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Pac-12 women's basketball enters final weekend of regular season

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Arizona State and Arizona have traveled to Oregon for the final weekend of the Pacific-12 women’s basketball season, with ASU looking to clinch a bye into the quarterfinals of next week’s conference tournament in Seattle.

The series begins with the No. 20 Sun Devils at the Oregon Ducks and the Wildcats at the Oregon State Beavers at 7 p.m. Friday and concludes on Sunday afternoon with the teams facing the opposite opponents.

ASU (22-6, 11-5 Pacific-12) and Oregon State (19-9, 11-5) are currently in a tie for third in the league, just ahead of fifth-place USC (17-12, 10-7), and appear to be two of the four teams from the Pac-12 in line for an at-large berth to the NCAA Tournament, along with Stanford (27-2, 16-1) and California (21-7, 13-4).

Before they matchup in Corvallis on Sunday however, ASU must run with the nation’s leading offense in Oregon (13-14, 4-12), which averages 93.3 points per game, and boasts Jillian Alleyne, who is leading the NCAA with 15.7 rebounds per contest. The sophomore is also second in the Pac-12 behind Stanford’s Chiney Ogwumike (27.1 ppg) in scoring at 22 per game, while freshman Chrishae Rowe is averaging about 21 and dropped 39 on ASU in her team’s 97-94 loss last month in Tempe. That was a game in which ASU senior center Joy Burke posted career highs of 22 points and 15 rebounds.

Arizona (5-22, 1-15) is just removed from another heartbreaking loss, 61-56 in overtime to Colorado at home Feb. 23, and is locked into last place and a meeting with the No. 5 team next week.

OSU has won seven straight, has the No. 32 RPI and is in the also receiving votes category of the rankings, as it will likely be qualifying for its first NCAA Tournament since 1996.

Washington (9-8), Washington State (9-8), UCLA (6-10), Colorado (5-11), Oregon, and Utah (4-13) are currently in the six to eleven seeds and must win the tournament to participate in the Big Dance.

Reshanda Gray of Cal scored 43 in a 75-68 win over Washington State on Thursday.

Undefeated Connecticut (28-0) and Notre Dame (27-0) continue to lead the national polls, with Louisville (27-2) and South Carolina (25-2) third and fourth.

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