Michelle Plouffe scored 30 points in Thursday's first-round win over Washington.
March 7, 2014
SEATTLE - Senior forward Michelle Plouffe scored a game-high 30 points to lead the 11th-seeded University of Utah women's basketball team to a 65-53 win over sixth-seeded Washington on Thursday night in the first round of the Pac-12 Tournament at KeyArena.
Utah (12-18) is 10-3 this season when holding its opponents below 60 points and the Utes limited Washington to a 25.5 shooting percentage (14-55) to go with a 48-37 rebounding edge.
Plouffe scored 30 points off an 11-for-24 shooting performance to go with 15 rebounds for her 15th double-double. She posted her 13th game with 20 or more points this season and had 10 or more points in 26 of 28 games that she has played in.
Freshman forward Emily Potter recorded her fourth double-double of the season with a game-high 15 rebounds and 12 points. She registered 17 games with double-figures in points.
Sophomore guard Danielle Rodriguez scored 10 points, her 13 th game with double-figures, and distributed a team-high five assists.
A Plouffe steal and breakaway lay-in and a driving lay-in by Rodriguez gave Utah a 4-0 lead as UW missed its first five shots. The Huskies then took the next seven points to grab a three-point lead (7-4) and a pair of Potter baskets brought the Utes back to within a point (9-8). The Utes responded with a 7-0 run of their own to grab their second four-point lead (13-9) of the half. Utah led by as many as 11 (23-12) after putting together a 10-0 run with 3-pointers by Rodriguez and freshman guard Devri Owens and two more baskets by Plouffe. The Huskies managed to trim their deficit to three heading into halftime, 31-28. With three turnovers in the first half, Utah is on pace to tie its Pac-12 season-low mark of six at Arizona on Feb. 21. Plouffe poured in 13 points, while Potter added eight points and a team-high five rebounds.
The Utes scored eight of the first 12 points of the second half to seize a 39-32 advantage as the Huskies responded with a 7-2 stretch to pull within two (41-39). Utah led by two (51-49) before a 9-0 run to assume a 60-49 advantage and the Utes would lead by fewer than nine the rest of the way during the 65-53 win.
Washington (17-13) was led by 20 points and seven rebounds from Kelsey Plum.
The Utes are now 2-2 all-time in the Pac-12 Tournament.
Utah will face third-seeded Oregon State in quarterfinal game No. 4 tomorrow at 8:30 p.m. MT. Krista Blunk (PBP) and Mary Murphy (Analyst) will call the game for Pac-12 Networks.