Arizona State Shoots Down Women's Basketball 86-72
Jan. 6, 2002
EUGENE, Ore. - The University of Oregon women's basketball team couldn't stop Arizona State's accurate shooting Sunday as the Sun Devils won 86-72 before 4,804 fans at McArthur Court.
Arizona State (12-4, 3-2 Pac-10) hit 68 percent of its shots in the first half-at one time it was as high as 76 percent late in the half-as it jumped out to a 49-30 lead going into the lockerroom. Meanwhile, Oregon (9-6, 4-2) managed to make just 38 percent in the first half and 39 percent overall.
'We just got flat-out beat, particularly in the first half,' first-year Oregon coach Bev Smith said. 'They came out with incredible focus, incredible discipline and incredible aggressiveness.'
The Ducks, who saw their three-game winning streak snapped, had a 13-8 lead with 14:57 on the clock. But Arizona State went on a 17-2 run over the next six minutes, sparked by eight points from Amanda Levens, to lead 25-15.
'I think playing as poorly as we did against Oregon State (a 77-70 loss) helped us today,' Arizona State coach Charli Turner Thorne said, whose team won at Eugene for the first time in eight games. 'Our team is too good to accept losing like that. I give them credit for coming back and playing great against a great Oregon team.'
Oregon trailed by as many as 25 points midway through the second half, but went on a little run of its own. The Ducks cut the Sun Devils' lead to 75-63 with 3:03 on the clock behind eight points from freshman Kedzie Gunderson and 10 from Shaquala Williams, who tied her career-high with 31 for the game.
'This is a game that we needed and that we wanted,' Smith said. 'We needed the substance that ASU had, but in the last 10 minutes, we showed that we're down, but not out.'
Four Arizona State starters scored in double-figures, led by Levens' 22. She also made 10-of-11 from the line as the Sun Devils shot 26-of-29 overall on free throws. Melody Johnson also was hard to contain as she made 8-of-9 from the floor en route to 18 points and seven rebounds.
'We tried a number of ways to stop their post play, but we just didn't play hard enough to keep Melody Johnson out of the paint,' Smith said. 'She knows how to use her body very well and she's hard to stop. We just didn't keep her feet out of the paint.'
Williams scored 19 of her 31 points in the first half and finished making 9-of-20 from the field, including 4-of-8 from 3-point range and 9-of-10 from the foul line. Gunderson scored a career-high 10 points before fouling out.
The game marked the return of senior guard Edniesha Curry, who had missed the last three games because of a left foot injury. She entered the game in the second half and finished with seven points, three assists and four steals.
Oregon next hits the road to take on California on Thursday at 7 p.m. On Sunday, the Ducks will play Stanford in a game nationally televised on Fox Sports Net. Tipoff is at 1 p.m.