Women's Hoops Falls to Washington, 59-58
Dec. 5, 2012
SEATTLE - Despite double-doubles from seniors Courtney Clements (Long Beach, Calif.) and Chelsea Hopkins (Las Vegas, Nev.), the San Diego State women's basketball team dropped a heartbreaker to Washington, 59-58, on the road Wednesday at Alaska Airlines Arena. The Huskies' Talia Walton nailed a 3-pointer with 10 seconds left on the clock to complete a furious comeback that saw the host school trail by as many as 19 points in the second half.
With the loss, the Aztecs slip to 4-3 overall, while Washington raises its record to 6-1 on the young season.
Clements led all players with 22 points and a career-high 13 rebounds, while Hopkins added 14 points and 10 boards of her own. The SDSU cause was also aided by senior Malia Nahinu (Hayward, Calif.), who finished with 12 points to go along with six rebounds and two blocks, but it wasn't enough as Washington drained 10 of 19 shots from beyond the 3-point arc, including a 6-for-10 clip in the second half to escape with the win.
Despite maintaining a 45-34 advantage in rebounds and a 15-7 edge in free throws made, the Aztecs were just 3-for-12 from 3-point territory and were minus-3 in the turnover department (15-12) as the Huskies outscored the visitors, 19-11, off those miscues.
Walton paced Washington with 17 points, while Aminah Williams completed a double-double as well with 15 points and 12 rebounds. In addition, Mercedes Wetmore (13 pts.) and Jazmine Davis (11 pts.) posted double-digit scoring totals, while Kristi Kingma notched nine boards and a game-high three steals.
SDSU raced to a 10-4 lead in the first half following a Nahinu jumper with 12:48 remaining. However, the Huskies gradually whittled away at the deficit over the ensuing eight minutes, eventually jumping in front 20-19 on a Wetmore basket at the 4:21 mark.
The Aztecs responded with eight consecutive points, capped by Clements' old fashioned three-point play with 1:49 left on the clock. Davis ended the run with a triple for Washington, but Danesha Long (Long Beach, Calif.) soon hit a pair of free throws, while Erimma Amarikwa (Vacaville, Calif.) converted a layup just before the horn sounded to give SDSU a 31-23 cushion heading into the locker room.
The Aztecs took advantage of some cold shooting by the Huskies, who connected on three of their first 13 shots to begin the second half. Following a Clements triple and an Amarikwa foul shot, SDSU enjoyed its biggest lead of the evening at 48-29 with 12:31 left to play.
However, Washington fought itself off the ropes with a 21-4 blitz, highlighted by five 3-pointers, including two by Davis, over the ensuing 9:38 to pull within 52-50 by the 2:53 mark. Two baskets by Hopkins on consecutive possessions seemingly put the Aztecs in the driver's seat at 56-50 with 1:54 remaining. Moments later, though, the Huskies crept back into contention following an and-1 conversion by Walton and a Davis free throw.
With 26 seconds left on the clock, Hopkins was fouled and subsequently drained two clutch free throws, giving SDSU a four-point bulge at 58-54. Wetmore then connected on a jumper, while the Aztecs missed the front end of a 1-and-1 opportunity at the other end. Washington quickly worked the ball up to Walton, who sank the go-ahead 3-pointer from the top of the key. SDSU had one last shot, but a jumper from the right hand side was off target, saddling the Scarlet and Black with the hard-luck defeat.
The Aztecs return to the hardwood on Saturday, Dec. 8, when they take on crosstown foe San Diego in another road contest at Jenny Craig Pavilion starting at 3:30 p.m.