Aztec Basketball Cruises Past Hawai'i 71-48 In Tourney Opener
Nov. 28, 2008
Sophomore center Paris Johnson (San Diego, Calif.) had a career-high 31 points to help the San Diego State women's basketball team defeat Hawai'i, 71-48, Friday in the first day of the Waikiki Marriott Beach Classic at the Stan Sheriff Center in Honolulu, Hawaii. With the win, the Aztecs ended a two-game losing skid to move to 3-2 on the year, while the Rainbow Wahines dropped to 0-4 after the two schools' first meeting since 1999.
Johnson made her first five shots and ended up with a career-high 31 points on 15-for-19 shooting, beating her previous best of 27 points last year against Indiana State. Johnson is the first Aztec to reach the 30-point barrier this season, while her 15 field goals tie for ninth in the SDSU single-game record book. The 6-4 center also led SDSU with seven rebounds and a pair of blocked shots.
Senior forward Jennifer Layton-Bailes (Sacramento, Calif.), who made her first start since January 2007, added a season-best 13 points and Quenese Davis (Sacramento, Calif.) had nine points and six assists.
The Aztecs got off to a quick start, going inside to Johnson, who hit each of her first four shots from the field for eight points by the first media timeout to put SDSU ahead, 11-5. Johnson also made her fifth-straight field-goal attempt, but the Rainbow Wahine used almost 60 percent shooting from the field to draw even at 18-18 with just over 10 minutes left in the half.
San Diego State came out of the 18-18 tie with a 6-0 run and held Hawai'i to just five points the rest of the way, heading into the locker room up by 15 points, 38-22.
The Aztecs continued to put points on the board coming out of the break, jumping ahead by 21 points at 46-25 with 16:26 left. Hawai'i drew to within 13 point with just over five minutes remaining, but two straight Johnson lay-ups started a 11-0 scoring run and SDSU went on to win by 23 points 71-48.
San Diego State shot a season-best 49.2 percent from the field, tallied 14 steals and forced 27 Hawai'i turnovers, including 20 in the first half alone.
The Rainbow Wahine were led by Megan Tinnin's 12 points, while Dita Liepakalne added 11 points for the host school.
San Diego State plays its second game in as many days when its plays Prairie View A&M at 11 a.m. HT on Saturday at the Waikiki Beach Marriott Classic. Live audio will be available for all games on SDSU's official website, www.goaztecs.com.