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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


W-Hoops faces another road test

After getting back on the winning track with a win against Ole Miss on Monday, the Arizona women’s basketball team (3-1) will look to stay there as it hits the road to face the University of San Diego Toreros (2-2) on Friday at the Jenny Craig Pavilion.

Arizona returns to California less than a week after their loss to San Diego State, and again will face a tough road battle at 7 p.m. against a USD team they beat in Tucson last year.

“”They came here last year and we were able to get the win, but we know going into their place it’s going to be a tough game for us,”” Arizona head coach Niya Butts said. “”We have to be able to match their intensity.””

In their gritty win against Ole Miss, the Wildcats were able to reduce the turnovers that mired them in the first three games, turning the ball over only 14 times.

Despite Butts seeing room for improvement in the offense, she credited the lower turnover rate as a reason the team was able to walk away with a victory on Monday.

“”I don’t think we executed the basketball very well at all, actually,”” Butts said after Monday’s game. “”I think we’ve got to get a lot better in that area … but not turning the ball over helps with that.””

Arizona will look to continue that trend against the Toreros, a team that has shot 48.6 percent from the field in its first four games and is capable of making the Wildcats pay for their mistakes.

Sophomore transfer Brooke Jackson demonstrated her ability to contribute in every aspect against Ole Miss by netting 20 points along with four assists and five steals, diving after loose balls and hitting shots late in the game.

Freshman Davellyn Whyte drew a foul late in the game Monday with the Wildcats up by two and knocked down both shots from the charity stripe to make it a two-possession game and secure the victory for Arizona.

Both Whyte and Jackson offered no secret keys to victory against San Diego, simply saying the team needs to maintain its hungry attitude going into every game.

“”We just want to keep it up, everyone knows how we felt after the (San Diego State) game. No one likes the feeling of a loss,”” Whyte said. “”So we need to keep proving our point that Arizona is going to be on the map this year.”” 

USD has averaged 32.2 rebounds per game in its first four games, presenting a mismatch for Arizona to capitalize on, as the Wildcats average over 10 more rebounds per game than the Toreros.

Junior Ify Ibekwe leads the team in the paint with 16 rebounds per game and will be going for her fifth straight double-double against USD.

After it takes on USD, Arizona will have a week off before returning to McKale Center on Dec. 4 to play the University of Nevada, Reno.

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