No. 11 ASU women pull away from Colorado

BOULDER, Colo. — Katie Hempen and Sophie Brunner scored 15 points each to help lead the No. 11 Arizona State women’s basketball team to a 68-60 win at Colorado on Friday night.

Brunner added 10 rebounds to record a double-double while Quinn Dornstauder came off the bench to score 11 points for the Sun Devils (19-2, 8-1 Pac-12), who shot 47 percent for the game.

Dornstauder, who also added seven rebounds and two blocks, Arnecia Hawkins (eight points) and Colorado native Eliza Normen (four points) combined to give the Sun Devils 23 points off the bench.

Colorado (9-11, 2-7) was led by Lexy Kresl, who scored a game-high 18 points.

It appeared as though the Sun Devils might start to pull away after a 3-pointer by Hempen gave ASU a 45-32 lead with 13:40 remaining. However the Buffaloes would slowly chip away at the lead as they got within five points six different times only to see the Devils respond and extend the lead each time.

Colorado would continue fighting and eventually made it a one-possession game after Kresl’s layup cut ASU’s lead to 61-58 with 2:35 remaining. Kresl, who was fouled on the play, missed the ensuing free throw and the Devils would take advantage when Brunner scored on the opposite end to give ASU a 63-58 lead.

The Sun Devils would clamp down defensively on Colorado’s next possession and would put even more distance between themselves and the Buffaloes after a 3-pointer by Kelsey Moos extended ASU’s lead to 66-58 with 1:18 remaining.

Colorado added a bucket to get within six, but Brunner, who was 9-of-11 from the foul line, connected on two free throws to clinch the win for the Devils.

ASU shot 59 percent in the second half, helping to offset Colorado’s 48-percent effort from the floor in the final 20 minutes.

The Sun Devils led by as many as eight points twice in the first half as a strong defensive effort held Colorado to only 28 percent from the floor.

Dornstauder (nine points/3-3 FGs, 3-4 FTs) and Hawkins (eight points/3-3 FGs, 2-2 FTs) combined for 17 of ASU’s 30 points during the first 20 minutes.

ASU was not able to get its lead into double digits in the first half as Colorado was able to stay in the game thanks to making three of its five 3-pointers and six of its seven free throws, which led to 15 of its 23 points.