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Stanford takes over top spot in women's basketball Pac-12 power rankings

There's a lot of movement in the Pac-12 this week after surprise wins by Stanford and USC

ASU senior center Quinn Dornstauder (22) goes up for an open layup during a women's basketball game versus no. 8 Washington in Wells Fargo Arena in Tempe, Arizona on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2017. ASU lost 65-54, putting them at 13-4 on the season.
ASU senior center Quinn Dornstauder (22) goes up for an open layup during a women's basketball game versus no. 8 Washington in Wells Fargo Arena in Tempe, Arizona on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2017. ASU lost 65-54, putting them at 13-4 on the season.

Every Wednesday, The State Press will be taking a look around the Pac-12’s uber-competitive women’s basketball landscape as the conference tournament in Seattle nears. With each team fighting for a shot at a NCAA Tournament bid come March, each weekend’s Friday-Sunday set of games should be full of exciting action and marquee showdowns.

If the season ended today, the brackets for that conference tournament would looks as follows, based on conference record:

Here’s our third weekly Pac-12 Women’s Basketball Round-Up heading into another weekend of conference play, including storylines, top performers and power rankings, as well as a look at the bracketology projections of ESPN’s Charlie Creme.

Last Weekend’s Storylines

Kelsey Plum isn’t the only prolific scorer in Seattle. Natalie Romeo, a senior guard at Washington, poured in a career-high 32 points on 10 three-pointers in the Huskies' win over California Friday night. Although she was held scoreless two days later against Stanford, Romeo proved that when she gets hot, she can be a vital spark for her team. 

The Beavers still own the beaver state, but not by much. Oregon State swept their rival Ducks in a home-and-home series Friday and Sunday, winning the two games by a combined 10 points. The two tight wins kept OSU hovering just outside the AP Top 10, and kept Oregon firmly on the bubble, as the Ducks continue to search for resume boosters going down the home stretch.

Player of the Weekend

Kristina Anigwe | Sophomore PF | California
Friday: 32 points, 6 rebounds, 6/6 FT shooting
Sunday: 23 points, 9 rebounds

Power Rankings

#1 – No. 8 Stanford (19-3, 9-1) | Last Week: No. 3
Last Weekend: @ Washington State (W, 76-54), @ Washington (W, 72-68)
Breakdown: To be the best, you’ve got to be the best. Stanford's win over Washington was without a doubt its biggest this season, and it’ll look to stay hot back home this coming weekend.
This Weekend: vs. USC (Fri.), vs. UCLA (Mon.)
Bracketology: No. 3 Seed vs. No. 14 Belmont (EVEN)

#2 – No. 11 Oregon State (20-2, 9-1) | LW: No. 2
Last Weekend: @ Oregon (W, 43-40), vs. Oregon (W, 67-60)
Breakdown: A couple of close wins over rival Oregon kept the Beavers in the second position this week. OSU will look for another ranked win when it visits Tempe Friday night.
This Weekend: @ Arizona State (Fri.), @ Arizona (Sun.)
Bracketology: No. 2 Seed vs. No. 15 Northern Colorado (EVEN)

#3 – No. 10 Washington (20-3, 8-2) | LW: No. 1
Last Weekend: vs. California (W, 90-67), vs. Stanford (L, 72-68)
Breakdown: Make no mistake, the Huskies' one loss to Stanford doesn’t change their league-title potential. Washington can definitely bounce back when it visits the struggling Rocky Mountain schools this weekend.
This Weekend: @ Utah (Fri.), @ Colorado (Sun.)
Bracketology: No. 2 Seed vs. No. 15 Stephen F. Austin (EVEN)

#4 – No. 13 UCLA (17-4, 8-2) | LW: No. 4
Last Weekend: vs. Arizona State (W, 69-60), vs. Arizona (W, 69-49)
Breakdown: Three games now separate UCLA as it looks to sew up a Pac-12 tournament first-round bye. The Bruins have a pair of tough road tests coming up, especially Sunday at Stanford.
This Weekend: @ California (Fri.), @ Stanford (Mon.)
Bracketology: No. 4 Seed vs. No. 13 Colorado State (EVEN)

#5 – No. 23 Arizona State (14-7, 5-5) | LW: No. 5
Last Weekend: @ UCLA (L, 69-60), @ USC (L, 65-50)
Breakdown: Three straight losses have the Sun Devils in a bad spot entering February. If ASU can’t beat at least one of the Oregon schools, it will continue on its downward trend.
This Weekend: vs. Oregon State (Fri.), vs. Oregon (Sun.)
Bracketology: No. 6 Seed vs. No. 11 Elon (DOWN)

#6 – Oregon (14-8, 4-6) | LW: No. 6
Last Weekend: vs. Oregon State (L, 43-40), @ Oregon State (L, 67-60)
Breakdown: The Ducks fell just shy of not one, but two perfect chances at a marquee resume boost. Oregon can stay above water on the bubble by splitting its weekend in the desert.
This Weekend: @ Arizona (Fri.), @ Arizona State (Sun.)
Bracketology: No. 8 Seed vs. No. 9 Tulane (UP)

#7 – Washington State (9-12, 4-6) | LW: No. 9
Last Weekend: vs. Stanford (L, 76-54), vs. California (W, 84-79)
Breakdown: The Cougars’ win over California essentially kept their season afloat; WSU only remains alive because it ranks fifth nationally in strength of schedule. The Rocky Mountain schools await this weekend.
This Weekend: @ Colorado (Fri.), @ Utah (Sun.)
Bracketology: Out (EVEN)

#8 – Utah (14-7, 3-7) | LW: No. 8
Last Weekend: @ Colorado (L, 54-49), vs. Colorado (W, 58-53)
Breakdown: A split weekend with Colorado keeps the Utes exactly where they’ve been for a while — on the wrong side of the bubble. An opportunity for a resume boosting win is on the horizon Friday at home against the Huskies.
This Weekend: vs. Washington (Fri.), vs. Washington State (Sun.)
Bracketology: First Four Out (EVEN)

#9 – California (15-7, 3-7) | LW: No. 7
Last Weekend: @ Washington (L, 90-67), @ Washington State (L, 84-79)
Breakdown: Back to back losses have the Golden Bears in bad shape. A team that was once 13-0, Cal needs to finish very strong in order to see the postseason.
This Weekend: vs. UCLA (Fri.), vs. USC (Sun.)
Bracketology: Next Four Out (UP)

#10 – USC (12-9, 3-7) | LW: No. 12
Last Weekend: vs. Arizona (W, 58-54), vs. Arizona State (W, 65-50)
Breakdown: USC got right back on track with a home sweep of the Arizona schools and will need to prove itself now on the road when it visits the bay area.
This Weekend: @ Stanford (Fri.), @ California (Sun.)
Bracketology: Out (EVEN)

#11 – Colorado (12-9, 2-8) | LW: No. 10
Last Weekend: vs. Utah (W, 54-49), @ Utah (L, 58-53)
Breakdown: The Buffaloes’ split weekend with Utah keeps them on the outside looking in. Colorado has a must-win coming up at home against Washington State.
This Weekend: vs. Washington State (Fri.), vs. Washington (Sun.)
Bracketology: Out (EVEN)

#12 – Arizona (11-10, 2-8) | LW: No. 11
Last Weekend: @ USC (L, 58-54), @ UCLA (L, 69-49)
Breakdown: The Wildcats’ four straight losses have them at the bottom of the league, and this coming weekend won’t get any easier, as they’ll face a hungry Ducks team and a hot OSU squad.
This Weekend: vs. Oregon (Fri.), vs. Oregon State (Sun.)
Bracketology: Out (EVEN)

Games to Watch This Weekend

No. 11 Oregon State @ No. 23 Arizona State – Friday, 6 p.m. MT: The Sun Devils are in need of a marquee win going into the final few weeks of the regular season, and a home game against Oregon State could provide that opportunity. The Beavers certainly have other plans, and will look to stay hot with another Top-25 victory.  

No. 13 UCLA @ No. 8 Stanford – Monday, 7 p.m. MT: Stanford is riding high after knocking off Washington but will need to stay level-headed with the talented Bruins coming into Palo Alto. UCLA, once favored to potentially win the Pac-12, can put itself in position to do so with a road victory at the always unfriendly Maples Pavilion.

Reach the reporter at or follow @Jeff_Griffith21 on Twitter.

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