March 2, 2013
LOGAN, Utah - Led by seniors Devyn Christensen and Jenna Johnson, Utah State women's basketball celebrated senior night with a resounding victory over UT Arlington, 81-57, on Saturday at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.
For the first time in school history, Utah State ended Western Athletic Conference play undefeated at home with a 9-0 record. Overall, the Aggies were 10-2 at home this year.
With the win, Utah State improved to 16-11 overall and 13-3 in WAC action with two games remaining. The Aggies are just behind Seattle which holds a 14-3 league record with one game left on the regular-season schedule. UT Arlington fell to 6-21 overall and 3-13 in league contests.
Seniors Christensen, Johnson and guard Pualei Furtado all earned starts today, which was the second of Furtado's career. Center Banna Diop, who missed the season due to injury, was also honored. Christensen ended the game with a game-leading 24 points to go along with eight rebounds and four assists. Johnson had her ninth double-double of the season with 17 points and 14 boards. Junior guard Jennifer Schlott added 12 points and seven assists, while freshman guard Makenlee Williams scored 11 points.
UT Arlington was led by 12 points from Desherrra Nwanguma, who also added six rebounds. Laile Suleiman had 11 points for the Mavericks.
The Aggies led the whole game, taking as big a lead as 29 points.
The Aggie defense was fierce to start the game, allowing only five points in the first 11 minutes of the game to take a commanding 22-5 lead. Utah State forced eight turnovers in the 10 minutes of action. USU kept the pressure on UT Arlington, extending its lead to 31-10 with five minutes left in the half.
The seniors led the way in the first half with Christensen scoring 13 and Johnson adding 10. Johnson added five rebounds, while freshman forward Haylee Thompson brought down four first-half boards.
UT Arlington was led by seven points from Aron Garcia, while Malaika Green added six off the bench. The Mavericks were plagued by 11 first-half turnovers.
The Aggies started the second half where their ended the first scoring the first four points.
A Christensen deep three gave the Aggies a 56-28 lead with under 16 remaining. The trey was one of four for the night for USU's all-time leading scorer. UT Arlington went on a mini-run, scoring seven-straight points to cut the USU lead down to 56-35 before a Schlott three stopped the Mavericks' scoring run.
UT Arlington would not get closer than 20 points in the second half as USU had 23 second-chance points compared to 12 by UTA.
For the game, Utah State shot 38.9 percent from the field (28-of-72) and 33.3 percent from beyond the arc (10-of-30). The Aggies shot 88.2 percent from the charity stripe (15-of-17).
UT Arlington shot 36.7 percent from the field (22-of-60) and shot 30.0 percent from three (3-of-10). The Mavericks shot 66.7 percent from the free throw line (10-of-15).
The Aggies will conclude the regular season next week with a pair of games in the Lone Star State. USU will take on Texas State on Thursday, March 7 at 5:30 p.m. (MT) and UTSA on Saturday, March 9 at 6 p.m. (MT).
Fans can follow USU women's basketball and Utah State athletics at http://twitter.com/USUAthletics, as well as on facebook, at https://www.facebook.com/USUAthletics.
Live stats will be available for most Utah State women's basketball games through the women's basketball page on www.utahstateaggies.com, by clicking on GameTracker in the current events box. All home games can be viewed by clicking on "Watch Live", while they can be heard by clicking on "Listen Live." Both can be accessed on www.utahstateaggies.com on the front page or the women's basketball page.
For tickets contact the USU Athletics Ticket Office at (435) 797-0305 or at 1-888-U-STATE-1 (1-888-878-2831) for more information or visit the Utah State athletic web site at www.UtahStateAggies.com.
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