Cougars Cruise Past Oregon State, 56-40

Dec. 21, 2006

CORVALLIS, Ore. - The Washington State women's basketball team opened the Pacific-10 Conference schedule with a win against Oregon State, 56-40, Thursday evening at Gill Coliseum.

The Cougars improved to 5-6 and 1-0 in the Pac-10 and Oregon State dropped to 4-4 and 0-1.

WSU's Kate Benz led the Cougars with 14 points and 7 rebounds. In addition, freshman Marisa Stotler added 10 points.

The win is big, because it's a win on the road and it's a Pac-10 win. Murrell said. 'It just really gives our young kids a lot of confidence.'

The Cougars shot 50 percent as they were 26-of-52 from the field. On the defensive end, WSU held OSU to 29.8 percent shooting and 24.1 percent shooting in the second half. The Cougars also out rebounded the Beavers 41-27.

The Cougars open the Pac-10 portion of the season with a win on the road something they have not done since Jan. 9 1993, when they defeated Washington, 75-72 in overtime.

It was the first win over Oregon State since the 2003 season and the first win in Corvallis since Feb. 14 1999 when the Cougars defeated the Beavers, 75-67.

WSU outscored the Beavers in the second half 32-17 after ending the game on an 18-6 run. The WSU bench outscored OSU's 13-2.

The Cougars went into halftime leading 26-24 after holding the Beavers scoreless for the first five minutes of the game. Despite only scoring four points during the Beaver drought, the Cougars went on a 10-0 run to give them a 24-14 lead with 4:21 remaining. The Beavers answered with a 7-0 run of their own to cut the lead to three at 24-21 with 2:22 until the half. Benz added two free-throws, but Julie Futch hit a three pointer as time expired to give the Cougars a two-point advantage.

In the second half, WSU started on an 8-2 run to build the lead to 34-26, which was culminated by a Dani Montgomery lay-in. During a span of 6:50 WSU outscored the Beavers 15-2, which gave the Cougars a 54-37 lead with 5:12 remaining in the final 20 minutes. Oregon State would not get closer than 14 points the rest of the way.

The Cougars return to action to host two conference games, Thursday, Dec. 29 at 7 p.m., against UCLA and USC, Saturday, Dec. 31 at 2 p.m. Both games will be played in Beasley Coliseum.

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