Michelle Plouffe poured in a career-high 31 points Friday against Washington State.
Feb. 14, 2014
SALT LAKE CITY - Senior forward Michelle Plouffe turned in 31 points, but the University of Utah women's basketball team had to settle for an 83-73 loss to Washington State in a Pac-12 Conference game Friday in the Jon M. Huntsman Center.
Utah (10-14, 3-10 Pac-12) set a new Pac-12 season high with 73 points after shooting 50.9 (29-57) from the floor as a team. The Utes' previous conference season high was 71 points at Oregon on Feb. 8.
Plouffe's career-high 31 points also came with 11 rebounds for her 11th double-double of the season. She now has nine games this year with 20 or more points and she has had 10 or more points in 20 of 22 games that she has played in this season. Plouffe also gave out five assists against the Cougars.
Freshman guard Malia Nawahine knocked down six of her seven shots for 14 points and also chased down five rebounds and had four assists. This was her fifth game with 10 or more points this season. She got off to a fast start after hitting her first four shots for nine points in the first half of the contest.
Guard Ciera Dunbar totaled nine points to go along with two boards and two assists.
Plouffe opened the game by hitting a baseline jumper and would score Utah's first six points (6-5). The Cougars scored five straight (13-8) before back-to-back lay-ins by Nawahine and a pair of Plouffe free throws brought the Utes back to within one (13-12). WSU pushed back out to a five-point lead (17-12) before a 14-2 Utah spurt, which included a 3-pointer by Owens and lay-ins by Plouffe and Ariel Reynolds, gave the Utes a 26-19 edge. The Utes then used a 5-0 run to extend to an eight-point lead (31-23), but the Cougars came right back with a 5-0 run to get back to within three (31-28). Utah went to the locker room with a five-point edge (37-32) and the Utes are now 7-5 this season when leading at halftime. The Utes shot 57.1 (16-28) from the floor and earned an 18-16 advantage in team rebounding. Plouffe made seven of her 11 shots for 16 points to go with four rebounds, while Nawahine added nine points after a 4-for-4 shooting performance in the first 20 minutes.
Washington State (13-12, 7-6 Pac-12) was led by a game-high 32 points from Tia Presley.