Samuelson helps No. 10 Stanford ease past Washington State
PULLMAN, Wash. (AP) Although Stanford took an early lead and quickly put the game out reach quick, coach Tara VanDerVeer saw plenty she didn't like from the 10th-ranked Cardinal.
''It did get a little sloppy,'' VanDerVeer said. ''We turned the ball over too much.''
Still, the Cardinal did everything it needed to win comfortably.
Karlie Samuelson had 16 points and seven rebounds to help Stanford turn a dominating interior performance into a 76-54 win over Washington State on Friday night and maintain a share of first-place in the Pac-12.
Samuelson, whose 43.9 percent career 3-point shooting is third in the nation, hit 4 of 9 from beyond the arc. The Cardinal shot 51.9 percent from the field and outrebounded the Cougars by 16.
Stanford led by as much as 32, but turned the ball over 23 times.
''At one point we had three or four freshmen out there together and it looked like it,'' VanDerVeer said. ''I think it's good to get experience, and we're resting people, we're keeping them out of harm's way - it was a kind of physical game.''
Pinelopi Pavlopoulou and Alexys Swedlund led Washington State with 13 points each.
Stanford jumped out to a 10-1 lead and Washington State made just 4 of its 12 shots in the first quarter.
The Cardinal clamped down on shooters, holding Cougars shooters to 28.6 percent in the first half while building a 41-24 lead at the break. Stanford was shooting 59.8 percent, which it sustained for nearly the rest of the game.
The Cougars - who shot 29 percent on the night - disrupted the Cardinal, but could not translate forced turnovers into points.
''I think I came out and traveled, turned the ball over and did something that was dumb,'' Samuelson said.
Something she kept doing: hitting her shots. And with that, the margin continued to grow.
Erica McCall hit a pair of free throws with 5:40 left in the third quarter to push the Cardinal lead to 30. Washington State ultimately never threatened.
''We were trying to eliminate their transition game and I thought there were times where our team really understood that and stayed focus on it to get them in a half court set,'' Washington State coach June Daughetry said. ''We have to play 40 minutes. When we learn to do that, we're going to be a really good team.''
Stanford improved to 61-0 against Washington State dating back to 1983. The Cardinal are tied with No. 7 Washington and No. 11 Oregon State for the top spot in the conference.
Washington State: The Cougars, down their top three scorers to season-ending injuries, dropped their second consecutive game to a top-10 team. WSU is playing without Borislava Hristova (14.7 points per game), Louise Brown (10.4) and Chanelle Molina (12.8).
Stanford: It took overtime for Stanford to beat WSU last time the teams played in Pullman in 2015, but this year was a smoother trip. The Cardinal are a double overtime loss at Oregon State away from being undefeated in conference play, and face their next big test on Sunday.
Stanford took care of business Friday over injury-depleted Washington State, but the real test looms Sunday at No. 7 Washington. Five Pac-12 teams are ranked No. 16 or better, which means the Cardinal still have ample tests left in conference play.
INCHING TOWARD 1000
VanDerVeer is now two wins away from her 1000th win, something only four coaches in college basketball - both men's and women's - can hold claim to. The Hall-of-Fame coach is a pair of wins shy of joining the late Pat Summitt as the second-ever women's college basketball coach to claim 1000 career victories. 846 of those wins have come at Stanford.
Washington State: The Cougars host California on Sunday before heading to play Colorado and Utah next week.
Stanford: The Cardinal face No. 7 Washington in Seattle Sunday, then return home to host USC and No. 13 UCLA week.