Career Night from Appleton Gives Cougars Victory

Dec. 16, 2007

PULLMAN, Wash. - Led by the shooting of junior guard Katie Appleton, the Washington State University women's basketball team defeated San Jose State University 78-72 in overtime Sunday at Friel Court. The Cougars improved to 3-6 on the season, while the Spartans dropped to 1-9.

Appleton scored a career-high 29 points on 11-of-20 shooting, including a 3-pointer with 11 seconds left that ultimately sent the game into overtime. The game marked her third 20-point output in the last four games.

WSU jumped out to an early 11-0 lead, its largest lead to open a game this season. The Spartans gradually climbed back into the game however, taking the lead with 4-minutes, 27-seconds left in the first half. The Cougars trailed at halftime 30-29.

A fast break lay-up by Heather Molzen gave the Cougars the lead once again with 18:47 remaining in the second half, but a 3-pointer from San Jose State's Natalie White at 18:24 regained the lead for the Spartans. San Jose State led by as many as 12 points in the second half, but the Cougars were able to mount a comeback bid to send the game into overtime.

With 1:19 remaining and WSU down by five points, Appleton stole a pass by Sayja Sumler and scored on a fast break lay-up to put the Cougars within three. Appleton then hit a 3-pointer with 11 seconds left to tie the game at 65, where the score would remain and send the teams into overtime.

With the Cougars up by two points in the overtime period, Appleton once again came up big, hitting a jumper to put WSU up by four at 1:46. It would be free throws for the Cougar offense from that point on, as WSU claimed a 78-72 overtime victory.

'It's a game of runs,' WSU Head Coach June Daugherty said. 'If you can bear down and take care of your end, the game will come back to you.'

The last time WSU found itself in overtime it also came away victorious. The Cougars knocked off Northwestern State 72-70, Dec. 16, 2006.

Appleton just missed a double-double by pulling down a team-high nine rebounds. The 5-foot-8, Big Bear Lake, Calif., native was a perfect 4-of-4 from the 3-point line and added four steals. The Pacific-10 Conference leader in steals recorded two against the Spartans.

'I am very proud of the way Katie played tonight,' Daugherty said. 'That is exactly whose hands we want the ball in at the end of a game.'

WSU received 11 points each from juniors Heather Molzen and Ebonee Coates, giving the Cougars a trio of double-digit scorers for only the second time this season. Freshman guard Kezia Kelly added a career-high six assists.

After going 2-2 in their four-game home stand, the Cougars hit the road for four games. WSU travels to play Montana (Dec. 18) and Long Beach State (Dec. 21) this week to close out its nonconference season. The Cougars then open up Pac-10 play on the road against Stanford (Dec. 28) and California (Dec. 30).


SAN JOSE STATE (1-9)White, Natalie 9-21 1-2 25; Nichols, Emily 5-9 0-0 15; Sumler, Sayja 4-8 0-08; Martin, Christine 3-5 0-0 7; Powell, Brittany 2-4 1-3 5; Davis, Tamiko2-3 0-0 4; Barnes, Myosha 1-3 1-2 3; Imaku, Brittany 1-3 1-3 3; Hall, Jaime1-4 0-1 2; Hicks, Alisha 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 28-63 4-11 72.

WASHINGTON STATE (3-6)Appleton, Katie 11-20 3-6 29; Molzen, Heather 4-9 2-6 11; Coates, Ebonee 5-91-4 11; Betteridge, Colleen 3-7 2-4 9; Kelly, Kezia 2-7 3-6 7; Dickerson,Salena 2-3 0-0 4; Calderwood, Katie 1-7 1-2 3; Price, Alexa 1-3 0-0 2;Williams, Jasmine 1-6 0-0 2. Totals 30-71 12-28 78.

San Jose State................ 30 35 7 - 72Washington State.............. 29 36 13 - 78

3-point goals--San Jose State 12-28 (White, Natalie 6-15; Nichols, Emily5-9; Martin, Christine 1-2; Imaku, Brittany 0-1; Hall, Jaime 0-1),Washington State 6-15 (Appleton, Katie 4-4; Molzen, Heather 1-2; Betteridge,Colleen 1-3; Calderwood, Katie 0-3; Price, Alexa 0-1; Kelly, Kezia 0-2).Fouled out--San Jose State-Imaku, Brittany; Sumler, Sayja, WashingtonState-None. Rebounds--San Jose State 40 (Davis, Tamiko 9), Washington State46 (Appleton, Katie 9). Assists--San Jose State 21 (Imaku, Brittany 7),Washington State 19 (Kelly, Kezia 6). Total fouls--San Jose State 24,Washington State 14. Technical fouls--San Jose State-None, WashingtonState-None. A-314