Clarendon leads No. 6 Cal women past ASU 66-53
BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) — California coach Lindsay Gottlieb had no intention of resting Layshia Clarendon after the sixth-ranked Golden Bears took a double-digit lead against Arizona State.
Even on a relatively quiet night, Clarendon's presence on the court is a sense of comfort to her coach and teammates.
Clarendon scored 18 points and played all 40 minutes in California's 66-53 win over ASU on Friday, extending the Bears' longest winning streak of the season and keeping them in a first-place tie in the Pac-12.
"It's not that I'm worried when she's not on the floor," Gottlieb said of Clarendon, Cal's leading scorer. "But we are obviously in our best rhythm when she is on the floor."
Gennifer Brandon added 10 points and 15 rebounds, Talia Caldwell scored 14 points and Brittany Boyd had 11 points, seven rebounds and five assists to lead the Bears (20-2, 10-1) to their eighth straight win.
California also matched the 2008-09 team for the best record in school history after 22 games.
Clarendon, who went 8 of 11 from the floor, scored only six points after halftime. She stayed on the court, however, and kept Cal's offense running after the Bears got off to a sluggish start in the first half.
"Tonight our energy was a little low," Clarendon said. "We kind of had to drag each other along. Maybe stuff the fans don't see but we know internally."
Caldwell, who went over 1,000 points for her career, helped pick up the slack. The senior center, who was averaging only five points through Cal's first nine conference games, went 6 for 6 from the floor and scored six points late in the second half when the Bears pulled away.