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BYU basketball: Cougars cruise to victory at Cal State Northridge

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. – Jennifer Hamson led BYU women’s basketball to an 82-66 win on the road at Cal State Northridge on Saturday.

"I thought Lexi played a really nice game for us," BYU head coach Jeff Judkins said. "Of course Jen gave us a serious mismatch down low. They couldn't stop her tonight. She played just 19 minutes and got 24 points for us. She had a great game.”

Hamson had 24 points and 11 rebounds for her third double-double of the season, to go along with four blocks. Lexi Eaton scored 16 points and had seven rebounds. Kim Beeston went 4-for-6 from the 3-point line to help her score 12 for the night. Ashley Garfield grabbed a season-high 10 boards to go along with four points.

BYU (4-0) shot 47 percent in the game compared to just 31 percent for Cal State Northridge (2-3). The Cougars outrebounded the Matadors, 52-32, and won the assist count, 22-17.

Lexi Eaton got things started for the Cougars in the first half by driving to the basket for two quick points.

BYU got into foul trouble early in the first half, committing five fouls compared to none for the Matadors in the first six minutes of play. Cal State Northridge then followed with seven-straight fouls of its own.

The Matadors led by as many as five points in the first half at 14-9 with 13:36 remaining. The Cougars took the lead again at 18-16 after a pair of Hamson free throws. BYU kept the lead for the rest of the half, taking its largest advantage with 4:09 left at 41-30.

BYU took a six-point lead at 43-37 going into the break after Kim Beeston stole the inbounds pass from Cal State Northridge as time expired.

Kim Beeston went 3-for-3 early from the 3-point line to help extend the Cougar lead. Eaton (12), Hamson (10) and Morgan Bailey (10) all scored in double digits during the first 20 minutes of play.

Coming out of the break, Beeston hit yet another 3-pointer from a Kylie Maeda assist to put BYU up 46-37. Following the three, Eaton went 1-for-2 from the charity stripe to give the Cougars their first double digit lead at 47-37.

It was all BYU from that point, as the Matadors couldn’t find an answer for the Cougars’ offense. BYU had its largest lead of the game at 76-48 with under seven minutes left in the game from a quick Bailey bucket.

Cal State Northridge rallied at the end of the game, but it wasn’t enough as the Cougars took the 82-66 road win.

“I think we didn't defend very well in the first half," Judkins said. “We got beat off of dribble-penetration. In the second half we did a little bit better job of that. I also switched up the defense a little bit and got them off rhythm and that made them stand around more."

BYU heads back home to the Marriott Center on Tuesday, Nov. 26, to face Washington State at 7 p.m. MST. The game will be broadcast live on BYUtv. Links to live stats can be found on the BYU women’s basketball schedule page.

Royce Hinton is the women's volleyball sports information director for BYU Athletic Communications.