ASU women's basketball starts season strong with second win

The Sun Devils dropped 81 points on the Bulldogs in first road win of the year

After coming off a season opening victory at home against UT San Antonio Roadrunners, the ASU women’s basketball team traveled to Fresno, California to play its first road game of the season.

The Sun Devils came ready to play as they defeated the Fresno State Bulldogs 81-49 to improve their record to 2-0 on the season.

The Sun Devils were led by junior center Charnea Johnson-Chapman, who dropped 16 on the game while shooting 7 for 9 from the field.

Redshirt junior guard Courtney Ekmark also helped out with 14 points and five rebounds on the night. Junior forward Kiana Ibis, and sophomore forward Jamie Ruden both put up 10 points, Ruden doing her damage in just 10 minutes.

Head coach Charli Turner Thorne said it was great to have Ruden back on the court after she missed the first game of the season.

Turner Thorne was also impressed with the Sun Devils' stat sheet, singling out the team’s shooting percentage (56 percent) and out rebounding the Bulldogs by 16 (41-25).

“All in all, I thought just a dominating performance,” Turner Thorne said. “(It was) just a great team win.”

The Sun Devils started out neck and neck with the Bulldogs in the first quarter as the teams traded baskets to start out the contest.

That was until the Sun Devils were able to grab a 15-10 lead and then held on to finish the quarter with a 18-12 lead. 

Going into the second quarter, it seemed that ASU had finally found its rhythm, ripping off a 12-2 run fueled by sophomore guard Robbi Ryan’s six points.

At that point, ASU lead 30-14 and did not look back, scoring nine more points to give themselves a 39-23 lead at the half.

The Sun Devils secured this lead with efficient shooting from the field. 

Ekmark and Ruden lead the Sun Devils with 12 and eight points respectively in the first half.

Ekmark also picked up five rebounds while playing 14 minutes out of the 20 minutes in the first half, while Ruden did not miss a shot going three for three from the field.

ASU did not cool down over the break, opening the second half with a 6-0 run stretching their lead to 22 points.

Eventually the Bulldogs started missing shots which lead to a 10-0 run for the Sun Devils which helped them extend their lead to 30 points as they led 58-28.

Fresno State was able to break the run by drawing a foul and knocking down two free throws, but it didn’t matter. The Sun Devils finished the quarter with a 36 advantage as they outscored the Bulldogs 28-10 in the third.

To start the fourth quarter, the Bulldogs outscored the Sun Devils 7-5 in the first three and a half minutes, but the margin was too big.

The Sun Devils held on to their lead and won by a score of 81-49.


Reach the reporter at Joshua.Zaklis@asu.edu and follow @JoshZaklis on Twitter.

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