Offense explodes in win over Boston College

The Arizona State University's women's basketball team shot 54.7 percent from the field as hey routed Boston College 79-54. With wins over UC Riverside and Colorado State last week the Lady Sun Devils have jumped to a 3-0 mark, the first time the program has accomplished this since the 2006-2007 season.

ASU interim head coach Joseph Anders was pleased with the outcome of the game, though he is aware of some changes that needed to take place.

"The thing that we want to continue to do is be calm and confident," Anders remarked. "I believe in our young ladies and they're beginning to believe in what we're doing. We knew that we were very, very good shooters & it's just a matter of time offensively, if you get the opportunity, to get a rhythm. And then once you saw the ball go through the basket the first time, it seemed to go in bunches at that point.

"The right people were taking shots, the right people were making the passes to them, and the passes inside that we needed as well. Anytime you can have 25 assists in a game, that's a great offensive game,"

ASU's leading scorer of the night, senior Kim Brandon finished the game with 18 points. Brandon had a strong second half, making 9 out of her attempted 15 shots against Boston College (1-2).

"(going into the 2nd half) I was calm and confident," Brandon stated. "My teammates got me the ball in the right places and they were setting good screens so I was wide open for the majority of my shots, so that was good. My teammates really got me open and got me the ball in the right spots where I was successful at."

Anders agreed that Brandon's second half performance outshined her first half, stating that she started off slow.

"We talked at halftime in terms of adjustments that she had to make from one half to the next…" Anders said. "We wanted to get her going again in the second half, and once she hit that first shot, other things began to open up. Once you hit outside shots, teams who play zone now make themselves vulnerable for slips and sides, more easy baskets, high lows, and backdoor cuts, and we were able to get those."

As both Brandon and Anders mentioned, the Lady Devils had an outstanding offensive game. Junior guard Micaela Pickens had 12 points, junior guard Alex Earl finished with 10 points, and freshman guard Promise Amukamara added eight points.

Another major offensive factor for the victory, was the Lady Devils' assist total. The team collaboratively tallied 25 total assists on Sunday night, with Pickens and Deja Mann pacing ASU with five assists each.

Although Coach Anders and his team were very pleased with the Sun Devil victory, they're far from complacent. The Devils' struggle to have two strong halves, as they admit this is their biggest weakness to date.

"We've fought the last two games about trying to put a whole game together," Earl said. "So it's either we play really good in the first half and lag a little in the second, or we play really good in the second half and don't show up in the first half."

Andres concurred.

"We're in search right now to play a complete game," he said. "And that's the thing that every program in the country is in search of. Today was as close as we have gotten to a complete ball game."

There were a few other issues that Anders is concerned about.

"There are things that we still need to get better at. The 19 turnovers: absolutely too many. Being out rebounded, although we did play pretty good defense. We still have things we must continue to go back to the classroom and get better at."

The Lady Devils will be traveling abroad for their next pair of games, as they will be playing Illinois and Rutgers at the San Juan Shootout in Puerto Rico later this week. ASU looks forward to this opportunity, and anticipates a great week of practice ahead in preparation for the games.

"The one thing we've always tried to do here at Arizona State is to schedule tough and play NCAA caliber opponents on a neutral floor," Anders commented. "The Puerto Rico trip allows us to be able to do just that. To be able to play against Illinois and Rutgers on a neutral floor, that's what we seek, that's what we desire, and we're looking forward to seeing where we are right now in our season."

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