So far this season, the No. 15 ASU women’s basketball team has won games by limiting their opponents scoring and scraping by with points. On Sunday afternoon, ASU found a new way to win.
The Sun Devils (19-3, 8-2 Pac-12) had their highest scoring game of the season, defeating the Oregon Ducks, 97-94, at Wells Fargo Arena on Sunday afternoon.
The Ducks (12-9, 3-7 Pac-12) led by as many as eight points in the second half, but ASU always seems to find a way to respond to adversity.
The Sun Devils have stepped up to every challenge they’ve faced this season redshirt senior center Joy Burke credits the team’s versatility.
“I think the best thing about our team this year is that we’re very versatile,” Burke said. “We’ve proven that we can win in different ways, no matter what the style of play is.”
The Sun Devils tried not to play into the Ducks’ preferred style, but Oregon was able to dictate tempo for a majority of the contest.
Burke recognized her team did not play the way they wanted but will take the win.
“We do like a fast-paced game, however we didn’t want to play into Oregon’s game,” Burke said. “We know they want to run up and down and stop the ball. I would say we’re not too excited about where our defense was but we’re very fortunate that we got a win.”
Burke led the way for the Sun Devils off the bench, scoring 22 points and hauling in 15 rebounds to help ASU.
Coach Charli Turner Thorne appreciated the boost the backup post player gave the Sun Devils.
“How ’bout Joy Burke,” Turner Thorne said. “We really needed her today, and she did a fantastic job stepping up.”
Junior guard Promise Amukamara added 21 for ASU and redshirt sophomore guard Katie Hempen scored 16 points, including a couple of 3-pointers.
The Ducks’ dynamic duo of Chrishae Rowe and Jillian Alleyne combined for 57 of Oregon’s 94 points and shot nearly 60 percent from the field, but the Sun Devils were too much.
Turner Thorne knows that ASU could have won by more and her team will continue to work on putting teams away.
“We just have to continue to be more disciplined as a basketball team,” Turner Thorne said. “We had every opportunity to close that game out.”
The Sun Devils will ride their current four-game winning streak into Tuesday night’s game against the rival Arizona Wildcats at 7:30 p.m. at Wells Fargo Arena.
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