Feb. 26, 2004
PULLMAN, Wash. - - Washington State's Bianca McCall tallied a game-high 24 points along with a game-high 18 rebounds in the Cougars' 77-72 loss to the Arizona Wildcats in Pacific-10 Conference women's basketball action, Thursday at Friel Court.
Arizona improved its record to 21-7 overall and 13-4 in the Pac-10. WSU dropped to 5-21 overall and 1-16 in conference play.
McCall turned in one of the best games of her WSU career in defeat. The senior from Santa Rosa, Calif., shot 8-of-16 from the field en route to tying the second-best scoring performance of her career. McCall scored a career-high 29 points at Stanford earlier this year and turned in 24 points at California, Jan. 18 of last year.
McCall's point total marked her second consecutive 20-point game as she increased her career total in that category to 10. McCall, who recorded her 10th career double-double, has scored in double figures in seven of her last eight games.
In addition, the 18 rebounds were just one off of McCall's career-high. McCall pulled down 19 rebounds in her first game as a Cougar against Wyoming, Nov. 22, 2002. The 18 boards tied for the 10th best single-game rebounding performance in school history. McCall has now has claimed two positions in the school's top 10 list in that category.
Arizona shot 28-of-59 (47.5 percent) from the field, including 9-of-26 from 3-point territory. WSU also shot above 40 percent for the game as the Cougars were 26-of-61 (42.6 percent).
"I thought the effort was there for 40 minutes," WSU Head Coach Sherri Murrell said. "They had to shoot 26 three-pointers to make nine. They had to shoot a lot to make a lot. But those three's didn't break us, we were still in the game.
"The effort was incredible and Bianca was a monster tonight, an absolute monster," Murrell added.
Dee-Dee Wheeler led Arizona with 20 points and Shawntinice Polk turned in a double-double of her own with 19 points and 14 rebounds.
Arizona seemed to be in control early, taking a 16-7 lead nearly seven minutes into the game. A 14-4 WSU run, capped by five consecutive points from Stephanie Singer, gave the Cougars a 21-20 lead at the 10:37 mark.
WSU extended its lead to as much as five on two occasions, the latter being at 29-24 at the 8:22 mark. Arizona used a 7-0 run to reclaim the lead at 31-29 with 4:14 remaining.
Down 39-38 at the half, the Cougars scored the first point of the second half to tie matters up. The deadlock was short-lived as Arizona used a 6-0 run to take a lead it would not relinquish for the remainder of the game.
The Wildcats stretched their lead out to 11 twice, the last being at 70-59 with 5:52 remaining. A 7-1 run pulled WSU to within five at 71-66 with 2:23 left.
Arizona withstood the Cougars' comeback attempt as a Polk lay-in increased Arizona's lead back to seven (73-66) with 1:59 remaining. The Wildcats' lead grew to eight at 75-67 with 27 seconds left. The Cougars would get no closer than four the rest of the way.
WSU returns to action for its final regular season game when it hosts Arizona State, Saturday, Feb. 28 at Friel Court. Tip-off is at 2 p.m.