Sports

Stanford women lose key battle to Huskies at Pac-12s

 

A fourth-quarter flurry was not enough to overcome a 16-point second-half deficit and the 11th-ranked Stanford women's basketball team was eliminated from the Pac-12 Conference tournament Friday night, dropping a 73-65 decision to Washington at the Key Arena in Seattle.

The fourth-seeded Cardinal (24-7) lost in the quarterfinal for the first time in the history of the tournament after winning the previous 13, ending a day that also saw No. 2 seed Arizona State fall to No. 10 California.

The Huskies (22-9) advance into Saturday night's semifinal final against top-seeded Oregon State. The Golden Bears meet third-seeded UCLA in the other semifinal. Stanford was the defending tournament champion.

Washington led, 56-40, with 1:34 remaining to play in the third period following Kelsey Plum's three-point play.

The Cardinal scored the final five points of the third quarter and the first three of the final quarter to cut the deficit in half.

The Huskies were up by 11 with just under five minutes to play when Stanford scored the next nine points, six on a pair of 3-pointers from Lili Thompson, to draw within 67-65 with 2:43 left. The Cardinal never scored again, missing its last five shots, three of which could have tied the game.

Washington took control from the outset with the help of Plum, who became the school's all-time leading scorer -- as a junior -- after netting 29 points against the Cardinal.

The Huskies shot 46.6 percent from the field, the highest by a Stanford opponent all season, and the 73 points allowed are the second most allowed by the Cardinal, eclipsed only by the 77 points given up to Texas in December.

Stanford, which entered play ranked second in the nation in field goal percentage defense, is regulated to the sidelines until the NCAA tournament field is revealed on ESPN at 4 p.m. March 14. The Cardinal fell to 37-4 overall at the conference tournament.

Erica McCall, who finished with 22 points on 9-of-18 shooting and six rebounds, blocked two shots to move into a tie, with Chiney Ogwumike, for fifth on the all-time single-season list with 62 blocks. Only Ogumike, Joslyn Tinkle and Jayne Appel have blocked more shots in a season.

Thompson and Karlie Samuelson each had 14 points for Stanford, which had a four-game winning streak snapped.

Freshman guard Marta Sniezek registered a tournament record 13 assists, the most by a Stanford player since Sonja Henning recorded 16 against California on March 1, 1991.

Sniezek's effort ties for third all-time on the single-game list, behind only Henning and Jennifer Azzi, who holds the school record with 16 in January of 1987.

Kaylee Johnson led the Cardinal with 10 rebounds, her first double figure rebounding game since grabbing grabbing 15 in a win over Cal on Feb. 2. It was her ninth of the season.

McCall and Kailee Johnson combined to shoot 50 percent (11-of- 22) from the field while the rest of the rest of the team combined to shoot 32.6 percent (14-of-43).

The Cardinal shot 45.5 percent in the second half and McCall was 7-of-10.

Plum was called for a technical foul after an exchange with Samuelson.

"They called a technical on me, so I disputed the

call." Plum said. "It was nothing malicious. I've known Karlie since freshman year in high school. I was just trying to get my arm out of there because it was in a really bad position so that's why I was moving it. I apologized to her after

the game."

— Palo Alto Online Sports/Stanford Athletics

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