Portland State women’s basketball dealt Southern Utah a lopsided, 78-49 loss in the Vikings’ home opener last Saturday afternoon at the Stott Center.
The Vikings looked strong in their first home game, playing well on both ends of the court. Their fierce defense forced Southern Utah to commit 30 turnovers, which were converted into 27 points by the Vikings.
”Coming off of two losses, we really came back and refocused at practice,” said junior center Kerstin Brosterhous. “It was a great team win, we all played together. We all contributed in some way or another.”
Portland State took a nine-point lead into halftime, but then absolutely exploded in the second half. The Vikings shot an impressive 57.6 percent from the field after halftime, and 46 percent for the entire game. Portland State’s lead reached 32 at its height, eventually turning into a convincing 29-point victory.
”The difference was we never had a real lull. We kept the pressure and intensity on them. We never had that long stretch where we lost the momentum and didn’t get it back right away,” said Portland State head coach Charity Elliott.
In the game, the Vikings defined the term “complete team effort.” All 12 Portland State players put points on the board. They also owned the inside game, outscoring Southern Utah 34-16 inside the paint. The Viks where dropping dimes from behind the arc, finishing with a 35.7 three-point shot percentage and making 73.7 percent of free throws.
”Everybody scored on the team. I felt that was phenomenal. I don’t remember the last time we did that,” said sophomore forward Kelsey Kahle.
Kahle led the Vikings with 12 points and 7 rebounds. Brosterhous contributed 11 points and junior guard Emily Boscacci did her best Steve Nash impression by doling out 10 assists for Portland State.
The victory was the first of the year for the Vikings, who improve to 1-2 after beginning the year with two losses on the road in the pre-division play.
”It was our first counting game at home, and you’ve got to defend your home court. We showed that it’s going to be tough to play here,” said Kahle.
The Vikings resume play on Tuesday with another home game, hosting Gonzaga. The game is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Stott Center.