No. 16 Stanford women’s basketball (5-3) used 11 three-pointers in the second half to beat San Francisco (2-4) 86-66 on Wednesday night. Shooting 52 percent from behind the arc in the third and fourth quarter combined, the Cardinal established a school record in threes made in one half.
Overall, four players — juniors Alanna Smith and Alex Romano, sophomore Dijonai Carrington and freshman Kiana Williams — scored in double figures. The freshman led the team with five of the Cardinal’s 15 three-pointers and had a career-high 17 points in the contest, while all other players in double digits had three makes from downtown.
Romano’s 13 points also tie her career high, but Smith once again led the team with 19 points and 11 rebounds en route to her third consecutive double-double, and Carrington added 19 points to go along with five boards and three steals.
While both teams only shot 30 percent from the field in the first half, USF held onto a four-point lead at the half. In most of the second half, both teams increased their success rates to 60 percent, but the Dons dropped to 50 percent shooting by the end of the game, allowing Stanford to get the win.
Coming out of the locker room, Stanford quickly erased its 28-24 deficit with six consecutive buckets and turned the tables with 7:12 remaining in the third period, when Carrington buried a three-pointer.
While the Dons came back on top at 40-38, Carrington added another three and was followed by Williams to spur a 10-2 run by the Cardinal. The team closed its record-breaking half, pouring another six buckets from deep, and put up 62 total points in the second half. This puts the Cardinal just five points shy of their all-time record for most points in a half; Stanford had scored 67 in the opening half of its game against Cal State Fullerton in 1994.
For the fourth-straight game, senior Brittany McPhee did not suit up, as she is still recovering from a foot injury.
Next up, Stanford travels to Texas on Dec. 3 to square off against No. 9 Baylor. This will be the Cardinal’s fourth top-10 matchup of the season in only nine games. The game will provide another good test to gauge the improvement the team has made since its opening two games against OSU and top-ranked UConn.
The Bears have only dropped one game so far this season and are sitting at a 5-1 record. The team lost to UCLA last week and will play the Cardinal four days after it faces off against Kentucky in the Big-12/SEC Challenge.
Baylor’s post combo of six-foot-seven junior Kalani Brown and six-foot-four sophomore Lauren Cox will surely challenge the Cardinal, who greatly improved their presence in the key so far this year. The pair combines for over 40 points and 10 rebounds a game, as Brown tallied 24.2 points and 10.3 rebounds each game this season, and Cox added 17.4 points per game and 10.4 rebounds per game.
In any case, Stanford will hope to even the all-time series between the two teams, as Baylor holds a 3-2 advantage. Nevertheless, the Cardinal came out on top with a narrow 71-69 win in their last meeting with the Bears in 2013.