(Photo by BYU Photo/Marcos Escalona)
BYU women’s basketball (24-5, 14-4) concluded the 2014 West Coast Conference season in second place, earned a No. 2 seed into the 2014 league championships and a first round bye.
The Cougars, who are on an eight game winning streak, will play in the second of four quarterfinal games on Friday, March 7 versus No. 10 seed Pepperdine. Tip off is at 2:00 p.m., PST (approx.). BYU swept the series against the Waves. The quarterfinal game will air live on BYUtv.
Coach Judkins Previews Pepperdine Matchup
WCC Player and Defensive Player of the Year, Jennifer Hamson, tops the list in scoring, rebounding and blocked shots for BYU. She averages 18.5 ppg, 11.4 rpg and 4.2 bpg. Hamson leads the nation in blocked shots, ranks 13th in rebounds per game, 14th in double-doubles, and 18th in field goal percentage.
Three other Cougars are recording double figures in points, with Lexi Eaton chipping in 17.0 followed by 11.7 points from Kim Beeston. Junior forward Morgan Bailey rounds out the scoring output, contributing 10.4 points. She is in second place in rebounds, pulling down 7.1 per contest.
BYU is averaging 72.6 points per game, while holding opponents to 64.1 points. The Cougars, who rank sixth in the country in blocked shots per game, have recorded more blocks than opponents in 25 games and have dished out more assists in 23 of the 29 games played to date. The team has also recorded more rebounds than opponents in 22 contests.
BYU in WCC Championships
BYU finishes in 2nd place in league race with 14-4 mark
Team is No. 2 seed, gets bye into quarterfinals
BYU ties for 3rd place with SMC in regular season with 11-4 mark
Team is No.4 seed, advances to semifinals Loses in semifinal to eventual league champion Gonzaga
BYU finishes tied for 2nd place with San Diego with a 12-4 mark
Is No. 2 seed because it swept the Toreros in the league race
Team wins first ever WCC Championships with 78-66 victory over Gonzaga
The Waves (5-24, 1-17) enter this year’s WCC championships as the No. 10 seed. They advanced to the quarterfinal round with an 80-74 win over No.7 seed Santa Clara.
Bria Richardson is one of four players for Pepperdine that tallies double digits in scoring with 16.9 points. Keitra Wallace follows with 12.3. Ea Shoushtari contributes 11.4 points and pulls down a game-best 6.7 rebounds per game. Allie Green rounds out the scoring output chipping in 11.3 points. The Waves score 64.3 points and grab 37.4 boards per contest.
BYU leads the series 7-2, including a 1-0 mark on a neutral court. The Cougars swept the series over the Waves this year.
Game Summaries in 2014 campaign
In Provo Lexi Eaton scored 18 and Jennifer Hamson had a double-double of 16 points and 13 boards in the 65-50 win. Pepperdine’s Allie Green scored a game-high 19 points for the Waves.
Increased offense was the story of the second game. Eaton gave the Cougars a game-high 25 points and three other players scored in double digits in the victory. Despite outscoring BYU in the second half and getting 23 points from Ea Shoushtari, Pepperdine fell to the Cougars 89-75.
A win in the quarterfinals would send the Cougar women to one of two semifinal games to be played Monday, March 10. The league’s championship game is set for Tuesday, March 11 at 1 p.m., on ESPNU. The winner receives an automatic bid into the NCAA Championships.