No. 22 ASU women beat Washington in Pac-12 opener

TEMPE, Ariz. — Behind a balanced scoring attack, stout defense and outstanding first-half effort, the No. 22 Arizona State women’s basketball team defeated the visiting Washington Huskies 62-48 on Saturday afternoon at Wells Fargo Arena.

The Sun Devils were led by Promise Amukamara, who finished with 14 points and three steals, and Sophie Brunner, who had 14 points, five rebounds and four steals.

The Huskies were led by sophomore guard Kelsey Plum, who finished with 17 points. Plum came into the game averaging nearly 27 points per game, best in the country.

The Sun Devils (12-1, 1-0 Pac-12) held Washington (11-1, 0-1) 35 points below its scoring average in snapping the Huskies’ 11-game winning streak while extending their winning streak to eight games.

"I thought we did a great job of executing our defensive game plan," head coach Charli Turner Thorne said. "We worked really hard to take away their threes and we worked really hard to not foul them and move our feet."

After a short jumper by Plum with 12:55 left in the first half trimmed the ASU lead to three, the Sun Devils countered with a game-changing 23-2 run to end the half and went into halftime with a 37-13 lead. The 13 first-half points were the fewest that Washington has scored all season and the fewest points ASU has given up in a half this season. It was also the 11th time the Sun Devils have held the opposition to 25 or fewer points in a half.

ASU dominated nearly every defensive category in the first half, holding Washington to 30 percent shooting while forcing 16 Husky turnovers. Washington finished with 24 turnovers Saturday, while ASU had only 12. The Sun Devils scored 25 points off of Washington’s turnovers.

"We helped early and aggressively," Turner Thorne said. "We didn’t let them isolate us 1-on-1 the way they’re so good at doing, and I thought we just really worked them hard defensively."

Plum was able to get going in the second half, scoring 13 of her 17 points in the final 20 minutes, but Washington was not able to overcome the lead built by ASU in the first half.

Katie Hempen and Elisha Davis both scored six points while Amukamara added five to help lead ASU’s offense in the second half.

ASU had a slight 36-34 edge in rebounds, but was dominant on the offensive glass where it had a 15-5 advantage. Kelsey Moos and Quinn Dornstauder both tied for the team lead with seven rebounds.

The Sun Devils resume action Monday, when they take on Washington State (10-2, 1-0) at Wells Fargo Arena.