Junior Bonnie Samuelson led a Stanford 3-point barrage Sunday, hitting five of the Cardinal’s 13 triples in a 74-48 win over Arizona at Maples Pavilion.
The Cardinal improved to 24-2 overall and 13-1 in Pac-12 play, moving closer to clinching its 14th straight regular-season title as it now holds a three-game lead in the standings with four to play. Sunday’s win also clinched for the Cardinal a bye into the quarterfinals of next month’s Pac-12 Tournament in Seattle.
Stanford blew the game open with a 28-2 run over a span of 9:54, turning an 11-8 deficit into a 36-13 lead with five minutes left in the first half. Chiney Ogwumike scored 11 of her 15 points during the run while Bonnie Samuelson, who scored 17 points on the day, hit a pair of triples with eight points during the run. Arizona, only able to suit up six players due to injuries, ended up going more than 10 minutes between field goals as the Cardinal pulled away, en route to a 48-19 halftime lead.
The run gave Setsuko Ishiyama Director of Women’s Basketball Tara VanDerveer the opportunity to pull her starters early, as none played more than 24 minutes Sunday. Ogwumike grabbed nine rebounds to go with her 15 points over 22 minutes, while Amber Orrange scored nine points with nine assists in 24 minutes of work.
“I was really happy this game to get some people some rest. To be able to rest Chiney and Mikaela, especially, and have some different people step up,” VanDerveer said. “Bonnie’s been working really hard and it was good to see her come in and get 17 points in 16 minutes.”
Three of Stanford’s first four field goals were of the 3-point variety, as Taylor Greenfield, Orrange and Lili Thompson each hit from deep. Arizona, despite being short-handed, hung tough for the first five minutes, taking an 11-8 lead on a Kama Griffitts jumper with 14:54 to go in the half.
But it would be all Cardinal from there. Thompson hit a triple to even up the score, then hit a free throw a minute later to put the Cardinal in front for good at 12-11. Ogwumike scored nine of Stanford’s next 13 points, capping it with a three-point play to put the Cardinal in front 25-12 with 8:27 to go in the half.
Samuelson would hit three triples over the final 7:56, and freshman Kailee Johnson would add one at the buzzer as the Cardinal ended the half with a 48-19 lead. Stanford went 10-for-17 from 3-point range over the opening 20 minutes.
“When Arizona went into the zone against us, that was great for us to come out hard against it. The 3-point shooting was something that was good for us to see,” VanDerveer said.
Samuelson played sparingly in the second half, only attempting one 3-pointer, finishing the game 5-for-8 from behind the arc.
“My shot felt really good, and my teammates did a really good job of finding me today. Tara gives me a lot of confidence in my shot, and I know what my job is,” Samuelson said.
Orrange, Thompson and Greenfield each hit a triple in the opening minutes of the second half, as the Cardinal started it 3-for-3 from deep. Thompson’s triple forced an Arizona timeout, after which VanDerveer removed Ogwumike and Orrange from the game, and they joined Ruef on the bench for the remainder of the contest.
VanDerveer got a long look at her reserve units over the final 15:50. Freshman Erica McCall led the way with seven points and seven rebounds while Johnson and Erica Payne combined to grab six rebounds as the Cardinal out-rebounded Arizona 42-28 in the game.