5:00 PM ET, January 15, 2005
STANFORD, Calif. (AP) -- Stanford let a 20-point halftime lead dwindle to seven before coming away with a victory over No. 14 Boston College.Brooke Smith scored 17 points to lift the Cardinal (No. 4 ESPN/USA Today, No. 6 AP) past Boston College 76-66 for their 15th straight home win on Saturday."I knew a 20-point lead wasn't going to be enough," Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer said. "I don't know if I communicated that to the team very well. We had our hands full. We have to do the right thing or they make you pay."Kelley Suminski had 15 points and Candice Wiggins added 13 for the Cardinal (15-2), winners of six straight. Stanford finished 8-of-8 from the free throw line in the closing minutes.Jessalyn Deveny led the Eagles (12-2) with 26 points and Brooke Queenan added 17. Boston College had its 11-game winning streak snapped, one short of matching the school record. The Eagles last lost against then-No. 15 Michigan State on Nov. 21."We got a little rattled," BC coach Cathy Inglese said. "I wasn't pleased with our focus. It's tough to come back from a 20-point deficit."Trailing 41-21 at halftime, Boston College opened the second half with an 18-9 run to pull to 50-39 with 10:29 left. The Eagles turned up the intensity on defense, applying full court pressure and forcing the Cardinal into several turnovers."We lost the second half, which isn't good," Suminski said. "We want to win both halves."Stanford regained an 18-point edge on Susan King Borchardt's 3-pointer with 5:17 left, but the Eagles went on a 13-2 run to draw to seven 3 minutes later. Queenan made a pair of 3-pointers and Deveny had seven points during the run.Wiggins made four free throws in the final 2 minutes to help seal the win.Boston College used just seven players, shot 24-of-50 from the field and outrebounded Stanford 32-27. Queenan and Deveny combined for 16-of-26 shooting, and Kathrin Ress had nine points and 10 rebounds."This reminded me of an NCAA game," VanDerveer said. "(Boston College) is an NCAA team. They are going to the tournament. It's especially valuable to our younger players. Candice gets a preview of the tournament in January."Stanford made 10 of its first 17 shots and used a 12-0 run to take a double-digit lead in the first 10 minutes. The Eagles committed seven turnovers and shot 38 percent through the first 12 minutes.Led by Suminski's three 3-pointers, the Cardinal finished 7-of-16 from beyond the arc. BC went 4-of-8 from 3-point range.Stanford has led at halftime in all 17 games this season. BC trailed at the break for the first time.The Cardinal have won 50 of their last 53 games at Maples Pavilion.