After an intense final 65 seconds, the Washington State Cougars (17-8, 9-5) women’s basketball team scored a resume building win over Arizona State (12-10, 4-6) on Friday night in Pullman, Wash. Johana Teder had one of the best nights of her career off the bench as the Cougs snapped an 11-game losing streak to Sparky and beat a team that was 28 spots higher than them in the NET rankings entering the game.
Jaddan Simmons drove the lane but lost control of the ball, it bounced off of Mael Gilles before it went out of bounds (the Pac-12 announcers thought it hit Bella Murekatete but I didn’t see it on the replays). On the in bounds play immediately after the turnover, the Cougars got it to Teder who nailed an easy lay-up after she drove the into the lane to make it 65-58 with 15 seconds left on the clock. Arizona State was unable to get a shot off on its final possession as the Cougars snapped their 11-game losing streak to the Sun Devils.
That final bucket of the game scored Teder’s 20th point of the game, which led Washington State in scoring. She easily had her best game of the season as she hit seven of 12 shots from the field, along with four of her seven from beyond the arc to power the Washington State’s offensive attack.
The win came after an intense final 65 seconds as the play became more physical down the stretch to repeatedly send both squads to the charity stripe. Krystal Leger-Walker hit the biggest pair of free throws to push the lead back to two possessions — and to score her 1,000 and 1,001 points of her college career — at 63-58. That had come right after Gilles had sunk the first of her two free throws to make it a three points game with 29 seconds left on the clock.
Teder also got a chance to hit a couple of free throws down the stretch as she was fouled to stop the clock. Simmons also got sent to the free throw line a couple of times in the final two minutes of the game.
Arizona State had tied the game at 48 after a 6-0 run, that was entirely fueled by Simmons and Jade Loville, forced the Cougars to find offensive success without Charlisse Leger-Walker (she’d fouled out of the game). Fortunatley for Kami Ethridge’s squad, Teder was up to the task as the junior drilled a three to give Washington State the lead back at 51-48; the Cougars would never relinquish it.
At the end of the third quarter, Ula Motuga jacked up a three that hit the side of the rim but the offensive rebound was pulled in by Murekatete. The junior spun around and hit the second chance jumper to give Washington State a 44-42 lead right before the buzzer at.
That bucket was huge as it put an end to a 9-0 run for Sparky that had completely erased a nine point lead that WSU had built up throughout the first part of the third quarter. Simmons was a huge part of that run as she hit the first five points, including a contested three from deep, to cut the Cougar lead down to two. It was tied by Imogen Greenslade after a couple of empty possessions for both squads.
Washington State had started off the third quarter on a 7-3 run that built its lead up to eight — the largest it would be in the game. The Leger-Walker sisters were practically unstoppable in the first four minutes of the third quarter. But foul trouble for Charlisse sent her to the bench with about five minutes left and the Cougar offense cooled down; which was a major reason that the Sun Devils were able to go on their run at the end of the quarter.
The second quarter ended with a a defensive board by Washington State after Simmons shot hit the front of the rim; Krystal got the ball and fired of a half court shot that was just to the right of the box on the backboard which meant it didn’t fall. That meant that Tara Wallack’s step back jumper in the lane, that made it a 29-25 WSU lead, was the last bucket of the half.
Arizona State had to go on a 5-0 run to erase a seven point Cougar lead that had been built off of a beautiful three from Teder and a step back jumper from Charlisse. This time it was Gabriela Bosquez and Gilles that fueled the Sun Devils mini-run to get back into the quarter. Once Bosquez hit her second-chance jumper, Coach Ethridge subbed both Murekatete and Wallack back onto the court and it made an immediate impact as Murekatete hit a jumper on her first offensive possession off the bench; and Wallack added in the last bucket of the half.
It was a quarter that had started with promise for WSU as Teder hit a three about 65 seconds into the frame. Loville had hit her own layup to cut the lead to five; but then Charlisse had pushed the lead back out to seven before ASU’s little mini-run.
Simmons jumper at the buzzer was wide and the Cougars took a 18-14 lead into the quarter break. It came right after the Cougs had gotten tagged for a shot clock violation when Teder kicked the ball out to Motuga instead of taking a fairly uncontested shot. Which was unfortunate, because Motuga’s shot was nothing but net. That meant that the last bucket of the quarter had come on a Wallack three that pushed her squads lead out to four.
Wallack’s three marked the end of a 6-2 run that WSU had been on to close out the first quarter. That run had put an end to a Arizona State 9-0 run that tied the game at 12 a piece after Washington State had gotten off to a hot start. Sparky’s run came thanks to absolute dominance from Loville (she had scored 12 of the Sun Devils 14 points). Loville hit a pair of threes that was added to a couple of brilliant moves in the paint.
Arizona State was forced to come back because of some absolutely brilliant shooting by Teder and Charlisse that sent the Cougars on a 9-0 run of their own to make it 12-4. The explosive duo powered the offense throughout the first quarter.
More from Sports with Neil and friends
- Pac-12 power rankings: A weekend of heart break
- Brett Favre’s welfare swindle should land him in jail
- Cougars melt down in the fourth quarter, lose to No. 15 Oregon
- Mariners commit to Castillo with 5-year contract extension
- Detrizio & Rieken score twice, WSU soccer routs Northern Colorado
- Podcast: What the fuck was that?
Photo Credit: Arizona State Athletic Communications