No. 8 CSF, No. 6 CSUN Advance To Quarterfinals Of Big West Tournament
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Big West Women's Basketball Tournament
Titans Rally to Shock Long Beach State in Big West Tourney's Opening Round
Cal State Fullerton outscored Long Beach State 27-13 over the final 10:46 to rally from an eight-point deficit to stun the fifth-seeded 49ers, 54-48, in the opening round of the Big West Tournament Saturday night at the Bren Events Center.
With the win, the Titans (10-21) snapped what was a three-game conference tournament losing streak dating back to March 10, 2010, where Fullerton defeated UC Irvine 89-76 in the first round of the tournament. The win also gives the Titans their seventh double-digit win season in the last eight seasons, but most importantly keeps their 2013 season alive, as they'll take on three-seeded Hawai'i tomorrow at 6 p.m. back at the Bren Events Center.
Mya Olivier led Fullerton with a team-high 13 points and eight rebounds in the win, while Alex Thomas scored all of her 11 points in the second half on 4-of-7 shooting from the field. Lauren Bushong provided a huge lift off the bench, nearly collected a double-double, as she poured in 11 points and grabbed nine rebounds for the Titans.
Long Beach State's (16-15) Devin Hudson put on a show, as she collected a game-high 17 points and 24 rebounds in the loss. Lauren Spargo when 2-of-6 from three-point land and scored 11 points to round out the double-digit scoring for the 49ers.
The Titans scored 41 points on 15-of-29 shooting in the second half, marking the most amount of points Fullerton had scored in any half since the team scored 42 points in the second half on Feb. 23 in a 60-42 win over UC Davis.
But as impressive as the second half performance was, the first half was equally as bad, as the Titans mustered up just 13 points on 5-of-32 shooting (15.6 percent) for the half. The 13 points scored was the least amount of points Fullerton had scored in any half this season and the fewest in the school's 23-year Big West Tournament history.
However, despite the poor offensive showing, Fullerton was only down 16-13 at the break, as the Titans' stingy defense held Long Beach State to just 26.9 percent from the floor on 7-of-26 shooting. The 16 points allowed is the tied for the lowest the Titans had allowed in any half this season.
After converting just five field goal attempts in the first half, the Titans immediately came out of the halftime break ready to play, as they converted four of their first seven shot attempts to eventually tie the game at 26-26 left to play in the game after Brianna Barfield connected on a mid-range jumper.
The game featured nine lead changed and six tied before Chante Miles a floater to put the Titans up 37-35 with 5:06 left to play in the contest.
Fullerton would never look back from there, as it was able to extend the lead and close out the game converting on its final six free throw attempts of the ball game, while shooting 80 percent (12-of-15) from the line for the game.
Defense Clamps Down In CSUN's 61-40 Victory Over UC Davis In Big West Tournament
The Cal State Northridge women's basketball team (16-15) defeated UC Davis 61-40 Tuesday evening in the Big West Tournament's First Round at the Bren Events Center on the campus of UC Irvine. Violet Alama and Ashlee Guay each scored 14 for the Matadors, who used a quick start and tough defense to defeat the Aggies and post their first win in the league's postseason tournament since 2009.
Northridge came out firing on all cylinders Tuesday night. The Matadors made 13 of their first 20 shots and led by as many as 17 in the first half. In all, CSUN shot 55.2 percent (16-of-29) from the field in opening 20 minutes to take a 33-21 lead into the locker room.
Although the shooting cooled off a little bit in the second half, the Northridge defense did not. UC Davis shot 8-of-28 (28.6 percent) in the first half and 6-of-32 (18.8 percent) in the second half. The Aggies finished at 14-of-60 (23.3 percent) from the field. They became the seventh Matador opponent to be held to under 50 points this season.
Alama was a force inside all night. She posted 10 points in the first half and finished 7-of-13 from the field. She added six points and an assist in 21 minutes of action.
Guay finished 5-of-10 from the field and added eight rebounds, a block and a steal in 38 minutes of action. Haley White scored 12 points for CSUN, including two 3-pointers, and added seven rebounds and three assists in 24 minutes.
Camille Mahlknecht was the fourth CSUN player to finish in double figures. She came off the bench to post 11 points, eight rebounds and four blocked shots in 34 minutes.
Sydnee Fipps, a 2012-13 All-Big West First Team honoree, led UC Davis with 13 points but was 4-of-13 from the field with eight rebounds before fouling out after 32 minutes on the floor.
The Matadors won the rebounding battle 40-33 and had 15 assists on 24 field goals. Randi Friess led CSUN with three steals.
Northridge returns to action Wednesday evening with a match-up against the tournament's fourth seed, UC Santa Barbara. Tip off between the Matadors and Gauchos from the Bren Events Center is slated for approximately 8:30 p.m.