Washington women fall short at No. 5 StanfordFebruary 28, 2014 @ 12:02 am
STANFORD, Calif. (AP) - Freshman guard Kelsey Plum knew what to expect in the rematch against No. 5 Stanford, just 18 days after Washington stunned the Cardinal at Seattle.
"Stanford's a great team," Plum said. "They're well-coached. They have really smart players. You could just feel the energy in the room during warm-ups. They wanted us."
Stanford got even with the Huskies, beating them 83-60 loss on Thursday night.
Plum led Washington (16-12, 9-8) with 21 points. Talia Walton added 12 and Jazmine Davis 10. Aminah Williams grabbed a team-high 12 rebounds.
Chiney Ogwumike scored 32 points and grabbed 11 rebounds for Stanford (27-2, 16-1 Pac-12), which clinched the Pac-12 regular-season title last week.
Stanford's Bonnie Samuelson added 14 points, while Lili Thompson had 11 and Amber Orrange 10. Mikaela Ruef grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds.
In the Huskies' 87-82 win in the teams' previous meeting, their winning strategy was to pack the inside, contain Ogwumike and dare her teammates to try and beat them from outside. Ogwumike scored 23 points, but Stanford went 9 for 41 on 3s.
This time, Washington had no answer for Ogwumike, and Stanford shot 32 for 68 from the field, including 9 for 24 on 3s
"I thought Stanford was phenomenal from the tip," Washington coach Mike Neighbors said. "They were very focused. Took it right at us. It took us a while to settle in, and they took full advantage of it. The shots they missed in Seattle they made tonight, and I think that's the difference in the game. I thought our kids played equally hard, we were equally as prepared. I just thought they shot the ball better tonight than they did."
Ogwumike fell four points shy of tying her career high, reached twice this season. The senior forward increased her career scoring total to 2,543, leaving her 87 shy of breaking former Stanford star Candice Wiggins' Pac-12 record. She also had her 21st double-double of the season.
Ogwumike downplayed any talk of payback but admitted Stanford was "more fired up" than usual.
Ruef wasn't quite so diplomatic.
"I'm not as politically correct as Chiney," Ruef said, laughing. "I wanted to kill `em. Nobody likes losing. I was super motivated. I think our team was motivated. I wanted payback. I'll say it."
The Huskies handed Stanford its only Pac-12 loss this season at Seattle as they snapped their 14-game losing streak to the Cardinal.
Stanford also played much better defense this time, limiting Washington to 37.3-percent shooting from the field. The Huskies shot just 12 free throws, making four.
"At our place, our offense is what won the game," Neighbors said. "We had kind of a unique defensive scheme and it happened to work because they missed a bunch of shots. But what won us the game was our offense was really good. I think (Stanford's) focus on the defensive end was obvious. It never let up throughout the game."
Stanford held Davis to 3-for-14 shooting and made Plum work extremely hard for her 21 points, two fewer than she scored in the first game against the Cardinal.
"They do a really good job of taking away my left hand, and they really packed it in," Plum said. "I think I struggled finishing. They do a really good job of not fouling. The 23 in the first game was such a team effort. We were moving the ball, getting shots, a lot more assists. This game the ball was probably more stagnant. That's my fault. As a young point guard I'm working on getting my teammates involved. There's a lot of things to learn from this game."
Ogwumike scored 21 points in the first half, lifting Stanford to a 45-32 lead at the break. She made 9 of 13 shots, most of them from point-blank range, having her way against Washington's zone defense, and hit 3 of 4 from the line.
Walton led Washington with 12 first-half points, making all four of her 3-point shots.
Stanford led 32-26 with 8:21 left in the first half after Davis made two free throws. But the Cardinal went on an 11-0 run, holding Washington scoreless for 6:19 and building a 43-26 lead.
"I think that our staff and team really focused on what we needed to do defensively in a different way," Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer said. "We just helped a lot better and we had a better defensive scheme. We understood what we needed to do better."
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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