Herculean effort leads Washington State past Arizona, 90-88
PULLMAN, Wash. — Behind a combined 65 points out of Borislava Hristova and Chanelle Molina , Washington State (8-16, 3-10) outgunned the visiting Wildcats of Arizona (15-8, 5-7), 90-88, Saturday afternoon at Beasley Coliseum.
The Cougars stars put on a show in front of their home crowd, splitting the scoring duties over the 40 minutes of action to take down the Wildcats’ the nation’s second leading scorer. After a game two nights prior, Molina came out scorching on Saturday afternoon as the junior point scored the Cougars’ first eight points of the game and netted 12 in the opening stanza.
It was the final four of those 12 that kick started a 9-0 closing run for the Cougars to capture a three-point lead after the first 10 minutes of action. After falling behind by six midway through the second quarter Molina again would spur the Cougars’ answer as she scored five of a quick seven for WSU to recapture the lead.
From there, Hristova led a free flowing attack that saw WSU again close the frame strong with a 16-6 spurt to nab a 42-38 at the break.
The 10 from Hristova in the second quarter was only a warmup as the star forward scored 12 of the Cougars’ 23 in the third and 13 of 25 in the fourth to help put away a pesky Wildcat team that refused to go home quietly.
The Cougars would need every bit of the dynamic duos scoring thanks to the play of Aari McDonald, who scored nine points in the game’s final 1:48 to make the home crowd at Beasley sweat. In the end, Hristova and Molina would hit the free throws needed to keep the Wildcats at arms length while Molina got her hand on a final three-point attempt by McDonald, blocking the last ditch effort by the Wildcats’ star and securing the victory for WSU.
Coach Ethridge Quote of the Game
“Well what an entertaining game especially when we find away to win. I just am really proud of our team and how hard we sustained our effort. I think that has been a big problem for us to sustain effort, execution, and focus and kind of purpose through a 40 minute game. I thought this was one of our better games where we really, for the things we wanted to do before this game and for this game, I thought we were really good for most of the game. Two phenomenal performances by Bobi and Nelle.”