Springing into the semifinals

Good morning from lovely San Jose, Ca, and the Pac-10 women's tournament!

It's a picturesque day outside where it is bright, clear and crisp on this first day of daylight savings time (did you remember to spring forward???). After an early morning flight, I am inside the HP Pavilion where I will be blogging about all of the action from today's semifinals.

First up, it's No. 3 seed Arizona State (21-9, 14-4 Pac-10) taking on Bay Area favorite No. 2 seed Cal (25-5, 15-3) at high noon today.

The Sun Devils are riding high into today's game on a five-game winning streak, which is also their longest of the season. Coach Charli Turner Thorne's Devils are here after a convincing 83-64 win over Washington in one of yesterday's quarterfinal games. All five of ASU's starters scored in double figures in that win and were led by 6-foot-3 junior Sybil Dosty's 17 points.

ASU may be the underdog in this first game of the day, but if they can get everyone firing on all cylinders today and catch Cal not playing a full 40 minute game again, ASU could find themselves in their second consecutive Pac-10 tournament championship.

Cal on the other hand would love nothing more than to represent the Bay Area in tomorrow's championship final. Before Cal thinks about tomorrow, they need to use the experience of their quarterfinal game to get through a pesky Sun Devil team. The Golden Bears edged out Oregon 67-60 yesterday by fending off the Ducks who came within three (57-54) with 1:30 left in the game. Thanks to solid shooting from the free throw line (10-of-12), Cal was able to stay alive.

Leading Cal into today's game is 6-foot-3 junior Devanei Hampton, 6-foot-1 junior Ashley Walker and 5-foot-8 junior Alexis Gray-Lawson. Another player to keep an eye on is 5-foot-8 sophomore Natasha Vital who almost had a triple-double yesterday with her 14 points, nine assists and seven rebounds.

There's 45 minutes before we start, so stay tuned!

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