PROVO -- Playing with the season on the line for the third time in six days, the BYU women’s basketball team fell to the USC Trojans in the third round of the WNIT 50-62 on Wednesday.
"I'm real proud of those girls and proud of their accomplishments this year," said BYU head coach Jeff Judkins. "But you have to give credit to USC. They're a very good team."
"This really was a team I enjoyed coaching and not many coaches can say that. I really enjoyed going to practice every day, added Judkins."
Mindy Bonham, playing in her final collegiate game, tied her season high with 21 points on 9-16 shooting. Bonham also grabbed six boards, dished out two assists and had two steals. The points were team and game highs.
Senior Coriann Fraughton made her way into the BYU history books early in the game, draining two free throws at the 17:47 mark in the game to become the 21st Cougar to reach 1,000 career points. Fraughton finished the game with four points.
Junior Kristen Riley finished the game with 11 points and 10 rebounds for her fourth-career double-double.
The BYU defense played well to start the game, holding the Trojans to just 2-14 shooting for the first 9:42 of the game but failed to take advantage on the offensive side while allowing USC to build a 20-15 lead with 5:42 remaining.
A fast break from Haley Hall to Kim Parker to Bonham sparked the Cougars at the 2:11 mark, starting a 10-0 BYU run to end the half. Led by Bonham’s 15 first half points the Cougars led 31-25 after the first 20 minutes of play.
USC came flying out of the locker room to start the half, scoring the first 11 points of the period to take a 36-31 lead. The Cougars were unable to overcome the deficit as the Trojans outscored BYU 37-19 in the second half.
The Cougars made just seven of their 30 shots from the field in the final 20 minutes, including 1-11 from three-point range. The Cougars shot 18-58 (31.0%) for the game, going just 5-21 (23.8%) from beyond the arc.
The loss signals the end of the Cougars season, marking the second consecutive year the women have moved to at least the third round of the WNIT.
-The BYU bench outscored all its opponents 740-426 this season.
-The 1,033 in attendance for the game marked the fifth 1,000+ attended game this season.
-The three rounds that BYU advanced through in this year’s WNIT are the second most in BYU’s NIT history. Last season, the Cougars advanced to the quarterfinals for the furthest they’ve been all-time.
-Coach Judkins’ 25-8 season marks the fifth 20+ season he has led in his career.
-The Cougars went 23-2 this season when they led the game at the half, 6-7 when their opponent outrebounded them and 14-2 when they played in the Marriott Center.
-Today’s game featured three players with double-figure points for the 12th time on the year.
-At 17:47 in the first half and after a made free throw, senior Coriann Fraughton tallied her 1,000th career point to become the 21st player in BYU women’s basketball history to do so.
-Under head coach Jeff Judkins, this is the first season he’s had two players reach 1,000 points in the same year.
-Mindy Bonham finished the game with 21 points to tie her season high for her 23rd season, 63rd career, time to score in double figures. Bonham’s two steals in the game put her in fifth place for the all-time steals leader in BYU women’s basketball history.
-Haley Hall finished the game with 10 points for her 10th season, 28th career, time to score in double figures.
-Kristen Riley finished the game with 11 points for her 15th season, 27th career, time to score in double figures. She also added 10 rebounds to the count for her fourth-career double-double and second of the season.
BYU head coach Jeff Judkins
"You gotta give credit to USC, they are a very well-balanced team and played like one tonight."
"You can't go five or six minutes without scoring a basket and I think that definitely cost us the game there in the second half."
"I'm real proud of those girls and proud of their accomplishments this year. It was a team I enjoyed coaching. Not many coaches can say that. I really enjoyed going to practice every day."
Senior Mindy Bonham
"They executed better than we did. It came down to defense and execution."
"You are as good as your last game and, unfortunately, we lost. It's been a great experience this year, one that I'll never forget. We were conference champs and that was a goal we had so I was happy we accomplished that. In the locker room we talked about how we really have improved each year that I have been here and I'm looking forward to watching these guys next year."