Utah Drives By Struggling USC, Picks Up Fifth Straight Conference Win

Feb 9, 2022, 4:17 PM
December 18, 2021, Salt Lake City, UT:
The University of Utah Utes Women’s Basketball team takes ...
December 18, 2021, Salt Lake City, UT: The University of Utah Utes Women’s Basketball team takes on the UVU Wolverines at the Jon M. Huntsman Center in Salt Lake City, Utah on Saturday, December 18, 2021. (Photo by Nick Grace/University of Utah)
(Photo by Nick Grace/University of Utah)

SALT LAKE CITY – The Utah Utes made swiss cheese of USC’s defense all afternoon on their way to a 91-69 win at the Huntsman Center.

The Utes (4-4, 13-7) hosted the Trojans (2-8, 9-11) on Wednesday, February 9 in a makeup for a previously scheduled game that was postponed due to health & safety protocols.

Freshman forward Jenna Johnson set the tone early when she set her feet in the paint in front of driving Trojan Tera Reed and drew a charge. The toughness and sacrifice shown by Johnson on the play are exactly what Utah will need as they fight to make the 2022 NCAA Basketball Tournament in March.

With the game tied at 12 early, Dasia Young, a player that has shown steady improvement in her role off the bench in recent weeks, knocked down a pair of three’s on back to back possessions. Young’s 20 made three’s this season is a career high as is her 37.7 percent shooting from deep.

In the first quarter, the Utes had five assists on seven made shots, leading them to a 22-13 lead after ten minutes.

Johnson, the stout forward out of Minnesota continued to show her toughness throughout the first half as she finished three old-fashioned three-point plays on her way to scoring 14 first half points.

The Utes went to halftime holding a 48-28 lead after closing out the half with an 11-0 run.

In the second half, Utah’s offensive focus was getting to the basket early and often. Using the dribble drive, the Utes were able to feast on a helpless Trojan defense.

The Utes would finish the third quarter shooting 60 percent from the field, 3-4 from deep and a perfect 5-5 from the charity stripe; increasing their advantage to 17.

USC made a brief run in the fourth quarter, but brilliant three-point shooting from Kennady McQueen and company allowed Utah to maintain a double digit advantage.

McQueen’s career high six three’s led to a team high 22 points. Johnson finished with 16 points while Young and Gianna Kneepkens each finished with 10.

USC had four players finish in double-figures, led by 21 from Jordyn Jenkins.

Utah next travels to California for a pair of Pac-12 games. The Utes will face the No. 2 Stanford Cardinal at Maples Pavilion on Friday, February 11. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. (MDT)

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