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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Late run powers Arizona women’s basketball past Southern Utah

Arizona+guard+JaLea+Bennett+%2833%29+jumps+back+while+shooting+over+a+USC+athlete+in+McKale+Center+on+Friday%2C+Feb.+5.
Munir Tufail
Arizona guard JaLea Bennett (33) jumps back while shooting over a USC athlete in McKale Center on Friday, Feb. 5.

The Arizona Wildcats women’s basketball team caught fire in the fourth quarter in the tune of a 20-0 run and defeated the Southern Utah Thunderbirds 77-65 to move to 3-1, 2-0 on the road in the early part of the season.

With just over seven minutes to go and the Wildcats down five, Marlena Washington hit a jump shot, Taryn Griffey hit a three and the two connected on a Griffey basket and the foul to spark a 20 point run taking them from down five to up by 15 with under two minutes left.

Junior Jalea Bennett, quiet in the early part of the season, exploded for 21 points to pace the Wildcats. Bennett is part of a Wildcats bench that is vastly becoming a strength of the team, accounting for more than half the teams points with 43.

“I was just trying to make shots that I take in practice,” said Bennett. “It just kind of came to me. We set up in our mind that we were going to win because it is a very long trip and we at least wanted to have a good trip back.”

“If it wasn’t for Jalea we probably wouldn’t win this game.” Barnes said.

Arizona, learning a new system under first year head coach Barnes, took some mistakes they made against North Texas on Tuesday and improved in turnovers down the stretch only having one from the seven minute mark to the two minute mark as opposed to SUU who turned the ball over five times in that same stretch.

“We talked about valuing each possession,” said Barnes. “Honestly, I thought it was a result of our post players not turning the ball over.”

The Wildcats will come back home for a matchup with Florida Atlantic on Wednesday at McKale, tip is set for 7 p.m.


Follow Saul Bookman on Twitter.


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