BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) -- For years now, Charli Turner Thorne's
teams at Arizona State have won by wearing down opponents with an
up-tempo offense and swarming defense all over the floor.
It took a half for the Sun Devils to finally show that signature
style against California.
Jill Noe had 16 points, six rebounds and five assists and Arizona State (No. 11 ESPN/USA Today; No. 10 AP) used a big second-half run to win its eighth straight
game, 74-58 over the Golden Bears (No. 19 ESPN/USA Today; No. 18 AP) on Thursday night.
"Hallelujah for the second half," Turner Thorne said. "A
really slow start. The first half we weren't working hard enough.
... We were sluggish."
Emily Westerberg added 14 points, 10 in the second half, and
five rebounds and Aubree Johnson had 11 points, four rebounds and
four assists in the Sun Devils' 11th straight Pac-10 victory.
Danielle Orsillo added 10 points as the team extended its road
winning streak to seven games dating to last season.
Arizona State (12-1 overall, 2-0 Pac-10), which beat rival
Arizona by 27 points in its conference opener last week, hasn't
lost since an 83-74 defeat to No. 4 Tennessee on Nov. 19.
Next up is a date with No. 14 Stanford on Saturday. Arizona
State last won at Stanford in 1984.
"Ah, it's time to win at Maples," Turner Thorne said.
Ashley Walker scored in double digits for the 12th straight game
this season, finishing with 16 points and eight rebounds. She also
helped Cal plug the middle on defense to make it tough for the Sun
Devils to establish an inside game.
Devanei Hampton added 14 points and five rebounds.
Westerberg made back-to-back layins from the left side to pull
ASU to 44-43 with 14:04 remaining and added another basket during
the decisive 20-2 run that turned a 44-39 deficit into a 57-46 lead
and put the game away. The Bears went cold and gave up second and
third chances on the defensive end during the stretch.
"We just gave them that little run and we didn't withstand
it," Walker said. "We were cold. They capitalized on our
mistakes. That's what top ranked teams do."
The Sun Devils, typically among the top defensive teams in the
conference, came out in a full-court press but needed a strong
effort in the second half to beat the Bears.
Cal (9-3, 1-2) had won five of six, splitting its opening games
of conference play last week in Los Angeles -- losing in overtime at
UCLA before beating USC.
But the Bears couldn't maintain their offensive pace from the
first half against a scrappy Arizona State team that has a knack
for making teams tired. Cal did not make a 3-pointer (0-for-5).
"They're a great team and they're playing their best basketball
ever," Cal coach Joanne Boyle said. "I'm very pleased with my
team's effort. In the first half we executed the game plan to a T.
The second half we fell apart and I was most disappointed we were
not getting stops. We had to work for everything."
The teams split the series last season, each winning on their
Cal added two walk-on guards Tuesday -- Natalie Nurnberg and
Julia Numair -- to boost the depth in their backcourt after losing
point guard and reigning Pac-10 Freshman of the Year Alexis
Gray-Lawson for the season with a right knee injury that will
require surgery, probably next week.
The Bears shot 60 percent in the first half on the way to a
31-29 lead at the break.
ASU made four of its first five shots with three 3-pointers to
build a quick 11-4 lead, but Cal answered with 13 straight points
and the Sun Devils missed their next 13 field-goal attempts and
went nearly 8 minutes without scoring before Orsillo's basket at
Turner Thorne's halftime talk focused on being more aggressive
to create opportunities.
"We had to get back to getting points off our defense," Noe
said. "That's what we're all about."