Pacific Women's Basketball Falls at Cal Poly, 84-74
A hot start and shooting night for the Tigers was negated by turnovers as the Cal Poly Mustangs shot 58 percent in the second half en route to a 84-74 win over Pacific Thursday night at Mott Gym. Sophomore forward Jordan Rogers (Sparks, Nev.) drained five three pointers for a team-high 17 points, while sophomore guard Erica McKenzie (Sparks, Nev.) added four treys for 14 points.
Pacific shot 62.5 percent in the first half, but Cal Poly scored 28 points off of 20 Pacific turnovers and connected at a 57.6 percent clip in the second half to emerge with the Big West Conference victory.
Five players hit double-figures for the Mustangs, as a trio finished with 19 points each. Jonae Ervin, Rachel Clancy and Caroline Reeves all tallied 19 as they each logged over 35 minutes. Kayla Griffin added 15 points with 12 rebounds for a double-double and Tamara Wells chipped in 10 to account for 82 of the Mustangs 84 points.
Cal Poly out-rebounded Pacific 36-28, and held a 50-24 advantage in the paint. Pacific struggled to get the ball inside to their post players while the Mustangs drove the lane all evening.
Freshman forward Danielle Peacon (Sparks, Nev.) added 10 points and six rebounds while sophomore forward Kendall Rodriguez (La Habra, Calif.) tallied eight points and six boards. Senior guard Jennifer Fath (Carrollton, Texas) hit on three of five attempts for nine points, while freshman forward Taryn Garza (Modesto, Calif.) added seven points. McKenzie also doled out six assists for Pacific.
The Tigers were scorching hot to start, connecting on their first seven field goal attempts, including a pair of three-pointers from McKenzie and three buckets from Rodriguez. Cal Poly roared back with an 11-2 run to cut the margin to 19-18 with 10:58 to go in the first as Kayla Griffin connected on a pair of field goals.
Jonae Ervin connected on six of her first seven shots as the Mustangs hung around, taking a 32-29 lead before Jennifer Fath drove the lane while being fouled. Her three-point play gave the Tigers a 34-32 lead with just over four minutes left.
Griffin answered with a lay-up for the Mustangs and after Peacon scored inside Clancy gave Cal Poly a 37-36 lead with 1:24 left in the half. Pacific received a jumper from Taryn Garza, but a free throw from Caroline Reeves gave the Mustangs a 40-38 lead at halftime.
The Tigers shot 62.5 percent in the first half, but 14 turnovers led to 24 Cal Poly points enabling the Mustangs to hold the lead into the break. Ervin led all scorers at halftime with 14 points, while Clancy added 10. Pacific was paced by eight from Rodriguez, while McKenzie added six points. Eight of nine Tigers scored at least four points in the first half.
A pair of early turnovers in the second half let the Mustangs stake a 44-38 lead with 16:54 to go in the ballgame before stretching the gap to 10 at 54-44 with 11:48 remaining as the Tigers missed their first seven field goal attempts of the half.
Cal Poly heated up as Clancy knocked down a three-pointer and Ervin drove the lane for a 15-point Mustangs lead. The Tigers, after coming back from double-digits to tie in their last two contests fought back, with a pair of three-pointers from Jordan Rogers.
But the Tigers would get no closer than eight, as the Mustangs kept executing on offense and knocked down 13 of 15 free throw attempts to hold on for a 84-74 win.
Cal Poly improves to 6-7 overall, 2-0 in the Big West, while Pacific falls to 4-12 overall, 1-2 in Big West play.
The road trip for the Tigers continues Saturday with a 2 p.m. tip-off against UC Santa Barbara.