Utah women upset No. 3 seed WSU 70-59 in Pac-12 tournament

Mar 3, 2022, 9:09 AM | Updated: 11:53 pm
Utah forward Jenna Johnson (22) drives to the basket against Washington State during the second hal...

Utah forward Jenna Johnson (22) drives to the basket against Washington State during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 women's tournament Thursday, March 3, 2022, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/David Becker)

(AP Photo/David Becker)

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Jenna Johnson scored 19 points on 7-of-11 shooting and Utah upset No. 3 seed Washington State 70-59 on Thursday night in the Pac-12 tournament.

Sixth-seeded Utah (19-10) plays No. 2 seed Oregon in Friday’s semifinals. The unranked Ducks, who have been in and out of the Top 25 after having been ranked No. 10 in the preseason poll, beat Utah 73-65 in the regular-season finale last Saturday to sweep the series.

Johnson scored 10 points in the first quarter and her 3-pointer with 6:03 left in the first quarter gave Utah the lead for good at 15-12. The Cougars (19-10) went 0 for 5 from the field and committed three turnover as the Utes used a 15-0 run to take a 29-13 lead into the second quarter.

Johnson hit another 3 — Utah’s eighth of the first half with 2:22 left — to spark a 7-0 spurt that made it 45-25 at the break.

Brynna Maxwell scored 11 points and Isabel Palmer added 10 for Utah.

Washington State (19-10), which won a program record 11 conference games this season and earned its highest seed in conference-tournament history, awaits an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Cougars are 0-2 all-time in the NCAA tourney, losing first-round games in 1979 and 2021 — a 57-53 loss to South Florida. Bella Murekatete made 7 of 13 from the field and finished with 18 points and Tara Wallack scored 16 on 6-of-10 shooting for Washington State.

Charlisse Leger-Walker, the Cougars’ leading scorer at 16.3 points per game, had six points and sister Krystal Leger-Walker scored four. The duo each went 2 of 12 from the field and 0 for 5 from 3-point range.

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Utah women upset No. 3 seed WSU 70-59 in Pac-12 tournament