WSU Falls To Arizona 80-50

Feb. 8, 2003

TUCSON, Ariz. - Jami Clevenger and Emma Joneby each posted a career-high 12 points to lead a trio of Washington State players in double figures in the Cougars' 80-50 loss to the Arizona Wildcats in Pacific-10 Conference women's basketball action, Saturday at the McKale Center.

Shawntinice Polk led Arizona with 28 points and 12 rebounds. Krista Warren (16 points) and Dee-Dee Wheeler (11 points) also scored in double-digits for the Wildcats.

'We started out playing behind and doubling down on (Polk), but that didn't succeed,' WSU Coach Sherri Murrell said. 'Then we tried fronting and then we tried zone. We tried everything and made every adjustment, but when it comes down to it, Shawntinice Polk is an All-American and will be for four years.'

The game began as a battle of runs with Arizona getting the upper hand. After Clevenger scored the first two points of the contest, Arizona ran off eight straight points to take an 8-2 lead three minutes into the game.

WSU responded with five consecutive points - all by Clevenger - to pull to within a point at 8-7. Another run by Arizona, this time 7-0, extended the Wildcats' advantage to 15-7 at the 13:14 mark.

Once again, the Cougars would score five straight points - courtesy of buckets from Sarah Barrett, who scored 11 points, and Joneby - to slice their deficit to 15-12 with 12:29 left.

But a 10-2 Wildcats' run built Arizona's advantage to 25-14 with 9:32 left. The Cougars were able to pull within 28-21 at the 8:11 mark, but the Wildcats ended the half with a 12-3 run to conclude the opening 20 minutes with a 40-24 lead.

Despite going 0-of-6 from three-point territory, Arizona ended the first half shooting 50 percent (16-of-32) from the field. Conversely, the Cougars were 10-of-27 (37 percent) despite converting 4-of-7 from outside the arc. Arizona made up for its lack of three-point production at the line, making 8-of-10 from the charity stripe while the Cougars were shut out from the line on only two attempts.

Arizona opened the second half with a 13-2 run to extend its advantage to 53-26 at the 15:55 mark. On the strength of a 9-0 run, the Cougars pulled to within 57-40 with 10:49 remaining but that was as close as WSU would get the rest of the game.

'In the first half, we were making some runs,' said Murrell. 'I felt like we did some really good things in the first half, but we didn't have the enthusiasm to keep it rolling.

'At half time, I asked the players, 'What kind of character are you going to show in the second half?'' Murrell added. 'I thought our players showed some good character. Our team isn't going to roll over. Arizona is a good team. We showed some good runs, but not enough.'

WSU returns home to face California, Thursday, Feb. 13 at 7 p.m.
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