Before we get into a game preview, read about Tierra Roger's recent honor:
Madison Square Garden announced that California Golden Bear sophomore Tierra Rogers is this year's recipient of the annual Maggie Dixon Courage Award. . . The award is presented annually to a recipient who, like Maggie Dixon, exemplifies the true meaning of the word courage, compassion and leadership.
She can also be heard speaking of the importance of Automated External Defibrillators (AED) and knowing how to perform CPR. These things saved Rogers life, and she is hopeful they can continue to save others. The Dixon Family is honored to present Tierra Rogers with this year's Maggie Dixon Courage Award.
Hit the jump for a quick UTA preview and your gamethread, plus holiday greetings from the team. Go Bears!
Cal plays the University of Texas Arlington Mavericks to kick off their participation in the Las Vegas Holiday Hoops tournament, and if this game is at all dramatic I’ll be very surprised. UT Arlington has already lost four games by 30 points or more, and I’m reasonably confident that Cal is the best team they will play this year. Like I said before Cal played Long Beach State – this is a game where you show up, win, take the RPI hit and move on.
My main concern is that Cal doesn’t tire themselves out too much for tomorrow’s much tougher game against Texas Tech. Cal is still playing with essentially an 8 man rotation (9 if Rama N’Diaye’s day-to-day injury has improved) and that lack of depth could make back-to-back games difficult. Ideally, nobody would play more than 30 or so minutes. That’s probably wishful thinking if Cal takes the court with only two true post players, but a fan can dream.
The Mavericks are led by senior guard Tamara Simmons, who averages 16.3 points per game, in part because of her solid 3 point shooting ability. Senior forward Shalyn Martin leads the team in rebounding, assists, steals and blocks and also isn’t afraid to launch it from deep. In fact, 30% of UTA’s field goals are from behind the arc, so if Cal can lock down the 3 point line a major piece of the Maverick offense goes out the window. UTA’s biggest weakness is probably turnovers – they average over 20 a game – though they have kept them in check since starting the season with 35 and 30 turnovers in their first two games, respectively.