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WCC Women's Basketball Recaps

Jan. 27, 2007

Gonzaga - 87
San Diego - 82

SAN DIEGO, Calif. - The University of San Diego women's basketball team fell to Gonzaga University in a battle of the undefeated in the West Coast Conference, 87-82, Saturday afternoon at the Jenny Craig Pavilion.

With the loss, the Toreros fall to 17-4 overall, 6-1 in the WCC and saw their season-high seven-game winning streak come to an end. With the win, the Bulldogs improve to 15-8 overall and move to 7-0 in the WCC.

Amanda Rego led the offensive charge for the Toreros as she scored a team-best 19 points and racked up 10 assists to post her seventh double-double of the season. Rego also pulled down a team-best eight boards. Amber Sprague scored 15 points for USD on 7-of-15 shooting as the second of five USD players in double figures. Both Kelly Winther and Morgan Henderson had 15 points apiece; a career-high for Henderson and the sixth consecutive game that Winther has recorded double figures. Kiva Herman was the final USD player in double figures as she dropped in 10; to mark the third consecutive game she has recorded double digits.

As a team, the Toreros shot 47 percent from the floor, but were out rebounded 37-31.

In the first half, the early going was close as both teams took their turn with the lead. Then with score knotted at 6-6, Gonzaga's Heather Bowman hit a jumper to spark a 10-4 run giving GU a 16-10 advantage.

After San Diego pulled to within three at 20-17 on a Rego jumper, the Zags would use a 7-2 run to again gain some breathing room. GU would eventually build their lead to 10 going into the break.

In the second half, San Diego came out firing on all cylinders as they began the period with a 10-4 run to cut the lead to two. Winther hit a three-pointer to get things rolling for the Toreros and Rego capped the run with a jumper as the crowd broke out into a frenzy.

The two teams then sea sawed back and forth for a bit until Rachael Kane hit a three pointer to give the Zags a 54-47 lead.

San Diego refused to go away as they continued to chip away at the lead, but every time USD got close, the Bulldogs would hit a big shot to end the Toreros threat. The Bulldogs would go on to build their lead up to as many as 13 on a Jami Bjorklund three-pointer with 3:29 remaining.

The Toreros refused to give up, as they continued to claw their way back into the game, but in the end could not over come the deficit.

Bjorklund lead all scorers with 25 points, while Heather Bowman added 20, Stephanie Hawk had 16 and Michelle Elliott had 10 points. As a team, GU shot 51 percent from the floor.

The Toreros will now begin the second half of conference action with one game this week. USD will play their travel partner, the University of San Francisco, on Saturday in a 2 p.m. game.

Loyola Marymount - 67
Santa Clara - 52

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - It was a battle of offense vs. defense, and today the Lions showed why they are the top defensive team in the conference, shutting down Santa Clara for a 67-52 win in Gersten Pavilion. LMU pulled ahead early, extending to a double digit lead midway through the first half, and led by as many as 23 points in the game. Amanda Patton led a group of four Lions in double digit scoring, putting in 17 points in the win.

LMU improves to 12-9 overall, 4-3 in the WCC standings. The Broncos are now 12-10 overall, and are tied with LMU for third place at 4-3 in WCC games.

The Broncos entered today's game as the conference's top scoring team, but LMU held them well below their average of 74.7 points in WCC games.

SCU opened the game by scoring the first four points, but LMU quickly tied it up and never trailed again. After a free throw by Kasey Monteith tied the game at 8-8 at 13:14, LMU went on a 14-2 run to take a 12 point lead, 22-10 at 6:01 on a jumper by Jessica Vargas.

Vargas and Jenna Sybesma were instrumental to LMU's run, coming off the bench to spark the Lions. Vargas played 12 minutes in the first half, helping the Lions shut down Santa Clara's guards.

The Lions extended their lead to 18 points on a pair of free throws by Patton at 1:14 before Santa Clara cut the lead to 15, 35-20, at the break.

Patton led the Lions with 10 points in the first half. LMU shot 41.9% from the field, and limited Santa Clara to just 29.6%, including 1-for-8 from three-point range. Jen Gottschalk led the Broncos with six points in the first half.

The Lions also controlled the glass, outrebounding SCU 23-15. Jennifer Hall and Valerie Ogoke led the way with six rebounds each.

The second half continued much like the first half, with LMU maintaining its double digit lead. A three-pointer by Patton put the Lions ahead 45-22 at 17:54. The Broncos continued to struggle on offense, as LMU maintained its defensive intensity. SCU managed to cut the lead to 13 on a pair of free throws by Tracey Walker at 3:54, but the Lions answered and held off the Broncos for the 15 point win.

The Broncos entered today's game as the nation's top three-point shooting team, averaging 9.1 per contest. Chandice Cronk was the nation's top three-point shooter, averaging 3.6 per game. Today, Santa Clara connected on three three-pointers, and Cronk was held without a three-point field goal, going 0-for-6 from behind the arc.

Patton led all players with 17 points, including four three-pointers. She also added three rebounds and two assists. Amanda DeCoud finished with 13 points, and set a season-high with six assists and matched her career-high with six steals.

Sybesma scored a career-high 12 points in a career-high 20 minutes of action. She was 6-for-10 from the field. Vargas played a career-high 20 minutes in the win, contributing two steals, two points and two rebounds.

Ogoke was LMU's fourth player in double digits, and she finished with 10 points and nine rebounds.

Walker led the Broncos with 16 points, all but two coming in the second half. Gottschalk chopped in 13 points, six rebounds and four steals.

LMU will hit the road next weekend, facing Portland and Gonzaga in the Northwest. The Lions will face the Pilots on Thursday night at 7:00pm, and the Bulldogs on Saturday at 2:00pm.

Pepperdine - 76
Saint Mary's - 73

MALIBU, Calif. - A Teena Wickett layup with 1:11 remaining broke a 72-72 tie and sent the Pepperdine Waves to their second West Coast Conference (WCC) victory of the season 76-73 over the Saint Mary's Gaels Saturday afternoon in Malibu, Calif.

Daphaine Kennedy led Pepperdine (9-13, 2-5 WCC) with 17 points on 6-of-9 shooting. Wickett had 12 in 17 minutes of action and Teiosha George pulled down a team-high 11 rebounds to go along with nine points as the Waves snapped a five-game skid.

Saint Mary's (9-11, 3-4 WCC) was paced by Sheridan Arredondo's game-high 22 points and nine rebounds. Jontelle Smith added 20 points - 13 coming in the second half - and Eghosa Obaiza notched a double-double with a 17-point, 11-rebound effort.

Trailing by one, Serena Benavente drew a foul while in the act of shooting. She connected on her first try but missed on the second setting up Wickett's dramatic layup. Kennedy hit a pair of free throws with nine seconds to play to ice the win.

In a game that saw eight ties and 14 lead changes, Saint Mary's last lead of the game came to an end after consecutive Kennedy treys in the final three minutes pushed Pepperdine ahead, 72-71.

It took Pepperdine less than four minutes to erase a six-point halftime deficit as the Waves opened the second half on a 13-6 run that was capped by a pair of Jasmane Clarendon layups.

Pepperdine shot almost 52 percent from the floor (14-for-27) and forced Saint Mary's into 12 turnovers which resulted in 16 points but was out rebounded by a 23-14 margin in the first half.

After converting a pair of free throws, Benavente gave Saint Mary's its largest lead of the afternoon 17-8 at the 11:42 mark of the first half. Pepperdine quickly erased the Gael's lead when Lauren Wenski buried a pair of treys and Nakeya Isabell stole the ball from Benavente before going coast-to-coast for a bucket that put the Wave on top 19-18.

Pepperdine will open the second half of league play next week when it travels to Gonzaga and Portland.

Portland - 64
San Francisco - 61

San Francisco - USF women's basketball watched a 15-point second half lead evaporate as Portland seized a 64-61 West Coast Conference victory Saturday afternoon at War Memorial Gym. The Dons (7-15, 1-6 WCC) led by as many as 16 in the first half, but the Pilots (9-13, 1-6 WCC) broke through for their first league win of the season, snapped a seven-game losing streak and beat San Francisco for the first time since 2005.

Junior guard Nykia Peace continued with her hot hand, matching a career-high with 18 points on 8-of-16 from the field to go along with seven rebounds. Peace recorded 16 in the Dons 58-53 loss against Gonzaga on Thursday night. Junior guard Dominique Carter turned in a 17-point, 10-rebound double-double, while junior guard Shay Rollins added 12 points for the Dons.

San Francisco streaked out of the gate and looked ready to put Portland away early, building an 18-4 lead with 12:24 in the first half on a 3-pointer by Peace. USF built its biggest lead of the game at 16 points, 29-13 on a three by Rollins with 3:42 left and headed to the locker room with a 32-19 lead at the intermission.

It was all Portland and freshman guard Laiken Dollente in the second half. The Pilots outscored USF 45-29, connected on .615 (16-26) from the field, including 4-of-5 from 3-point range. Dollente, who managed just six points in the first half poured in 24 in the second for a game-high 30, converting on 11-of-18, 3-of-4 from beyond the arc. San Francisco shot .333 (12-36) after recess and went 1-for-10 from deep.

Portland held a 37-36 rebound edge after trailing 21-15 on the boards at halftime and shot .460 (23-50) from the floor for the game and held USF to a .394 (26-66) rate.

Freshman forward Laura Thomas did significant damage with 10 points and a game-high 16 rebounds in 32 minutes. Senior forward Anne Graner added seven points and five rebounds.

USF returns to action Saturday, February 3 when it hosts San Diego. Game time against the Toreros is set for 2:00 PM at War Memorial Gym.