Vandals Cruise in Season Opener Over UCSB - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Vandals Cruise in Season Opener Over UCSB

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Idaho won easily in the season opener, beating UCSB 64-42. Idaho won easily in the season opener, beating UCSB 64-42.

by Idaho Athletics

MOSCOW, Idaho—The 2015-16 women’s basketball season began with a bang for the Idaho Vandals on Sunday. Senior Ali Forde posted her 13th career double-double, 10 points and 14 rebounds, to go along with four blocks as the Vandals defeated UC Santa Barbara, 64-42.

Idaho (1-0) started the game staunch on the defensive side of the floor. The Gauchos started 0-for-7 from the field, getting their first basket at the 4:25 mark of the period. UCSB was held to 2-for-14 shooting in the first 10 minutes, turning the ball over five times. Conversely, the Vandals started 6-of-15 in the first quarter. Sophomore Geraldine McCorkell recorded seven of her game-high 14 points in the opening period.

“We fed off our defense to start the game,” head coach Jon Newlee noted. “That is what we talked about in the locker room. We wanted to lock them down and push the ball in transition to get some good looks. I think we did every one of those things to start the game.”

Karlee Wilson gave the Vandals a 16-point lead towards the end of the first half, Idaho’s largest lead to that point. The Vandals led 32-18 at the end of the first half. McCorkell had nine points and a team-high four assists. Forde was well on her way with six points and eight rebounds.

UCSB (0-2) cut the Idaho lead to 14 twice in the first four minutes of the third quarter, but that would be as close as the Gauchos would be able to get. Christina Salvatore netted five of her 10 points in the period, overcoming a 1-for-5 start. Forde put the Vandals up by 21 at the 1:29 mark of the third, making the score 47-26.

The Vandals got their largest lead of the game, 54-30, off a Forde layup with 6:43 to play. The Vandal bench put an exclamation mark on the win with seven points in the fourth quarter.

Freshmen Taylor Pierce, Mikayla Ferenz and Brigitte O'Neill all made their Idaho debuts throughout the game. Pierce drilled her first career 3-pointer in the first quarter, finishing with six points. Ferenz came off the bench with seven points in 18 minutes.  

The Silver and Gold out-rebounded UCSB, 47-34, totaling 18 offensive rebounds for 10 second chance points. Idaho scored 21 points off the Gauchos 17 turnovers.

“We are a great offensive team,” Forde said. “I feel like we are always going to be a great offensive team. This week really had been practicing on our defense. It was one thing we really needed to focus on. Last season other teams were able to score on us. We are really working on shutting that down this year.”

Idaho returns to Memorial Gym on Friday, Nov. 20 to take on CSUN. The Vandals look to avenge its 2014-15 season opening loss at Northridge last season.

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