Aztec Women's Basketball Outlasts Brigham Young, 73-71
Feb. 24, 2010
SAN DIEGO - San Diego State junior Paris Johnson hit the game-winning basket with 35 seconds remaining to lift the Aztec women's basketball team to a thrilling 73-71 victory over second place Brigham Young Wednesday evening at Viejas Arena. With the win, SDSU defeated BYU at home for the third year in row, improving to 16-10 overall and 8-6 in MWC play, while the Cougars saw their four-game win streak come to an end, dropping to 18-7 and 9-4 in league action.
"I'm really proud of our whole team, because everyone played to their strengths," said Aztec head coach Beth Burns. "I thought we gave BYU some points in the first half that we (defensively) were capable of not allowing. We did a much better job in the second half and they earned every point they made."
Johnson (San Diego, Calif.) finished the evening with a season-high 24 points on 8-of-11 shooting to go with nine rebounds, while classmate Coco Davis (Sacramento, Calif.) contributed a career-best 14 points, including a perfect 4-for-4 effort from beyond the arc, and seven assists. Senior Quenese Davis (Sacramento, Calif.) also had seven assists and recorded 13 points. Fellow senior Jené Morris (San Francisco, Calif.) was the fourth Aztec starter in double-figure scoring with 10 points and tallied four takeaways on the night to make her the Mountain West Conference's all-time career leader in steals (267).
The second meeting between the two sides this season featured 16 lead changes and 14 tie scores. The Aztecs were up by three points twice in the final two minutes, including at 71-68 with 1:16 left. BYU's Coriann Wood, however, hit her fourth triple of the game to tie the score at 71-71. Following a timeout, SDSU's Coco Davis found Johnson in the paint for what would turn out to be the game-winning jumper.
BYU had one final chance to tie or grab the lead, but Jazmine Foreman's 3-point attempt would not fall as Johnson hauled in the defensive rebound to secure the 73-71 victory.
San Diego State had an early five-point advantage in the first half, but the Cougars responded with an 8-2 run to take their first lead of the night at 10-9. The two sides continued to trade leads six more times until Wood scored five straight points in a span of 41 seconds to put BYU up by five and later seven on a Foreman jumper. The Aztecs came all the way back to take the lead again at 34-32, but a triple by Cougar Haley Hall put the visitors ahead, 38-36, going into the break.
Neither school was able to create much separation in the second half until BYU owned a five-point lead at 59-54. Johnson quickly erased that deficit with a jumper and three free throws to tie the score at 59-59, and ended up contributing 13 of her 24 points in the final 9:26 to help secure the Aztec victory.
San Diego State finished the game by shooting over 49 percent from the field, including 50 percent in the second half, and committed only 13 turnovers. BYU made 8-of-19 from beyond the arc and shot 84.6 percent (11-for-13) at the stripe, while owning a slight +2 rebounding margin.
The Cougars were led by Mindy Bonham's 19 points, while Wood had 18 off the bench.
San Diego State will have a bye on Saturday, before playing its final two regular season games next week at Colorado State and at home vs. Air Force on March 6.