Women's Hoops Nips UCLA 73-71 in Pac-10 Tournament Quarterfinals

March 5, 2005

Final Stats

SAN JOSE, Calif. - Junior Kristen Kovesdy scored 14 of her 19 points in the second half to lead the Arizona State University women's basketball team past UCLA 73-71 Saturday afternoon in the quarterfinals of the 2005 State Farm Pac-10 Conference Tournament at the HP Pavilion.

With the victory, third-seeded ASU improved to 21-8 on the season and won its fourth straight contest. The Sun Devils also snapped a two-game losing streak in the Pac-10 Tournament and earned their first win since capturing the inaugural Pac-10 Tournament championship in 2002. UCLA fell to 16-12 on the year.

ASU will take on the winner of the quarterfinal game between second-seeded Oregon and sixth-seeded Washington on Sunday afternoon. Sunday's semifinal contest will tip off at 12:30 p.m. Pacific (1:30 p.m. Mountain) and will be televised nationally by Fox Sports Net.

The Sun Devils came out slow in the first half and fell behind 18-10 with 11:48 to play, but junior Amy Denson scored six straight points to get ASU within two. ASU took the lead seven minutes later when senior Kylan Loney made a back-door layup to make it 27-26 with 5:07 left. After two more lead changes and ties, freshman Reagan Pariseau put ASU back on top with a three-pointer, and the Sun Devils went into the locker room with a 35-33 advantage. Denson led the team with 11 first-half points, while Loney knocked down a pair of threes for 10 points and also had four assists.

After senior Carrie Buckner made a layup to put the Sun Devils up by four to open the second half, UCLA grabbed hold of the momentum, using an 8-0 run to take a 41-37 advantage with 17:44 to play. ASU would tie the game up five more times before regaining the lead for good when Loney knocked down back-to-back three-pointers to put the Devils up 63-58 with 4:49 to play. ASU led by as many as seven points, but the Bruins made one final run, cutting the lead to two points with 1:12 to play.

Sophomore Emily Westerberg knocked down a jumper to give ASU a 73-69 lead with 53 seconds left and UCLA again cut it to two seven seconds later. After an ASU turnover with 29 seconds to play, one of just five in the second half for ASU, the Sun Devil defense stood strong, causing UCLA junior Nikki Blue to miss the potential game-tying jumper with four seconds left to hold onto the 73-71 victory.

Kovesdy led three Sun Devils in double figures for scoring with 19 points on 9-of-13 shooting. She also paced the team with seven rebounds, including a season-high six offensive boards. Loney finished with 18 points and knocked down four three-pointers, while Denson came off the bench with another solid performance, turning in 15 points, six assists and five rebounds.

For UCLA, Blue finished with a career-high 36 points and junior Lisa Willis added 25, but the Sun Devil bench outscored the Bruins 21-0 en route to the win, their third of the season over UCLA.

Sunday's game can also be heard live in the Valley with Jeff Munn calling the action on KDUS 1060 AM or on the internet at www.thesundevils.com.

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