(Photo by BYU Photo)
PROVO, Utah – Behind a career-high 30 points from Cassie Broadhead, BYU women’s basketball handled San Diego 81-63 in the Marriott Center on Saturday afternoon.
"It's nice to get one, especially when you lose Thursday night," BYU head coach Jeff Judkins said. "It's good to get that bad taste out of your mouth. We played really well in spurts today. I think you're seeing a kid becoming a star in Cassie (Broadhead). She's the best player in the league right now."
BYU (10-7, 4-2 West Coast Conference) had a season-high 17 takeaways in the win, earning 26 points off of those turnovers. Despite shooting 39 percent in the game, San Diego (8-8, 2-4 WCC) shot 56 percent from three, the same percentage as the Cougars. Both teams shot 9 for 16 from beyond the arc.
Broadhead had 30 points in the win, surpassing her previous career high of 24. She also had seven boards, tying her career mark, and six assists. Seniors Makenzi Pulsipher and Kalani Purcell both reached double figures in points. Pulsipher notched 18 points on 6 of 11 shooting, while Purcell had 15 points, six rebounds, five assists and two blocks. Both of them had four steals in the conference matchup.
In the first quarter, the two teams came out shooting cold. There were no points scored until the 7:01 mark, a layup by the Toreros. The Cougars responded 16 seconds later with a basket from Purcell to make it 2-2.
With less than five minutes remaining in the first quarter, Purcell picked off San Diego for a steal and found Amanda Wayment for the easy layup. The bucket gave the Cougars a 6-5 lead with 4:52 on the clock.
After San Diego took the lead, BYU scored five unanswered points, including a 3-pointer from Pulsipher with 21 seconds left, to take a 15-14 advantage after the first 10 minutes of play.
The offense picked up for the Cougars in the second quarter. They went on a 12-2 run to get up by double digits, 32-19, capped off by a pair of treys from Broadhead and Pulsipher.
Following four straight from San Diego, BYU put together seven unanswered points to make it a 39-23 advantage with 2:03 until the break. Broadhead drilled a mid-range jumper at the buzzer to extend the Cougars’ halftime lead to 42-26.
Pulsipher opened up the second half with a three at the 9:18 mark. The teams traded baskets until BYU jumped out on a 11-2 run behind eight points from Broadhead, including two 3-pointers. The run pushed the lead to 57-33 with 4:09 left in the third quarter.
With 2:02 on the clock, Broadhead surpassed her previous career high of 24 points with a layup at the shot clock buzzer, giving the Cougars a 59-37 lead. BYU led 60-39 at the end of the third quarter.
After a bucket by Pulsipher at the 8:41 mark in the fourth quarter, the Cougars did not make a field goal for five minutes. The Toreros took advantage of the empty possessions, going on an 8-0 run and getting within 12 points.
A midrange jumper from Pulsipher with 3:47 to play ended the drought, making it 69-55. Brenna Chase tracked down a steal with less than 30 seconds to play, taking it down the court for a breakaway layup to seal the win. Solid free throw shooting down the stretch gave BYU the 81-63 win over San Diego.
The Cougars are back on the road on Thursday, Jan. 19. They will face Pepperdine in Malibu, California at 7 p.m. PST. The game will be broadcast live on theW.tv.
BYU took the 15-point 41-26 lead into halftime. The Cougars recorded the 18-point victory in their sixth conference game of the season. BYU is now 9-3 when leading at halftime, and the Cougars’ 81 points are a season-high.
Three Cougars finished in double figures for the fifth time this season—Broadhead (30), Pulsipher (18) and Purcell (15).
BYU shot a season-best 54.0 percent from the field to San Diego’s 39.2.
The Cougars finished the contest with a season-high 17 steals, with six coming in the first quarter. BYU recorded 10 steals to USD’s zero in the first half.
In 40 minutes of play, BYU logged 15 bench points to San Diego’s zero.
Cassie Broadhead finished the first half in double figures, leading all scorers with 15 points. The junior also tallied a game-high four rebounds and four assists in the first 20 minutes of play. Broadhead ended the game with a career-best 30 points, going 9 of 14 from the field. The New York native also tied a career-high seven rebounds, and tallied six assists and two steals.
For the fourth time this season, Makenzi Pulsipher recorded 3-plus 3-point field goals. The senior guard finished the contest with four treys, going 4 of 5 from behind the arc. Pulsipher had 18 points in the win, with 12 coming from behind the arc. She also recorded a game-high four steals and three rebounds.
Kalani Purcell recorded double figures for the 13th time on the year. Purcell finished the contest with 15 points, six rebounds, five assists and four steals.
Amanda Wayment tallied a season-high three steals in the first half alone. The junior finished the game with seven points, going 3 of 3 from the field. Wayment also recorded two rebounds in the win.