SUU Falls to Arizona State in Tempe

The Southern Utah University women’s basketball team fell at Arizona State University Monday afternoon by a score of 44-55. 

The T-Birds shot just 32.6% from the field in the loss and committed 19 turnovers.

Darri Frandsen led the T-Birds in scoring with 13 points. Madelyn Eaton contributed 11 while Cherita Daugherty scored 10. No other T-Bird scored more than four points, including star Liz Graves, who was held to just one point. It is the second game in a row where the Big Sky’s leading scorer has been held to single digits. 

Taya Hanson scored a game-high 15 for the Sun Devils while snagging five boards. Jaddan Simmons tossed in 13, while Jamie Loera put up seven, each snagging three rebounds a piece. ASU outrebounded the T-Birds 36-32.

The game was close throughout, with neither team shooting well due to stifling defense being played at both ends of the court. The Sun Devil’s finally broke the cold shooting spell they suffered through the first three quarters — scoring 19 points in the fourth while shooting 57% from the field. 

ASU jumped out to an early 8-0 lead before a 3-pointer from Daugherty put the T-Birds on the board at the 4:22 mark in the first quarter. Neither team could establish much of a rhythm the rest of the quarter as ASU took the lead into the second quarter 12-8.

The second quarter was eerily similar to the first, as neither team could consistently find the bottom of the net. Frandsen and Megan Kamps were the only T-Birds to score throughout the period, and ASU closed out the half with a seven point lead, 24-17.

Eaton hit a jumper immediately out of halftime for the T-Birds to bring them within five, but that would be the closest SUU would come for the remainder of the game. For every SUU punch there was an ASU counter. SUU closed the quarter with two Eaton free-throws to make the score 36-30.

The fourth quarter saw the Sun Devil’s lead ballooned up to as many as 14 points before three consecutive T-Bird free-throws brought it down to 11 before the final buzzer sounded.

The T-Birds move to 8-4 (3-2) on the season. Per Big Sky rules, the T-Birds need at least three more (eight total) conference games in order to qualify for the Big Sky Tournament. 

The remaining schedule for SUU features six conference games, with two games each against Sacramento State University, Northern Arizona University, and Portland State University.

The T-Birds currently sit at fourth in the Big Sky. SUU takes the floor again in Sacramento as they take on Sacramento State on February 18.

Story by: Kelton Jacobsen
Photo courtesy of the SUU Athletic Department Strategic Communications