Women’s basketball to host No. 5 Stanford

Stanford will be WSU’s highest ranked opponent of season



Junior forward Ula Motuga hides the ball from a falling defender.

DANIEL SHURR, Evergreen reporter

The Washington State women’s basketball team is gearing up for an intense, two-game home stretch against the No. 5 Stanford Cardinal.

The Cougars are returning from a road trip that sent the team through both California and Oregon. While on that road trip, the Cougars suffered their first road loss of the season, at the hands of the USC Trojans.

Things didn’t get much easier for the Cougars when they paid a visit to the No. 8 UCLA Bruins and dropped their second game in a row.

WSU did not have a forgiving schedule, as they still had two road games against Oregon and Oregon State before they were tasked with hosting a top-ten team.

In their loss at Oregon, the Cougar offense scored a season-low 50 points, as the inability to connect on shots hurt the WSU shooters once again.

However, despite averaging a respectable 70 points per game, it has been the defense that has kept WSU in games this season, as they held a high scoring Oregon team to just 58 points in their home stadium.

On their way home, they traveled through Corvallis to take on the Oregon State Beavers. That showdown resulted in six periods of action, and the Cougars defeated the Beavers 77-75 in double overtime.

With that in the rear-view mirror, WSU now takes on their highest-ranked opponent of the season as they host the Stanford Cardinal.

The Cardinal were ranked as the number one team in the nation for a large portion of the year. However, after a stunning overtime loss to the University of Colorado and a loss against the No. 6 UCLA Bruins, the team has since fallen to the number five spot in the national rankings.

The Cardinal have been an offensive juggernaut this season, leading the Pac-12 in points per game, scoring an average of 83 each outing.

They have five players that have eclipsed 100 points on the year, including the conference leader in three-point percentage fifth-year guard Anna Wilson, who is just shy of 50 percent from downtown.

Defensively, Stanford has also been tough to score on, as the team allows an average of only 55 points per game, as opposed to WSU allowing 60.

Stanford also leads the Pac-12 conference in rebounds, steals and blocks.

Hosting Stanford in back-to-back games will be a test for the Cougars, who just snapped their three-game losing streak.

Even so, head coach Kamie Ethridge continues to be pleased with the attitude and competitiveness her team carries with them no matter who they are facing.

“I love our competitiveness, I love our demeanor and I love how hard we play,” Ethridge said.

The first game against Stanford will tip-off at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 27 in Beasley Coliseum, while the following game will commence at noon Friday, Jan. 29. Both games can be streamed on the Pac-12 Network.