Even through the praise from coaching mentor Mike Krzyzewski when he departed Duke to lead his own program at Stanford, or the constant chatter over the past year about Johnny Dawkins’ uncertain future if the Cardinal failed to reach the tournament — he has somehow ignored it all.
That missed chance in the Pac-12 tournament semifinals cost Tara VanDerveer’s Stanford team a top seed in the NCAA tournament. And a short flight — and that’s what hurts most for VanDerveer considering fewer Cardinal fans will make the Midwest trek.
The Cardinal earned the 10th seed in the South Region and will open tournament play Friday in St. Louis against 7-seed New Mexico.
UCLA jumped on listless Stanford early and kept pouring it on for an 84-59 rout over the Cardinal on Friday night to set up a showdown against the fourth-ranked and top-seeded Wildcats in the Pac-12 championship game.
Stanford shut down Arizona State’s best players and pulled away with a dominating second-half offensive performance, picking up a marquee win by blowing out third-seeded Arizona State 79-58 Thursday night in the Pac-12 tournament.
Stanford shot its way into the Pac-12 tournament quarterfinals, adding another notch to its NCAA tournament resume.
Dwight Powell made a go-ahead free throw with 36.1 seconds remaining after Stanford missed seven consecutive from the line late, and the Cardinal held on to beat Utah 61-60 on Saturday.
Chasson Randle scored 24 points to rally the Cardinal (18-11, 9-8) from an eight-point deficit to take the lead in the final minutes. But he missed a 3-pointer as time expired.
Chiney Ogwumike had 32 points and 11 rebounds to lead No. 5 Stanford in an 83-60 victory over Washington on Thursday night.
Jahii Carson scored 26 points – 23 in the second half – and Arizona State held off Stanford 76-64 Wednesday night, snapping the Cardinal’s three-game winning streak.