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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Wildcats women’s basketball stretches losing streak

Ryan+Revock+%2F+The+Daily+Wildcat%0A%0AUA+junior+guard+Candice+Warthen+shoots+a+jump+shot+against+Wake+Forest+on+Tuesday+at+the+McKale+Center.++
Ryan Revock
Ryan Revock / The Daily Wildcat UA junior guard Candice Warthen shoots a jump shot against Wake Forest on Tuesday at the McKale Center.

Second half struggles doomed Arizona women’s basketball as it lost 64-56 to BYU on Saturday in Provo, Utah. The Wildcats (1-6) dropped their fourth game in a row at the hands of the undefeated BYU Cougars (6-0).

“This game didn’t turn out the way we wanted it, but I can see us coming together a little bit more,” head coach Niya Butts said in a press release.

The Wildcats started out the game strong as they led 18-11 with 14:05 in the first half. From that point on, the Cougars outscored Arizona 23-15 to take a 34-33 lead at the half. By this point, all five Arizona starters had scored, and, despite trailing, the game was still within reach for the Wildcats.

The margin stayed close until a free throw by BYU sophomore guard Lexi Eaton put the Cougars up for good with 14:31 left in the second half. Eaton finished the game with 12 points, including two three-pointers.

After being contained in the first half, the Cougars utilized their noticeable size advantage down the stretch. Junior forward Morgan Bailey and senior center Jennifer Hamson dominated the second half in the paint both offensively and defensively. The Cougars outscored Arizona 20-2 on points in the paint in the second half and 34-16 on the game.

Bailey finished the game with 18 points, 7 rebounds and 2 assists, but Hamson was the centerpiece of BYU’s offense and defense. Hamson finished with a double-double and had game-highs in points (18), rebounds (16) and blocks (3).

Arizona junior guard Candice Warthen and senior guard Kama Griffitts scored 14 points each but had little help from the rest of the Wildcats. Only two other Wildcats scored more than five points.

BYU held a 49-38 lead in rebounding for the game and had almost as many defensive rebounds (37) as Arizona had in total rebounds (38).

“BYU is probably the best team we have played this season and we were right there at the end,” Butts said in a press release. “This is not a time for us to stop moving. This hurts and we have to continue to get better, but I think we are making strides forward.”

The Wildcats take the court next as they face the University of Alabama at Birmingham in Birmingham, Ala., on Thursday at 6 p.m. MST.

—Follow Roberto Payne @HouseofPayne555

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