Cougars still cannot beat the Cardinal

JAKOB THORINGTON, Former Evergreen reporter

The WSU women’s basketball team fell to the No. 5 Stanford Cardinal 77-58 on Friday in Stanford, California, and extended its losing streak to Stanford to 66 games and remain win-less in the all-time series.

Redshirt senior forward Borislava Hristova extended her streak of scoring double-digit points to eight games. She scored 21 points and grabbed 8 rebounds. Hristova is eight points away from setting the all-time scoring record for WSU women’s basketball held by Jeanne Eggart.

It wasn’t enough to match the No. 5 team in the country, as Stanford (12-1,1-0) limited all but four players to score for WSU (7-7, 0-2).

Most of the Cougar’s offense was produced by senior guard Chanelle Molina and Hristova. The two combined for 48 points and shot 19-32. The rest of the team shot 3-20 and scored 10 points, from sophomore forward Shir Levy and redshirt junior guard Johanna Muzet. The Cougars’ bench scored four points.

Despite the 21-point loss, WSU finished the night shooting 42.3 percent and hit seven of 16 3-pointers. Stanford shot 46.8 percent and made nine of 22 3-pointers.

Molina kept the Cougars in a tight contest with five points midway through the first quarter as Stanford led 9-7. She finished the night with 27 points, shooting 5-8 from the 3-point line and moved into fourth place for most 3-pointers made in WSU history.

The Cardinal went on a 13-5 run to close out the quarter with a 22-12 lead, which included two 3-pointers from senior forward Nadia Fingall. Fingall finished the game with 20 points and a career high of three 3-pointers made.

Stanford statistically dominated WSU in assists and bench points. The Cardinal assisted for a bucket 15 times opposed to the Cougar’s four assists and scored 27 bench points.

Stanford stayed hot in the second quarter from the 3-point line, shooting 6-12 from the 3-point line in the first half and led comfortably 41-23 going into halftime.

Hristova scored 14 of the Cougars’ 23 points in the first half and the Cougars had three players scoring a bucket in the first twenty minutes of the game. WSU finished the first half shooting 34.8 percent and had nine turnovers.

Hristova scored a 3-pointer to open the second half and Molina scored six points to cut the deficit to 49-34 with under five minutes left in the third quarter.

The rest of team continued to struggle finding a basket as Muzet was the only Cougar not named Molina or Hristova to score in the third quarter with her lone layup of the night. At the start of the fourth quarter, the Cougars trailed 58-41.

Stanford grabbed three offensive rebounds early in the fourth quarter to stifle the Cougars’ chance of a fourth quarter run and extended their lead to 21 points three minutes into the fourth quarter. The Cardinal out-rebounded the Cougars 38-29 and finished the game with 13 offensive rebounds.

Levy scored five of her six points in the fourth quarter, but Stanford’s lead was too much for the Cougars to overcome by the final buzzer.

The Cougars will stay in California for a matchup against the California Golden Bears at noon Sunday at Haas Pavilion in Berkeley. The game can be seen live on the Pac-12 Networks.