March 3, 2012

Matadors Down Titans 60-51 on Senior Day

2012 Big West Women's Basketball Tournament Bracket

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. --- The Cal State Northridge women's basketball team (17-12, 11-5 Big West) defeated Cal State Fullerton 60-51 Saturday afternoon in both team's Big West Conference regular season finale. Janae Sharpe scored a game-high 19 points and Jasmine Erving added 12 points and nine rebounds as the Matadors ended up second in the league standings.

Knowing they needed a victory to at least entertain the notion of splitting the regular season title with Cal Poly, the Matadors came out firing in the first half. As a team, CSUN shot 53.6 percent in the opening frame (15-of-28) and Sharpe led all scorers with 15 points at halftime.

The second half saw the Titans fire back, taking a one-point lead with 15 minutes remaining in the game. However, Northridge persevered and after tying the game at 41-41 with 13 minutes left, the Matadors closed the contest on a 19-10 run to end the game.

Sharpe was efficient from the field, finishing 8-of-15 and adding five defensive rebounds. In her rookie season, Sharpe finished at 12.9 points per game in the 16 Big West contests.

In the final regular season home game of her career, Erving finished 3-of-8 from the field but a perfect 6-of-6 from the free throw line. She and Camille Mahlknecht each had nine rebounds and Erving finished at 14.5 points and 7.8 rebounds per contest during league play.

Mahlknecht added five points, three blocks and a steal to her nine boards. Violet Alama had a strong game off the bench, finishing with six points, seven rebounds and four assists.

Ashlee Guay posted six points, three rebounds, three steals and two assists in 30 minutes of action.  Finally, Jianni Jackson had nine points and five rebounds for the Matadors.

For the game, CSUN finished at 37.5 percent from the field and hit 17-of-21 free throws (73.9 percent). Cal State Fullerton finished at 31.6 percent from the field and 52.6 percent from the free throw line. Megan Richardson led the Titans with 15 points. 

In the end, Cal Poly defeated Pacific in Stockton and erased any hopes for a co-championship. CSUN finished the regular season as the No. 2 seed in the Big West and will host Long Beach State in a Big West Quarterfinal contest on Mar. 6. Tip off between the Matadors and 49ers is set for 7 p.m.