Utah Women's Basketball Topped By No. 6 Arizona, 77-60
SALT LAKE CITY – The University of Utah women's basketball team fell to the No. 6 Arizona Wildcats today in the Jon M. Huntsman Center, 77-60. Utah is 2-4 overall this season and 1-4 in Pac-12 play.
The Utes stood shot-to-shot with the Wildcats in the first half, but an 8-0 run by Arizona in the first quarter opened a gap that the Utes struggled to close. The 8-0 run occurred in the first quarter with Arizona taking a 22-14 lead with the Utes unable to score any field goals for the final four minutes of the quarter despite shooting 62-percent from the floor.
Utah held Arizona scoreless from beyond the arc in the second quarter, but the Wildcats were still able to hold a double-digit lead with 5:47 left in the period. It was then that Niyah Becker gave the Utes a spark from the bench, scoring eight points in the quarter, including a huge three-pointer with nine seconds remaining to send the Utes into halftime only down eight.
Arizona led by as many as 17 points early in the third quarter with the Utes with the Wildcats scoring 10 of their 19 third quarter points off turnovers. The Utes shot 41-percent from the floor in the third with Peyton McFarland scoring eight of her points in the period but Arizona was still able to take a 12-point lead into the fourth.
The Utes quickly made it a seven-point game on sharp shooting from the three from Becker with 9:12 left in the game, but a 12-0 run from the Wildcats would open the game against to double-digits. Arizona would hold Utah to just four made field goals in the fourth, walking away with the 77-60 win.
The Utes had three players finish in double-digits against the Wildcats, led by junior Niyah Becker who put up a season-high 13 points on 4-of-9 shooting. Becker was 3-of-7 from the three-point line as well, also grabbing three rebounds, a steal and a block.
Brynna Maxwell scored 11 points which included going 3-for-6 from beyond the arc while Peyton McFarland recorded her first collegiate double-double with a career-high 10 points and 11 rebounds.
TALKING ABOUT THE GAME: HEAD COACH LYNNE ROBERTS
"I thought we competed. The first quarter kind of crushed us and put us in a hole, but then for the most part after that we did well, defensively we did pretty good. Our turnovers just continue to crush us and to start the third quarter we had three in like 45 seconds and that set the tone."
"I felt like we were in a good spot heading into halftime because we had gained some composure and some confidence and then we just turned it over. Credit to Arizona, I think they do a really good job defensively. They are very athletic and they are able to do some things aggressively."
McFarland recorded her first-career double-double as a Ute, scoring a career-high 10 points with a career-best 11 rebounds. It is the first double-double by a Utah freshman since Utah's game against Arizona on Feb. 15, 2019.
The Utes will turn their attention to the Washington schools to bring in the New Year, playing against Washington State on Jan. 1, 2021 and Washington on Jan. 3 with times and TV selections being announced at a later date.