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Aztecs fail to hold lead during 69-60 loss to Arizona

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Aztecs fail to hold lead during 69-60 loss to Arizona

Freshman guard Mallory Adams attempts to drive to the hoop during the Aztecs 69-60 loss to Arizona on Dec. 2 at Viejas Arena.

Freshman guard Mallory Adams attempts to drive to the hoop during the Aztecs 69-60 loss to Arizona on Dec. 2 at Viejas Arena.

Raymond Gorospe

Freshman guard Mallory Adams attempts to drive to the hoop during the Aztecs 69-60 loss to Arizona on Dec. 2 at Viejas Arena.

Raymond Gorospe

Raymond Gorospe

Freshman guard Mallory Adams attempts to drive to the hoop during the Aztecs 69-60 loss to Arizona on Dec. 2 at Viejas Arena.

by Tristi Rodriguez, Staff Writer

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The San Diego State women’s basketball team let a win slip away on Sunday afternoon against the University of Arizona at Viejas Arena.

After a back-and-forth game, the final score was 69-60 in favor of the Wildcats.

The Aztecs came out strong in the first half, allowing Arizona to take the lead once and for only 33 seconds.

The Aztecs led the rest of the first half, with their largest lead being 12.

Although the Wildcats were down most of the first half, they continued to battle.

After going on a 13-3 run, the Wildcats crept their way in making the score 33-31 just moments before halftime.

That essentially sparked the fire they brought out in the second half.

Arizona redshirt sophomore Aari McDonald led the Wildcats, finishing with 29 points, nine rebounds, four assists and four steals.

SDSU freshman guard Sophia Ramos finished with a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds and said the team’s lack of communication led to the loss.

“We just started rushing on the offensive side and not communicating enough on the defensive end to find their shooters and stop their transitions, which ended up hurting us down the line,” she said.

Sophomore guard Najé Murray came out hot in the first quarter, shooting four of five from the field and two of three from the three-point line.

Her shot cooled off the rest of the game, and she finished the game with 16 points, shooting six of 12 from the field and four of 10 from the three-point line.

Arizona realized that Murray was on fire early in the game and began to defend her more closely.

“When you have 10 in the first, they defend you differently,” Murray said. “If they’re going to put a defender on me tight, then it’s time for someone else to go off, and they definitely showed up.”

Although Murray was unable to keep the flame alive with her shot, she finished with four rebounds, three assists and three steals.

Murray said she has to contribute in other ways than just points.

“It’s never about scoring,” she said. “If I have 20 in the first and zero the rest of the game, it doesn’t matter because there’s other things that I have to do.”

Arizona has been outscoring its opponents by an average of 26.3 points.

Head coach Stacie Terry said she is proud of her team.

“I want to say how proud I am of my team for even making this a game,” she said. “We could’ve folded, and we didn’t. That is a testament to the grit that they had and how hard they played.”

SDSU sophomore guard and the team’s leading scorer, Te’a Adams, was out due to a sprained right ankle.

Terry said Adams’ absence affected the game result.

“It’s challenging because Te’a does so many things for us,” she said. “Not only is she one of our leading scorers, she guards the best player on the floor every time. So we were down on both sides of the ball.”

Although Adams couldn’t physically help her team, she managed to help mentally and emotionally.

Ramos said Adams helps out from the bench.

“Te’a is out on the court with us, but she’s not (completely) out,” she said. “She’s a big part of our team on the bench as well. She’s a big supporter.”

Murray said the team made adjustments which forced certain players to step up.

“You can’t replace anyone that you lose so it’s more like adjusting to the difference,” she said. “So you have to find a way. It’s just making the adjustment last minute because it happened quick. People came to the role they had to be in and they had a couple days to be ready for it and they showed out for sure.”

The Aztecs take a road trip next week to UC Irvine on Dec. 7 and CS Northridge on Dec. 9.

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