Pacific Women's Basketball: Tigers Drop Conference Home Opener to Cal Poly, 63-53
With the loss, Pacific dropped to 3-10 overall and 1-2 in the Big West Conference, while the Mustangs improved to 9-4 and 2-0 in conference play.
Pacific came out firing early in the game, when freshman Kendall Rodriguez (La Habra, Calif.) drained the first three pointer of the contest after the first minute of play, giving the Tigers and early 3-0 lead. While Cal Poly came back to close the gap and knot the score up, Pacific distanced itself once more at 17:09, when a lay-up by senior Jasmine Dana (Bakersfield, Calif.) gave the Tigers an 8-5 lead.
From there, the Mustangs retaliated with a 14-2 run over the course of the next nine minutes to take a 19-10 lead at 9:51, as Caroline Reeves contributed a quick fast-break lay-up.
On the heels of the largest lead of the half, the Tigers would not let the rest of the first stanza get out of hand, tying the contest back up at 4:20 and took the lead, when sophomore Christina Thompson (Sacramento, Calif.) was sent to the line for a pair of free throws, after drawing a foul from Christine Martin. Thompson's two free throws gave Pacific a 25-24 lead.
With the Tigers trailing by one down to the final seconds of the first half, 29-28, Ashlee Stewart launched a three-pointer from the top of the men's arc with four seconds left to play, sinking in the net with one second left on the clock. That gave Cal Poly a half-time lead of four points, 32-28.
Out of the locker room and into the second half, the Mustangs posted on the scoreboard first, increasing their lead to six off a jumper by Kristina Santiago at 18:57 that gave Cal Poly the 34-38 advantage. But again, Pacific stuck with it and sparked a 6-0 run in the next minute to tie the score up once more, 34-34, off a junior Jennifer Fath (Carrollton, Texas) jumper at 17:25.
Over the next minute, possession switched hands back-and-forth, as both teams tied up the score three times, closing out with a final 40-40 tie at 13:24. Then Reeves tallied a lay-up at 13:13, as both teams went on to record a three-minute scoring drought.
The Mustangs snapped the skid at 10:45 with a lay-up from Steward to take a 44-40 lead. But the duo of Thompson and freshman Jordan Rogers (Sparks, Nev.) gave Pacific another fighting chance, as they propelled a Tiger 4-0 run that tied the score once more, 44-44.
Using the momentum needed to tie the game, the Tigers jumped out ahead to a four-point lead at 8:16, off a lay-up from senior Emma Head (San Diego, Calif.), 48-44. However, Cal Poly came right back in it to tie the game at 6:19, 49-49 off a 5-1 run over that minute.
That was the last the Tigers would see of the Mustangs, as Cal Poly led by as much as 12 points, 51-63, with 43 seconds left in the contest. The Tigers tallied their final two points with 0:23 left, when junior Claire McLeod (Melbourne, Australia) drained a pair of free throws, for the final 10-point loss, 63-53.
Pacific next returns to action on Saturday, Jan. 9, when they host UC Santa Barbara at 4 p.m. in the Alex G. Spanos Center.