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ASU Women’s Basketball: Balance Crucial Aspect in Sun Devil Blowout

(Photo: Nicole Hernandez/WCSN)

The Arizona State Women’s Basketball team was efficient in their rout of San Jose State Sunday afternoon at Wells Fargo Arena, winning 82-37.

The Sun Devils blew past their opponents thanks to runs of 16-0 on two different occasions, one to open the first half, and the second coming early in the third quarter.

ASU overmatched the Spartans in nearly every facet of the game.

“I thought we had more of a complete game today than we had on Friday,” head coach Charli Turner Thorne said. “We had a much better second half, cleaned up our fouling, cleaned up our turnovers and held them to 16 points in the second half.”

The Sun Devils displayed a more refined version of their game, showing notable improvements since their season opener.

“I think we came out a lot more relaxed today and a little bit more consistent than we were on Friday night,” senior forward Kelsey Moos said. “The most important thing is getting better every single game and every single practice.”

Freshmen Playmakers: ASU received hefty contributions from freshmen guards Reili Richardson and Robbi Ryan. The two combined for 22 points on 6-12 shooting.

“They’re playing beyond their years,” Turner Thorne said. “They’re really like starters for us right now with how consistent they’ve been.”

Fellow freshman guard Kiara Russell added eight points as well.

Guard play was the number one question mark coming into this season due to the departure of last year’s backcourt starters. So far this year the Sun Devil ball handlers have looked comfortable and have appeared to adjust to the college game well.

A Balanced Attack:  Like Friday’s contest, Turner Thorne played all 13 of her eligible players, a move that paid dividends. The Sun Devils were able to stay fresh thanks to their platoon like subbing.

“We tend to like to find out ten, Turner Thorne said. “I do feel like we’re going to be two deep at every position which is critical for our style.”

Moos’ thoughts mirrored those of her coach’s.

“The way we play we have to have a deep bench,” Moos said. “We have to go out there and work super hard on defense, super hard on offense and just really push the tempo. It’s really important to have a bench that can go in and the level can go up when we sub. You never know who’s going to step up on each night. It really helps a lot and it takes some of the pressure off the people who are normally top scorers, it’s more balanced.”

Improvements:  Of course ASU still had flaws. Though they took care of the ball better than they did on Friday, the Sun Devils still turned the ball over 17 times. Their post game also appeared to be rusty.

“I don’t think we did a good job of establishing our back to the basket game,” Turner Thorne said. “We continued to create some good shots and just not quite finish.”

Turner Thorne was also less than pleased with her team’s performance on the glass

“We really have to keep getting better on our rebounding,” Turner Thorne said. “My coaching staff was very adamant that going into the fourth quarter we discussed that anyone that missed a box-out would have a sprint tomorrow. We boxed out a lot better in the fourth quarter.”

The Sun Devils will return to the hardwood next Saturday against Marquette at 1:00 MST in Milwaukee.

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