The Stanford men’s and women’s basketball teams rolled to big exhibition victories over the weekend at Maples Pavilion, with sophomore forward Dwight Powell scoring 16 points to lead the men’s team to a 100-47 victory over Ryerson and freshman forward Bonnie Samuelson scoring 17 as the women’s team rolled to a 100-54 win over Vanguard.
Powell led four players in double figures on the men’s side, and there were plenty of encouraging signs a year after the Cardinal finished eighth in the Pac-10 with a 15-16 overall record.
Redshirt freshman center Stefan Nastic scored 11 points in 10 minutes off the bench, a good sign after he missed the majority of last season with a foot injury. Redshirt senior Josh Owens looked good early, scoring 10 points and grabbing eight rebounds in 23 minutes of play.
Stanford was all over the Rams from the opening tip-off, running out to a 25-8 lead after 10 minutes and substituting liberally throughout. Cardinal fans got their first look at freshman guard Chasson Randle, one of the top recruits in the country and the only scholarship player in this year’s recruiting class.
Randle—who started alongside sophomore guard Aaron Bright, senior forward Andrew Zimmermann, Powell and Owens—finished with seven points and three assists in his college debut, but he is expected to play a major role in the Cardinal’s offensive attack.
If the exhibition proved anything, it was that Stanford’s offense doesn’t lack for depth at the guard and small forward positions. Senior guard Jarrett Mann, a two-year starter in the backcourt, junior Gabe Harris, sophomore Josh Huestis and sophomore Anthony Brown all played well on Saturday, which could be a big bonus for head coach Johnny Dawkins.
From the looks of it, the women’s team is also spoiled with talent, but in a different position. With returning All-Pac-10 sisters in senior Nnemkadi and sophomore Chiney Owgumike, as well as juniors Joslyn Tinkle and Sarah Boothe, freshmen Taylor Greenfield and Samuelson, head coach Tara VanDerveer might have trouble picking just three forwards to start when the No. 5 Cardinal opens the regular season on Friday at Texas.
Stanford used a 27-4 run to put the game out of reach of the Lions after just over seven minutes, and the starting lineup of both Ogwumike sisters plus Greenfield, freshman guard Amber Orrange and senior guard Lindy La Rocque combined for 44 points with 22 boards in just 83 minutes of play, and Orrange chipped in six assists despite not scoring.
The team’s field-goal percentage did take a somewhat noticeable hit from the first exhibition game last week against UC-San Diego, when the Card shot 57.5 percent—Stanford finished Saturday’s win a tick under 45 percent from the field.
The real tests for the Cardinal will come early and often—five of its first six games are against teams that made it into last year’s NCAA Tournament—starting with the No. 21 Longhorns on Friday from Austin, Texas.
Dawkins and the men’s team will also open the regular season on Friday, hosting Central Arkansas at Maples Pavilion at 7 p.m.
– Miles Bennett-Smith