The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

Write for Us
Want your voice to be heard? Submit a letter to the editor, send us an op-ed pitch or check out our open positions for the chance to be published by the Daily Utah Chronicle.
Print Issues

Team ?a work in progress? facing home games

By Liz Frome

After claiming a win and a loss on the road during the week of Thanksgiving, the Utah women’s basketball team has returned home for back-to-back matches early in the week, taking on Weber State tonight and Idaho State tomorrow.

The games mark the start of Utah’s last month of preseason matchups before beginning conference play Jan. 9 against TCU in Fort Worth.

With a 2-3 record behind them and eight more preseason games to go, head coach Elaine Elliott said the record might not always indicate the Utes’ progression.

“We’re a work in progress,” Elliott said. “We’re going to get better as the season goes on. We might not be talking about a great record, but all these games will be good for us later.”

In the game against Stanford on Thursday, the Utes were dealt a tough 60-41 loss by the Cardinal, with all but three of their total points on the night coming from freshman center Taryn Wicijowski (15), senior forward Kalee Whipple (13) and sophomore point guard Janita Badon (10).

The team as a whole shot just 20 percent from the field in the first half and headed into the locker room down by nine.

The Utes shot for a more accurate 49 percent in the second half but were unable to come away with the win, as Stanford answered with 42 percent shooting.

“It’s hard when you have a lot of growing to do,” Elliott said. “Twenty minutes of growing was what it was for us. We did a better job of getting the ball to the rim (in the second half).”

After scoring just three points in the first half, Wicijowski came out strong in the second, scoring the rest of her 15 points. With All-American center Jayne Appel defending her, Wicijowski said she had more drive to perform.

“I feel even more motivated when I’m playing against someone with that kind of a reputation,” she said. “I want to show that I can play with anyone.”

pite an unbalanced offensive attack, the Utes pulled together on defense and held Stanford to its lowest-scoring win since February, when the Cardinal beat California with just 58 points. Wicijowski held Appel to just two points and six rebounds in 21 minutes of play.

Wicijowski’s toughness and motivation seemed to carry over to the Utes’ matchup against Santa Clara two days later, leading the Utes with 21 points and five rebounds in their 59-54 win over Broncos.

Whipple closely trailed Wicijowski against Santa Clara with 18 points and seven boards, including 5 of 6 free throws in the final minutes of the game to seal the Utes’ victory.

Senior forward Halie Sawyer, who was held scoreless against Stanford, also added a pair of free throws with just more than two minutes to go against the Broncos. The points gave Utah a 10-point advantage that turned out to be sorely needed as Santa Clara immediately followed with a 7-0 run, cutting the Utes’ lead to three with just 49 seconds left.

Whipple’s and Sawyer’s free throws put the Utes back up by five to end the game.

Sawyer’s pair of free throws accounted for half of her four points, and she led the Utes in rebounding with nine boards on the night.

The Broncos were led by forward Lena Gipson, who tallied 17 points and 12 rebounds for a double-double.

The Utes will start their two-game stretch at home against Weber State tonight at 7 p.m. and will face Idaho State on Wednesday.

[email protected]

Mike Mangum

Taryn Wicijowski scored 15 points in the second half of the Utes? loss to Stanford. Wicijowski also played stellar defense, holding Jayne Apple to only two points.

Leave a Comment

Comments (0)

We welcome feedback and dialogue from our community. However, when necessary, The Daily Utah Chronicle reserves the right to remove user comments. Posts may be removed for any of the following reasons: • Comments on a post that do not relate to the subject matter of the story • The use of obscene, threatening, defamatory, or harassing language • Comments advocating illegal activity • Posts violating copyrights or trademarks • Advertisement or promotion of commercial products, services, entities, or individuals • Duplicative comments by the same user. In the case of identical comments only the first submission will be posted. Users who habitually post comments or content that must be removed can be blocked from the comment section.
All The Daily Utah Chronicle Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *