ASU rally comes up short against No. 9 Cal

<p> TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) -A Bay Area women's basketball team is alone in first place in the Pac-10, and for a change it's not Stanford.</p><separator></separator><p>Devanei Hampton scored a career-high 28 points, 17 in the first half, and No. 8 California stayed unbeaten in the conference with a 64-51 victory over Arizona State on Thursday night.</p><separator></separator><p>Ashley Walker added 13 points, seven in a row over a 2:19 span of the second half to lift the Bears out of trouble en route to their eighth consecutive win. The school record is 10 straight victories.</p><separator></separator><p>California (16-2, 7-0 Pac-10) won in Tempe for the first time since 1999 and is off to its best start since going 17-2 in the 1983-84 season.</p><separator></separator><p>&quot;We're honored that we're in first place right now,&quot; Hampton said, &quot;but we still have a long ways to go.&quot;</p><separator></separator><p>For most of the night, Cal took the Sun Devils out of their trademark fast-paced, pressure-defense game.</p><separator></separator><p>&quot;If you take bad shots, they're rebounding and running,&quot; Bears coach Joanne Boyle said. &quot;I thought we did a really good job, Devanei particularly in the first half, of just taking really good shots.&quot;</p><separator></separator><p>The loss snapped a five-game winning streak for the unranked Sun Devils (11-6, 5-1), who rallied from 23 down in the first half to cut the lead to four in the second.</p><separator></separator><p>&quot;We do that a lot, which is not a good thing,&quot; Arizona State's <a href="">L… Lacey</a> said. &quot;We get down and we always somehow come back and somehow go on a run, but against a top-10 ranked team and the top-ranked team in the Pac-10 as of right now, you can't do that.&quot;</p><separator></separator><p><a href=""… January</a> scored 16 and Lacey 10 for the Sun Devils, who missed their first 11 shots and ended up 33 percent from the field, 1-for-13 from 3-point range.</p><separator></separator><p>Cal led 16-0 and 33-10 but a 15-1 run late in the first half and early in the second helped Arizona State close it to 40-36. Hampton, though, scored five consecutive points to lift the Bears back into control, 45-36 with 12:23 to play.</p><separator></separator><p> Arizona State climbed back one more time by making 6-of-8 free throws, the last two by <a href="… Thompson</a>, to slice the lead to 47-42 with 8:08 to go. Walker scored three times inside, the second for a three-point play, and Cal led 54-42 with 5:24 to go.</p><separator></separator><p>&quot;I came out real quick before that sequence,&quot; Walker said. &quot;Coach just looked at me and basically said `We need you. We need you to get every rebound and every loose ball.' That's something I'm known for.&quot;</p><separator></separator><p>The Sun Devils never got closer than 10 after that.</p><separator></separator><p>Arizona State coach <a href="… Turner Thorne</a> said she barely recognized her team.</p><separator></separator><p>&quot;I mean, I'm perplexed,&quot; she said. &quot;We did not practice like this. The only thing I can ever come up with as a coach when something like this happens is we just tried too hard. We just maybe put too much pressure on ourselves.&quot;</p><separator></separator><p>Hampton, a 6-foot-3 junior who missed nine games early this season while recovering from surgery on her right knee, dominated inside early, going 8-for-11 in the first half. She finished 13-for-23 overall.</p><separator></separator><p>She scored six in a 10-0 Cal run that put the Bears ahead 33-10 with 2:36 left. The Sun Devils finally got their offense rolling, outscoring California 11-1 over the final 2 1/2 minutes of the half to cut the lead to 34-21 at the break.</p><separator></separator><p>The run reached 15-1 when Arizona State scored the first four points of the second half, cutting the lead to 34-26 on <a href="">D… Simon's</a> steal and layup. Natasha Vital's 3-pointer boosted the lead to 37-26 with 18:30 to play, and it was 40-28 when Alexis Gray-Lawson made a 3 with 17:14 to go.</p><separator></separator><p>A pair of blocked shots by ASU's <a href="">K… Murphy</a> and one by <a href="">Jill Noe</a> highlighted the 8-0 run that cut it to 40-36 on Simon's two free throws with 13:21 left. But Hampton followed a 3-point play with an inside basket and Cal was on top 45-36 12:33 before the end.</p><separator></separator><p>Cal plays Saturday against an Arizona team that's 0-6 in the Pac-10. The Sun Devils are home Sunday against No. 7 Stanford.</p><separator></separator><p>&quot;I really think we match up pretty well with Cal. We just didn't execute our game plan very well,&quot; Turner Thorne said. &quot;Stanford, in some ways, I think is a tougher matchup.&quot;</p><separator></separator><p>&nbsp;</p>