SEATTLE – Seattle University women’s basketball led for much of the contest with Utah Valley Saturday afternoon, but the Wolverines pulled out a 58-55 decision in a Western Athletic Conference (WAC) game at the Redhawk Center.
“Our first quarter was fantastic today,” said Coach Suzy Barcomb. “I thought we lost our intensity after that. Carla was a bright spot off the bench. She provided us with offense and strong defense today.”
SU (0-16) was on fire to begin the game, sinking five threes in the first period. Facing UVU’s 2-3 zone defense, the Redhawks stroked confidently from deep, as Courtney Murphy hit a trey and Kamira Sanders drained two more. Carla Bieg came off the bench and swished a pair of triples as Seattle U recorded its best first quarter of the season. Along with 25 points, the Redhawks hounded the visitors into seven turnovers for a 10-point margin through 10 minutes.
UVU looked better in the second period, trimming its margin. After a Wolverine hoop, Bieg sank a jumper. The visitors cut into their deficit from there, until a Bieg basket at the 5:28 mark. The SU offense went dry until the final minute of the frame when Sarah Rahon drilled a deep trey from the left wing, giving her side a 34-28 lead at halftime.
Joana Alves hit two foul shots to start third-quarter scoring. Murphy answered a a UVU three with a jumper of her own and then Bieg and Alves both scored in the lane, making it 42-32 with 5:39 showing on the clock. The Wolverines rallied with nine straight points to get within one late in the period.
Murphy connected from downtown to stem the run, but UVU continued to hit, eventually taking a 49-45 advantage into the fourth quarter.
Murphy swished a 15-footer to start scoring in the fourth, but the visitors answered. Madeline Dopplick set up an Alves three-point play as the Redhawks made it 51-50 with 7:47 remaining. Utah Valley came back with a three, however. Bieg later came up with a steal and passed ahead to Murphy, who finished in the paint to get within two again.
After a UVU hoop, Bieg hit a triple, making it 56-55 at the 3:32 mark. The defenses clamped down from there, though, as two Utah Valley foul shots represented the only scoring down the stretch.
Alves led with 17 points and eight rebounds. Bieg matched her career high with 15 points off the bench. Murphy put up 12 points, while Sanders added eight points, four rebounds, and four assists in 35 minutes.
The Redhawks hit the road for two WAC contests next week, playing at New Mexico State (Jan. 17) and then UTRGV (Jan. 19).