Sun Devils Sneak Past Bengals

A young team is going to through learning experiences throughout their season, Friday night was one of those for the No. 15 Arizona State Sun Devils.

Sun Devils Sneak Past Bengals A young team is going to through learning experiences throughout their season, Friday night was one of those for the No. 15 Arizona State Sun Devils. ASU (5-1) struggled offensively all night, but their defense was just enough to pull them past Idaho State 65-56 in the opening game of the ASU Classic at Wells Fargo Arena. "It was evident to everyone in the arena that we weren't on our game tonight," senior guard Danielle Orsillo said. "It was not Sun Devil Basketball."

The first half was a struggle offensively for both teams. ISU shot 37.5% and ASU shot just 32% and missed 13 of their first 19 shots, but lead 22-20 at the break.

"It felt like there was a lid on the basket," ASU coach Charli Turner Thorne said.

The Bengals (1-7) hung with the Sun Devils and the game was locked at 33-33 with 10:40 to play, before ASU rattled off a 17-7 run to go up 50-40 with 6:30 left.

Orsillo led ASU with 18 points and junior forward Becca Tobin added 10 points and seven rebounds.

Orsillo noted that Tobin was key for ASU on the defensive side of the ball.

"She was covering for everybody on defense," Orsillo said. "She was just everywhere. Becca was awesome."

With many new faces from last year's Elite Eight team, ASU is still trying to find an identity and trying to become a closer knit team.

"We are going to start making some sacrifices in order to become a team," Orsillo, who topped the 1,000 point mark for her career, said.

Turner Thorne knows that the Sun Devils still have a long way to go, but have the talent to get to where they want to be.

"It's the team that needs to come together more and be more consistent with their position defense and more consistent in getting the right shot," Turner Thorne said.

The Sun Devils didn't help their offensive cause by shooting just 19-32 from the free throw line.

"It is funny, because (before the game in free throw drill) we shot the best that we have, ever," Turner Thorne said.

Senior forward Oana Iacovita led ISU with 15 points and Queen Creek native Morgan Wohltman added 12.

Junior point guard Tenya Watson did not start due to a hyper extended knee suffered in practice. Watson came off the bench and played 13 minutes. Turner Thorne almost didn't play Watson at all, but the junior college transfer assured her head coach that she was okay to go.

ASU advances to the championship game of the ASU Classic and will face the Pepperdine Waves who knocked off Utah State 67-46 in the other opening round game. The championship game will tip at 4PM with the constellation game at 1PM.


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