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ASU WBB: Sun Devils down Oral Roberts in sixth straight win

At 8-2 and No. 23 in the nation, the Sun Devils are on a roll. Why are they playing so well?

NCAA Womens Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Greensboro Regional: Arizona State v Florida State
Arizona State Sun Devils head coach Charli Turner Thorne
Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Coming into Wells Fargo Arena for an afternoon non-conference home game against Oral Roberts (7-5), ASU had won five games straight crushing its opponents by an average of 14.2 points. No. 23 Arizona State (8-2) did not halt its winning ways in a 79-52 blowout win over the Golden Eagles.

The Sun Devils knocked down the first three shots to take a 6-0 lead and didn’t look back the entire game. ASU led 44-31 at the half and then outscored ORU 35-21 in the second half to cap off the worry-free victory.

In the midst of a six-game winning streak with four wins being by double-digits and two against ranked opponents, the Sun Devils have obviously figured out how to win.

What makes them so unbeatable?

Seniors

Veteran Sun Devils like center Quinn Dornstauder, and forwards Sophie Brunner and Kelsey Moos have taken the young ASU backcourt under their wing. With all three 6-foot or above, they make it an easy feed into the key to score baskets.

Brunner (10.7) and Dornstauder (8.4) lead the team in points per game, and Brunner (5.8), Dornstauder (5.2) and Moos (5.2) lead the team in rebounds.

The senior trio has started every game this season and made another strong impact today against ORU. Brunner earned a double-double scoring 18 points and adding 10 rebounds. Dornstauder had 10 points, three boards and two blocks. Moos finished with two points and grabbed seven rebounds.

Bench Play

In every single game this season the Sun Devils have either outscored or tied their opponent in bench points. In their last three wins, Arizona State’s reserves silenced then-No. 15 Kentucky’s bench 12-0, demolished Middle Tennessee’s 40-8 and then went onto defeat Oral Roberts’ 34-16.

While Golden Eagles’ senior Maria Martianez and freshman Kaylen Mayberry lead the team playing 31.3 minutes per game. The Sun Devils’ most-utilized player, freshman guard Reili Richardson, averages 24.8. She’s emerged as a starter, coming off the bench in seven of 10 games this season amidst leading the Devils in minutes per game.

The Sun Devils had 11 players hit the hardwood against Oral Roberts and each one of them scored points. The Golden Eagles had nine play and just seven scored.

Height

ASU has out-rebounded its opponents 335-262 this season and 138-81 on the offensive glass. The Sun Devils cruised on the boards again over Oral Roberts capturing 43 rebounds compared to the Golden Eagles’ 16.

Seniors Brunner, Dornstauder and Moos lead the team in rebounds per game in that order. The three also play a huge role in the Sun Devils’ scoring in the paint. ASU scored 46 of the its 79 points in the key dominating the small-sized Golden Eagles.

What’s Next?

In their final non-conference game of the season, the Sun Devils look to improve their hot streak against Holy Cross (2-7) at home on Dec. 21 at 5 p.m. Just over a week later, Arizona State plays host to No. 10 Stanford and California on Dec. 30 and Jan. 1.