The first half of play on Saturday was exactly what Charli Turner Thorne was looking for after calling out her team after Thursday's victory over Oregon. The Devils played excellent pressure defense to hold Oregon State to just 14 points in the half.
"It was all our intensity," said January when asked what was the difference in the first half as opposed to Thursday, "We didn't grasp the fact that the second time through it is going to be harder to beat teams. They adjusted to us."
"It was an improvement from Thursday. We played twenty minutes hard, but we let it get close in the second half. We have a lot to work on."
ASU used that intensity to fuel a 22-2 run that stretched a tie game into a 30-10 lead.
"We gave them no looks in the first half," said ASU Head Coach Charli Turner Thorne "We took one of the most disciplined, well executing teams in our conference and didn't give them much if anything. We won the game in the first half."
The Beavers are the same team that played one possession games with Cal and Stanford this season and ASU knew they weren't going to go away easy.
The Sun Devils helped Oregon State get back into the game with turnovers and sloppy play. The Beavers played more up tempo in the second half and didn't allow ASU to set their defense. The Devils turned it over 24 times.
"We had some turnovers and travels," said Simon," That was us rushing and not taking our time. But we got back up and that is us being poised. We have to continue to do that."
The Beavers cut ASU's twenty point lead all the way down to eight with 2:52 left in the game. The Devils then turned on the defense again and only allowed Oregon St. to score four more points the rest of the way.
"We let down in the second half. We were fouling a lot," said Simon, "We are going to learn from it and work really hard next week."
Dymond Simon led the Devils with 19 points and Briann January added 17, but both were sloppy with the ball and committed a combined eight turnovers.
"Dymond and Bri are great decision makers, and they had a very uncharacteristic game," said Turner Thorne, "They reverted back a little with some of their transition passing. They just needed to keep the ball longer at times and set their teammates up better. That is something that will be fixed by next week."
ASU will head to Los Angeles to try and set the school record for consecutive wins. The Devils will visit the Galen Center on Thursday to take on USC at 8PM. ASU took down the Trojans 83-71 in Tempe earlier this season.
"Two explosive teams that get up and down the court," said January, "We won't be able to play the defense that we played today and come away with a sweep."