Dec. 1, 2007
BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) - Christina Wirth scored 18 points and had six rebounds and No. 23 Vanderbilt, sparked by a 20-0 run in the first half, rolled to a 90-69 win over Saint Mary's in a weekend tournament.
Jennifer Risper tied a career high with 12 points and added seven rebounds and five assists for the Commodores (7-1), who won their fourth straight. Vanderbilt, which was coming off an impressive 68-55 defeat of No. 11 Duke on Wednesday, had five players in double figures and led by as many as 28 despite committing 20 turnovers.
Next up for the Commodores is No. 12 California (6-1) on Sunday.
Lauren Shaughnessy had 17 points, six rebounds and five assists for Saint Mary's (5-4) in the first-ever meeting between the two schools. Serena Benavente added a career-high 16 points and five rebounds while Jontelle Smith scored 14 for the Gaels.
Wirth, the only Vanderbilt player to score in double figures in every game this season, had seven points in the first half before warming up. She scored nine points in the first seven minutes of the second half, including a 3-pointer to give the Commodores a 67-42 lead with 13:05 left to play.
Risper later scored on consecutive trips down the floor to extend Vanderbilt's lead to 74-46 before Saint Mary's made a brief charge at the Commodores. Shaugnessy had five points, including a 3-pointer during an 18-4 run, to pull the Gaels to 78-64 with 4:35 remaining. That was close as Saint Mary's got.
Wirth scored on a short hook shot from underneath the basket and Amy Malo had four points in a 12-5 Vanderbilt run to close out the game.
The Commodores trailed by six early in the first half and were down 25-24 with 9:30 left before breaking the game open with a 20-0 run. Lauren Leuders had seven points, three rebounds and an assist during the streak, which left Vanderbilt with a comfortable lead against the overmatched Gaels. St. Mary's also missed eight straight free throws and went into halftime trailing 44-29.
The two-day tournament is sponsored by the Contra Costa Times.