Elliott's 21 Points Lifts SDSU Women's Hoops To 51-37 Victory Over Southern Utah
Dec. 30, 2004
SAN DIEGO - Sophomore Michelle Elliott matched a career high with 21 points to lead the San Diego State women's basketball team to a 51-37 victory over Southern Utah Thursday night at Cox Arena. With the win, the Aztecs improved to 4-6 overall, including 4-2 at home, while the Thunderbirds dropped to 4-7 in 2004-05.
"This gives us a huge lift after a couple of tough outings on the road," SDSU head coach Jim Tomey said. "This was a game that we really needed to close the (calendar) year on a good note. Michelle Elliott played great - you can see how badly we missed her. She came into the game early and gave us a huge lift on the offensive end."
Elliott (Pasco, Wash.), playing in her second consecutive game after missing the previous four due to injury, came off the bench to score 21 points on 7-for-15 shooting from the floor. The sophomore guard had 13 of her 21 points in the first half, added three triples and was a perfect 4-for-4 from the line. Elliott was helped by freshman Ashley Cheesman (Orem, Utah), who had 15 points on 5-of-8 shooting and a team-best eight rebounds all on the defensive glass.
The Aztecs played tenacious defense, limiting the Thunderbirds, who were averaging over 65 points a game, to a season-low 37 points, including 19 in the first half and 18 in the second. Southern Utah also had 28 turnovers, shot 22.6 percent from the field and saw its two leading scorers limited to a combined 1-for-21 shooting.
The game featured four ties and eight lead changes. SDSU trailed by as many as five points at 15-10 at the 8:57 mark, but Elliott's third three-pointer of the first half put the Aztecs down by just one at 17-16. Cheesman then scored the team's next two baskets to put SDSU up, 20-19, going into the locker room.
The Thunderbirds regained the lead at 24-20 by scoring five unanswered points to start the second half. Cheesman cut the four-point point deficit in half with a lay-up and then tied the score at 24 with another lay-up off a spectacular mid-air pass by Veronica Shaw (Phoenix, Ariz.).
The two sides traded leads three more times, before an Elliott two-pointer and a three from freshman Kate Eveland (Southlake, Texas) but the Aztecs ahead for good at 32-28 with 13:06 left in the contest. Southern Utah would manage just two more field goals and only nine total points the rest of the way, as SDSU went on to claim the 51-37 victory.
Thunderbird Sarah Hutton led her team with eight points, all from the free-throw line, and 10 rebounds in the losing effort.
San Diego State continues non-conference play next week with a pair of games against visiting Canisius on Tuesday and Eastern Washington on Friday. Both contests are slated for a 7 p.m. start at Cox Arena.