Thomas and McDonald lead No. 10 Arizona to win over Washington
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — If senior Sam Thomas played her final home game Sunday, she made it one to remember.
Thomas had 20 points including a career-high six 3-pointers, added a season-high seven rebounds and had three blocked shots when No. 10 Arizona ran its winning streak to six games with 75-53 victory over Washington on Sunday.
"Sam was aggressive," Arizona coach Adia Barnes said. "She was looking for her shot, feeling it. We know Sam is always going to be constant and consistent on her defense. But when she is looking for her shot and she's hitting them, we're just a better team overall."
Since the NCAA is allowing everyone an extra season of eligibility, Thomas could return next year as well as fellow seniors Aari McDonald and Trinity Baptiste.
None has made their decision public, although McDonald is expected to be a first round pick in the WNBA draft if she leaves school.
"I'm not sure I'll be three-for-three," Barnes said. "I'll be one-for-three or two-for-three."
McDonald had 20 points and tied a season high with eight assists, Cate Reese had 12 points and Shaina Pellington had 11 for the Wildcats (14-2, 12-2), off to their best league start in program history.
Arizona shot 55.1% from the field, 63.6% in the first half, and made nine of their first 10 3-pointers. They finished 12-of-16 from three-point range, 75%, setting a school record for three-point percentage in a game.
"My teammates always tell me to shoot the ball more, so on senior night I thought I would listen," Thomas said.
"We knew Washington was going to play a lot of zone, many different types of zone, so we knew the threes were going to be open. I just tried to do my job and hit when my teammate fed me the ball. They kept feeding me again and again."
Quay Miller had 13 points and nine rebounds and Haley Van Dyke had 12 points for the Huskies (5-11, 2-11), who broke an eight-game losing streak at Arizona State on Friday.
The Wildcats opened a 13-point lead in the first quarter, and Thomas' fifth three gave them a 48-28 lead three minutes into the second half.
FOR THE GAME
- Arizona set a program record for three-point shooting percentage in a game in Sunday's victory, connecting on 12 of 16 attempts from three for 75.0%. The performance broke the previous record versus USC on Feb. 12, 2005, which saw Arizona connect on 11 of its 16 three-point field goal attempts for 68.8%.
- Senior Sam Thomas erupted on offense with a career best six made three-point field goals and a season-high 20 points in her team's win over Washington. She also grabbed a season-high seven rebounds in the victory.
- Finishing with 20 points and eight assists, senior Aari McDonald tallied her seventh 20-point game of the season while matching her season high in assists. She also had eight assists in two previous games this season.
- Shaina Pellington's 11 points gave the guard her first double-digit scoring game since scoring 16 versus Idaho on Dec. 23, 2020, a streak of eight games leading into Sunday's game.
- The Wildcats recorded an impressive 20 assists in the game on 27 made field goals, accounting for 74.0 percent of all made baskets.
- The Wildcats' defense allowed 24 points in the first half to the Huskies, marking the 5th time in Pac-12 play that Arizona has held opponents to 25 or fewer points in the first half.
- Aari McDonald advanced her NCAA-leading streak of double-digit scoring games to 82 straight games with her 11 points in the first half.