(Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
An impressive run in the 2010 WNIT, coupled with 20-plus wins, and a second place finish in the Mountain West Conference capped off the 2009-10 campaign as one of the best in recent memory.
BYU’s 23-10 overall record is the fourth 20-plus win season for coach Judkins and it ranks third best during his eight-year tenure. That achievement was also recognized in basketball circles where the Cougars received votes in the polls once in January and once in early March.
Because of the team’s impressive record, they received an automatic berth into the 2010 postseason WNIT where they advance to the quarterfinal round (Elite Eight). Their inspiring run began with a home win over Pepperdine before embarking on a six-day, three game schedule. During the run they beat Pac-10 foe Arizona State in Tempe, beat MWC member Wyoming in Laramie, before falling to eventual champion Cal in Berkeley. The WNIT invitation was the 12th overall postseason national tournament appearance and the fifth in the NIT. The three wins the team recorded in the 2010 WNIT were the most victories in any postseason tournament in the program’s history.
With an 11-5 league record, the Cougars surprised several MWC foes by finishing second in the league after being picked to finish sixth.
The team also had success playing at home where they tallied an 11-2 overall record and went 7-1 in conference action.
During their nonconference portion of the schedule the Cougars captured road wins over Montana State and CS Fullerton. For the second year in a row, the team competed in the Hukilau Invitational, an event they co-sponsor with BYU-Hawaii. While in Laie, they beat the University of San Francisco, and the University of Hawai’i. Both games were played on the BYU-Hawaii campus.
Part of their schedule included playing all instate schools where they picked up wins over Southern Utah, Utah, Utah Valley University, and Utah State.
In league play BYU had a successful campaign sweeping the series against Air Force, Colorado State, Utah and UNLV. They split the series with WY, TCU, and SDSU and went on to finish second in the regular season race.
Five players were recognized for their season accomplishments when the league announced its MWC postseason awards. Junior Mindy Bonham led the way with two accolades being named to the All-MWC Second Team for the second year in a row. She was also named to the All-Defensive Team. Teammate Jazmine Foreman also made the All-Defensive Team. Junior forward Coriann Wood picked up the league’s first ever Sixth Player of the Year award. Wood added her second MWC honor being named Honorable Mention All-MWC. Co-captain Haley Hall joined Wood on the Honorable Mention All-MWC list along with teammate and junior center Kristen Riley.
In the Mountain West Conference the team and several players finished the season ranked in numerous statistical categories. BYU concluded the year in first place in assists in all games and in league contests and ranked second in 3-point field goal percentage. The Cougars placed third overall in defensive rebound percentage in all games, and finished second in two categories, field goal percentage and in rebounding margin.
Several players also placed high in a number of statistics led by Coriann Wood who ended the year in first place in 3-point field goal percentage in all games while teammate Haley Hall finished in seventh place. Hall along with Mindy Bonham and Jazmine Foreman ranked second, sixth and seventh, respectively, in the assists category in all games. Freshman Alexis Kaufusi ranked fifth in field goal percentage in all games followed by teammate Kristen Riley who placed sixth. Bonham ranked ninth, Foreman 12th and Wood 14th in the same category. Riley finished in ninth place in rebounding in league contests.
On the national record books BYU also placed high in a few categories. They were ranked 13th in assists per game, 28th in 3-point field goal percentage, 31st in assist/turnover ratio, 42nd in 3-point field goals per game, 43rd in field goal percentage, and 47th in scoring defense. Haley Hall placed 34th in assist/turnover ratio and 84th in steals per game.
Once again the strength of Cougar bench was unrelenting and played a vital role in the team’s success. In points, the BYU bench scored a total of 533 points to opponents 388. In the rebound category, the Cougar reserves grabbed a total of 517 boards compared with 370 for the opponents.
A productive offense also added to the team’s success during the 2009-10 season where they scored at least 70 points 13 times, compiling a 12-1 record, eight of those in league play. In all games except three, at least two BYU players put up double figure points.