BYU women’s basketball wins first WCC regular-season championship

The Cougars celebrate after winning their first regular season WCC title with a victory over San Diego Thursday night. (Ari Davis)

The BYU women’s basketball team secured their first outright West Coast Conference regular season title with a 68-60 victory over San Diego in the Marriott Center last Thursday, Feb. 18.

“I’m really happy for them,” said BYU head coach Jeff Judkins. “To see these young ladies and know what they’ve sacrificed for — this is something a coach with always remember. I told them that when they walk in the building they’ll see (the conference championship banner) and they’ll remember. They’ll remember what they did this year and what they shared together. I’m very proud of them.”

With a 15-1 conference record, the Cougars broke Gonzaga’s 11 straight regular-season title streak and will enter the WCC tournament as the defending regular season champions.

The Cougars are riding a 15-game winning streak and went undefeated at home for the fist time since the 1979-1980 season.

Senior Kylie Maeda said the conference title proves BYU’s consistent effort and hard work.

“Winning a regular-season championship requires being good the whole season,” Maeda said. “It shows our hard work throughout the season and how much we’ve improved since our first game.”

After defeating San Diego on Feb. 18 to claim the conference championship, senior Lexi Eaton Rydalch turned to Judkins and said “we’re not done yet.” BYU has two more conference games on the road this week and a tournament to prepare for.

“It’s really important to keep your guard up when you have that success. It’s so easy to let down and become complacent,” Rydalch said. “But our team, we know that we are setting out to do better things than just this. We want to win the tournament championship and then make some noise in the NCAA. That’s our real goal. To get BYU’s name out there and show people what our program is about.”

The Cougars play at Portland on Feb. 25 and at Gonzaga on Feb. 27. BYU then travels to Las Vegas for the WCC tournament in March.

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