Utah women upset No. 3 in Washington State Pac-12 tournament with 70-59

Johnson scores 19 points as sixth-seeded Utes takes on No. 2 Oregon in Friday’s semifinals.

Utah guard Brynna Maxwell, left, reacts after guard Isabel Palmer (1) during the first half of an NCAA collegiate basketball game in the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 women’s tournament Thursday, March 3 , in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/David Becker)

Las Vegas • Jenna Johnson scored 19 points in 7-of-11 shooting and Utah defeated No. 3-seeded Washington State 70-59 in Thursday night’s Pac-12 tournament.

Sixth-seeded Utah (19-10) plays second-seeded Oregon in the semifinals Friday at 9:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Network) MST. The unranked Ducks, who went in and out in the top 25 after finishing 10th in the preseason poll, defeated Utah 73-65 in last Saturday’s regular season finals to win the season series.

Johnson scored 10 points in the first quarter and her 3-pointer at 6:03 in the first quarter gave Utah a definitive 15-12 lead. The Cougars (19-10) went 0-5 from the field and made three turnovers as the Utes used a 15-0 run to lead 29-13 into the second quarter.

Johnson hit another 3 – Utah’s first-half eighth with 2:22 left – to spark a 7-0 sprint that took it 45-25 at the break.

Brynna Maxwell scored 11 points and Isabel Palmer added 10 for Utah.

Washington State (19-10), which won a program-record 11 conference games this season and has its highest seed total in conference tournament history, is awaiting an open bid for the NCAA tournament. The Cougars are 0-2 all-time in the NCAA tournament, losing first-round games in 1979 and 2021 — a 57-53 loss to South Florida. Bella Murekatete made 7 of 13 from the field and finished with 18 points and Tara Wallack scored 16 on 6-of-10 shooting for Washington State.

Charlisse Leger-Walker, the Cougars’ top scorer with 16.3 points per game, had six points and sister Krystal Leger-Walker had four. The duo each went 2 of 12 from the field and 0 for 5 from the 3 point area.

https://www.sltrib.com/sports/utah-utes/2022/03/04/utah-women-upset-no-seed/ Utah women upset No. 3 in Washington State Pac-12 tournament with 70-59

Jessica MacLeish

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