WSU drops first conference game

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Weber State University’s Shawnte Taylor blocked Brigham Young University’s Kristen Riley in a game earlier this season. WSU lost to Sacramento State University 78-60 on Saturday in its first Big Sky Conference game.

The Weber State University women’s basketball team dropped its first game of the Big Sky Conference season last week when they lost to Sacramento State University 78-60.

Despite the loss, Head Coach Bethann Ord said she feels the team played well, but had a few bad breaks in the game and wasn’t able to recover.

“Basketball is a game of runs,” Ord said. “We had a few stretches where they went on runs; we didn’t get the stops. The first half, even though we were down, the team played hard. We just had some missed opportunities.”

The game was close for most of the first half before a late run by the Hornets pushed the lead to eight points at halftime. The Wildcats tried to chip into it in the second half, but SSU made a strong push midway through the period to take a 21-point lead, and WSU wasn’t able to mount a comeback.

Senior center Mikell Woodfield led the Wildcats with 13 points and seven in the game,  but the Wildcats came up short against the Hornets. Sophomore guard Jordan Pfau added nine points and five rebounds for WSU, while Kia Rhodes, Amanda Hughes and Justine Johnson each added eight points.

Ord said the most important thing for the team moving forward will be to play its style of basketball and not change its game based on what the other team is doing.

“There was a three-minute stretch that wasn’t the way we play Weber State basketball,” Ord said. “We played at their tempo, not our tempo, and that hurt us.”

Led by Kylie Kuhns’ 17 points and 15 rebounds, the Hornets defeated the Wildcats 78-60 at the Hornet’s Nest in Big Sky Conference action.

Ord said she feels the team is building strong chemistry and continues to make improvements during each game.

“I feel that the team is coming together very well,” Ord said. “Every game, I feel like we’re getting better and making improvements each game.”

The game was WSU’s league-opener, with the Wildcats falling to 0-1 in conference and 2-12 overall. SSU improved to 2-0 in league play, 7-8 overall.

WSU will return to action on Thursday, Jan. 5, against Eastern Washington University in their home Big Sky Conference-opener. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. at the Dee Events Center.

Ord said she hopes the team will remember to focus on its game plan and not get sucked into playing a different game.

“We will try to get better,” Ord said. “We’re working on our things first, then we’ll start preparing for Eastern Washington.”

WSU has lost four games in a row, and will be looking to snap its skid against the Eagles. Sophomore forward Laura Palmere, who sat out last season after transferring from the University of Denver, said she is looking forward to the conference season, and that the team has put in a lot of work and hopes to get its first conference win at home against EWU.

“I’m really excited to get going after all the preparation we’ve been through,” Palmere said.