February 27, 2017

DiJonai thanks the seniors

Dear Seniors,

I would like to take the time to acknowledge the significant impact that each of you have had on me during our short time together.

Karlie, the world knows you as a clutch shooter. They know they can get ready to get out of their seats as soon as the ball leaves your hands. But me, I know you as the person who has always been willing to come early or stay late to ensure that I as well as my other freshmen understood the plays as well as any of the drills we would be doing. You have been a great encourager and someone who has taught me about discipline. Shooting over 50% from 3, yet always being the first one in the gym trying to get better. I want to say thank you for being the leader you are on and off the court. I love you, Karl. #FMS

Erica, the world knows you as a prolific scorer, and one who is always there in clutch time to make the big plays. But me, I know you as the person who I can look to whenever I need to be cheered up. I have truly never seen you upset. Whether you have 25 points or 2 points (which is rare) you have the same blissful spirit that is contagious to all who come in contact with you. Thank you for encouraging me and telling me over and over that “it's okay” when I mess up, with a smile on your face. I will miss our sing-offs, and getting hype over our mutual love for “Cali music” and “jerkin music”. I will miss your hilarious storytelling that is impossible to do without using your hands. I will miss your selfie taking and dance skills that I desire to imitate! I love you, Bird. #BAB

Briana, the world knows you as a high energy lockdown defender. But me, I know you as my mentor and the person who is there for everyone through anything. You're so selfless and determined. Your positive attitude and ability to take constructive criticism is something that I truly admire and desire to emulate. I will miss our late night Netflix sessions, that mostly ended up being our social hour. I will miss the unique dynamic of our relationship that will never be matched by anyone else. I will miss you saying “money” every time I shoot the ball (even though half the time it is an air-ball). I will miss pestering you all day long, rolling my eyes at you for every little thing, and delaying my responses whenever you address me. Bri, there are so many characteristics about you that make you someone who I will never forget and someone who will always hold a special place in my heart that cannot replaced. Thank you for being a great role model, someone that I truly look up to (figuratively), and the person I can go to for anything. Thank you for putting up with me, and all of my sassiness. Can’t wait to bother you some more when you come back to visit me, frequently. I love you, Briana. #Nevermind


DiJonai Carrington (NaiNai)

February 23, 2017

The Top 10 Things That I liked about 1000 Wins!

I am going to do this Johnny Carson style! (Some of us are old enough to remember his Top 10 List!) Drum roll!!!

#10 - Outstanding attention from the press about Women’s Basketball! It was so much fun to have so many of our writers and TV sports announcers document the occasion. Thank you Pac 12 Networks and ESPN for covering the game and postgame ceremony! I am happy to do my part in promoting this terrific game of ours!

#9 - Confetti in Maples! I am so glad that Bri, Karlie and Bird dumped a bucket of confetti on me instead of Gatorade! Thank you to everyone that planned and worked hard to make the postgame celebration so special!

#8 – Getting the win on the first try! I explained to our team that the game was not “just another game” and that in fact it was special with extra pressure. However, I hoped and believed our team would play in much bigger games with more on the line later in the season. We were all thankful that our team really stepped up and played well to get the 1000 Win the first opportunity!

#7 - Distracted me from politics! Enough said!

#6 – Kodye Pugh’s (Freshman on the men’s team) sketches of me to commemorate my 1000 wins signed by the men’s team and framed. Wow I am so touched by this gift.

#5 – Nike’s gift of a large black box with clear plexiglass cover engraved with each 100 milestone win. Inside the box on shelves were 4 Nike Air Force One shoes that highlighted special wins! Incredibly creative and beautiful!

#4 - All of the congratulatory texts, emails, letters and phone calls from all over the country! THANK YOU!!! I am copying and saving each one to put in my scrap book!

#3 – The surprise video tribute. I was overwhelmed by the wonderful things that people said. It was so special to hear from former players, (Jennifer Azzi, Trisha Stevens, Nneka and Chiney Ogwumike, Candice Wiggins, Jayne Appel, Jeanette Pohlen, Melanie Murphy, Regan Freuen and so many others) Athletic Directors ( Bernard Muir, Andy Geiger and Phyllis Bailey ) Announcers (Bill Walton and Charles Barkley), and Coaches ( David Shaw, Dawn Staley, Geno Auriemma, Jim Foster Jim Harbaugh, Dick Gould and the BEST from my sister Coach Heidi VanDerveer !!!)

#2 -Sharing this special night with our staff and team. I am so proud of this group. We have outstanding leadership and team camaraderie. This is such a fun and exciting season. The picture of our team will be framed and cherished for the rest of my life.

#1 – Having my 89 year old mother Rita cheering and coaching from courtside seats. I love you Mom! A special thank you to Cindy Pohlen for driving up for the game. Sharing this honor with ALL of our Stanford fans! THANK YOU!!!

February 20, 2017

Perfect Cardinal careers

For my blog I’ve been thinking about what my teammates like outside of basketball, so I’ve come up with a list for what I think each person would be perfect at career wise if they weren’t playing basketball.

First is Alanna, she would definitely be a zookeeper or someone who works well with animals. She is always watching animal videos and when we were at the Smithsonian in Washington D.C. she literally told me, “I wish I was a zookeeper that sounds like the perfect job.”

Bird would be a dancer/singer. She does so well in the spotlight and has such great dance moves and over the years her singing has really improved!

Kaylee—If you couldn’t tell by Kaylee’s earlier blog post she would be a wedding planner. I actually have already promised her that she can plan my future wedding (if I have one) for me!

Karlie LOVES dogs so if she could become a dog breeder and just raise puppies and train them I think she would love that (along with being a basketball coach on the side of course).

Bri plays video games all the time so if she could get a job creating or testing video games she would be perfect. I tried to play NBA2k with her once and she just schooled me.

Alexa is so amazing at photography. If she could travel the world and earn a living taking photos and helping people out I think she would be living her dream (and I think she probably will do this!).

Marta would be a super good food critique. She really has an eye for nicer things and isn’t afraid to tell people when they are not good at something. She would have some pretty high standards for the restaurants around town but would be a very trustworthy reviewer.

Shannon could be an opera singer. We all tell her she should sing the National Anthem before games because she is so good at singing, she belts it out in the locker room!

Mikaela should be a Disney animator. She loves everything Disney and can pretty much sing along to every Disney song + she’s an amazing drawer so this is the perfect fit for her.

Anna would be a great fashion designer. She is always wearing the most well thought out and put together outfits. I know her line of clothes would be a huge hit, especially among athletes.

Dijonai would be an amazing makeup artist. I think she has practically done everyone’s makeup on the team at least once this year already.

Nadia could be a comedian. She makes jokes 24/7 and keeps everyone in the locker room laughing not matter what.

— Brittany

February 7, 2017


The city where everybody wears black, drives on the left side of the road and is home to the best coffee. I had lived in Melbourne for 18 years before I moved to Stanford and being away from it has made me truly appreciate it! I truly believe the saying “distance makes the heart grow fonder” is in full effect when in regards to me and Melbourne. Things I used to complain about, I now remember with fondness. For example, the unpredictable weather had me wondering how it went from pouring rain to blistering hot all within a few hours, and now I look back and appreciate the variability and how it kept me on my toes. Or how I would look out across the street and observe a sea of people wearing all black and wonder where all the color was, and now I see the unique fashion and style of the city. I would complain about too many cafes to choose from and now I miss the coffee! One of my favorite cafes, Top Paddock, had the best coffee and the most amazing pancakes that looked so good I didn’t want to eat them.

See! It’s literally a work of art.

I am so happy I have the opportunity to be here at Stanford and being here has made me appreciate my home city so much. I am discovering new things about Stanford almost every day but always in the back of my mind is my home and the city I will always hold close to my heart.

— Alanna