LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Hitting the road for two games this week, Santa Clara women's basketball (12-11; 4-6 WCC) lost to LMU (9-14; 3-7 WCC) by a final of 71-50. The Lions jumped out to a big lead early on and never looked back.
Santa Clara returns to the court on Sat., Feb. 9 at 2 p.m. at local rival San Francisco.
"Our young kids got some experience and competed," said Santa Clara head coach Jennifer Mountain. "We can't dig ourselves a hole and expect to come out on top."
The Bronco offense was led by Brooke Gallaway who had a career-high 12 points on 3-6 shooting and 6-8 from the free throw line. Meagan Fulps scored eight points on 3-12 shooting and 2-7 from deep while Ruta Zurauskyte scored eight on 3-7 shooting. Vanessa Leo had a career-high 12 rebounds while scoring eight points. The Broncos shot 30.8 percent (16-52) from the field but just 4-19 from deep.
LMU was led by Alex Cowling who scored 18 points on 8-17 shooting with eight boards and Hazel Ramirez who scored 16 on 5-11 shooting. Barnes added 12 points on 5-7 from the field and Johnston had 10 points on 4-10 shooting. Ben-Jumbo had six rebounds while Lenoir had a game-best five steals. The Lions shot 46.0 percent (29-63) from the field.
LMU started the game on a 16-0 run over the first 7:42 to take a commanding lead early on. Ramirez and Cowling each scored six points during the run on three buckets apiece. The Broncos missed their only four field goal attempts during that span.
Radanovich scored the first bucket of the night for Santa Clara on a three ball at the 13:18 mark to get the Broncos on the board and followed with another a minute later to make the score 16-6.
LMU followed with a 6-0 run over a minute and a half before Fulps hit another Bronco three that made the score 22-9.
The lead continued to grow and reached 20 points for the first time on a pair of free throws by Ramirez to make the score 32-12. The Lions would build their lead as high as 25 points on two free throws by Chelsea Barnes with 45 seconds remaining in the half.
LMU would take its 25 point lead into halftime with the score 42-17.
Radanovich led Santa Clara with six points on 2-8 shooting and 2-7 from deep. Zurauskyte scored four first half points on 1-3 shooting while grabbing three boards. Fulps was 1-5 from the field while scoring three points. Leo had a team-high four rebounds in the half. As a team Santa Clara shot 25.0 percent (6-24) from the field and 3-12 from three.
LMU was led by Cowling who scored 13 points on 6-8 shooting with a game-high seven first half rebounds. Barnes added 10 points on 4-6 shooting and Ramirez had nine on 2-6 from the field and 5-5 from the free throw line. The Lions shot 47.2 percent (17-36) from the field and were a perfect 8-8 from the charity stripe. The Lions also took care of the basketball, committing just four turnovers. In the paint they outscored Santa Clara 20-4 and 16-4 in points off the bench.
After Santa Clara went on a 6-0 run early in the second half that made the score 45-26, LMU answered with an 8-0 run of its own over 2:34 that got the lead back out to 53-26. Ramirez knocked down two baskets during the run.
The teams continued to trade buckets and at the under four media timeout LMU held a 68-44 lead with 3:50 left in the game.
Santa Clara got the deficit down to 19 but the Lions were able to hang on and seal the 71-50 victory.