STANFORD, Calif. (AP) Alanna Smith looks pretty good after spraining an ankle last week.
She put together quite a finish Friday night.
Smith scored 14 of her career-high 24 points in the fourth quarter, and No. 10 Stanford beat Oregon 81-60 for its 21st victory in the past 22 meetings between the schools.
Article continues below ...
Smith was 9 for 15 from the field while showing off her ability to drive to the basket and score with either hand. Smith said she merely responded to coach Tara VanDerveer’s encouragement.
”Tara keeps telling everybody on the team to attack the basket and go to your strengths, and that is one of my strengths,” said Smith, a sophomore from Australia who learned how to use her left hand when she broke the other one in high school.
Stanford (13-2, 3-0 Pac-12) hasn’t lost at home to the Ducks in nearly 30 years, but Oregon made the Cardinal sweat before they pulled away in the fourth period at Maples Pavilion.
Briana Roberson scored 15 points for Stanford, and Erica McCall had 14.
”It’s a great win for us,” VanDerveer said. ”Oregon has a really talented young team.”
Mallory McGwire had 16 points and 11 rebounds for the Ducks (11-5, 0-3), and fellow freshman Sabrina Ionescu scored 14 in her return after missing the past four games with a broken thumb.
”They played at a championship level and we’re not there yet,” Oregon coach Kelly Graves said. ”I thought we battled. There were times they kind of separated and then we brought it back a bit. Bottom line is Stanford doesn’t beat themselves.”
Oregon: The young Ducks – with three freshmen in their starting lineup – beat then-No. 24 Michigan State in late November, but since have lost to top-10 teams Mississippi State, Washington and Stanford. Oregon is improving, but not quite ready to get over the hump against the elite.
Stanford: VanDerveer needs just seven victories to become only the second NCAA women’s coach to reach 1,000 wins. She is 993-227 in 38 seasons at Stanford. The late Pat Summitt won 1,098 games during her career at Tennessee.
Stanford’s victory over a team it has historically dominated won’t provide much of a bump for the Cardinal. Their chance to climb in the rankings comes Sunday when No. 16 Oregon State visits Maples Pavilion.
Asked about the weekend’s NFL playoffs, VanDerveer said she is rooting for the Seattle Seahawks, whose quarterback Russell Wilson is big brother to Stanford freshman guard Anna Wilson.
A FAMILIAR FACE
Oregon assistant Nicole Powell was a first-team All-American for Stanford in 2004 and a three-time finalist for the Naismith Player of the Year award.
Oregon plays Sunday at No. 20 California (13-2, 1-2), which will be anxious to secure a weekend split after losing 66-56 to Oregon State on Friday.
Stanford faces No. 16 Oregon State (14-1, 3-0) on Sunday. Stanford and OSU split two games last season after the Cardinal had won 29 in a row through 2015.