Arizona women no match for No. 4 Stanford
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Arizona tried to stop Chiney Ogwumike inside with no success. The Wildcats had trouble getting out to Stanford’s shooters, too.
The result was predictably lopsided.
Arizona fell into a big early hole and faded even more down the stretch, leading to a 96-52 loss to the fourth-ranked Cardinal Friday night.
"They’ve got a lethal combination because they’ve got a player on the inside few people in the country can guard, but they’ve also got a perimeter full of people who can shoot the 3-ball and from deep, so that causes a lot of problems," Arizona coach Niya Butts said.
After allowing Arizona to keep it close early in the first half, Stanford (16-1, 5-0 Pac-12) blew it open with a big run to build a 21-point first-half lead. The Cardinal cruised from there, shooting 63 percent while hitting 15 of 32 from 3-point range for their 59th straight Pac-12 road win.
Ogwumike made 12 of 13 shots, finishing with 24 points and 12 rebounds. Karlie Samuelson added 16 points and Lil Thompson had 12 points and six assists. Stanford finished with 28 assists on 40 field goals to win its 23rd straight over the Wildcats.
"We’re not really concerned about who plays, we want to play well," Stanford coach Tara VanDeveer said. "I think the best thing on this team is that people keep each other accountable. If someone’s not playing well, there’s someone right there who can come in a do well."
Arizona (4-12, 0-5) shot well early, but was no match for Stanford after the opening five minutes.
The Wildcats had a hard time stopping Ogwumike inside in the first half and finding Stanford’s shooters all night to lose their fifth straight.
Kama Griffits had 12 points and Erica Barnes added 10 for Arizona.
"Their lead was extended on us tonight because we simply didn’t compete down the stretch," Butts said. "Certainly, the way they were shooting it, they weren’t going to lose."
Stanford was a heavy favorite in this one.
After losing to No. 1 Connecticut on Nov. 11, the Cardinal won 13 straight. Four of those were in in the Pac-12, the closest a 10-point victory over Colorado in their last game.
Arizona has had an opposite start to conference play, following a three-game winning streak to close out the non-conference schedule with four straight Pac-12 losses. All but one were close, but none of the teams were anything like what the Wildcats were facing in Stanford.
Arizona did manage to keep it close early with good shooting, hitting six of their first nine shots to stay within 15-13 in the opening five minutes.
Problem was, the Wildcats couldn’t stop the Cardinal at all.
Led by Ogwumike, Stanford hit nine of its first 11 shots and kept pouring them in, using a 21-4 run to build the lead to 45-24. The Cardinal shot 22 of 33, including 8 of 15 from 3-point range, in the first half to lead 52-31.
Ogwumike had 16 points and seven rebounds by halftime, making eight of nine shots.
Stanford gave the Wildcats no chance at a comeback, hitting 18 of 30 shots while clamping down on defense. Arizona shot 7 of 22 in the second half against the Cardinal’s pressure.