(Photo by Mark A Philbrick/BYU Photo)
LAS VEGAS -- Morgan Bailey led No. 2 seed BYU women’s basketball to a 77-51 win over No. 10 seed Pepperdine in the second round of the West Coast Conference Tournament.
“I want to congratulate Pepperdine for playing a great tournament,” BYU head coach Jeff Judkins said. “It's tough to play back-to-back games. We had a lot of legs early in the game, and I think that kind of wore them down. I'm proud of this team. They don't care who gets the glory; they just go out there and play together to win.”
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Bailey had 17 points and eight rebounds while Lexi Eaton contributed 17 points of her own. Jennifer Hamson had a double-double of 13 points and 12 boards while Ashley Garfield led all players with 13 rebounds. Kim Beeston led the team in assists with seven and steals with two.
BYU (25-5) hit 45 percent of its shots compared to just 26 percent for Pepperdine (6-25). The Cougars outrebounded the Waves 57-30 and had more assists, 15-7.
Bailey and Hamson each contributed four points to put the Cougars up 8-2 to start the game.
A Xojian Harry 3-pointer with 14:18 to go in the first half capped off a 13-2 BYU run that extended the Cougars’ lead to 15-4.
Despite turning the ball over five times early, BYU jumped out to a 26-9 advantage with five different Cougars adding points to the board.
Garfield and Bailey combined to go to the free throw line for six shots in the same trip down the floor thanks to a pair of offensive boards. A pair of makes extended BYU’s lead to 32-14 with just under four minutes to play before halftime.
Beeston made her first 3-pointer of the game with :43 left in the half to give the Cougars a 20-point 42-22 lead at the break.
Pepperdine started the second half with a 7-0 scoring blitz, cutting into BYU’s lead 42-29 and forcing Judkins to call his first timeout of the half. The Cougars followed with a 16-2 run of their own in just over six minutes of play.
Four of BYU’s players were in double figure scoring at the under-eight timeout as the Cougars took a 28 point lead at 64-38.
With a pair of Bailey free throws BYU took its largest lead of the game, 70-36, with six minutes left to play. It was Cougars from that point as BYU cruised to a 77-51 victory.
The Cougars continue WCC Tournament play on Monday, March 10, when they face No. 3 seed Pacific at 2 p.m. PDT. Links to live stats and video feeds can be found on the BYU women’s basketball schedule page.
With the win over Pepperdine, the BYU women’s basketball team advances to the semifinals of the 2014 WCC Championships. The Cougars have played in the semifinals all three years since joining the league.
For the 13th time this season BYU had four players finish the game with double digit scoring. Lexi Eaton and Morgan Bailey each had 17. Jennifer Hamson tallied 13 with 10 from Kim Beeston.
The Cougars inside presence played a key role in the win over Pepperdine. BYU had 30 points in the paint, compared with 12 for the Waves.
BYU tallied 18-second chance points to the eight for Pepperdine.
For the 23rd time this season the Cougars have pulled down more rebounds than their opponents. Against the Waves, BYU had 57 while Pepperdine recorded 30. The 57 rebounds were one shy of the season high 58 versus San Francisco at home.
With seven blocks versus Pepperdine, the Cougars have tallied more blocked shots than their opponents in 26 games.
BYU dished out 15 assists to seven for Pepperdine making it the 24th time that BYU has had more assist than its opponents.
Lexi Eaton led all scorers in the first half with 11 points, going 4 for 4 from the free throw line. She would finish the game with 17 points, remaining perfect from the charity stripe at 8 for 8. The 17 points mark the 23rd game she’s had double figures in points.
Jennifer Hamson topped the list in rebounds in the first 20 minutes of action with seven, and ended the contest with 12. With the 13 points she recorded her 20th double-double of the season. She was perfect from the free throw line making all five attempts and recorded a game-high three blocks.
Morgan Bailey picked up her 14th game scoring in double digits with 17 points, just one-point shy of her career high. She also pulled down eight rebounds, had one assist and one block.
Kim Beeston picked up her 20th double figure game in points with 10 while dishing out a game-high seven assists.
Ashley Garfield came off the bench and grabbed a game-best 13 rebounds to go with three points, one assist and one block.