The Cal Poly Pomona women's basketball team has not lost to an NCAA Division I team this season, but the Broncos could have their hands full in the Golden Bear Classic on Friday and Saturday at UC Berkeley.
Pomona, with a 6-1 record, will meet Colorado, also 6-1, in its first-round game and Berkeley faces Santa Clara. The winners meet for the title at 8 Saturday and the losers play in the consolation game.
Colorado, whose only loss was by 79-78 against Houston, could present problems for the Broncos. The Lady Buffs are led by senior guard Erin Carson, who averages 14.6 points.
"Once again we are like a little fish in a big pond as we take on Division I teams," Pomona Coach Darlene May said. "But we are using this tournament and the one at Cal State Fullerton (which Pomona won) as learning experiences, especially for our seven freshmen. The main thing is for us to be ready when our conference season starts in January."
The Broncos have had good fortune against Division I teams with wins over Sam Houston State, Cal State Fullerton and the University of San Diego. Pomona, which has won five in a row, defeated Division II opponents Sacramento State (75-55) and UC Davis (74-51) in non-conference games last week.
While Pomona's roster consists mostly of freshmen, the Broncos have been led by more experienced players including junior guard Cathy Gooden (5-5), junior forward Marcine Edmonds (6-1) and sophomore center Niki Bracken (6-2).
Gooden, perhaps the team's best long-distance shooter, is averaging 17.4 points and 4.6 assists. Edmonds, a strong inside player who has made 68.1% of her field-goal attempts, is averaging 15.9 points and 4.9 rebounds and Bracken 15.6 points and 7.4 rebounds. The Broncos also have an all-around player in senior guard Paula Tezak (5-8), who averages 7 rebounds, 4.9 points and 8.5 assists.
The games in the UC Berkeley tournament will be Pomona's seventh and eighth consecutive contests away from home. Pomona is 5-0 on the road.
After losing four games in a row, the Cal Poly Pomona men's basketball team will try to get back on the winning track when it plays host to Azusa Pacific at 7:30 tonight at Kellogg Gym.
The Broncos, 2-4, will face another struggling team in Azusa Pacific, 2-7.
But Pomona Coach Dave Bollwinkel is not about to take the Cougars lightly.
"The Cougars' record is not a true reflection of their abilities because, just like we had a good player who just became eligible in Bill Dobbs (6-2 guard), in their case Mark Moses (6-4 guard) is eligible and he helps in that his strengths are where they were most vulnerable," Bollwinkel said.
Azusa Pacific stayed close to NAIA national power Biola last week before dropping an 86-75 decision. The Cougars have been led by senior center Bill DesRochers, who is averaging 20.3 points and 8.7 rebounds. They are strong at guard with Danny Scott and Moses.
Pomona, which dropped games to Division II opponents Sacramento State (95-88) and UC Davis (85-75) last week, has been led by 6-7 center Tony Theisen. The senior, who has made 62.7% of his field-goal attempts, is averaging 15.5 points and 9.8 rebounds.
And 6-4 senior forward Terry Stevens averages 11 points and 5.2 rebounds and reserve guard Nate Macon (6-3) is averaging 12.2 points. The Broncos received a strong debut from Dobbs, who scored 20 points in his first two games last week.
World-class hurdler Sam Turner and basketball player John Barber, who once scored 188 points in an exhibition, lead a list of seven former Cal State Los Angeles athletes named to the school's Athletic Hall of Fame.
The others are Dunn Marteen, Darrell Brown, Tina Mochizuki, Marge Callahan and Jackie Hoyt. They will be inducted Jan. 22 on the Queen Mary in Long Beach.
Marteen was an All-American quarterback for the Golden Eagles in 1964; Brown was an All-American and the Southern California Baseball Assn. player of the year in 1977; Mochizuki was a men's and women's tennis coach and player before she turned pro in 1983; Callahan turned out 33 All-Americans as archery coach from 1976-84, and Hoyt helped start the intercollegiate women's athletic program at the school.
With the seven additions, the Hall of Fame has 32 members including former tennis star Billie Jean King and three-time Olympic gold medalist Mal Whitfield.
Forward Tami Chick of Huntington Beach High has signed to play basketball for Cal Poly Pomona next season.
Chick, a 5-10 forward, also stars in volleyball and track. "Tami is a tremendous athlete who has outstanding vertical leaping ability (30 inches)," said basketball Coach Darlene May. "She can flat out run. She's going to be an outstanding college player one of these days. She was highly recruited in volleyball, as well as basketball, and chose us over some Division I schools."
Chick made All-Sunset League in basketball, won the league title in the 100-meter low hurdles last year and was an all-leaguer in volleyball this season.