Jan. 2, 2007
CEDAR CITY, Utah - Amanda Rego's fifth double-double of the season helped lead the University of San Diego women's basketball team to a 61-50 non-conference win over the Southern Utah University Thunderbirds Tuesday evening in USD's final West Coast Conference tune-up at The Centrum.
With the win, the Toreros continue the best start in program history at 11-3 and improve their road record to 3-1. With the loss, the Thunderbirds fall to 3-10.
"I thought our team turned it on defensively in the second half and we needed it since we came out so flat offensively in the beginning," said head coach Cindy Fisher. "We had a good run at the end of the first half to get close and really turned it up defensively in the second half. Our defense created baskets for us tonight."
Rego, the nation's leader in assists per game (8.1), recorded 11 assists and 11 points, while also recording a team-best eight rebounds and four steals in the win. The second Torero in double figures was Amber Sprague, who recorded a game-high 14 points on 7-of-8 shooting. Morgan Henderson tied a career-high with 12 points and the final Torero in double figures was Kelly Winther with 10 points, while also recording a career-high four steals. The Toreros shot 47 percent from the field and out rebounded the Thunderbirds 34-25. San Diego also forced 22 turnovers and scored 19 points off those turnovers.
After both teams sea-sawed back and forth over the first several minutes of the game, the Thunderbirds would use a 13-5 run to take a nine point lead at 20-11 with 7:02 remaining in the first half of play.
Despite the team's leading scorer, Amber Sprague, in foul trouble, the Toreros dug in defensively and only allowed the Thunderbirds to score four points over the remaining seven minutes as they put together an impressive 11-4 run sparked by a Kiva Hermann lay-up and capped by a Herman jumper to trail by two going into the break.
In the second half, USD wasted no time as they opened the frame with a 9-1 run to take control of the momentum and lead 31-25 with 14:56 remaining in the period.
San Diego would then build their lead up to as many as 14 thanks to back-to-back steals, one by Henderson and one by London Houchin, which both led to Rego lay-up's. Amber Sprague then followed with a jumper to give the Toreros a 43-29 edge, a lead they would not look back on as they cruised their way to their 11th win of the season.
SUU's Anne Westwood had a team-high 11 points along with six rebounds and assists. Heather Hillock joined Westwood in double figures with ten, adding three assists in the loss.
The Toreros will return to action on Sunday as they begin West Coast Conference play against their University of San Francisco in a 2 p.m. tilt at the Jenny Craig Pavilion.