AZUSA, Calif.-- Allison Greene and Sendy Valles have quickly adjusted to life as Cougars, and that was no more apparent than in a 76-61 win over NCAA II No. 13 ranked Western Washington on Friday night. Four players finished in double figures as junior point guard Greene orchestrated a Cougar offense that shot nearly 57 percent from the floor in a rout over a team that reached the NCAA II Final Four last season.
Greene dished out a game-high 10 assists and added 15 points of her own for one of two Cougar double-doubles. Azusa Pacific assisted on 20 of its 29 field goals, and buried nine of its 19 shots from deep. Junior forward Valles nailed all six of her shots from beyond the arc, and finished with 22 points and 10 rebounds.
Freshman center Maggie Dumphy also had an efficient night, converting five of her six shots to tally 10 points and four rebounds. Sophomore forward Kelly Hardeman was the team’s fourth player with 10+ points as she scored 13 to go with six boards and two steals against the reigning West Region champions.
“Western Washington is a great program. They have the pedigree. They’ve been where we want to go. So I was very pleased with how we played against a really good team,” said head coach T.J. Hardeman. “I thought our defense was outstanding. It looked like we had five people playing as one cohesive unit. Then on offense we found each other. It’s hard to beat a team that plays that well together and it was a rewarding to beat a good team like that.”
Azusa Pacific never trailed, and led by as many as 24 points after posting a blistering 68.2 percent clip from the floor in the second half. Azusa Pacific led 39-28 at the break and a 25-10 Cougar run spanning the end of the first half and the early portion of the second half gave the Cougars a 62-38 lead with 8:11 to play. From that point on the Vikings weren’t able to get to within 15 as Azusa Pacific evened its record at 1-1.
Valles registered her second double-double in as many games, and after two contests is averaging 17.5 points and 11 rebounds a night. Greene followed up her dazzling 21-point debut with an equally impressive showing on Friday. The Beaverton, Ore. native had a hand in 39 points, and finished with 10 assists against three turnovers.
“Allison and Sendy both have very good basketball IQs. They also bring that added part of finding each other and knowing when to distribute and when to score. I thought we had a lot of players do nice things for us. Maggie came in and did a really nice job, and Joelle Tampien had some really good moments off the bench,” said Hardeman.
Azusa Pacific forced 18 Viking turnovers, and limited WWU to a 43.6 percent mark from the field (24-55). Sophomore forward Lauren Gilster chipped in with seven points and three rebounds, while Tampien scored five points on 2-of-3 shooting.
On Saturday Azusa Pacific will face its second nationally ranked GNAC opponent in as many days when it plays 21st ranked Seattle Pacific. The Falcons improved to 5-0 on Friday night on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer in Game One of the West Region Crossover Classic, defeating UC San Diego 66-63. Last year SPU recorded an overtime win over the Cougars in Bellingham, Wash.