The Sun Devils’ tough times on offensive weren’t likely to be resolved versus one of the nation’s best defensive teams.
Pair that with having to guard one of the nation’s best players, and it doesn’t quite equate to a favorable outing.
The ASU (11-12, 3-8) women’s basketball team shot 31 percent in each half compared to No. 4 Stanford Cardinal (21-2, 10-1), which shot 45 percent. The Sun Devils were easily handled 69-45.
The Cardinal has held opponents’ field goal percentages to 32 percent this season, good enough for fourth best in the nation.
Only twice have an opponent of the Cardinal shot over 45 percent.
On the other hand, ASU hasn’t shot over 50 percent since Jan. 13. It certainly wasn’t going to find the touch Sunday afternoon.
“We’ve got to hit shots and execute better on offense,” coach Charli Turner Thorne said. “We can take a lot from this game. They can hit shots.”
Freshmen Haley Videckis was the only Sun Devil in double figures. She finished with 11 and hit three 3-pointers.
Redshirt senior Janae Fulcher returned for the Sun Devils after missing their game versus Cal, but struggled from the field. She went 1-8 and scored only six points.
Besides scoring the basketball, ASU had to deal with the potential Pac-12 Player of the Year in junior Chiney Ogwumike.
The forward had one of her best games of the season, as she scored 26 points on an efficient 10-16 shooting to go with 14 rebounds.
By the end of the first half, the Cardinal already controlled the contest. They were up 37-20.
The second half wasn’t much different. The Cardinal only shot 5-20 from 3-point land, but dominated the paint area. They outrebounded the Sun Devils 38-31 and scored 30 points in the paint.
One positive aspect that comes out of this game for ASU is its low turnovers. It committed only 10.
However, Stanford was able to convert those into 21 points.
ASU has not been able to find its rhythm in conference play and have dropped five straight.
ASU has played impressive games, particularly versus USC, but hasn’t found that needed consistency. That is something that is an essential to be successful in the tough Pac-12 conference.
“It’s just hard right now because they know what they need to do it and they’re just not able to do it as consistently as they want to,” Turner Thorne said.
The Stanford Cardinal has always been a tough matchup for the Sun Devils, as they are for any other team in the nation. Turner Thorne has been through it year after year.
“I thought we did at least battle the second half. We didn’t play nearly as good as we needed to,” Turner Thorne said. “I’ve brought better, more experienced teams that have got it handed to them even worse than they did today.”
Reach the reporter at firstname.lastname@example.org