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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


After upsetting Cal, UA women’s basketball receives rude awakening from No. 6 Stanford

Beau Leone

Arizona player tries to fake past Stanford during the Arizona-Stanford game on Jan. 13, 2019 at McKale Center. The Wildcats lost the game 78- 48. 

Arizona women’s basketball has had an impressive season so far, knocking off two top-25 teams.

On Sunday, however, the Wildcats were given a glimpse into the play of a top-10 basketball team, and it was a rude awakening. No. 6 Stanford came into McKale Center and thoroughly defeated the Wildcats 78-48, dropping Arizona to 13-3 overall, 2-2 in Pac-12 play.

Every time the Wildcats would score, Stanford had an answer. Every time the ‘Cats would get a big defensive stop, the Cardinal had one of its own.

          RELATED: Arizona women’s basketball upsets No. 24 Cal

“Stanford really had us on our heels,” head coach Adia Barnes said. “Hitting shots, making us pay if we don’t switch fast. I felt like, in the first half, they got any shot they wanted.”

Stanford jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead, but after that, the first quarter shifted to a defensive stalemate, with both teams struggling to put the ball in the hoop. The Cardinal held the lead after one quarter, 21-12.

During the Arizona-Stanford game, forward Sam Thomas (14)  dribbles the ball past Stanford's defense and towards the basket during Sunday's game. The Wildcats lost the game 78- 48. 
During the Arizona-Stanford game, forward Sam Thomas (14)  dribbles the ball past Stanford’s defense and towards the basket during Sunday’s game. The Wildcats lost the game 78- 48. 

The second quarter was also an impressive defensive showing, but only for the Cardinal. Stanford outscored the Wildcats 23-4 in the quarter and went into halftime with a 44-16 lead. Arizona was shooting just 19 percent when the halftime buzzer rang and shot just 1-11 from 3-point range.

Things didn’t get any better in the third quarter for the ‘Cats, as Stanford increased its lead to 35 points and led 62-27. Arizona made a dent in the Stanford lead in the fourth, but only marginally, with the final score ending in a 30-point Cardinal win.

Arizona had only one player in double figures: redshirt sophomore Aari McDonald. After scoring 30 points in three straight contests, she couldn’t make in four in a row, posting 17 points on 6-22 shooting and added eight rebounds. 

“I think they just made her work really hard,” Barnes said of Stanford’s defense against McDonald. “We can’t rely on Aari having 30 points a game. It’s just not realistic, and it’s not how you’re gonna win long term.”

The ‘Cats didn’t get a point from their bench until late in the fourth quarter, with the bench finishing with a total of four points. Conversely, the Stanford bench finished with 22 points.

Shooting was the problem of the day for the Wildcats, finishing a disappointing 27 percent from the field and just 24 percent from beyond the arc.

The Wildcats will look to put this loss behind them, as they travel north for a pair of weekend games versus the ranked Oregon schools. First up is No. 10 Oregon State on Friday, Jan. 18 at 8 p.m.

Follow Noah Auclair on Twitter

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