USU women end road trip with a loss at Hawai’i Monday

HONOLULU – Despite a career-high 12 rebounds from senior forward Nicole Johnson, the Utah State women’s basketball team fell to Hawai‘i, 69-56, at the Stan Sheriff Center on Monday. The loss was the Aggies’ third-straight, and USU ends the road trip going 0-2 with a loss to Fresno State on Jan. 16. It was the third-straight game that USU was held to under 60 points. The Aggies are now 2-8 when scoring under 60 points this season. With the loss, Utah State falls to 10-8 overall and 2-3 in the Western Athletic Conference. Hawai‘i improves to 8-10 and matches USU’s 2-3 league record. The Aggies were led by senior center Lydia Whitehead’s fourth double-double of the season. Whitehead had 11 points and 11 rebounds. Junior guard Alice Coddington led USU with 13 points, adding four rebounds and two steals. Hawai‘i had four players in double digits led by 13 points from Leilani Galdones. Dita Liepkalne added 12 points, while both Breanna Arbuckle and Allie Patterson dished in 11 apiece. On the boards, the Rainbow Wahine were led by 10 points from Galdones who had a double-double. Johnson came one step closer to tying the all-time blocks record with one block in the game. The senior now has 119 blocks in her Aggie career just eight away from tying Jessica Freeman who had 127 in her USU career. Utah State struggled to start the game, missing its first four three pointers to start the game. After the Rainbow Wahine scored the first five points of the game, the Aggies fought back scoring the next six to take a 6-5 lead at the first media timeout. After that point, Hawai‘i went on a 9-0 run to take a 14-6 lead. With 5:39 left in the first half Goddard drained a three which was USU’s first of the game after missing its first seven from beyond the arc. The three pointer cut the UH lead down to 25-17.The Aggies used a 9-1 run to cut the lead down to 27-26. A layup by Whitehead with 1:36 left in the first half gave USU its first lead since it was 6-5. The half would end with the game tied 31-31. Utah State was led at half time by Alice Coddington’s seven points. Both post players Nicole Johnson and Lydia Whitehead ended the first half with six points. Whitehead led all players with seven first-half rebounds. Utah State’s leading scorer, Amber White, was held scoreless in the first half. Hawai‘i was led by Leilani Galdones’ six points, while a trio of players had five points, Keisha Kanekoa, Briauna Linton and Allie Patterson. The teams traded baskets to start the second half. With the Rainbow Wahine up three, LaCale Pringle Buchanan tied the scored at 42-42 with her first three pointer of the night. USU took a 44-42 lead on a breakaway layup by Coddington. Behind a strong second half from Allie Patterson, UH tooks a five-point lead, 51-46. White scored her first points of the game off of two free throws with 4:12 left. The free throws cut the lead down to four points, but USU would not get any closer. In the final minute of the game, UH outscored USU 9-3 to take as big a lead as 13 points. The Rainbow Wahine ended the game out-scoring the Aggies 20-8 in points in the paint. For the game, the Aggies were out-rebounded 44-35, including 25-12 in the second half. The Aggies shot 34.4 percent from the field (21-of-61) and 23.8 percent from three (5-of-21). USU shot 64.3 percent from the charity stripe (9-of-14). The Rainbow Wahine shot 41.1 percent from the field (23-of-56) from the field, while shooting 41.7 percent from three (5-of-12). Hawai‘i shot 58.1 percent from the free throw line (18-of-31). Utah State returns to Logan looking to break the losing streak against New Mexico State on Saturday, Jan. 23 at 1:00 p.m. Live stats will be available for most Utah State women’s basketball games through the women’s basketball page on www.utahstateaggies.com, by clicking on GameTracker in the current events box. All home games can be viewed by clicking on “Watch Live”, while they can be heard by clicking on “Listen Live.” Both can be accessed on www.utahstateaggies.com on the front page or the women’s basketball page. For tickets contact the USU Athletics Ticket Office at (435)797-0305 or at 1-888-U-STATE-1 (1-888-878-2831) for more information or visit the Utah State athletic web site at www.UtahStateAggies.com. ? -USU-

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