Washington came out of the gate with aggressive pressure defense that produced 16 turnovers by the San Francisco Dons in the first half.
As a result, the Dawgs scored 13 points off those first half turnovers.
As we covered in our preview of the game, the success of the Dons offense is most successful when they are hitting jump shots:
The majority of their Offense (45.6%) comes from Jump Shots — USF is rated very good at Catch & Shoot Jumpshots & Jumpers Off-the-Dribble.*
Washington’s first half defense prevented San Francisco from getting comfortable shooting the ball, as the Dons struggled shooting 33% overall (9-of-27) in the first half.
More importantly, as we previewed, the Huskies needed to neutralize SF’s significant three-point threat:
The Dons shooters are very good from 17 feet to beyond the three point line.*
The Huskies must extend their defense to the three-point line in order to reduce the Dons number of three point attempts.*
Jody Wynn’s Dawgs held the Dons to 16% three-point shooting (1-of-6) in the first half.
Thanks to the aforementioned points from turnovers, Washington produced a 16-of-31 (51%) first half shooting performance.
This countered San Francisco’s first half positives, i.e., six first half steals, 9 forced turnovers and out-rebounding the Huskies 17-15.
By halftime, the Huskies held a commanding 18-point lead 37-19 over the Dons, led by Haley Van Dyke’s 11 first half points.
Second Half Seattle Standoff
San Francisco began the second half with a 9-0 run, 4 layups and free throw as they attacked the Huskies press with their shifty guards driving aggressively down the middle, pulling within single digits of Washington 37-28.
Forcing Jody Wynn to pull her starters and make full lineup substitutions, not just once but twice.
The Huskies finally pulled themselves together defensively, as well as responding with three Washington three-pointers by Missy Peterson, Mai-Loni Henson and JaQuaya Miller, respectively.
The 3-point flurry was part of a 13-2 run that put the Dawgs back in control of the game 50-30.
more game notes: Ali Bamberger personally took on challenge in 2nd half when USF's shifty guards kept attacking lane in transition. Ali walled off smaller shifty guards with nimble foot movement & subtle body positioning that frustrated their attack, her defensive IQ🧐💯