Then things began to turn Stanford's way. With a three by Bri and a McCall layup, the quarter ended at 60-57. Although Purdue twice brought the lead down to three, Stanford never trailed again. In the closing minutes Marta and Bird made their free throws to seal the game.
Both teams shot well at 50% and 45% respectively. Stanford had a team edge in rebounds (30-28) and in blocks (5-2). The teams were virtually equal in three-point shooting (47.4% vs. 46.7%) but Stanford took a few more shots, making 9-19 vs. 7-15 for Purdue.
Purdue's main scoring threat was their point guard, Ashley Morrisette, who ended up with 23 points. Stanford matched her with 22 points by Brittany and 20 by Karlie.
Karlie in particular matched her career high of three-point shots, making six of eight. (She had made six in New Mexico in her freshman season.)
Brittany made 10 of 18 attempted goals, including multiple times when she drove in a semicircle under the basket and flipped the ball up for a reverse layup.
Three other Cardinal players scored — Bird had a double-double with 16 points and 12 rebounds; Bri had 11 points including two of four three-pointers; and Marta was 2-7 on field goal attempts, but also 5 of 6 on free throws for 9 points in all.
All told, this was a tough, hard-earned win that should give the team confidence going forward.
The Cardinal are the champs ... Bird is the MVP ... she and Karlie are named to the All-Tourney team.
Here are game reports and commentary:
- McPhee, Samuelson lead No. 11 Stanford women to Cancun title, the Associated Press game recap
- WBB Falls to No. 11 Stanford, 78-69, the Purdue Athletics game recap
- Cancun Challenge Champs, the Stanford Athletics game recap
- Stanford 78 Purdue 69 from the CARDboard
A gallery of photos from Purdue Athletics,
And two videos tweeted by Stanford Athletics: