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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Ibekwe earns Pac-10 Player of the Week

For the second time in her career, senior forward Ify Ibekwe was named the Pacific 10 Conference Player of the Week — this time earning it for her 22 point, 22 rebound performance on Sunday against ASU.

Sunday’s performance was Ibekwe’s ninth double-double of the season, but this time she got it before halftime, tallying 11 points and 10 rebounds before the break.

Ibekwe led Arizona to its first victory over ASU since Jan. 26, 2005, snapping an 11-game losing streak. The forward’s 22 rebounds are the most by any player in the Pac-10 this season, and the sixth-highest total in NCAA Division-I women’s basketball on the year.

Ibekwe said she didn’t even realize she was putting up rebounding numbers that high, even though she had more rebounds (22) than the rest of the team combined (17).

“”I don’t know how (that happened), I was just playing,”” said the senior from Carson, Calif. “”It was nothing different, just knowing this was my last game against ASU at home.””

Arizona head coach Niya Butts said that she is going to be sure to point out to Ibekwe what she was doing differently against ASU.

“”I’ll be sure to tell her, that it was because … she boxed out tonight,”” Butts said. “”She didn’t just rely on her athleticism and ability, but she actually boxed out. We’ve been really sticking to that as coaches.””

Grabbing rebounds wasn’t the only area Ibekwe dominated in on Sunday.

On her way to 22 points, she shot 50 percent from the field and hit 2-of-3 from behind the arc. She also committed only one turnover while blocking a shot and recording two steals.

Arizona improved to 14-9, and 5-7 in the Pac-10 — matching the Wildcats’ win total from all of the 2009-2010 season.

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