Women's Basketball Falls at Home to Pacific in First Meeting as WCC Foes

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SANTA CLARA, Calif. – In the first meeting between the two programs in the West Coast Conference, Santa Clara women's basketball lost to Pacific by a final of 88-68. The loss puts the Broncos at 6-10 overall and 2-3 in WCC action while the Tigers are now 8-8 overall and 3-3 in conference play.

Santa Clara returns to the floor Fri., Jan. 17 at 7 p.m. vs. Portland.

"We didn't do a good job of controlling their inside play and we didn't control the ball," said Santa Clara head coach Jennifer Mountain. "It was really about pressure today. They picked up the pressure and we started getting tips on every pass. We got tentative on offense and did not play well today."

Santa Clara shot 42.9% (24-56) from the field and 23.1% (3-13) from three. The Broncos had 42 rebounds, 13 assists, 24 turnovers, four blocks, and steals steals. Ruta Zurauskyte led the offense with 16 points on 5-9 shooting and seven rebounds. Jo Paine scored 12 points with seven rebounds while Vanessa Leo added 12 points and two blocks.

Pacific shot 44.3% (31-70) from the field and 31.8% (7-22) from three. The Tigers had 42 rebounds, 13 assists, 11 turnovers, three blocks, and 16 steals. Kendall Kenyon led the offense with 25 points and 10 rebounds with two blocks and a steal. Hailie Eackles scored 17 points on 6-12 shooting while KiKi More scored 11 points with five assists.

Santa Clara jumped out on top with an early 8-2 behind four points from Nici Gilday and four from Zurauskyte. Eackles hit a three for the Tigers to get them within three.

Pacific got the deficit to one with five quick points on back-to-back possessions. Erin Butler hit a three and Kenyon made a jumper at 15:48 to make the score 11-10 Broncos.

The Tigers took their first lead at 14:18 on a three from Butler. After Leo grabbed an offensive board on the next possession to put Santa Clara back on top 14-13, Unique Coleman converted a three-point play on the ensuing possession for Pacific.

A deep three by Madison Parrish at 8:12 put Pacific up by four. The teams exchanged baskets until Pacific made consecutive baskets to go on top 35-29 with 4:41 left in the half.

With 3:23 on the clock Ricki Radanovich made a nice move to bank a layup high off the glass while also getting foul. She converted the three-point play to make the score 36-34 Pacific.

Pacific went on a 6-0 run over two and a half minutes to get the lead out to eight points with 42 seconds on the clock. Radanovich made a steal and put in a layup to end the run and make it a 42-36 game. Eackles hit a jumper from the top of the key as the clock winded down to send the teams to locker rooms with the score 44-36.

Santa Clara shot 45.2% (14-31) from the field and 0.0% (0-3) from three in the first half. The Broncos had 22 rebounds, seven assists, 12 turnovers, one block, and six steals. Zurauskyte led the offense with nine points and three boards. Paine added seven points and four rebounds while Raquel Avila had four assists.

Pacific shot 45.2% (14-31) from the field and 38.5% (5-13) from three in the first half. The Tigers had 17 rebounds, six assists, eight turnovers, two blocks, and eight steals. Eackles led the offense with 11 points one 4-7 shooting. Parrish and Butler each scored eight points while Coleman added seven.

The Pacific lead got out to double-digits for the first time at the 17:15 mark on a baseline jumper by Kenyon. The Tigers would go on an 8-0 run over 1:22 to make the score 57-42 with 16:27 on the clock. Marie Bertholdt ended the run with a layup off a Tiger turnover.

Eackles hit a three from the right corner at 13:14 to give the Tigers their first 20-point lead of the night. Pacific would go on a 9-0 run over 3:40 to make the score 68-46 with 11:44 left in the second half. Santa Clara was 0-4 from the field with five turnovers during the run. Paine got the Broncos back on the board with a three at 9:18 to make it a 68-49 game.

With the Tigers' lead up to 23, Leo converted a three-point play at 5:51 to make the score 76-56. After five straight points by Pacific, Paine made a nice move on the baseline to hit a short jumper.

Radanovich hit back-to-back threes to make the score 88-68 with just over a minute and a half left on the clock.

Game Notes: At 12:16 in the first half senior guard Ricki Radanovich checked-in for the first time since the season-opener after breaking her wrist. … Nici Gilday pushed her streak of consecutive made free throws to 25 before missing her sixth attempt of the day. Her last miss came vs. San Francisco on Dec. 30. … Courtney Lisowski and Taylor Williams checked in with 2:34 left in the game.