The Arizona State Sun Devils (18-6, 7-4) were unable to overcome the Stanford Cardinal’s (15-9, 6-5) hot shooting night in a 62-59 loss Saturday night.
The Cardinal shot over 55 percent from behind the arc, including a perfect perimeter shooting night from its big men, Josh Huestis and Dwight Powell, who were both two-for-two from three.
“The matchup along the front lines was difficult for us,” head coach Herb Sendek said. “We had some challenges carrying over our preparation into execution.
After keeping it close for the first 10 minutes of the game, the Cardinal started to pull away after a John Gage three-pointer at the 10:25 mark of the first half. That led to a 14-4 run over the next seven and a half minutes before ASU was able to pull within eight by the half.
Stanford then pushed its lead to a game-high 16 points at the 14:47 mark of the second half. 24 seconds later, Sendek pulled Ruslan Pateev and ASU went without a center for the rest of the game.
“Defensively we were having a hard time with our bigs out on the perimeter guarding. We tried to matchup with them a little better…I think it helped us close the gap,” Sendek said.
With its small lineup, ASU was able to cut the deficit to as low as three, but was never able to complete the comeback.
“When we play like that, I think it causes teams a little big more trouble because the guards can’t get the ball to the bigs and when the bigs aren’t missing, I think it takes them out of the flow of the game,” Jahii Carson said.
Powell scored a game-high 22 points for the Cardinal while collecting 10 rebounds. Huestis contributed 13 points and 12 rebounds. Gage was the only other Cardinal player that scored in double figures with 11.
Carrick Felix recorded yet another double-double for the Sun Devils, scoring 16 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.
Carson and Jonathan Gilling joined Felix in double figures, scoring 15 and 13 points, respectively.
ASU’s next game will be in Utah against the Utes on Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. MST.