February 11, 2017

A tale of two halves

Karlie becomes the 38th member of SWBB's 1,000-point club. (Stanford photo)
Fans of Stanford women’s basketball had little to cheer about during the first half of the Colorado game on Feb. 10.

However, the home crowd of 2,546 was energized during the second half as the Cardinal gradually caught up and won 64-51, thanks in large part to Brittany McPhee.

The junior guard scored a total of 26 points, with 20 in the second half, and snared a career-high 11 rebounds. She added an assist and a block to her stat line, so when she exited the game with under two minutes left, she was accorded a standing ovation.

Britt brushes up on free throws

Britt was one of the first players on the court before the third quarter. She stood at the free-throw line and swished one toss after another as her teammates returned.

Free throws haven’t been her strong suit during the season. She made three of six during this game, with all three makes coming in the second half.

“I wanted to get out there. I don't think anybody's ever happy missing free throws,” she said during the post-game press conference.

The first quarter ended in a 9-9 tie, and the half saw the Cardinal down 24-27.  Stanford nosed ahead 46-44 after the third quarter, thanks to a last-second 3-pointer by senior forward Erica “Bird” McCall. Also making 3’s during the game were Britt, senior guard Briana Roberson and sophomore guard Marta Sniezek, each with one.

Turnovers drop in second half

Another improvement in the second half involved turnovers. Stanford had 11 in the first half but only two in the second.

Bird was the only other Cardinal in double figures with 15 points. She also had 10 rebounds and one block.

Colorado defenders remained glued to senior guard Karlie Samuelson, but her 4 points were enough to raise her career total to 1,003 to become the 38th member of the team’s 1,000-point club. Even without scoring much, Karlie helped out with four rebounds, two assists and a steal along with her trademark defense and hustle.

She, Bird, Bri and Britt were the starters along with junior forward Kaylee Johnson. Twelve players were suited up. The other player, freshman guard Mikaela Brewer, wasn’t there.

The victory moved Stanford into a three-way tie with Oregon State and Washington atop the Pac-12 conference.

Utah is next on the agenda at 1 p.m. Feb. 12. The game will be shown on Pac-12 TV.

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