MOSCOW, Idaho—The University of Idaho women’s basketball team came out firing in the first half and never looked back. The Vandals defeated the visiting Carroll College Saints, 67-39, on Tuesday night in front of the spirited Memorial Gym faithful.
Idaho (5-3) shot an impressive 17-of-32 (.531) from the field in the first half. The Vandals netted 39 points in the opening half, matching its season high at Nevada. Junior Stacey Barr was 4-of-5 in the first 20 minutes of play, leading the Vandals with nine points going into the break. Idaho closed the final 11:28 of the first half on a 19-3 run, boosting the Silver and Gold to a 39-12 halftime lead and putting the game out of reach.
Idaho’s 12 points allowed in the first half was the lowest of the season and lowest since North Dakota scored 18 on Dec. 29, 2011.
“It was great to be home back in Memorial Gym,” head coach Jon Newlee state. “It feels like we have been on the road forever. To be able to come home and play with the energy we played with in the first half, I was really pleased with our effort.”
Barr finished with a game-high 20 points, adding 11 in the second half. From the field Barr missed only two shots, finishing 6-of-8 (.750) from the field and 2-of-4 (.500) from beyond the arch. As a team the Vandals finished the night shooting 25-of-57 (.439).
“As a team and individually we spoke a lot this week about our shot selections,” Barr noted. “Against Cal we did not do such a great job with our shot selections. So tonight coming out and making that adjustment really helped us.”
Alyssa Charlston led the team in rebounds with 10. The Vandals were able to out rebound the Saints, 43-36. Charlston along with Christina Salvatore, Connie Ballestero and Addie Schivo all finished with six points on the night.
“I thought we executed our offense tonight,” Newlee said. “Especially in the first half. We were moving the basketball. Everybody was getting their looks and sharing the basketball. We got on the offensive boards and did a good job getting to the glass. We just played with a lot of energy.”
Defensively the Vandals recorded five blocked shots, the most this season. Charlston recorded two blocks, a new season high. Salvatore, Forde and Maren Austgulen joined the party adding a block a piece. Coming into the game Idaho was only averaging one block a game, placing the Vandals ninth in the Western Athletic Conference.
Carroll was led offensively by Kalee Junkermeir with 11 points in her 31 minutes of play. The Saints 39 points were the least given up by the Vandals since the last time these two schools met. Carroll totaled 40 points back in 2011.