STANFORD, Calif. (AP) — The game was less than 12 minutes old Saturday night, and Stanford senior Chiney Ogwumike already had 15 points against Washington State.
The Cougars had to know they were in trouble.
Ogwumike finished with a career-high 37 points, leading No. 5 Stanford to an 84-64 victory as the Cardinal improved to 57-0 all-time against Washington State.
"I think that we're at a point in the program where our kids believe they can beat Stanford where the first four or five years they didn't believe it," Washington State coach June Daugherty said. "We don't come in fearing them. In the past our kids were pretty nervous to play against them. They come in excited about the opportunity and the challenge. That speaks volumes about the seniors in our program and how far they've brought this program along."
Lia Galdeira led the Cougars (15-15, 9-9 Pac-12) with 16 points, and Tia Presley and Sage Romberg scored 10 apiece. Amber Orrange scored 20 points for Stanford, making 7 of 9 shots from the field and grabbing eight rebounds. Bonnie Samuelson added 10 points for the Cardinal.
Stanford (28-2, 17-1 Pac-12) last week clinched the Pac-12's regular-season title and the No. 1 seed in the upcoming conference tournament at Seattle. The Cardinal earned a first-round bye and will open play Friday. Stanford hosts an NCAA tournament regional later this month, so there's a chance that Ogwumike will play again on her home court.
Washington fell into sole possession of seventh place in the Pac-12 and will meet Oregon on Thursday in a first-round game with the winner advancing to play No. 18 California.
In a Jan. 11 game at home, WSU led Stanford by one point with under 9 minutes left and gave the Cardinal a scare before falling 77-69.
"Last time we felt we were in the game the whole time, so I feel we definitely believed we could win the game," Romberg said. "And so we went into it with that mentality, because what other mentality are you going to have? It's important to have confidence going into the game. We had to go into it thinking we had a chance. We just wanted to try our best and play hard."
Ogwumike grabbed 13 rebounds, shot 14 of 23 from the field and made 9 of 10 free throws.
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