Trio of career highs lead Aggie women to 68-57 win over Utah Friday

LOGAN, Utah – Three junior Aggies logged career highs to lead Utah State women’s basketball to a monumental 68-57 win over Utah Friday night in both teams’ season-opener at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.Any Friday the 13th superstitions were run out of the building early, as Utah State jumped out to an 8-0 lead and led 36-18 part way through the first half as the Aggies went on to earn their second-ever win over Utah. It was also USU’s first win over Utah since 1975. Friday was only the second meeting between the two teams since USU reinstated women’s basketball prior to the 2003-04 season, and it was Utah’s first visit to the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum since 1986-87. Utah still holds a 27-2 all-time advantage.Junior forward Amber White led all scorers with a career-high 25 points, nearly matching her previous career high of 10 points in the first four and a half minutes by netting nine. Fellow junior, guard Alice Coddington also tallied a new career-high with 18 points, including 11 in the first half, while the third junior, forward Stacey Howard, also notched a career best with seven points.”I don’t think that I can describe it,” White said of USU’s win. “Utah won its conference last year, and we came out and didn’t pay any attention to that. We just came out and played our game. It is great.”Utah was led by Kalee Whipple’s 21 points, while Taryn Wicijowski added 12 points.Senior forward Lydia Whitehead topped USU with nine rebounds, while Utah’s Halie Sawyer pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds, leading the Utes to a 36-28 advantage on the boards.”We feel like we can compete,” Pebley said. “Last year, we had a chance to beat BYU, and we didn’t. We have competed against the top teams in the state. I think that all the teams in the state are competing against eachother. It says a lot about what the coaches are doing in the state. There is a competitiveness when it is instate teams you are going to see people rise to the challenge.”The Aggies bolted out of the gates sparked by White, as she hit a pull-up midlane jumper for her third-straight basket and an 8-0 USU lead. White drained a three-pointer from just to the left of the top of the arc for her 12th point to put USU ahead, 18-5. A 7-0 Utah run pulled the Utes within 18-14 on a Whipple layup but USU regained control with a 12-0 run, capped by a three-pointer from the right corner by redshirt-freshman guard TJ Goddard, part of her eight points in the game. The Aggies’ lead swelled to 44-22 with 44 seconds left on a Coddington bucket and USU had a 44-27 lead at intermission.Coddington topped her previous career high of 12 with a trey from the top of the arc to put USU ahead 47-27 before Utah cut away at the lead, trimming it to 59-49 with a layup by Sasha McKinnon with 6:45 to go, topping a 7-0 Ute run. An old-fashioned three-point play by Howard gave the Aggies the momentum back at 62-49. Utah cut the margin to 66-58 with 15 seconds left on a Diana Rolniak layup, but Utah State hung on with White hitting a free throw with four seconds to go to secure the win.USU scorched the nets to the tune of 62.1 percent (18-of-29) field goal shooting in the first half and ended at 54.2 percent (26-of-48) from the field. The Aggies hit 7-of-16 (43.8 percent) from three-point range, as White, Coddington and Goddard hit two each while Howard hit another. Utah State was 8-of-14 (57.1 percent) at the free throw line.Utah shot 38.2 percent (21-of-55) from the field, including 4-of-13 (30.8 percent) three-point shooting. The Utes were 12-of-16 (75.0 percent) at the free throw line.Both teams had 17 turnovers apiece, with Utah logging 10 steals compared to Utah State’s five swipes. Goddard and Coddington dished out three assists each, part of the Aggies’ 13 total, while Utah had 11, led by Janita Badon’s four helpers.The Aggies now hit the road for a pair of games. USU takes on Portland on Monday, Nov. 16 at 8:00 p.m. (MT) and faces San Francisco on Sunday, Nov. 22 at 3:00 p.m. (MT).Admission to Utah State women’s basketball games is $5 for adults and $1 for youth. Fans can buy a women’s sports pass for $75 which will gain admittance to all USU women’s basketball, volleyball and gymnastics action. For more information, contact the USU Ticket Office at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, by phone by calling 1-888-USTATE-1 or (435) 797-0305, or online 24 hours a day at and clicking on the “buy/renew tickets” under the “tickets” drop down menu.-USU-

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