Women's Hoops Returns Home to Host Washington State, Washington
Feb. 4, 2003
TEMPE, Ariz. -
Coming off a pair of losses at Oregon and Oregon State last weekend, the Arizona State Sun Devils (12-8 overall, 4-7 Pac-10) return to the friendly confines of Wells Fargo Arena this weekend, taking on Washington State on Thursday night and No. 20/24 Washington on Saturday afternoon. Thursday night's game with the Cougars tips off at 6 p.m. Mountain Standard Time on AZ-TV (George Allen and Doug Gerlach calling the action), while Saturday afternoon's game vs. the Huskies, which is Native American Appreciation Night at Wells Fargo Arena, will tip off at 1 p.m. on Fox Sports Net (Jim Watson and Tammy Blackburn calling the action). Arizona State, which has lost four of its last five games, returns home for the only two home appearances in the middle of a streak that will see the team play five of seven games on the road. This weekend, the Sun Devils are looking to avoid their first three-game losing streak since ending the 1999-00 campaign with three straight losses. ASU is also aiming to win its 12th straight game and sixth consecutive season sweep over Washington State, while a victory over the red-hot Huskies would mark the team's fifth win in the last six meetings at home vs. Washington.
Washington State (0-19, 0-11 Pac-10) enters Thursday's game looking for the team's first victory of the year, while the team is in the midst of a 43-game losing streak that spans over the last two seasons, most recently falling to UCLA 86-70 and USC 89-36 last weekend. No. 20/24 Washington (17-3, 9-2) has won its last four games and eight of its last nine. The Huskies, who will face Arizona on Thursday night before heading to Tempe, swept USC and UCLA last week, including a 94-76 win over the Women of Troy and a 111-77 victory over the Bruins.
In the SeriesArizona State holds a 22-11 advantage in the series with Washington State and has won the last 11 meetings with the Cougars, including a 66-58 victory in Pullman on Jan. 11. On Thursday night, the Sun Devils will have the opportunity to earn their sixth consecutive season sweep over the Cougars after getting their fifth straight last year with a 68-40 win in Tempe on Jan. 12 and a 75-56 victory in Pullman on Feb. 7. Arizona State holds a 13-3 advantage in games played in Tempe with the Sun Devils winning the last five meetings between the two teams at Wells Fargo Arena. WSU's last wins over the Sun Devils came during the 1996-97 season when the Cougars swept both games that year.
Washington leads the series with Arizona State 24-11 and has won the last two meetings and four of the last five games, including a 69-56 victory in Seattle on Jan. 9 of this year. Last season, the two teams split the two meetings with ASU earning a 66-61 win at Wells Fargo Arena on Jan. 10 and UW taking a 68-50 victory at Bank of America Arena on Feb. 9. The Huskies also hold a slim 9-8 advantage in games played in Tempe, while ASU will be looking for its second straight home win over the Huskies on Saturday afternoon. The Sun Devils have won four of the last five meetings between the two teams at Wells Fargo Arena with the only loss in that stretch a 66-62 defeat on Jan. 11, 2001. That stretch of home success dates back to the 1997-98 season when Arizona State dealt then undefeated and seventh-ranked Washington a 77-76 loss on Jan. 8, 1998 in Tempe.
Home-Court AdvantageArizona State's losses to UCLA and USC on Jan. 16 and 18 snapped a 10-game Pac-10 home winning streak for the Sun Devils and marked the team's first Pac-10 home losses since ASU fell to then sixth-ranked Stanford 75-66 on Dec. 21, 2001. ASU has won 17 of its last 20 home games and 11 of 13 Pac-10 home games dating back to last year. In the last three seasons, ASU has gone 18-5 in Pac-10 play at Wells Fargo Arena
Earlier this year, the Sun Devils had their school-record 13-game home winning streak snapped by No. 9 Notre Dame on Dec. 7. That streak included the team's last eight Pac-10 home contests of last season and its first five games of the 2002-03 season. The previous school record for consecutive home victories was 12, accomplished over the 1981-82 and 1982-83 seasons. ASU, which played its first seven games of the 2002-03 season at home, has turned in a 42-11 record at Wells Fargo Arena in the last four seasons.
There's No Place Like HomeIn addition to their 9-3 record at Wells Fargo Arena this year (3-2 in Pac-10 games), the Sun Devils are also turning in some stellar stats in their home games. At home, ASU is averaging 69.9 points a game and shooting 42.6 percent from the field (292-685) and 36.6 percent from three-point land (56-153). In comparison, on the road, the team is averaging 61.9 points per game and shooting 38.4 percent from the field (177-461) and just 27.5 percent from three-point land (22-80).
Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes...Head coach Charli Turner Thorne shook up her starting lineup in ASU's Jan. 23 upset of then 19th-ranked Arizona, giving senior guard Rainy Crisp her second start of the season and freshman forward Jenny Thigpin the first start of her career. It marked the fourth different starting lineup of the season for the Sun Devils, while eight of the 12 players on ASU's active roster have now started at least one game this year. Here is the team's record with each different starting lineup:
ASU's Starting Lineup RecordBuckner, Denson, Albert, Loney, Noe 5-1Noe, Buckner, Kovesdy, Loney, Crisp 1-0Denson, Kovesdy, Loney, Noe, Buckner 5-7Buckner, Denson, Thigpin, Loney, Crisp 1-0
Offensive FirepowerAfter leading the Pac-10 in most defensive categories in the last two years, this year's Sun Devils have also shown a little offensive firepower this season. This year, the team is averaging 66.7 points per game which ranks seventh in the Pac-10, including a season-high 82 points twice (last at Akron on Dec. 20). The team also ranks sixth in the Pac-10 in field goal percentage and fifth in three-point percentage, shooting 40.9 percent from the field (469-1146) and 33.5 percent from three-point land (78-233).
But Not to Forget the Defense...In addition to the team's improved offensive performance, the Sun Devils still continue to be one of the top defensive teams in the conference. ASU is second in the Pac-10 in rebounding defense, allowing just 33.5 rebounds per game. The Sun Devils are also ranked third in the league in scoring defense, allowing just 62.8 points per contest. Arizona State has led the league in both rebounding and scoring defense in each of the last two years (2000-01 and 2001-02). Last year, the team set a Pac-10 record by giving up just 59.1 points per game, while the team's current average of 33.5 boards allowed per game is just off the school record for rebounding defense, set by last year's team at 33.3 rebounds per game. On Jan. 23, the Sun Devils held then No. 19 Arizona to just 58 points and 28 rebounds, 20.8 points and 13.1 rebounds below the Wildcats' then Pac-10 leading 78.5 points and 41.1 rebounds per contest. ASU also held the Wildcats to just eight offensive rebounds in the game and none in the first half of that contest.
The Sun Devils also lead the league in three-point shooting defense, a category the team has paced the Pac-10 in three of the last four years. This season, ASU is allowing its opponents to shoot just 28.8 percent from three-point land (49-170), while in the last four games, the Sun Devils have held their opponents to just 15.2 percent shooting from beyond the arc (5-33). On Jan. 31 at Oregon, ASU held the Ducks, the league's third-best three-point shooting team, to just 18.2 percent (2-11), down from their season numbers of 35.7 percent and 6.2 treys per game.
Last Time OutArizona State scored a season-low 45 points and shot just 25 percent from the field, falling at Oregon State 70-45 last weekend in Corvallis.
For the second game in a row, the Sun Devils, who lost their fourth straight game at OSU's Gill Coliseum, started slow, going without a field goal for the first 5:34 of the contest and falling behind 9-3 with 12:30 to play. Arizona State tied the game at 13-13 with 7:48 remaining and took their first lead of the ball game with 5:57 to play when freshman Jill Noe got a steal and made a layup to make it 19-18. OSU, however, scored the next four points of the game to regain a 22-19 lead with 4:08 to play. ASU would cut the lead to one, but Oregon State held onto a 28-25 halftime lead.
Arizona State had just eight field goals and shot just 30.8 percent in the first half (8-26) compared to 44.0 percent by the Beavers (11-25). Oregon State junior Hollye Chapman led all scorers with 16 points in the first half. Noe had eight points to lead the Sun Devils, while freshman Jenny Thigpin had eight of her career-high nine rebounds in the first 20 minutes.
In the second half, ASU scored the first three points of the half to take a 29-28 lead, but the Beavers scored 24 of the next 31 points, including an 11-0 run, in the game to take a 52-36 lead with 7:03 to play and never looked back. The Sun Devils' offensive performance got worse in the second half with the team managing just 20 points and shooting 19.2 percent from the field (5-26).
Noe led the Sun Devils with 12 points but shot just 3-of-10 from the field, while sophomore Carrie Buckner and junior Iman Young each had seven points. Thigpin finished with a team-high and career-best nine rebounds.
For Oregon State, Chapman led all scorers with 22 points and also added nine rebounds, three assists, a block and a steal. OSU's Casey Bunn turned in a double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Last Time Against Washington StateFreshman Jill Noe scored 18 of her career-high-tying 23 points in the second half as Arizona State rallied to a 66-58 victory at Washington State on Jan. 11.
The first half was all Cougars as WSU forced nine ASU turnovers early and took a 15-7 lead with 8:40 to play. The Cougars took their biggest lead of the game three minutes later, going up 19-9, after forcing three more ASU turnovers. The Sun Devils cut the WSU lead to 19-18 with 2:35 left in the half, but the Cougars scored five of the final six points to take a 24-19 halftime lead. ASU shot just 25 percent in the first half (7-28) and turned the ball over 17 times.
In the second half, ASU quickly cut the lead to two when Noe knocked down a three-pointer, but WSU answered with a 9-2 run to make it 33-24 with 16:32 to play. Loney knocked down her second three-pointer of the game to make it 33-27 and start the ASU rally. Freshman Kristen Kovesdy made a pair of layups including a one on a steal and fast break to get ASU within two, 35-33, with 13:08 to play. ASU took control a minute later when Noe hit a shot on an inbounds play, was fouled and knocked down the free throw to tie the game at 38 with 11:21 left.
Senior Rainy Crisp stole the Cougars' inbounds pass on the next possession, was fouled and knocked down a pair of free throws to give ASU its first lead of the ball game, 42-40 with 10:36 to play. WSU briefly took a two-point lead, but Noe converted on another three-point play to put ASU up for good, 45-43 with 8:23 remaining in the game. The Sun Devils then hit a pair of free throws, including one on a technical foul, to go up 47-43 and never allowed the Cougars to get closer than three. After shooting just 25 percent in the first half, ASU turned in a 44.1 percent effort in the second half (15-34) and finished at 35.5 percent.
Noe led all scorers and tied her career best with 23 points, scoring 18 in the second half. She also added four assists and three steals in the victory. Kovesdy finished with 15 points and eight rebounds, while Buckner pulled down a career-high and team-best 12 rebounds and added eight points, two blocks and two steals. Freshman Jenny Thigpin added seven rebounds and had four points and a block in just nine minutes. Jessica Perry led three Cougars in double figures with 29 points, while Bianca McCall had 15 points and 14 rebounds.
Last Time vs. WashingtonFreshman Amy Denson turned in a career-high 18 points as Arizona State fell to Washington 69-56 Jan. 9 at UW's Bank of America Arena. The Huskies, who were playing in their first Pac-10 home game of the year, honored sophomore Kayla Burt who was diagnosed with a career-ending rare heart condition and underwent surgery the week before.
The Sun Devils trailed from the start, falling behind 8-0 in the first four minutes. ASU shot just 20.7 percent (6-29) and scored a season-low 14 points in the first half, while ASU starters Jill Noe and Kylan Loney were limited to just five and four minutes, respectively, by foul trouble. UW's Giuliana Mendiola had 17 points on 6-of-8 shooting in the first half to lead UW to a 33-14 halftime lead.
In the second half, Washington continued to build on its lead, going up 39-18 with 18:28 to play, but the Sun Devils cut the lead to 15 after an 8-2 run to make it 41-26 with 16:49 remaining. The Huskies pushed their lead to 25 points midway through the half, but ASU scored the next eight points to cut the lead to 17, 59-42 with 6:20 remaining. Denson scored 10 of her career-high-tying 18 points over the final 2:14 in the 69-56 Husky victory.
For the Sun Devils, Denson knocked down 7-of-14 shots and pulled down nine rebounds in 24 minutes, while freshman Kristen Kovesdy finished with seven points, 10 rebounds and a career-best four steals. Loney had 11 points and knocked down a pair of three-pointers in just 19 minutes, while Noe, ASU's leading scorer, finished with just five points in the game. Mendiola led all scorers with 22 points and also turned in 10 rebounds and five assists for the Huskies.
Just Say NoeFreshman Jill Noe earned her second Pac-10 Women's Basketball Player of the Week honor of the season on Jan. 6 and became the first true freshman in the Pac-10 to earn two player-of-the-week honors in a season since Stanford's Nicole Powell did it in 2000-01. Noe was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week for Dec. 30-Jan. 5 after averaging 21.0 points, 10.0 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 4.5 steals in ASU's home wins over Oregon State and Oregon. She turned in a career-high 23 points and 11 rebounds in the victory over Oregon State and followed up that effort with 18 points, nine rebounds and seven assists in ASU's win over Oregon. On the weekend, Noe shot 41.7 percent from the field (10-24), 42.9 percent from three-point land (6-14) and 83.3 percent from the free throw line (15-18).
Noe was also named the Pac-10 Women's Basketball Player of the Week for Dec. 9-15. She came within one rebound and one assist of recording the 13th triple-double in Pac-10 history in ASU's 76-53 defeat of Denver on Dec. 9. Noe finished with 17 points, nine rebounds and nine assists, adding six steals in 26 minutes of play. She shot 7-of-11 (.636) from the field, including a 75.0 percent clip (3-of-4) from 3-point range. Noe also recorded two blocked shots and committed no turnovers in the victory.
Noe has done it all for the Sun Devils this year, pacing the team in scoring (14.9 ppg), free throw percentage (.811) and steals (2.2 spg). She also ranks second on the team in three-point field goal percentage (.383) and assists (3.1 apg) and is third in rebounding (5.5 rpg). She is ranked third in the Pac-10 in steals, fifth in free throw shooting, seventh in scoring, ninth in three-point shooting and tied for 15th in rebounding. With 297 points, she already ranks fourth on the ASU single-season list for scoring by a freshman and is also threatening the school freshman records for steals (sixth with 44) and assists (ninth with 61).
Noe has scored in double figures 16 times in 20 games this year (with five 20-point games) and has paced the team in scoring in 12 of ASU's 20 contests this season, including 11 of the last 16. She notched career highs for scoring in back-to-back games with 21 points at California on Dec. 29 and 23 points Jan. 2 vs. Oregon State and matched her career best again with 23 points (including 18 in the second half) at Washington State on Jan. 11.
Ball TheftsThe Sun Devils are ranked third in the Pac-10 in steals this season, averaging 10.6 steals per game. The team had a season-high 20 steals vs. UW-Milwaukee in the championship game of the Wells Fargo Holiday Classic on Nov. 30 and 19 in their victory over Denver on Dec. 9. ASU has tallied at least 10 steals in 11 of 20 games this year. Freshman Jill Noe leads the team and is ranked third in the Pac-10 with 2.2 thefts per game, including a career-high-tying six steals Jan. 2 vs. Oregon State. Eight Sun Devils have 12 or more steals on the year.
Young GunsThree of ASU's true freshmen continue to lead the team and rank in the top 20 in the Pac-10 in both scoring and rebounding. Freshman guard Jill Noe, a two-time Pac-10 Player of the Week this season, ranks first on the team and seventh in the Pac-10 in scoring at 14.9 points and third on the team and tied for 15th in the Pac-10 in rebounding at 5.5 boards per contest. Noe has led the team in scoring in 11 of the last 16 games, including a career-best 23 points Jan. 2 vs. Oregon State and again Jan. 11 at Washington State. Freshmen forwards Amy Denson and Kristen Kovesdy have turned in nearly identical numbers this season. Denson leads the team and ranks 10th in the Pac-10 in rebounding (6.2 rpg, 125 rbs), while Kovesdy is second on the team and 11th in the league in the category (6.2 rpg, 124 rbs). In scoring, the pair is tied for second on the team at 10.8 points per game, while Kovesdy holds the edge in the league standings at 19th (216 pts) and Denson is 20th (215). Kovesdy also leads the team and ranks third in the Pac-10 in field goal percentage at 57.6 percent (80-139).
Double TroubleASU had a true freshman turn in her first career double-double in each of the team's first three games, while the Sun Devil rookies have had eight of ASU's nine double-doubles this season. Freshman guard Jill Noe led the Sun Devils with a double-double in their season-opening win over Chicago State with 17 points and 10 rebounds, freshman forward Kristen Kovesdy matched the feat with a double-double of her own with 19 points, on 7-of-7 shooting, and 10 rebounds off the bench vs. Northern Illinois, and freshman forward Amy Denson turned in 12 points and 14 rebounds in ASU's victory over Portland State in the first round of the Wells Fargo Holiday Classic. Kovesdy turned in the second double-double of her young career at Kent State on Dec. 18 with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Denson turned in the second of her career with 17 points and 11 rebounds at Cal on Dec. 29 and Noe accomplished the same feat on Jan. 2 with career bests of 23 points and 11 rebounds vs. Oregon State. Both Noe and Kovesdy had their third double-doubles of the season Jan. 16 vs. UCLA with Noe turning in 11 points and a career-high-tying 11 rebounds and Kovesdy adding 13 points and a career-best 13 boards.
Second-Half SurgesThis year's Sun Devils have shown the ability to kick things up a notch in the second half, outscoring their opponents 730-662 over the final 20 minutes this year. The team has only been outscored in the second half in just six games this year (all losses). ASU has shot 43.1 percent from the field in the second half this year (247-573), including a season-best 81.0 percent outing Dec. 20 at Akron (17-21). Comparatively, the Sun Devils have outscored their opponents just 604-593 and shot just 38.7 percent from the field (222-573) in the first halves of games this year.
In the team's first loss of the year to No. 9 Notre Dame, the Sun Devils followed up a dismal 17-point, 13.8-percent half by playing the Fighting Irish to a 35-35 tie and shooting 39.5 percent from the field in the final 20 minutes. On Dec. 18 at Kent State, ASU rebounded from a 26.7 percent first half (8-30) with a 51.9 percent half (14-27). In ASU's games at Washington and Washington State on Jan. 9 and 11, the team averaged 16.5 points and shot 22.8 percent from the field (13-57) in the first halves compared to 44.5 points and 46.9 percent from the field (31-66) in the second halves of the two contests.
Success at the Charity StripeThis season, the Sun Devils have turned into one of the league's better free throw shooting teams, ranking fifth in the Pac-10 in the category at 69.0 percent on the year (318-461). Last year, the team finished ninth in the Pac-10 in the category at just 63.9 percent (524-820). The Sun Devils turned in their best effort from the charity stripe this year with an 83.3 percent outing (15-18) at Kent State on Dec. 18 and have shot 70 percent or better from the line in 10 of 20 games. Freshman Jill Noe leads the team and is fifth in the Pac-10 at 81.1 percent (90-111), including 8-of-8 Jan. 18 vs. USC. Six Sun Devils are shooting at least 65 percent from the charity stripe on the season.
- This weekend's games with Washington State and Washington mark the only two home games for ASU in a stretch of five of seven on the road, which started last week in Oregon. ASU is 9-3 at home this year (3-2 in the Pac-10) compared to just 3-6 on the road (1-5 in the Pac-10). The team's lone league road win coming at Washington State Jan. 11.
- Saturday's game will pair Washington, the league-leader in scoring (78.2 ppg) and three-point percentage (38.6 percent) with Arizona State which ranks third in the Pac-10 in scoring defense (62.8 ppg) and first in three-point defense (28.8 percent).
- Last weekend marked the worst offensive performance of the season for the Sun Devils who averaged just 48.5 points in the two games, down from their season average of 66.7 ppg. ASU tied its season lows with 52 points, 18 field goals and 49 field goal attempts at Oregon. Two nights later, ASU set new season lows with 45 points and 13 field goals at Oregon State. The Sun Devils also turned in season lows for shooting percentage (.250) and assists (four) in their loss to the Beavers.
- A total of four Sun Devils rank in the Pac-10's top 20 in rebounding (Amy Denson-10th, Kristen Kovesdy-11th, Jill Noe and Carrie Buckner-T15th).
- Along with her team, freshman Jill Noe has also turned in some stellar numbers at home this year, averaging a team-best 15.8 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.6 steals per game in the friendly confines of Wells Fargo Arena. She is also shooting 42.2 percent from the field (54-128) and 44.0 percent from three-point land (22-50) at home this year.
- Sophomore Carrie Buckner has turned up her game a notch in the last six games, averaging 7.5 points and 7.7 rebounds per contest. She turned in the first double-double of her career with 10 points and a career-high-tying 12 rebounds vs. Arizona on Jan. 23, while she played a career-high 35 minutes in each of ASU's games vs. UCLA and USC, averaging 10.0 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.0 steals per game and taking the toughest defensive assignment in each contest. She held the Pac-10's scoring leader, UCLA senior Michelle Greco, to just six points, 12.6 points below her then average of 18.6 points per game and added 12 points and six rebounds, while against the Women of Troy, Buckner had eight points and matched her career best with five steals.
- On the year, Buckner is tied for seventh in the Pac-10 with 2.05 steals per game. With 41 takeaways this year, she has already matched her production of 38 steals from last year.
- The Sun Devils have already blocked 60 shots this season, which surpasses the 51 the team had all of last year and is the most since the 1998-99 team had 62 rejections. Last year, ASU finished ninth in the Pac-10 with just 1.5 blocks per game, while this season, the team ranks fifth with 3.0 per contest. Freshman Kristen Kovesdy leads the team and is tied for seventh in the Pac-10 in the category with 0.8 blocked shots per game. Her 15 blocked shots also put her in fifth on the ASU single-season list for blocks by a freshman and just four rejections out of second place on the list, while Jenny Thigpin is tied for eighth on that list with nine blocks.
- ASU outrebounded UCLA 55-35 on Jan. 16, which marked a season high for the Sun Devils in rebounding and the most boards since the team turned in 55 in a win over Delaware State on Nov. 19, 2001. The last time ASU had 50 or more rebounds against a Pac-10 team came during the 1996-97 season when both Arizona State and Arizona had 50 rebounds in a 66-42 Wildcat win in Tempe.
- The Sun Devils are now leading the Pac-10 in the category with 15.5 offensive boards per game, including a season-high 17 vs. UCLA on Jan. 16 and again at Oregon State on Feb. 1. Freshman Kristen Kovesdy ranks fourth in the Pac-10 with 2.8 offensive rebounds per game, while sophomore Carrie Buckner is sixth in the league with 2.7 offensive boards per contest.
- ASU's seven new players account for 64.7 percent of the team's scoring (863 of 1334 points) and 58.5 percent of the team's rebounding (435 of 743 boards) this year.
- Freshman Kristen Kovesdy is leading the team and ranks third in the Pac-10 in field goal percentage, knocking down 57.6 percent of her shots on the year (80-139). She knocked down her first 16 attempts of the season, including a perfect 7-of-7 performance in ASU's season-opening win over Chicago State, 4-of-4 vs. Northern Illinois and her first five shots vs. Portland State. Kovesdy did not miss her first shot until the 11:59 mark of the second half in that game vs. Portland State, ASU's third game of the year.
- Through ASU's 20 games, sophomore Kylan Loney leads the team with 33 three-pointers, surpassing the total of 14 she had all of last year. Loney leads the team and ranks seventh in the Pac-10 at 38.4 percent from three-point land this year (33-86), while freshman Jill Noe is second on the team and ninth in the league at 38.3 percent (31-81). Loney drilled a career-best and team-high five three-pointers in ASU's Jan. 4 win over Oregon, while Noe has knocked down at least three treys in five games this year.
- The Sun Devil bench has outscored their opponents' reserves in all but six games this year and is averaging 18.5 points per game (369 points).
- This year, Arizona State returns just one starter and six letterwinners from its 2001-02 Pac-10 Tournament Championship and NCAA Tournament squad (with the losses of junior and two-year starter Betsy Boardman and sophomore forward Alexis Tate to season-ending knee injuries) but has added a recruiting class of five freshmen and one junior college transfer which was ranked in the top 25 in the nation by Blue Star. The 2002-03 Sun Devil active roster is a young one featuring a junior college transfer, three sophomores and six freshmen.
Turner Thorne Second in All-Time Wins at ASUWith a 102-94 record in her seven years at ASU, head coach Charli Turner Thorne holds sole possession of second place in all-time wins by a Sun Devil women's basketball coach. Turner Thorne earned the 100th win of her ASU career with a 78-63 victory over Oregon on Jan. 4 of this year. With ASU's victory over Arizona on Dec. 30 last year, the 2001 Pac-10 Coach of the Year passed Maura McHugh who turned in a 75-65 record in her six seasons at the helm (1987-93). Juliene Simpson is the all-time winningest coach in ASU women's basketball history, notching a 134-92 mark in eight years (1979-87).
Since Turner Thorne took over the reins of the program in 1996-97, the Sun Devils have begun a steady climb back to the national prominence that the team enjoyed in the early 1990s. In 2000-01, Turner Thorne's Sun Devils captured ASU's first Pac-10 Championship, an NCAA berth, a return to the national rankings and the team's first 20-win season in nine years, while her 2001-02 squad tied the school mark for single-season wins with a 25-9 record. The 2001 Pac-10 Coach of the Year and District 8 Regional Coach of the Year has improved the team's wins total in each of her six seasons and guided ASU to five consecutive double-digit win seasons.