Cougars to face Loyola Marymount and Portland

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Once she wore blue, now she will return wearing purple. Former BYU basketball player Jazmine Foreman will be coming to the Marriott Center to coach Portland against her past Cougar teammates.

Seniors Kristen Riley and Hayley Steed played with Foreman a few seasons ago, which will add an interesting twist to the game.

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BYU forward Stephanie Vermunt goes up for a shot against Pepperdine defender Jade McNorton during Thursday's game at the Marriott Center.
“It was crazy to be in Portland and see her [Jazmine] in purple,” Steed said. “I”m happy for her, I think she’s having fun coaching and she’s probably doing a really good job. If I see her before the game I’m sure I’ll just give her a big hug and say good luck.”

As well as playing Portland, the team will face off against Loyola Marymount once again. At the last matchup, BYU blew the Lions out, 80-47.

“The advantage is you get to see them [the opposing teams] play,” BYU coach Jeff Judkins said. “I’ve always liked the second game; it seems like I have a better understanding of what’s pushing this league.”

The team is now on a five-game winning streak. Since defeating both the Lions and the Pilots previously, Judkins wants to give his bench some good playing time. He said he’s going to try and play the younger women on the team a bit more so they can gain the experience the older team members have.

“Xojian [Harry] had a really good game against Portland, so her matchups are good,” Judkins said. “I’ve got to get Ashley [Garfield] in there more, where she gets more comfortable.”

The momentum the team has going right now is hard to beat. Freshman Lexi Eaton tore up the court last Saturday by scoring 16 points and shooting 60 percent from the field. The attitude and energy the team has going right now is something they want to keep and put into their two upcoming games.

“We just want to continue the momentum throughout this week, during practices and just keep our focus,” Eaton said. “We’re playing really well right now and we want to continue to be aggressive and play as a team.”

The Cougars have an edge on the two teams this week and they don’t plan on taking any teams lightly. The women continue to take one game at a time and compete as if they haven’t already beaten these teams.

“We kind of just want to stay focused, especially because we’ve been on a winning streak right now,” Riley said. “We know that you can never be complacent, especially when you’re winning, because that’s when teams come out fighting harder than before.”

Since BYU already edged these teams earlier in the season, Judkins said they want to stay on their toes.

“I’ll bring up examples of other teams who’ve been complacent,” Judkins said. “I tell them to win championships you have to win games you’re supposed to win, and every game is one at a time.”

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