TEMPE, Ariz. — Quinn Dornstauder went up for a shot, came down with a thud. A hard foul by Washington’s Kelsey Plum sent Arizona State’s biggest player to the floor and her teammates raced to her defense, pushing the Huskies away.
The Sun Devils used the takedown as a rallying point. Washington went into a shell, turning a close game into a runaway.
Dornstauder scored a career-high 25 points and No. 9 Arizona State scored 14 straight points after the junior center was fouled hard by Plum, leading the Sun Devils to a 77-57 victory Sunday.
“You’re always going to have your teammate’s back whenever there’s a flagrant foul,” said Arizona State senior guard Katie Hempen, who had 11 points.
Arizona State (24-4, 15-1 Pac-12) was hesitant at the start of Senior Day, falling into a 10-point hole as Plum repeatedly found gaps in its defense.
The Sun Devils rallied to make it close by halftime and blew it open with a huge third quarter run sparked, in part, by Plum’s foul on Dornstauder.
Arizona State also harassed Plum after she scored 11 points in the opening 10 minutes and held Washington to six field goals in the second half. Offensively, the Sun Devils used their inside-out game to shoot 50 percent and had 23 assists on 29 field goals.
Sophie Brunner and Elisha Davis each scored 11 points to help the Sun Devils win their sixth straight game and keep pace with No. 7 Oregon State atop the Pac-12.
“The first quarter was a little shaky and I was like, ‘Wow, OK, we’re a little emotional,’ not locked in,” Arizona State coach Charli Turner Thorne said. “After the first quarter, we played great Sun Devil basketball.”
Washington (18-9, 9-7) raced out to a big lead, only to become more frustrated as the game wore on, leading to a pair of flagrant fouls and a technical in the second half.
Plum, the nation’s second-leading scorer, had 25 points on 7-of-21 shooting and Talia Walton added 13.
Washington finished with 19 turnovers — 12 in the second half — that led to 24 points in its fifth loss in eight games.
“I thought the second that we gave a little glimpse that we were out of composure, they jumped on it” Washington coach Mike Neighbors said. “Everybody got into it and you can’t beat these guys in that environment.”
Arizona State won the first meeting Jan. 8 behind a strong finish, hitting 8 of 11 shots in the fourth quarter to beat the Huskies 68-61 in Seattle.
Plum hit 3 of 4 of her 3-point attempts in the first quarter of the rematch and the Huskies disrupted Arizona State’s offensive rhythm to build a 10-point lead.
The Sun Devils started getting the ball inside more consistently in the second quarter and did a much better job of containing Plum to pull within 30-28 by halftime.
Arizona State continued to get the ball inside Washington’s defense in third quarter and had a good passing game going between its frontcourt players, leading to wide-open shots at the rim.
“They’re a good team and Charli’s a good coach, so we knew they were going to figure it,” Neighbors said of Arizona State’s offense.
The Sun Devils caused havoc on the defensive end, too, jumping into passing lanes for steals and forcing the Huskies into difficult shots. Arizona State’s success at both ends led to a 19-2 run that put them up 52-38.
The game got testy in the third quarter as the Sun Devils pulled away.
Plum was called for a flagrant foul midway through for chopping down hard on Dornstauder, then Davis and Washington’s Katie Collier were each hit with technical fouls after tangling for a rebound.
Washington’s Chantel Osahor was called for a flagrant foul in the fourth quarter for grabbing Brunner’s arm after she came up with a steal and had a clear path to the basket.
Arizona State continued to stretch the lead from there, keeping itself in position for the Pac-12 title.