a panel of Ivy media and women's basketball sports information directors, Princeton received 16 of 17 first-place votes and 135 points and are expected to repeat as the Ivy League champion.

Predicted Order of Finish (First-Place Votes in Parentheses)

           School                Points

  1. Princeton (16)          135
  2. Harvard (1)              115
  3. Dartmouth                 96
  4. Yale                           84
  5. Columbia                   73
  6. Brown                       50
  7. Cornell                      39
  8. Penn                         19

 

Against The Ranks

In a busy week filled with 18 games from Monday through Sunday, Yale and Princeton will face off against the stiffest competition of the week. The Bulldogs head to California, which is 2-1 and receiving votes in the Nov. 22 AP Poll. Meanwhile, the Tigers travel to Nashville, Tenn., for the Vanderbilt Tournament, where they will face Southern California, which is also 2-1 and receiving votes in the latest AP Poll. The Trojans' lone loss is to then No. 6 Duke.

 

Scouting California

Coming off of a 24-13 campaign in 2009-10, which ended with a Women's NIT championship, California returns four starters from the title-winning squad and is already off to a solid start to the season. The Golden Bears won their first two games of the season over Rutgers (66-57) and Saint Mary's (89-63) before theiir eight-game winning streak dating back to last season was snapped in a double-overtime loss at New Mexico (63-54). Sophomore forward DeNesha Stallworth leads the Bears in scoring at 15.0 ppg, third-best in the Pac-10, and is fourth in the conference in rebounding (10.0 rpg). She has recorded a double-double in each of the first three games this season. The Bears are dangerous from outside the arc, averaging 20.0 3-point attempts per game. Defensively, the Bears are the toughest Pac-10 so far this season, allowing opponents to shoot just 33.0 percent.

 

Fab Freshmen

Just three games into the 2010-11 season, Cal's three freshmen are already making significant contributions. Lindsay Sherbert has cracked the starting lineup out of the gates, and she was among the starting five in each of the first three games of the season. She grabbed 10 of her 14 rebounds against New Mexico in the first half. She also scored a season-high 20 points against Saint Mary's. She has averaged 9.3 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. Afure Jemerigbe, came off the bench in the first three games and scored nine points in each of the first two games of her college career. Mikayla Lyles played in two of the three games and averaged 14.5 minutes in the pair of games. She scored six points in her debut against Saint Mary's.

 

Fourth Of Ten

If the Pac-10's Preseason Coaches Poll is any indication of the quality of the teams in the conference, the Golden Bears are considered to be the fourth-best team in the state of California. Stanford was selected to win the conference, receiving nine of 10 first-place votes and 81 points. UCLA received the other first-place vote and 73 points, followed by USC (61) and Cal (60). Arizona State was chosen to finish fifth with 49 points, followed by Oregon (37), Arizona (36), Washington (22), Washington State (22), and Oregon State (9).

 

Series History

Yale has faced California only once in its 37-year history prior to this season. The last meeting came nearly 32 years ago. Yale traveled to Cal's Berkeley, Calif., campus and dropped an 80-61 decision to the Golden Bears. This game will feature the fifth-ever meeting against a team from the Pac-10 for the Bulldogs. Yale is still searching for its first victory against a Pac-10 opponent.

Report filed by Jon Erickson Jr., Yale Sports Publicity

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