MORAGA, Calif. - After taking a week off for final exams, the Saint Mary's women's basketball team (6-2) heads across the country to Queens, New York to participate in the St. John's Chartwells Holiday Classic on December 15-16.
On Saturday, the Gaels take on No. 14 UCLA (5-1) at 11:30 a.m. (PT). On Sunday, the Gaels will face either St. Johns or Tennessee Tech. All of the games will be broadcast live on the internet at ESPN3.com.
Saint Mary's is 2-6 all-time against UCLA. Last year the Bruins defeated the Gaels 75-59 in McKeon Pavilion. The last Saint Mary's win over UCLA came on December 6, 2003 as the Gaels defeated the Bruins 55-52 in McKeon Pavilion. Saint Mary's has never faced St. John's or Tennessee Tech.
The Gaels enter the week having won five straight games, despite only playing two home games this season. The St. John's Classic will be SMC's final non-conference road games, as the Gaels return home to face Pacific and George Washington to wrap-up the month of December before conference play begins in January. The Gaels begin West Coast Conference action on Jan.3 and 5th, on the road at San Francisco and Loyola Marymount.
Jackie Nared leads the Gaels with 18.6 points per game, while adding 9.8 rebounds per game. Nared has four double-doubles this season, including single-game highs of 28 points and 17 rebounds.
Danielle Mauldin is the team leader in double-doubles with five in her first eight games of the season. The junior post has single-game highs of 20 points and 17 rebounds.
Both Nared and Mauldin have recorded WCC Player of the Week awards this season. As a team, the Gaels average 47.2 rebounds per game, out-rebounding opponents by over 12 per game.