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Women's Basketball Rally Falls Short Against Washington State

Jan 1, 2021

Final Box Score (PDF) | Boxscore

SALT LAKE CITY – The University of Utah Women's Basketball program shot 46-percent from the floor and out-rebounded the Washington State Cougars on Friday afternoon with a strong fourth quarter rally, but the Utes ultimately fell 79-74. Utah is 2-5 overall this season and 1-5 in Pac-12 play.

The Utes trailed by six at halftime and by as many as 17 in the third quarter, but the Utes battled back in the fourth to make it a three-point game with 10 seconds to go. Utah was then forced to foul though with Washington State hitting two free throws to seal the victory.  

Utah came out of the gate in the first quarter shooting 57-percent from the floor, but Washington State was also on point shooting 61-percent. The Utes and the Cougars headed into the second quarter tied 20-20 after Kennady McQueen hit her first of two three-pointers, knocking it down at the buzzer to make it a tie game.

The Utes took a four-point lead to start the second quarter on a 6-0 run to make it 29-25, but the Cougars had an answer with a 10-2 run of their own, eventually taking a 35-31 advantage with 4:56 on the clock. Turnovers would plague the Utes to end the quarter, turning it over four times in the last 3:56 with Washington State heading into halftime with a 44-38 lead.

Utah would hit an offensive wall in the third quarter, shooting just 28-percent from the floor and 25-percent from the three with Washington State taking a 17-point lead with 1:53 on the clock. The Utes would head into the final quarter down 12 after Niyah Becker and Andrea Torres scored back-to-back buckets to end the period.

The Utes continued to chip away, quickly making it a six-point game after McQueen scored six straight points to start the quarter. Washington State made it a 12-point game again with 3:40 remaining, but Utah continued to fight, going on a 7-0 run to bring it to five.

Brynna Maxwell was fouled on a three-point attempt with 10 seconds to go in the game, easily knocking down all three free throws to make it a three-point game, but the Utes were then forced to foul with the Cougars hitting two free throws for the five-point victory.

Torres finished the game with a season-high 14 points, only missing one shot in the game (6-7) while recording a career-high tying nine rebounds. Maxwell contributed 12 points while Kemery Martín put up 10 points and three rebounds.

McQueen scored a career-high 11 points for her first collegiate double-digit game, shooting 4-for-6 from the floor and 2-for-3 from beyond the arc, adding three assists. Ola Makurat was also a spark for the Utes off the bench, scoring a season-best nine points and seven rebounds.

"I am pleased that we fought to the end. Washington State is a good team and they've got really smart players that seem to make the right reads. The turnovers in the first half kind of hurt us, but I thought we were better in the second. I just think we had a lousy third quarter."

"But I was pleased with our effort, and our intensity on the boards. We competed, we just didn't do enough to win."

Utah's bench was a huge part of today's offense, scoring 34 points with McQueen leading the Utes off the bench with 11 points. The last time Utah's bench scored over 30 points was against UCLA on March 1, 2020 when they put up 38 points.

Utah will turn its attention to Washington on Sunday, Jan. 3 when the two teams tip off at 2 p.m. MT in the Jon M. Huntsman Center. The game will air on Pac-12 Mountain and Pac-12 Washington.