Women's Hoops Hosts Washington State on Senior Day at 4 p.m. Saturday
Feb. 25, 2005
TEMPE, Ariz. -
Following a 69-48 victory over Washington on Thursday night, the Arizona State University Sun Devils wrap up the regular season with Washington State (6-20, 2-15) at 4 p.m. Saturday afternoon at Wells Fargo Arena. Saturday is Senior Day with four Sun Devils playing in their final regular-season home game. Winners of their last two games and four of the last five, the Sun Devils hold a 19-8 overall record and an 11-6 Pac-10 mark, which puts them into a four-way tie for second place in the league standings. Including Thursday's victory over the Huskies, ASU has won its last six games at Wells Fargo Arena and 16 of its last 17. With a win on Saturday, the Sun Devils could turn in just the seventh 20-win season in school history and tie the school record for Pac-10 victories in a season. ASU is also looking to continue their seven-game home winning streak over the Cougars. Seeding for next week's Pac-10 Conference Tournament in San Jose, Calif., will be determined at the conclusion of Saturday's games.
ExposureAll of ASU's games will be broadcast live or on tape delay on NBC 1190 AM with 28-year Valley broadcaster Jeff Munn (play-by-play) and Phoenix Mercury general manager Seth Sulka (color) calling the action. Munn, who is a radio play-by-play announcer for the Arizona Diamondbacks and the club's public address announcer, is in the first year of his second stint as ASU's play-by-play voice. All of ASU's radio broadcasts are available live on the internet at www.thesundevils.com.
Senior FinaleASU will honor its four outstanding senior guards - Betsy Boardman, Carrie Buckner, Kylan Loney and Lauren Stagg - prior to Saturday's game with Washington State. The quartet will be playing in their final regular-season home game of the year. The four players have helped ASU to several of the most successful seasons in school history, including the Pac-10 Tournament championship and an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2002 and postseason appearances in each of their four years. Boardman, a fifth-year senior, also played on ASU's 2001 Pac-10 co-championship squad which advanced to the NCAA Tournament.
20-Win SeasonsWith a win over Washington State on Saturday, the Sun Devils could turn in the seventh 20-win season in school history and the first since the team tied the school record for single-season victories with a 25-9 record in 2001-02, winning the inaugural Pac-10 Tournament and advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament that season. A win against the Cougars would also mark the third 20-win campaign under ninth-year head coach Charli Turner Thorne.
ASU's 20-Win Seasons25-7 1981-82 (NCAA Sweet Sixteen)25-9 2001-02 (Pac-10 Tournament Champions, NCAA Second Round)23-7 1982-83 (NCAA Sweet Sixteen)20-9 1991-92 (NCAA First Round)20-11 2000-01 (Pac-10 Co-Champions, NCAA First Round)
In the Series With Washington StateASU holds a 25-12 advantage in the series with Washington State and has won 14 of the last 15 meetings with the Cougars. The Sun Devils lead the series 15-3 in games played in Tempe and have won the last seven meetings between the two teams at Wells Fargo Arena. This season, ASU opened Pac-10 play with a 67-39 victory over WSU on Dec. 27 in Pullman, while last year, the teams split a pair of meetings. ASU began league action with a 68-61 victory in Tempe on Dec. 27, 2003, and WSU got a 75-72 victory on Feb. 28, 2003 in Pullman.
The Cougars bring a 6-20 overall record and a 2-15 Pac-10 mark into Saturday's game following an 89-60 loss at Arizona on Thursday night. WSU got its second Pac-10 win of the season with a 68-63 defeat of Oregon State on Feb. 12 but fell at Washington 76-72 last weekend. Sophomores Kate Benz and Adriane Ferguson are pacing the team and ranked 15th and 20th in the Pac-10 in scoring with 10.7 and 9.9 points per game, respectively. Benz is also averaging a league-best 9.3 rebounds per contest.
Washington NativesASU has three players on its current rosters who hail from eastern Washington/Idaho. Sophomore forward Emily Westerberg (Greenacres, Wash.) and freshman point guard Reagan Pariseau (Spokane, Wash.) were teammates at Spokane's Central Valley High School, while the pair played for the Spokane Stars AAU team with sophomore forward Aubree Johnson, a Post Falls, Idaho, native.
The Sun Devils will have two more players from the Evergreen state on the roster next season when Kirsten Thompson, a 6-6 center from Monroe, Wash., and Briann January, a 5-8 guard from Spokane, Wash., join the squad. Thompson and January signed letters of intent with the Sun Devils in November and were both recently named honorable-mention Women's Basketball Coaches Association High School All-Americans.
State Farm Pac-10 Tournament ScenarioThe race for seeding in the 2005 State Farm Pac-10 Tournament will go down to the wire and will be decided by the results of tomorrow's final regular-season action. If the four teams currently tied for second in the Pac-10 standing all win tomorrow (ASU, Arizona, Oregon and USC), here's how the seeding would shake out by virtue of the tie-breakers. ASU would get the fourth seed and likely play fifth-seeded USC in the 7:15 p.m. PT game on Saturday, March 5 (8:15 p.m. MT).
Potential Pac-10 Tournament Seeding1. Stanford2. Oregon3. Arizona4. ASU5. USC6. UCLA7. UW8. California9. WSU10. OSU
Home-Court AdvantageArizona State holds an 11-1 mark at home this year, including a Dec. 21 upset of No. 8 UConn. Including their win over Washington on Thursday night, the Sun Devils have won six straight home games, 16 of their last 17 home contests and 29 of the last 32 at Wells Fargo Arena. ASU's Jan. 7 loss to No. 8/8 Stanford snapped the team's 10-game winning streak at Wells Fargo Arena and marked the team's first loss at home since Jan. 14, 2004. The school record for consecutive home wins is 13, set by the Sun Devils over the 2001-02 and 2002-03 seasons (last eight in 2001-02, first five in 2002-03). The Sun Devils hold a 73-15 record at home in the last six seasons (.830, 1999-00 to present) and a 50-8 mark at Wells Fargo Arena over the last four campaigns (.862).
The Sun Devils turned in a 13-1 record at Wells Fargo Arena last year, tying the school record for home wins for the third consecutive year and setting the school mark for home winning percentage in a season (.929). In 2002-03, ASU went 13-4 at Wells Fargo Arena which matched the school-record 13 victories the 2001-02 team had (13-2).
Pac-10 VictoriesWith an 11-6 Pac-10 mark with one regular-season game left, the Sun Devils have a chance to tie their school record for Pac-10 wins. It also marks the sixth time in school history that ASU has reached double figures for Pac-10 wins (four times under Charli Turner Thorne). ASU has won a school-record 12 Pac-10 games twice. In 2000-01, ASU went 12-6 and captured a share of the Pac-10 championship, while in 2001-02, the team matched that mark in conference regular-season play before going on to win the inaugural Pac-10 Conference Tournament.
With a win on Saturday, the Sun Devils would finish in a tie for second place in the Pac-10 standings, which would mark the fourth time in five years that the team has finished in the top half of the Pac-10 standings. ASU was picked to finish fourth in the Pac-10 by the media and the league's coaches in this year's preseason poll. Last season, ASU was picked fourth by the media and fifth by the coaches and ended up in a tie for third with an 11-7 mark in Pac-10 play.
More Balanced Than A ScaleThe Sun Devils have gotten balanced scoring so far this year with seven different players leading the team in scoring in the team's 27 games. On Thursday night, sophomore Aubree Johnson and junior Kristen Kovesdy each turned in 14 points to lead ASU past Washington. That marked a career high in scoring for Johnson and was the first time that she has led the team in scoring this season. Junior Amy Denson came off the bench to lead the team in scoring in the two previous games and has paced the squad five times this year. She turned in a season-best 16 points on 6-of-11 shooting Feb. 17 at Oregon and then bested that mark two days later, tying her career high with 18 points Feb. 19 at Oregon State.
ASU has two players averaging in double figures and ranked in the Pac-10's top 20 for scoring (and another just under 10 points per game) with less than two points separating the trio. Sophomore Emily Westerberg is leading the team and tied for 11th in the league at 11.5 points per game, while junior Kristen Kovesdy checks in at 13th in the Pac-10 at 10.9 points per game. Senior Kylan Loney is third on the team and just out of the league's top 20 at 9.6 points per game. In a Nov. 27 win over Prairie View A&M, all 13 Sun Devils scored two or more points, while Arizona State has nine players averaging at least 3.0 points per game this year.
Kovesdy has led the team in scoring 10 times, including 18 points on 8-of-11 shooting Jan. 3 against Arizona and a season-high 21 Feb. 3 at California (19 in the second half). Westerberg has accomplished the feat six times, turning in 18 points in ASU's Dec. 21 win over No. 8 Connecticut and a career-best (and team season-high) 26 points in a Jan. 22 win over Oregon, while Loney scored a season-high 23 points, including 5-of-9 three-point attempts, in ASU's Dec. 7 victory at then No. 11/14 Georgia.
In addition to scoring, the Sun Devils are also getting balanced rebounding this season with eight different players leading the team in the category in at least one game. Westerberg is leading the team and is just out of the Pac-10's top 20 with 4.8 rebounds per game, including an average of 6.0 boards in the last 12 games (72), while sophomore Aubree Johnson (4.5), senior Carrie Buckner (4.2) and junior Amy Denson (4.0) trail closely behind. Westerberg pulled down a career-best 14 rebounds Jan. 20 against Oregon State, while Johnson had a season-best nine rebounds in that game and seven two days later against Oregon. Denson pulled down a season-high 10 rebounds Feb. 17 at Oregon, while Buckner grabbed a season-best eight Jan. 9 vs. Cal. Seven Sun Devils are averaging at least 2.0 boards per contest, while senior Lauren Stagg led the team for the first time this year with five rebounds Thursday against Washington.
Defense Against Pac-10 OpponentsIncluding the team's 69-48 victory over Washington on Thursday, the Sun Devils have held a Pac-10 opponent to 50 points or fewer six times this year and 16 times in ASU's 19 years in the league. Fifteen of those 16 low-scoring efforts have come under ninth-year head coach Charli Turner Thorne. Turner Thorne's squads have led the Pac-10 in scoring defense in two seasons (2000-01 and 2001-02) and set the school record for fewest points allowed at 59.1 points per game in 2001-02.
This year, the Sun Devils are allowing a league-low 53.4 points per contest (ninth in the nation) and are on pace to set the school single-season marks for both scoring and rebounding defense. The Sun Devils are allowing just 53.4 points and 31.8 rebounds per game, while the school records are 59.1 points and 32.2 boards per contest and were set by the 2001-02 and 2003-04 Sun Devil teams, respectively. ASU also has a chance to break the Pac-10 record for scoring defense, currently held by Stanford which gave up just 58.4 points per game last season.
Arizona had come into the Jan. 3 game as the Pac-10 scoring leader at 73.5 points per game but was held 26.5 points below its season average. California was the top three-point shooting team in the league and third in the country, but ASU held the Golden Bears to 0-of-9 shooting in the meetings this season. ASU also held Cal senior Kristin Iwanaga, the league's top three-point shooter at 64.0 percent to 0-for-3 shooting in two games. The Sun Devils also held Stanford, the league scoring leader at 77.4 points per game, to just 67.5 points per game in two meetings this season. On Thursday night, Washington had come into the game averaging 80.3 points per game in its previous three contests (all wins), but the Sun Devils held the Huskies to their season low of 48 points to snap that three-game winning streak.
Turner Thorne First in All-Time Wins at ASUWith ASU's 44-42 victory over then No. 19 UCLA on Jan. 14 in Los Angeles, ninth-year head coach Charli Turner Thorne became the all-time winningest coach in Arizona State University women's basketball history. She now holds a 142-120 record at ASU and has passed Juliene Simpson who notched a 134-92 mark in eight seasons in Tempe (1979-87). Turner Thorne tied Simpson's mark with ASU's Jan. 9 win over California.
Turner Thorne has led her Sun Devils to a school-record five consecutive postseason bids including WNIT appearances in 2000, 2003 and 2004 and ASU's first back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances in 20 years in 2001 and 2002. ASU previously had advanced to postseason play in three straight seasons (NWIT runner-up in 1981, NCAA Sweet Sixteen in 1982 and 1983). After a 17-12 mark in 2003-04, Turner Thorne became only the second coach in school history to lead the Sun Devils to four consecutive winning seasons. The last time ASU had four straight winning campaigns was under Juliene Simpson from 1980-81 to 1983-84.
ASU took control of the game early, using a 6-0 run to take a 14-6 lead with 14:03 to play. The two teams combined for 27 first-half turnovers, but ASU shot 58.3 percent from the field and scored the last five points of the opening frame to take a 33-23 halftime advantage. Junior Amy Denson came off the bench to lead the team with eight points on 3-of-4 shooting in the first half.
In the second half, Washington scored the first five points to cut the ASU lead in half, but Johnson had four points and senior Lauren Stagg completed a three-point play in a 9-0 run to give ASU a 44-30 edge with 14:32 to play. The Sun Devils, which have won four of their last five games overall and six straight home contests, then used a 15-6 run to take a 61-42 lead with 6:53 to play and put the game away.
Johnson finished with a career-high 14 points on 7-of-10 shooting, while Kovesdy made all seven of her field goal attempts. Denson finished with 10 points and four steals and tied her career best with seven assists, while Stagg added seven points, a team-high five rebounds, five assists and two steals.
UW sophomore Cameo Hicks had 14 points, while sophomore Jill Bell was the leading rebounder with a game-high six rebounds.
The Sun Devils shot 61.2 percent (30 of 49) from the field -- their best percentage of the conference season and second-best outing of the season -- to overcome 27 turnovers. The Huskies committed 24 turnovers themselves, which ASU converted into 27 points. UW made 18 of 59 field goals (30.5 percent) and had just 48 points against the conference's best scoring defense.
Westerberg's WaysSophomore forward Emily Westerberg is leading the Sun Devils and is tied for 11th in the Pac-10 in scoring at 11.5 points per game. She is also ASU's top rebounder this year, pulling down 4.8 boards per game. In Pac-10 play, Westerberg is averaging 11.7 points (10th in the league) and 5.6 rebounds per game (11th) to pace the squad, including 22 points Jan. 7 against Stanford and a career-best 26 Jan. 22 against Oregon.
Westerberg has turned in a team-best 17 games in double figures this season. She scored 18 points in ASU's Dec. 21 upset of eighth-ranked Connecticut and has moved into the team rebounding lead after averaging 6.0 boards per game in the last 12 contests (72). She pulled down 11 rebounds Jan. 14 at UCLA and had a career-best 14 Jan. 20 vs. Oregon State. She turned in her first career double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds vs. UCLA on Feb. 12.
A first-team Pac-10 All-Freshman selection last season, Westerberg continues to be outstanding from the free throw line. She is ranked third in the Pac-10 and 29th in the nation at 85.3 percent from the charity stripe (81-95), including a 6-of-6 effort Dec. 21 against UConn and a perfect 8-for-8 afternoon Jan. 22 against the Ducks.
Getting It Done on DefenseArizona State has established itself as one of the top defensive teams in the Pac-10 Conference and the nation. The Sun Devils have led the league in at least one defensive category in each of the last seven seasons (1998-99 to present). This season, the Sun Devils lead the Pac-10 in scoring defense (53.4 points per game), rebounding defense (31.8 rebounds per game) and three-point defense (23.8 percent). Arizona State is also ranked ninth in the nation in scoring defense. This year also marks the fourth straight year and the sixth time in seven seasons that ASU has led the league in three-point defense.
Last year, ASU paced the Pac-10 in rebounding defense (32.2 rpg) and three-point field goal defense (30.4 percent allowed) and finished second in scoring defense (61.1 ppg). By allowing just 32.2 rebounds per game, ASU set a school record for rebounding defense in 2003-04, besting the previous low of 33.3 by the 2001-02 Pac-10 Tournament championship squad.
ASU has held 18 of its 27 opponents under 60 points and four under 40 points, setting the school record for fewest points by a Pac-10 opponent in a 50-38 win over Oregon State on Jan. 20. The Sun Devils tied the school record for fewest points allowed (in all games) after holding Prairie View A&M to just 30 points on Nov. 27. The very next game, ASU almost tied the school record again with a 71-31 victory over Alabama State. ASU also outrebounded Prairie View A&M by a margin of 43-9 in the victory.
In the last seven seasons (since the start of the 1998-99 season to present), ASU has held its opponents to just 61.6 points and 33.7 rebounds per game and 28.8 percent shooting from beyond the arc (12,682 points, 6,948 rebounds, 557-1937 three-pointers, 206 games).
A Little Help From Their FriendsArizona State ranks second in the Pac-10 and 29th in the NCAA with an average of 16.7 assists per game. The Sun Devils have had assists on 71.4 percent of their field goals this season (450 on 630 field goals), including 17 of 21 Dec. 21 vs. UConn, 13 of 15 Jan. 20 against Oregon State, 24 of 27 Feb. 12 against UCLA and 26 of 30 vs. Washington on Thursday night. With one regular-season game to play, ASU is just 26 assists shy of the school record of 476 assists set by the 2001-02 Pac-10 Tournament championship team. Last year, ASU finished just one assist shy of the school record with 475 (16.4 dishes per game).
Like in scoring and rebounding, the Sun Devils have remarkable balance in assists with senior guard Kylan Loney averaging 2.41 assists per game, and senior Carrie Buckner (2.37) and sophomore Emily Westerberg (2.26) following closely behind. Loney has 65 assists, while Buckner and Westerberg have 64 and 61 on the year, respectively. Junior forward Amy Denson (60, 2.22 pg) and freshman guard Reagan Pariseau (53, 1.96) trail right behind. Denson turned in a career-best seven in ASU's Nov. 27 win over Prairie View and tied that Thursday night against Washington. Denson has continued to improve her passing in each of her three seasons at ASU. Last year, she nearly doubled her assists total from her freshman year, averaging 1.5 assists per game compared to 0.8 in her rookie season.
Buckner (2.7) and Westerberg (2.6) are pacing the team in assists in league play, while Buckner has the best overall assist-to-turnover ratio on the squad (1.49) with 64 assists and 43 turnovers. She would rank fourth in the Pac-10 in the category but falls short of the minimum of 3.0 assists per game.
Loney dished out a season-high six Dec. 4 against Gonzaga, and with 361 assists in her four years at ASU, she is ranked sixth on the ASU career lists and should finish her career in ASU's top five.
Loney Sets Career Three-Point MarksSenior Kylan Loney is ASU's career-leading three-point shooter, draining 146 three-pointers in her four years in Tempe. The 2004 first-team All-Pac-10 selection set the ASU career mark with a pair of treys Jan. 26 at Arizona, passing Crystal Cobb who had 134 from 1989-94. Fellow senior Betsy Boardman ranks third on the ASU career list with 131 three-pointers made, while Loney has also surpassed Cobb's career mark of 392 three-point tries with 416.
Loney has shot 42.1 percent of her long-range attempts over the past eight games (16-38), including a 4-of-5 evening Feb. 3 at Cal and a perfect 3-for-3 effort Feb. 5 at No. 4/2 Stanford. She is on the way to shaking the slump that had seen her shoot just 18.2 percent (8-44) from beyond the arc in the previous 10 contests. This season, she has shot 35.0 percent from three-point land (43-123) and is just out of the Pac-10's top 10 for shooting percentage. Loney ranks sixth in the Pac-10 in three-pointers made (1.59 per game) and is shooting 32.0 percent in Pac-10 play (24-75).
Loney, who finished sixth in the Pac-10 in three-point shooting last year at 37.8 percent, shot just 16.7 percent from three-point range (2-12) in the first three games of this season but knocked down 58.6 percent of her threes (17-29) in the next five. She had a similar start last year, shooting 15.4 percent in the first five games and lighting it up for 41.0 percent in the last 24 contests (41-100).
Loney ranks third on the team (and just out of the Pac-10's top 20) in scoring at 9.6 points per game. She had been leading the squad in scoring but has fallen to third with 8.5 ppg in league action. In ASU's Dec. 7 upset of No. 11/14 Georgia, Loney tied her career bests with five three-pointers and nine three-point attempts and was named the U.S. Bank Pac-10 Player of the Week for the second time in her career. Against Stanford on Jan. 7, she knocked down 4-of-4 three-pointers and finished second on the team with 14 points, while she had a team-best 13 points on 5-of-7 shooting Feb. 5 at Stanford.
Keeping Up with KovesdyAfter leading the league all season, junior forward Kristen Kovesdy is now second in the Pac-10 in field goal percentage, shooting 60.6 percent from the field (126-208). In Pac-10 play, Kovesdy has also shot 60.2 percent from the field (77-128), including a perfect 7-of-7 night Thursday against Washington. Kovesdy finished second in the Pac-10 in field goal percentage last year at 55.7 percent, the seventh-best season effort by a Sun Devil.
Kovesdy already ranks second on the ASU career field goal percentage chart at 55.7 percent (335-601), and at 60.6 percent this year, she is on pace to set ASU's single-season shooting mark. Monique Ambers holds the school mark with a 58.8 percent effort in 1992-93 (142-243).
Kovesdy ranks second on the team and 13th in the Pac-10 in scoring at 10.9 points per game this season, less than one point behind sophomore Emily Westerberg for the team lead (11.5). Kovesdy has paced the Sun Devils in scoring in a team-best 10 games and is second on the squad with 15 games in double figures for scoring. She turned in the team's first double-double of the season with 13 points and season-high 10 rebounds Feb. 10 against USC and had 17 points in just 19 minutes Feb. 12 vs. UCLA.
Kovesdy led the Sun Devils with 16 points on 7-of-8 shooting in ASU's season-opening victory over Virginia on Nov. 11. She turned in a season-high 21 points on 9-of-11 shooting in the win against Gonzaga in the championship game of the Wells Fargo Holiday Classic on Dec. 4. On Dec. 21 against No. 8 UConn, she finished second on the team with 14 points, going 6-of-6 from the field, and she also had a team-best 18 points on 8-of-11 shooting Jan. 3 vs. then No. 25 Arizona.
Sun Devil Quick Hits
... ASU has won its last two home games by 21 points each night. At home this season, the Sun Devils are outscoring their opponents 66.1 points per game to 50.9 (+15.2).
... Senior Lauren Stagg turned in one of the most complete games of her ASU career on Thursday night vs. Washington with seven points on 3-of-4 shooting, a team-best five rebounds, five assists and two steals. She is making the most of the last few weeks of her ASU career, averaging 4.3 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists in the last four games.
... ASU shot a league play-best 61.2 percent from the field (30-49) Thursday against Washington. That also marked the second-best outing of the season for ASU, trailing only a 62.3 percent showing Nov. 27 vs. Prairie View A&M.
... ASU has shot 51.0 percent from the field in the last four games (104-204), up from the team's season percentage of 42.8. The past four games have seen the team turn in three of its best shooting efforts since starting Pac-10 play. The team shot 52.9 percent Feb. 12 against UCLA and buried 45.5 percent of its attempts Feb. 17 at Oregon.
... With a 19-8 overall mark, ASU has already surpassed its wins total from one season ago. Last year, ASU held a 17-8 mark through the first 25 games of the season but lost its last four games at 17-12.
... The Sun Devil bench has averaged 31.0 points per game in the last four contests and has outscored its opponents 124-43 in the last four games, including a 38-3 advantage in its Feb. 12 victory over UCLA, a 27-10 edge Feb. 17 at Oregon and a 31-14 lead Thursday vs. UW. On the season, ASU is getting 21.5 points per game from the nine Sun Devils currently coming off the bench.
... Junior Amy Denson has come off the bench to average 14.7 points and 4.3 rebounds per game in just 19.7 minutes of action in the last three contests. She has shot 60.0 percent from the field (15-25) and 92.9 percent from the free throw line (13-14) during that stretch.
... Sophomore Aubree Johnson has averaged 13.5 points per game in the last two contests, tying her career best with 13 points Feb. 19 at Oregon State and setting a career high with 14 points Thursday vs. Washington to celebrate her 20th birthday.
... ASU's 80 points Feb. 12 vs. UCLA marked the highest scoring game for ASU in Pac-10 play this season. It was also the second-highest scoring total of the season for the team, trailing just a 102-30 win over Prairie View A&M on Nov. 27.
... ASU has held nine teams to 50 points or fewer this season, including six Pac-10 opponents. The team holds a 9-0 record when holding teams under 50 points this season, while head coach Charli Turner Thorne is 36-2 in her nine years at ASU when the Sun Devils hold teams to 50 or fewer points.
... ASU holds an 8-0 mark when scoring 70 points or more this year. The Sun Devils hold a 16-0 record this season when scoring 60 points or more and are 18-1 when holding teams to 59 points or less.
... Sophomore forwards Emily Westerberg and Aubree Johnson have both stepped up their rebounding during league play. Westerberg is grabbing 5.6 boards per league contest up from 4.8 in all games, while Johnson is pulling down 4.8 rebounds in Pac-10 action compared to 4.5 in all games.
... Senior guard/forward Betsy Boardman made her first two starts of the season Jan. 20 and 22 against Oregon State and Oregon. With 13 points Jan. 20 against Oregon State, she became the 14th Sun Devil in school history to join the 1,000-point club. The fifth-year senior, who has come back from two ACL tears (one in each knee), now has 1,045 career points. Boardman has played in 118 career games with 93 starts and has averaged 8.9 points per game in her ASU career.
... ASU is 17-1 when leading at halftime this season. The team lost its first game when leading at the half Jan. 26 at Arizona. The Sun Devils led 27-23 at halftime in Tucson but were outscored 33-22 in the second half in the 56-49 loss.
... Turnovers have troubled the Sun Devils this season. ASU is averaging 20.5 turnovers and forcing 20.3 turnovers per game in Pac-10 action (-0.2 turnover margin). On the season, ASU is turning the ball over 20.1 times and forcing 22.3 turnovers per game (fsixh in the Pac-10 in turnover margin at +2.26). ASU averaged 25.0 miscues per game in its first three contests of the season but had just 16.7 in its next seven non-conference games.
... Just 11 of ASU's 27 opponents have shot more free throws than the Sun Devils this season (4-7 record in those games). The team has a season average of 19.0 free throw attempts per game and is connecting on 67.3 percent of its attempts (seventh in the Pac-10).
... ASU ranks third in the Pac-10 and 46th in the NCAA with 10.9 steals per game after finishing third in the Pac-10 in the category last season (10.0 steals per game). The Sun Devils reached double figures for steals in 19 of 29 games last year with a season high of 17. Arizona State has been in double figures for steals in 18 of its 27 games this year. The team turned in a season-high 19 steals in its Nov. 20 win over San Diego with four Sun Devils turning in three steals apiece in the victory and had 16 in last week's win at Oregon State.
... Senior Carrie Buckner is leading the team and ranked fifth in the Pac-10 with 2.3 steals per game. She has had a season-high five steals three times this year, most recently last week at Oregon State. Buckner is ranked fourth on the ASU career list with 218 steals in her four seasons in Tempe.
Up NextFollowing Saturday's regular-season finale with Washington State, the Sun Devils will head to San Jose, Calif., for the fourth annual State Farm Pac-10 Conference Tournament March 4-7. Seeding and pairings for the Pac-10 Tournament will be announced on Saturday, Feb. 26 following the conclusion of the regular season. ASU heads into tournament play looking for its sixth straight postseason appearance and its first NCAA Tournament berth since 2002. The bracket for the 2005 NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Championship will be announced on Sunday, March 13 on ESPN.
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