STANFORD -- The vaunted Stanford women's basketball team found itself in an unfamiliar position Friday night when playing host to No. 14 UCLA in a Pac-12 showdown at Maples Pavilion.
For the first time in four years Stanford was not holding down first place during a conference game.
Not for long.
Order was restored as the sixth-ranked Cardinal (15-2, 4-1 Pac-12) rebounded from a disappointing performance against Cal in a 75-49 walkover in front of a crowd of 3,606.
"Stanford played with an edge," UCLA coach Cori Close said. "They played with a sense of purpose. They were the aggressors the entire time."
Stanford forced a four-way logjam atop the league after its 14th win in a row over the Bruins (13-3, 4-1). Cal and USC also are 4-1. Something will give Sunday when the California schools switch dance partners: USC comes to Maples, and Cal plays host to UCLA.
Stanford added to the Sunday drama by opening the second half with a hammer -- an 11-2 run to put the game out of reach.
Thank the usual suspect for another signature performance. Preseason All-American Chiney Ogwumike had 25 points and 13 rebounds. The junior forward finally got the kind of support she'll need if Stanford hopes to make a run at a sixth consecutive Final Four appearance.
Point guard Amber Orrange had 15 points, making 7 of 15 shots. She also had five steals. Sara James played well in her second collegiate start with seven points, three
The Cardinal needed something positive after getting dominated on its home court Sunday by Cal to end an 81-game conference win streak.
It held the league's highest-scoring team to a season-low 31.4 percent from the field. UCLA scored 24 fewer points than its average as it saw a six-game win streak end.
The Cardinal shot with accuracy (52.9 percent) and rebounded with ferocity (36-25). Those are the kind of statistical victories coach Tara VanDerveer expects.
"It didn't feel handily," VanDerveer said of the result. "We've won some very big games this year. We needed to remind ourselves that we're capable of playing" like this.
After last weekend's loss to Cal, VanDerveer started James in favor of Mikaela Ruef. James' early aggressiveness energized the Cardinal.
"Sara James is the X factor," Ogwumike said. "She motivates people to hustle by going for loose balls on the floor."
James said she went to practice this week on a mission.
"It's another wake-up call," she said of the Cal loss. "We had the whole week to show how much we wanted to improve."
The game was close for the first 11 minutes. Then Orrange ignited a decisive rally that led to a 36-24 halftime lead. She scored two straight baskets as Stanford went on a 14-2 spurt to build a 29-17 with 4:03 left in the half.
"You saw how our team learned from their last game," VanDerveer said. "The biggest key was how Amber broke people down on her dribble."