Jan. 14, 2012
EUGENE, Ore. - Kimberly Brandon (14 points, 13 rebounds) and Kali Bennett (11 points, 12 rebounds) both recorded double-doubles to lead the Arizona State women's basketball team to a 53-49 win over Oregon on Saturday.
Jada Blackwell came off the bench to score 12 points (5-6 FGs) while Olivia Major, who was making her second career start, hit a pair of key 3-pointers in the last five minutes to help the Sun Devils (11-5, 2-3 Pac-12) snap a three-game losing streak.
After being outrebounded in their last two games, the Sun Devils came through with a dominating effort on the boards as they outrebounded the Ducks 52-38, including a 20-12 advantage on the offensive glass which led to a plus-13 difference in second chance points (17-4). In addition to the 25 rebounds Brandon (13) and Bennett (12) accounted for, Deja Mann came through with a career-best eight boards while also dishing out three assists.
Defensively speaking, the Sun Devils came through with an outstanding team effort in holding Oregon (10-8, 2-4), the nation's No.11 team in scoring coming into Saturday's game, nearly 29 points below its per-game average of 77.9 points.
Trailing 17-16 at the half, the Sun Devils came out and grabbed the lead after Brandon scored the first five points of the second half to put the Sun Devils up 21-17 with 15:59 left.
The Sun Devils, who led by as many as five in the second half, would not trail for the rest of the game as they combined clutch shooting with tenacious defense to capture their third consecutive win against the Ducks.
Oregon pulled even once in the second half - 32-32 with 8:32 remaining - after Deanna Weaver hit one of two free throws. However the Sun Devils would respond by scoring the next four points, which came via a jumper by Alex Earl and a pair of free throws by Brandon.
Major's first 3-pointer of the game gave the Sun Devils a 41-36 lead with 4:35 left, but the Ducks would not go away as they got within a single point three times in the last 2:35.
Major's second 3-pointer once again gave ASU a four point-lead, 46-42, with 1:05 left.
The Ducks would start fouling to extend the game and, eventually set themselves up with a chance to win or force overtime, however Bennett denied Oregon's Nia Jackson when she rejected the Oregon guard's shot with six seconds left. Bennett then clinched the win after a put back off a free throw miss by Micaela Pickens to give the Sun Devils the win.
The Ducks were led by senior guard Jasmin Holliday, who scored 12 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, but had only two points and three rebounds in the second half.
The Sun Devils return home to face new Pac-12 members Colorado (Thurs., Jan. 19 at 11 a.m. MT) and Utah (Sat., Jan. 21 at 2 p.m. MT). Thursday's game against Colorado will be the Sun Devil women's basketball program's annual Sparky's Kids to College Field Trip game in which several thousand fourth, fifth and sixth grade children from around the Valley will be in attendance.