Friday night’s 64-62 thriller over Oregon State was just the start of three home games in five days for the No. 15 Arizona State women’s basketball team.
The Sun Devils (18-3, 7-2 Pacific-12) host Oregon, the nation’s top scoring offense coached by Paul Westhead, at 1 p.m. Sunday and rival Arizona at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Friday night, the Ducks (12-8, 3-6) won at the Wildcats (4-16, 0-9,) 84-72, despite being held to 12 below their average (95.9), which is the third-highest in Division I history.
“We’re going to run and anything advantage break-wise we’ll look for,” ASU coach Charli Turner Thorne said. “Other than that, they’re not a team that will have flow, they’re going to run and trap us, they play mostly zone. They do everything they can to come down and take a quick shot.”
Last week, Oregon 6-foot-3 sophomore Jillian Alleyne was named the NCAA Player of the Week after scoring 35 points and grabbing 25 rebounds in a 101-85 win over Washington and recording 21 and 19 in an 82-66 victory over Washington State. In the Arizona game, the nation’s leading rebounder contributed 29 and 20, her 16th consecutive double-double and above her average of 21 and 15.
The Ducks also are getting 21 points and seven rebounds per game from 5-foot-10 freshman guard Chrishae Rowe.
Westhead, who won the 2007 WNBA title with the Phoenix Mercury and the 1980 NBA championship with the Los Angeles Lakers, is in his fifth season in Eugene, which is the same amount of time he spent with Loyola Marymount, his second-longest lasting job behind nine years at LaSalle.
“You’re going to see every press,” Turner Thorne said. “They do every thing they can to beat you up. They have the best offensive personnel since he’s (Westhead) been there.”
Coach Turner Thorne also said the Sun Devils need to get back to the mode they were in during November’s Cancun Challenge, when they played three games in three days.
Oregon’s schedule included a 114-68 loss at No. 1 Connecticut, where Alleyne scored 15 and grabbed nine while playing with a sprained ankle. She had 26 and 13 in a 30-point loss at No. 4 Stanford.
The Wildcats, who got a season-high 20 points and 10 rebounds from Erica Barnes in the Oregon game, host the Beavers (12-9, 4-5) at noon Sunday. Arizona also committed a season-low 10 turnovers during the fast-paced Ducks contest.