Second-Place USC Hosts UCLA In Crosstown Clash
LOS ANGELES - The USC women's basketball team (16-6 overall, 10-3 in the Pac-10, good for second place), under the direction of second-year coach Fred Williams and paced by Naismith Player of the Year candidate Tina Thompson, hosts UCLA (11-11, 5-8) on Saturday (Feb. 22) at 7:30 p.m. at the Lyon Center. The Women of Troy have won 7 of their last 9 games and have already surpassed both its overall and conference win totals of last season when the Women of Troy went 13-14, 8-10. Thompson recently has become only the fourth player in Pac-10 history to reach the 2,000-point plateau for her career and now stands at 2,090.
TELEVISION - The game will be televised live on Saturday (Feb. 22) at 7:30 p.m. by Fox Sports West 2. Tom Kelly and former USC Naismith Award winner Lisa Leslie will call the action.
RANKINGS - USC and UCLA are not ranked.
VS. UCLA - USC leads UCLA, 27-22. USC, which saw its 9-game winning streak against UCLA fall last season in Westwood, returned to its winning ways against the Bruins with a 60-56 win earlier this year on Jan. 24 at Pauley Pavilion. Sophomore guard Kristin Clark had an outstanding game, scoring a game-high 23 points on 10-of-20 shooting, making 4 key steals and getting 2 assists. Senior forward Tina Thompson had a double-double with 14 points and 15 rebounds. The Bruins led at halftime, 34-30, but the Women of Troy outscored them, 30-22, in the second half. With the score tied at 40, Clark made a steal and a lay-up to give the Women of Troy a 42-40 lead with 13:56 left, a lead they would not relinquish. USC got the lead up to 7 points with 2:29 left at 59-52 following 2 Thompson free throws, and held on the rest of the way. Freshman guard Melanie Pearson led the Bruins with 16 points and 9 rebounds. The last time USC faced UCLA at the Lyon Center Thompson scored a career-high 49 points, 1 point shy of the Pac-10 and USC-record 50 points set by former Trojan Cherie Nelson.
LAST WEEK - USC defeated Arizona State, 77-63, on Friday (Feb. 14) and fell to Arizona, 82-64, on Sunday (Feb. 16). Both games were at the Lyon Center. Against the Sun Devils, USC was led by senior forward Tina Thompson's 22 points and 8 rebounds and senior center Michelle Campbell's 10 points and 11 rebounds. The Sun Devils, led by Molly Tuter's 18 points, were held to only 31.9 percent shooting from the floor. USC took a 36-34 lead into halftime and opened the second half with a 9-2 run to take a 45-36 lead. Arizona State got as close as 51-46 with 12:15 to play, but an 11-2 run gave USC a 62-48 edge with 8:30 to go. USC, which also got 10 points from senior guard Erica Jackson and 11 off the bench from freshman forward Tiffany Washington, held a double-digit lead for the rest of the game. In the loss to the Wildcats, USC was held to 33.8 percent shooting. Thompson led USC with 26 points and 12 rebounds, but the Women of Troy couldn't overcome the aggressive defense and consistent outside shooting of Arizona. The Wildcats, led by freshman Lisa Griffith's 25 points and 7 3-pointers, turned a 30-19 first-half deficit into a 42-35 halftime lead thanks in part to a 17-0 run. They only built on the lead after the half, never leading by less than 9 points the rest of the way. Campbell added 14 points for the USC cause.
RECORDS - Senior forward Tina Thompson surpassed the 2,000-point mark for her career against Stanford on Feb. 6 and now stands at 2,090, good for third place on the Pac-10's all-time scoring list. She just passed Stanford's Val Whiting, who scored 2,077 points from 1989-93. In second is Oregon State's Tanja Kostic, who's at 2,349. She has also moved into second place on the Pac-10's all-time list for free throws attempted and made and stands at 501-for-694 for her career. Thompson has 1,091 rebounds for her career, good for fourth place on the Pac-10 career rebounding chart. Next up is Whiting (1,134). Thompson just cracked the Pac-10's Top 5 chart in field goals and stands at 757. She is 14 away from doing the same in field goal attempts . . . USC's 12 3-pointers at Arizona set a school record for most 3-pointers in a game. The previous record was 11, set against Arizona State on Feb. 15, 1996. Kristin Clark's 5-of-6 performance on 3-pointers in the Arizona game tied her for the second-most made in a game with Erica Mashia's performance last year against California. Clark's 3-point percentage against the Wildcats is also good for second all-time on the single game chart . . . The Women of Troy tied a school record at Washington when they made 19-of-20 free throws for a clip of 95 percent. The Women of Troy did the same in 1993.
TROY NOTES - USC is off to its best conference start (10-3) since the 1993-94 season when the Women of Troy won their first 10 Pac-10 games . . . Three of USC's 6 losses have been by 3 points or less and 4 of USC's 6 losses have come at the hands of teams that were ranked in the AP Top 10 at the time of the game . . . USC topped the 90-point mark in 3 consecutive games (UC Santa Barbara, Long Beach State, New Orleans) for the first time since the 1986-87 season. The last time USC did it 4 times in a row was in the 1982-83 season when the Women of Troy surpassed 90 points 5 consecutive times . . . USC has outblocked its opponents at a wild pace, 113-35, or an average of 5.1-1.6 . . . USC has had 2 overtime games this season (UC Santa Barbara and Western Kentucky, double overtime) and is 1-1 in those games, beating the Gauchos and falling to the Lady Toppers . . . USC is holding opponents to a .377 field goal percentage and is outscoring opponents, 76.4-68.2 . . . USC has had 6 players set or tie career scoring highs this season (Michelle Campbell, Kim and Kristin Clark, Erica Jackson, Jodi Parriott, Adrain Williams) . . . In the double-overtime Western Kentucky game, USC had 5 players play more than 40 minutes, including Kristin Clark, who played all 50 minutes . . . USC has played 3 Sun Belt Conference schools, beating New Orleans and falling to Louisiana Tech and Western Kentucky . . . USC swept the Washington schools on the road this year for the first time since the 1992-93 season.
COACH FRED WILLIAMS - USC women's basketball coach Fred Williams is in his second year as head coach and is in his 12th season with the program in some capacity. He was named head coach of the Women of Troy following Cheryl Miller's resignation in September of 1995. A longtime fixture in the Los Angeles basketball community, Williams was USC's associate head coach under Miller for 2 seasons (1994-95) and spent 8 seasons as an assistant (1984-91). In his first season as head coach, Williams' squad, which featured 6 freshmen and only 1 healthy senior, finished 13-14 overall and 8-10 in the Pacific-10 Conference. As associate head coach during the 1993-94 and 94-95 seasons, Williams helped direct USC to a 44-14 record and 2 NCAA Tournament appearances (including to the Mideast Regional Final in 1994).
TINA THOMPSON - A Naismith Player of the Year Top 10 candidate for the 1996-97 season, 6-3 forward Tina Thompson is in the midst of an All-American senior season, averaging 22.5 points and 10.4 rebounds, shooting 52.6 percent from the field and 39.5 from 3-point land. She is also averaging 1.2 blocks and 2.0 steals per game, scoring at least 20 points in 17 of 22 contests, including 10 efforts of 25 or more. She surpassed the 2,000-point mark for her career against Stanford on Feb. 6. Thompson, who has 12 double-doubles this season and 54 in her career, has been named Pac-10 Player of the Week 3 times this season for the weeks ending Dec. 8, Dec. 22 and Jan. 19. They were her third, fourth and fifth such honors in her career with one each coming as a sophomore and junior. Thompson, who has also been named to 2 all-tournament teams this season in addition to being selected as MVP of the Pac-10/Sun Belt Challenge, posted a season-high 31 points vs. UC Santa Barbara (12/19) to go along with 14 rebounds. She had 30 points against New Orleans (12/28) in the first day of the Pac-10/Sun Belt Challenge and she scored 26 points, grabbed 13 rebounds, blocked 3 shots and had 5 steals vs. Long Beach State (12/21). Thompson hit 26 again at Arizona (1/16) to go with 14 rebounds. She began this season with a 25-point, 11-rebound effort against San Diego State (12/1). She put up 22 points and a career-high 6 blocks against Western Illinois (12/6) in the first round of the Dial Soap Classic at Louisiana Tech and came back with a game-high 25 points (including 2 3-pointers) in the title game against the Lady Techsters (12/7), helping her earn All-Tournament honors. Thompson posted a 25-point, 17-rebound showing against Utah (12/14) in the UC Irvine Tournament, where she also earned All-Tournament honors. She opened the Pac-10 with a double-double at Washington (1/2) and followed that up with a 23-point, 10-rebound, 4-steal outing against Washington State (1/4). She had 19 points against California (1/10), 25 vs. Stanford (1/12) and 22 vs. Arizona State (1/18). Her latest double-doubles came against UCLA (1/24) with 14 points and 15 rebounds, vs. Oregon State (1/31) with 21 points and 12 rebounds and against Oregon with 20 points and 13 rebounds. She scored 29 points and had 7 rebounds against Stanford (2/6) and had 17 points at Cal (2/8), including the go-ahead layup with less than a minute to play. On the latest homestand, Thompson had 22 points on 9-of-15 shooting against Arizona State (2/14) and followed that with 26 points and 12 rebounds against Arizona (2/16). Thompson is the active leading scorer and rebounder in the Pac-10 with 2,090 points and 1,091 boards to her credit, good for third and fourth place, respectively, on the all-time lists. Thompson's junior season was highlighted by a 49-point effort against UCLA, which is second all-time among Pac-10 and USC performers, just 1 point shy of former Trojan standout Cherie Nelson's 50 against Cal in 1989.
MICHELLE CAMPBELL - The top shot blocker in the Pac-10, 6-5 center Michelle Campbell has proven to be a big factor in the fortunes of the Women of Troy in 1996-97. She put in another summer in which she worked hard on her game and USC has relied on her for inside scoring support as well as strong defense in the post. A reserve last season, she is again a starter and is flourishing, averaging 11.8 points, 7.8 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game. Campbell, who has 5 double-doubles and has scored in double figures in 9 of her last 10 games, put forth an excellent performance in the Pac-10/Sun Belt Challenge, earning All-Tournament honors. She scored 25 points, blocked 7 shots, both career highs, and had 12 rebounds against Western Kentucky (12/29) and had 16 points against New Orleans (12/28) to go along with 4 blocks and a career-high 5 assists. Most recently, she had 10 points and 11 rebounds against Arizona State (2/14). She had 23 points and 9 rebounds vs. Oregon State (1/31), 18 points and 9 rebounds at Arizona State (1/18), 17 points and 3 blocks at Cal (2/8) and had 15 points and tied a season high with 13 rebounds vs. Long Beach State (12/21) to go along with 4 blocks. Campbell had 14 points and 13 rebounds vs. UC Santa Barbara (12/19), 14 points vs. Arizona (2/16), 13 points and 10 rebounds at Arizona (1/16), 13 points and 3 blocks against Oregon (2/2), 12 points vs. Stanford (1/10), 11 points at UCLA (1/24), 10 points against Utah (12/14) and 11 rebounds and 3 blocks vs. Colorado State (12/13). Campbell, who has at least 1 block in 20 of 21 games, increased her scoring in 7 consecutive games in one early stretch, going from 4 points against Louisiana Tech to 25 against Western Kentucky. One of only 2 fifth-year seniors on the team (Rashida Jeffery is the other), Campbell was second on the Pac-10's active career leader board in blocked shots entering her senior season and now has 150. Campbell was a key reserve off the bench in 1995-96 as a junior, averaging 4.7 points and 3.1 rebounds per game in just 13.4 minutes.
KRISTIN CLARK - A feisty guard with a do-all attitude, sophomore Kristin Clark (identical twin of USC guard Kim Clark) figured to serve mainly as a backup guard in 1996-97, but has moved into the starting role as a result of Erica Mashia's hip injury. Clark has been sharp all season as the team's second-leading scorer (11.8) and possibly the Pac-10's most improved player. Clark scored a career-high 25 points at Arizona (1/16), making 5-of-6 3-pointers in the process. She followed that up 2 games later with 23 points and 4 key steals at UCLA (1/24) and she had 20 points (including 3 3-pointers) against Oregon (2/2). In USC's overtime win over UC Santa Barbara (12/19), Clark hit the game-tying shot, a 12-footer with 14 seconds to go, that sent the game into the extra period. She finished with 11 points and 6 steals in the win and has had at least 2 steals in 16 of 22 games this season. At Cal (2/8), her 3-pointer with 1:24 left in the game got USC to within 1 point, kickstarting a Women of Troy game-winning rally. She has scored 19 points 3 times, in wins over Utah (12/14) and New Orleans (12/28) and in a loss at Stanford (2/6). She had 13 points and 7 rebounds at Washington State (1/4) and, in the second game of the Pac-10/Sun Belt Challenge vs. Western Kentucky (12/29), Clark played all 50 minutes of the double-overtime affair, scoring 12 points and dishing out 8 assists. She opened the season with 12 points and 6 rebounds against San Diego State (12/1), had 11 points, 2 assists and 3 steals vs. Washington (1/2), 12 points and 4 assists at Arizona State (1/18) and had 10 points and 4 steals vs. Stanford (1/10). A solid ball-handler, the 5-7 Clark is equally deft at penetrating and dishing or pulling up for a 3-pointer. She is also valuable defensively as she is one of the quickest players on the team and is first in steals (2.4) and floor burns. Playing in all 27 games as a freshman, Clark came on at the end of the 1995-96 season and became a valuable contributor for the USC backcourt, starting 3 times.
ERICA JACKSON - Coach Williams is looking for a solid leadership figure as well as a veteran guard in 1996-97 and has both in 5-8 senior Erica Jackson. With 50 career starts to her credit entering this season, Jackson is a starter for her third consecutive year. Jackson (averaging a team-high 4.2 assists) tied her career high in scoring against California (1/10) with 14 points on 5-of-8 shooting, which included 2-of-3 on 3-pointers. She followed that with an 11-point effort, including 2 more 3-pointers, against Stanford (1/12) and had 10 points, 9 assists and another 2 3-pointers at Arizona (1/16). She scored 11 points and had 8 assists in the win over Oregon State (1/31), had 7 assists 2 days later vs. Oregon (2/2), scored 10 points vs. Arizona State (2/14), scored 9 points and dished out 6 assists in USC's opener vs. San Diego State (12/1) and had 9 points again vs. Utah (12/14) and New Orleans (12/28). Jackson, who had a career-high 10 assists vs. Western Kentucky (12/29), is USC's second best free throw shooter, making 42 of her 60 attempts (70 percent), which includes a stretch of 17 in a row that ended against the Gauchos. She is set at point guard, but, as she did for much of last season, she is able to slide over and play the 2-guard as well. Jackson started all but 1 game as a junior in 1995-96, sharing the backcourt with Erica Mashia.
ADRAIN WILLIAMS - A 6-4 sophomore forward, Adrain Williams has started 9 games for the Women of Troy this season after starting most of the season as a freshman. An athletic player, she is quick and agile for her size, a good rebounder and she can get out on the break or pull up for a jumper. She is fifth in scoring (7.6) and third in rebounding (5.8) and posted the best game of her USC career against Colorado State (12/13) with 21 points and 14 rebounds. Williams, who has come off the bench since the Pac-10 season started, had 13 points and 13 rebounds at California (2/8), hitting 2 clutch free throws in a one-and-one situation with 21.8 seconds left to give USC a 3-point cushion, which the Women of Troy held on to. Williams put together a double-double in the win over Long Beach State (12/21) with 13 points and 11 rebounds and repeated the feat vs. California (1/10) with 12 points and 13 rebounds off the bench. She scored 12 points on 6-of-8 shooting at Washington State (1/4) off the bench, posted 11 points and 4 steals against Western Illinois (12/6), had 11 points vs. New Orleans (12/28) and another 11 against Oregon State (1/31). A frontcourt starter in 20 of 27 games as a freshman in 1995-96, Williams averaged 9.6 points per game (third on the team) and was second in rebounding (5.8).
JODI PARRIOTT - A versatile forward, 6-2 sophomore Jodi Parriott has seen her role increase in 1996-97 as she provides Coach Williams with options at both the 3 and 4 positions. Parriott, USC's fourth-leading scorer (8.6) who has started at small forward since the Pac-10 season started, has become a valuable contributor offensively and defensively for USC. She scored a career-high 22 points vs. Western Kentucky (12/29) on 9-of-16 shooting and then matching that on 9-of-15 shooting at Washington (1/2) in her first career start. In the win over the Huskies, Parriott sank 3 free throws with no time on the clock to give USC a 1-point win. She followed that up with a 13-point effort on 6-of-8 shooting at Washington State (1/4). Parriott posted 20 points (including 7 in overtime) and 8 rebounds against UC Santa Barbara (12/19), had 16 points and 8 rebounds vs. California (1/10) and scored 11 points and made a career-high 5 steals against Oregon State (1/31). Playing in all but 1 game, all off the bench, as a 1995-96 freshman, Parriott averaged 1.9 points and 1.9 rebounds in an average of 9.6 minutes per outing.
KIM CLARK - After missing most of last season with a right shoulder injury, Kim Clark (identical twin of USC guard Kristin Clark) is expected to add outside shooting depth to USC's perimeter game in 1996-97. The 5-7 redshirt freshman, an aggressive player with an eye for loose balls, has come on recently as a defensive catalyst and as a back-up ball-handler. A lower back injury kept her out of early action this season, but Clark, now averaging 8.9 minutes per game, made her season debut against Long Beach State (12/21). She has played in 12 games this season, setting a career high with 11 points vs. California (1/10) on 5-of-6 shooting in 8 minutes. She played 17 minutes at UCLA (1/24) and was on the floor in the game's final minutes and played 18 minutes at Stanford (2/6). At Arizona State (1/18), Clark had 3 points, 2 assists and 2 steals in 11 minutes. She is one of 2 2-sport athletes on the team (true freshman Antoinette Polk is the other) and was a starting midfielder on the USC soccer team this fall. Clark scored 6 goals this year and had 3 assists.
RASHIDA JEFFERY - Counted on for important minutes inside the key, 6-2 fifth-year senior forward/center Rashida Jeffery saw her season, and USC career, end on Jan. 21 with knee surgery. Jeffery hadn't played since USC's second game of the season when she suffered a sprained knee. Jeffery was expected to play a valuable role for the Women of Troy in 1996-97 as the top post player off the bench. Jeffery, plagued by knee problems throughout her career, got a chance to start in USC's opener and came up big, grabbing a career-high 17 rebounds in 31 minutes to go along with 10 points against San Diego State (12/1). She was 3-of-3 against Western Illinois when she suffered the knee injury that ended her season. When healthy, Jeffery was one of the most athletic players in the conference and routinely played at the rim, making her one of the most fierce rebounders in the Pac-10. USC's most productive frontcourt player off the bench as a junior in 1995-96, Jeffery averaged 5.3 points and 4.7 rebounds (third best on the team) in only 15.2 minutes per game.
ERICA MASHIA - A Pac-10 All-Freshman team selection as a freshman guard in 1995-96, Erica Mashia was slated as USC's starting shooting guard this season. However, after finishing second on the team in scoring as a freshman and setting school season free throw and 3-point percentage records, Mashia reaggravated a hip injury suffered last season (in the preseason) and will likely be forced to redshirt.
FANTASTIC FRESHMEN - Williams added 4 freshmen to his roster this season, including 2 who are seeing opportunities right away. Guard Kiyoko Miller (5-8), from Valley Christian High (Brea, Calif.), comes to USC as a USA Today All-USA Honorable Mention and Southern Section Division IV Co-Player of the Year. Forward Tiffany Washington (6-2), from Bishop Montgomery High (Torrance, Calif.), was the Southern Section Division III Player of the Year. Miller, who made her first career start at Arizona (1/16), scored a season-high 7 points vs. Utah (12/14), had a season-high 5 rebounds vs. New Orleans (12/28), had 6 points, 3 assists and 2 steals vs. Long Beach State (12/21), 6 points on 3-of-4 shooting vs. California (1/10) and had a combined 10 points in USC's 2 games in the Dial Soap Classic (12/6-7). Washington, who recently came up with a strong showing against Stanford, scoring 5 points in 5 minutes, posted a double-double in only her second game, scoring 12 points and getting 11 rebounds against Western Illinois (12/6) and then scored 11 points (on 5-of-5 shooting) with 7 rebounds vs. Colorado State (12/13). Washington recently matched that with 11 points and 5 rebounds vs. Arizona State (2/14) and she had 8 points and 7 rebounds (5 offensive) at Arizona State (1/18). She has made 24-of-44 shots on the season (54.6 percent) and is averaging 3.4 points and 3.1 rebounds in 11.2 minutes per game. Coach Williams has welcomed to the squad Antoinette Polk, a 5-10 guard who recently finished her first season with the volleyball team. Polk spent the volleyball season as a redshirt, but began basketball practice Dec. 16 and made her USC debut in the final 3 minutes of the Long Beach State game. She made 1 of 2 shots in her first appearance and is 5-of-10 on the season in 5 games, recently setting a career high with 6 points at Arizona State on 3-of-3 shooting. The Sacramento Player of the Year, Polk, from El Camino High (Sacramento, Calif.), is an excellent athlete with great speed, quickness and leaping abilities. Also new is walk-on Robyn Lewis, a 5-7 guard from Gahr High (Cerritos, Calif.), who earned All-San Gabriel Valley League honors as a senior last year. She has played in 7 games this season, making 4-of-12 shots.
USC IN THE PAC-10 (as of 2/16) - Tina Thompson is the Pac-10's leading scorer (22.5) and second-leading rebounder (10.4). She is third in 3-point percentage (.395), tied for fourth in blocked shots (1.2) and field goal percentage (.526) and is fifth in free throw percentage (.760). Michelle Campbell leads the Pac-10 in blocked shots (2.2), is sixth in field goal percentage (.518) and is seventh in rebounding (7.8). Erica Jackson is sixth in assists (4.2) and Kristin Clark is tied for fifth in steals (2.4). As a team, USC is second in the Pac-10 in rebounding (43.6) and is third in field goal percentage defense (.381) and scoring offense (76.4). USC's 45 free throws vs. UC Santa Barbara (12/19), its .950 free throw percentage at Washington and its .800 3-point percentage vs. Arizona State on 4-of-5 shooting are Pac-10 highs and its 59 rebounds against Colorado State (12/13) is tied for a high. Campbell's 7 blocks vs. Western Kentucky (12/29) are a Pac-10 high.
SCHEDULE - The Women of Troy have faced 3 teams currently in the AP Top 25 this season: Louisiana Tech, Stanford (twice) and Western Kentucky. USC fell to then-No. 3 Louisiana Tech in the Dial Soap Classic, 66-47, lost to then-No. 9 Western Kentucky, 85-82, in double overtime, and lost to No. 3 Stanford twice: 77-76 at the Lyon Center and 103-69 in Palo Alto.
UCLA - The Bruins, under fourth-year coach Kathy Olivier, are 11-11 overall, 5-8 in the Pac-10, tied for sixth place. Freshman forward Maylana Martin is averaging a team-high 17.4 points and 6.1 rebounds and freshman guard Melanie Pearson is second with 9.5 points. Like USC, UCLA is coming off of a split with the Arizona schools, having lost to Arizona and beaten Arizona State.
PAC-10 PRESEASON COACHES POLL - 1. Stanford, 2. Oregon, 3. USC, 4. Arizona, 5. UCLA, 6. Washington, 7. Washington State, 8. California, 9. Oregon State, 10. Arizona State.
EARLY SIGNING - USC signed one player in the early signing period, Tashara Carter, a 6-0 forward from Bishop Montgomery (Torrance, Calif.). Carter averaged 16.0 points and 8.0 rebounds as a junior last season when she teamed with current Trojan freshman forward Tiffany Washington. Carter was recently tabbed a 1996-97 Street & Smith All-American honorable mention. Other honors include: All-State Division III as a junior in 1996, All-CIF Division III in 1995 and 1996, 1995 Los Angeles Times All-South Bay, 1995 and 1996 Daily Breeze All-South Bay, 1995 Del Rey League MVP and 2-time All-Del Rey League selection. Carter, who averaged 15.0 points and 7.0 rebounds per game as a sophomore, helped lead Bishop Montgomery to the Division III-AA state championship in 1995.
SHORTHANDED - USC Coach Fred Williams has been without his full complement of players so far this season. It starts with the likely season-long loss of starting sophomore guard Erica Mashia because of a hip injury. He had been without the services of both redshirt freshman guard Kim Clark (because of a nagging back injury) and freshman guard Antoinette Polk, who has been with the volleyball team. Both made their debut in USC's game against Long Beach State (12/21). Williams also has had to do without senior forward Rashida Jeffery since the second game of the season. Jeffery had season-ending knee surgery on Jan. 21.
WILLIAMS SAYS - "The loss to Arizona was obviously a tough game but all we can do is learn from it and go on. We're still in the thick of things in the Pac-10 and we're looking to finish off our last 5 games strong. Every game will be a hard-fought affair the rest of the way and UCLA will be no different. They have a fine team and gave us all we could handle and more the last time we met. I expect Saturday to be no different."
The Last Time A Trojan...
The Last Time USC...
Tina Thompson - The Word Is...
"Thompson is hands down the league's MVP."
"Tina Thompson, in my mind, is one of the premier players of the Pac-10. Thompson controls things inside and outside. She is their go-to player."
"She's got a well-rounded game and is going to be a great pro."
"(Thompson) can score from the outside, drive from the outside or play with her back to the basket."
"Tina Thompson isn't someone you can easily overlook. First, there are 6 feet, 3 inches of muscular arms and legs that seem to be everywhere on the basketball court. Above the rim, under the basket, in an opponent's face."
(On Thompson's 49-point game as a junior) "Watching Tina perform on television was exciting and fun viewing. She makes it seem so easy."
"She's a great player and we did not have one player who could match up with her."
"Tina Thompson is a phenomenal scorer."