No. 13 Rutgers 59, Arizona St. 52
April Sykes scored 14 points, Monique Oliver grabbed 13 rebounds
and No. 13 Rutgers held on to beat Arizona State 59-52 and win the
San Juan Shootout title Saturday.
Sykes was 2 of 3 from behind the arc en route to winning
tournament MVP honors.
Khadijah Rushden pitched in 13 points and nine rebounds for the
Scarlet Knights (6-0) despite playing just 20 minutes because of an
”We needed her tonight,” Rutgers coach C. Vivian Stringer
Guard Deja Mann led Arizona State (4-1) with 11 points,
including a 5 of 5 free throws.
Rutgers shot 36.7 percent for the game, including 2 of 5 3-point
attempts, and held the Sun Devils to 28.6 percent shooting,
including 25.6 percent in the second half. Arizona State hit 1 of 7
Rutgers grabbed the lead early and never trailed, taking a 33-25
advantage into halftime. But Arizona State battled back in the
second, making it a 1-point game with less than two minutes to
Rutgers pulled away in the final minute, as Rushden and Oliver
both hit two free throws as the clock ticked down.
Stringer said her team’s toughness and composure were the keys
to overcoming 18 turnovers and blunting the late run by Arizona
”We didn’t give up,” she said. ”We got hit, we fell down, but
we got up.”
Center Kali Bennett had 10 rebounds, four assists, four steals
and two blocked shots to lead the Sun Devils, who scored 12 points
off those 18 turnovers and led in most statistical categories,
including points in the paint (32-26), points off turnovers
(12-11), second-chance points (16-11), steals (10-9) and assists
The Sun Devils also had a 50-49 rebounding edge and got 21
points from their reserves, but shot just 47.8 percent from the
Stringer credited Arizona State’s ”extremely aggressive
defense” and said the tough challenger gave her the opportunity to
see ”who are our warriors.”
”This was a pressure game,” she said.