Arizona State Storms Past Texas Tech 61-45

Dec. 18, 2006

PHOENIX (AP) -Now you can call them the Rain Devils.

Tenth-ranked Arizona State (10-1) beat Texas Tech 61-45 on Monday night when the second outdoor game in women's college basketball history was called on account of rain with 4:18 to play at Chase Field, home of baseball's Arizona Diamondbacks.

There wasn't time to close the roof before the court got dangerously wet. The game was called because of concern that players would be injured.

The temperature was a brisk 56 degrees at tipoff under partly cloudy skies in downtown Phoenix and most of the crowd of 7,791 in the 49,000-seat stadium were bundled up like Packers fans at Lambeau Field.

In the second half, when Arizona State led by as many as 20 points, a slight wind made it even colder.

Texas Tech (8-4) took a 7-2 lead, but the Sun Devils responded with a 22-5 outburst. Coach Charli Turner Thorne substitutes often and in waves, and the reserves - led by 5-foot-5 freshman Dymond Simon - triggered the run.

Simon's driving layup punctuated the surge and put Arizona State ahead 24-12 with 7:49 left in the half.

The Lady Raiders twice cut it to seven late in the first half and trailed 37-25 at the break.

Emily Westerberg scored four in a 10-0 run early in the second half that put the Sun Devils up 47-27 on Danielle Orsillo's basket with 15:12 to play. Texas Tech never got closer than 16 again.

The court used by the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury was moved from U.S. Airways Center, a block away, and installed along the first base side of the infield. The NCAA allowed players to wear long-sleeve shirts under their jerseys. Four ASU starters and one Texas Tech player did so. A couple of Arizona State players wore gloves on the bench.

The first women's outdoor game also was held at Chase - then known as Bank One Ballpark - in 2000, when Tennessee beat Arizona State 67-63.

Tennessee was invited to participate this year, too, but declined, opting instead for the warmth of Wells Fargo Arena in Tempe, where the Lady Vols handed Arizona State its only loss this season.

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