Duke outrebounded Cal 46-39 in a 70-58 season-opening win. - Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

California Golden Bears vs. Duke Blue Devils: A top 10 showdown at Haas Pavilion

The #9 California Golden Bears will face the #2 Duke Blue Devils on Sunday at 3 p.m. Pacific on ESPNU. Check out SB Nation's California Golden Blogs for full coverage of the Bears' season.

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Video: The unveiling of Cal's Final Four banner

CalBear81 of SB Nation's California Golden Blogs got footage of the unveiling of Cal's 2013 Final Four banner.


AP poll: Duke gets a vote for #1, Cal drops to #10

Duke still has room for improvement after getting an impressive road win at Cal yesterday despite grabbing a #1 vote in the latest Associated Press poll.


Cal's post scoring struggles prevented a comeback

Down just five points to the #2 Duke Blue Devils at halftime of yesterday's 70-58 loss, the #9 California Golden Bears were in good position to pull off a big nationally televised win.

Yet as Nick Kranz of California Golden Blogs noted, Cal short-circuited their own comeback efforts with missed opportunities in the paint.

Shooting woes, oddly mostly on inside shots, plagued Cal and prevented a potential comeback...Entry passes were tougher than usual, and Duke's efforts to front Reshanda Gray limited her touches. Players were rushing to get shots up when they got inside, and as a result more than a few that should have gone in didn't.

Cal was ultimately outscored 42-26 in points in the paint by an aggressive Duke squad. Yet as mentioned previously, this was better than what happened against Long Beach State when they all but ignored their post players.

For full coverage of Cal's loss, check out our Cal-Duke storystream.


The second half run that separated Duke from Cal

The #2 Duke Blue Devils withstood repeated comeback attempts by the #9 California Golden Bears to earn an impressive 70-58 win on the road to open their 2013-14 season.


Versatile freshman Range earns praise after loss

Despite a 70-58 loss to the Duke Blue Devils on Sunday afternoon at Haas Pavilion, California Golden Bears coach Lindsay Gottlieb was optimistic about her team moving forward and sounded particularly excited about freshman forward Courtney Range as reported by Viet Nguyen of BearInsider.com.

For a second game in a row, Courtney Range exhibited her all-around game, grabbing a tough rebound then taking it coast to coast. On the next drive, she again drove into the lane, this time to create a better angle to dish off to Gray inside, and Cal was again within single digit, 46-37 with 12:34 to go.

"She's not like any player I've ever coached," said Gottlieb about Range. "A lot tall kids who want to be a guard, but they don't have the perimeter skills. She's legitimately a wing."

Range went the length of the floor again, and her free-throw closed the gap to 46-38. But it was a close as Cal would get on this day.

The development of Range along with fellow freshman Mercedes Jefflo - whose ability to handle the ball and score while replacing Eliza Pierre's energy on defense about as well as anyone could hope for - is certainly something for Cal fans to watch as the season wears on. Gottlieb mentioned this in the press conference and it's hard not to agree: this roster might be the most versatile she's had at her disposal since returning to Cal as coach.

For more on the game, stay tuned to our Cal-Duke storystream.


Why rebounding is important for Cal against Duke

Nick Kranz over at California Golden Blogs has weighed in with his keys to the California Golden Bears beating the Duke Blue Devils today and the big one is pretty obvious: rebounding.

1. Win the battle of the board

Last year, Duke was one of the few teams to out rebound Cal. Duke won by 14. Those two sentences are not in the least bit coincidental. Last year, it was nearly impossible for Cal to win games without pulling down more rebounds. It's what they are built to do, and although this is a different team with new players, I suspect that rebounds are still the absolute key.

The most significant aspect of the rebounding battle will be the offensive boards, where Cal has really dominated other teams in recent years and has one of the nation's best in athletic 6-foot-2 forward Gennifer Brandon: even against Long Beach State in their season opener on Friday night, Cal struggled to get high percentage shots in the paint without doing so off of offensive rebounds. With 6-foot-3 Duke center Elizabeth Williams patrolling the paint today, it doesn't figure to get any easier.

For more on the matchup - including perspective on what Duke has to do to win - check out our Cal-Duke storystream.


Cal v. Duke preview: Stopping Boyd key for Duke

Containing California Golden Bears point guard Brittany Boyd will be a key for the Duke Blue Devils on Sunday.


Video: Cal's Brandon discusses return from injury

Video from BearInsider.com of the California Golden Bears' postgame press conference after their season-opening 70-51 win against Long Beach State at Haas Pavilion on Friday night.

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