Women's hoops snaps eight-game losing streak
Arizona women’s basketball snapped its eight-game losing streak Sunday night at McKale Center after frustrations boiled over Friday. The Wildcats (12-13, 4-10 Pac-12) beat Utah (14-11, 5-9) 61-52.
“The way we did it was with team basketball, especially on the offensive end,” head coach Niya Butts said. “I thought last game we did enough defensively to win, not enough offensively.”
Senior guard Davellyn Whyte bounced back after a rough Friday night with a game-high 21 points, nine rebounds and five steals to boot.
“I thought she was much, much better, especially on the offensive end, she stayed solid,” Butts said. “She made an effort play there in the first half that was pretty amazing. We turned the ball over and she sprinted back to slow down the ball, that could have easily been an easy two points. She did a lot of good things [Sunday], she led the team a lot more.”
Gabriela Diaz / Arizona Daily Wildcat UA women's basketball team play against Utah at McKale. Arizona ended their 8-game losing streak with a 61-52 win.
The Wildcats lost 55-42 to No. 21 Colorado Friday night, Whyte tied her season low of six points and was benched the final nine minutes for not getting back on defense.
Butts’ press conference was delayed about an hour and players were not available for comment after the Colorado loss.
“I think it will just help us get momentum for the next game,” junior guard Carissa Crutchfield said about Friday.
Utah jumped out to a 4-0 to start the game, but then UA went on a 14-0 run and would never trail again.
“We had a little extra pep in our step in the beginning and we executed like we’ve been practicing,” Whyte said. “So we just put two and two together and that’s why we jumped out early.”
UA led 35-24 at the half.
“I think it helped us a lot because usually we dig ourselves a hole that’s too deep,” Whyte said. “When we start to get our rhythm and start playing good, it’s usually too late.”
Crutchfield had nine points and five boards and junior forward Alli Gloyd scored eight and had nine rebounds.
“I think everybody was aggressive at one point,” Crutchfield said.
The Wildcats forced 19 turnovers, which led to 28 points and only turned it over 11 times.
“[Sunday] we only had 11 turnovers, that’s big for us,” Butts said. “We forced them into turnovers and we kept most of those possessions.”
Utah went on a 6-0 run to cut it to cut the lead down to six but Arizona got the lead back up to 11, with 3:38 left. A couple of Ute threes cut the lead down to seven with 1:59 left but the UA was able to hold on.
“Had we taken care of the ball against Colorado the way we did [Sunday], I think the outcome would’ve been different,” Butts said.
Arizona’s last win was Jan. 18 against the Utes in Salt Lake City. The Wildcats now own the tie breaker against Utah, which was in seventh place going into Sunday’s game.
“Sometimes you gotta get knocked down to the bottom to get back up and I think we’ve been at the bottom a little too long and we’re kinda tired of it,” Whyte said.
Up next for the Wildcats is Arizona State at home on Tuesday night.