Cougars Overtake Vandals 68-52

Dec. 2, 2000

PULLMAN, Wash. - In an 180 degree reversal from Thursday's loss to BYU, the Washington State women's basketball team outscored the Idaho Vandals 46-19 in the second half to capture the 34th meeting between the Palouse rivals 68-52 Saturday night at Friel Court.

The win snaps a three-game losing streak for the Cougars to the Vandals. Washington State improved to 3-2 while Idaho dropped to 1-5.

In the 90-58 loss to BYU, Washington State was outscored 51-24 in the second half. It seemed the effects from that defeat carried over into the first half of the Idaho contest. The Cougars found themselves down early 9-0 on their way to facing a 33-22 halftime deficit to the Vandals.

But after spotting Idaho an early bucket that increased the Vandals' lead to 13 at the 19:26 mark of the second half, the Cougars awoke out of their slumber keyed by an offensive outburst by sophomore Jessica Ottmar.

Propelled by 11 consecutive points from Ottmar to open the Cougar second half scoring, WSU went on a 18-4 run to take its first lead of the game at 40-39 with 10:41 left. In that stretch, Idaho missed nine of ten shots (including eight straight) and turned the ball over six times.

A period of four ties and two lead changes ensued that put the game at a 48-46 Idaho advantage with 6:40 left. But just as they began the second half, the Cougars ended the game with a flourish outscoring Idaho 22-4 the rest of the way. The Vandals finished the contest by missing ten of their last 11 shots.

'I thought that Idaho played a really strong first half,' said WSU coach Jenny Przekwas. 'I think they were beating us with physical play and with transition. In the second half we speeded our game up. We had a smaller line-up in and we were more willing to take the physical play. It really made a lot happen for us in the second half.'

In the second half, Idaho made six field goals, one less than their seven free throws. In addition, the 18 total field goals by Idaho was one less than their total number of fouls and turnovers.

Although she saw action for only five minutes in the second half after fouling out at the 10:51 mark, Ottmar scored 13 of her game high 17 points in the final stanza. Yvonne Volkman tallied her third consecutive game of scoring in double figures with 11 points.

The Cougars return to action this Friday at 8 p.m. against the University of Portland at the Hayden Homes Cougar Shootout at the Spokane Arena. Depending on the outcome of the Portland contest, WSU will face either Idaho or Toledo Saturday at 6 or 8 p.m.
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