Sports

Cardinal women find a way to fend off the Cougars' upset bid

Chiney Ogwumike rescued the third-ranked Stanford women's basketball team once again, continuing to show why she may be the most valuable player in the nation.

Ogwumike matched her career high with 36 points and added 17 rebounds as the Cardinal avoided an upset, beating host Washington State, 77-70, in a Pac-12 game Friday night.

Stanford (11-0, 22-1) travels to Seattle for a 12:30 p.m. conference game against Washington on Sunday, its two-game lead over second-place Arizona State still intact.

Amber Orrange and Taylor Greenfield each added 11 points for the Cardinal, which owns a 56-0 all-time record against the Cougars.

Ogwumike has scored at least 30 points in a game a school mark 11 times this season. She also recorded her 17th double-double.

Stanford escaped Pullman with a 21-game winning streak thanks to Ogwumike, key baskets from elsewhere around the court and Washington State's inability to make more than half of its free throws.

Ogwumike scored 24 points and had 13 rebounds in the second half alone as the Cardinal had to fight off the Cougars time and again. She made 68 percent of her shots overall.

Stanford never led by more than nine points in the second half, and actually trailed, 55-54, when Dawnyelle Awa hit a 3-pointer with 9:05 remaining to play in the game.

Ogwumike followed with a pair of free throws about 20 seconds later to push the Cardinal into the lead, which it never relinquished.

The Cougars did tie the game again, 61-61, on Sage Romberg's 3-pointer with 5:34 left to play.

Twenty-six seconds ticked off the clock before Ogwumike connected on a layup and Greenfield hit a 3-pointer to put Stanford ahead, 66-61.

The Cardinal held a 10-point advantage at one point in the first half but was able to take a four-point edge into the locker room at halftime.

Ogwumike's career scoring total improved to 2,400, third on the Stanford list and 91 points behind her older sister Nnemkadi Ogwumike for second all-time. She also has 1,401 rebounds, an ongoing school and conference record.

Ogwumike is also atop the school's all-time list in field goal percentage and rebounds per game.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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