May 23, 2019

Women host No. 13 Cal

Juan Villa / The Collegian

Breakdown: Bulldogs

The Fresno State women’s basketball team opens up the season Saturday when the Bulldogs host No. 13 Cal.

With coach Adrian Wiggins imposing a new system, the question arises: How many points will the Bulldogs score?

In their two exhibition games this week, the Bulldogs broke the century mark both times, knocking off the Melbourne Roos 107-67 and Fresno Pacific 104-73.

The new system that the Bulldogs will use starting this season has been known to light up scoreboards. Former Fresno City College men’s basketball coach and current men’s Pepperdine coach Vance Walberg came up with a system that uses constant pressure to force turnovers and exhaust opponents. When Walberg was at Fresno City, his team averaged more than 100 points each season.

Don’t expect the Fresno State women to do the same, but if the Bulldogs can score more than 80 against the 13th-ranked team in the nation, expect them to possibly break 100 against lesser opponents later on in the season.

Breakdown: Bears

The Golden Bears come into Saturday’s game against Fresno State as one of the best teams in the country. Last season, Cal went 23-9, its best record in school history, making the NCAA tournament in the process.

This year, Cal is led by preseason All-Americans Devanei Hampton, Ashley Walker and Alexis Gray-Lawson.

Hampton, a 6 foot, 3 inch forward/center, was a member of the 2006 USA Under-20 women’s national team. Last season, she averaged 16.6 points and 8 rebounds per game, and was named the Pac-10 player of the year.

Gray-Lawson averaged 10.6 points a game last season before a season-ending knee injury in January. She also had 10 points, 9 assists and 6 rebounds against the Bulldogs last year.

In last year’s game against Fresno State, the Golden Bears held the Bulldogs to 27 percent shooting in the first half. Walker had a double double, shooting 8-of-12 from the field, as well as going 7-of-7 from the free throw line for a team-leading 23 points, while grabbing 11 rebounds.

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