December 21, 2013

Saint Mary's Outlasts Cal State Northridge

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. ---

The Cal State Northridge women's basketball team (4-8) lost 72-60 to Saint Mary's Saturday afternoon in a non-conference contest at The Matadome. After rallying from nine down to tie the game at 60 with 3:13 left to play, Northridge surrendered an open 3-pointer on its next defensive possession and ultimately fell to the Gaels.

On a wild Saturday in both team's final contest before the Christmas holiday, Bernadette Fong grabbed an offensive rebound and scored to give the game its sixth tie. On the next posession, the Gaels' Lauren Nicholson drained a 3-pointer to give Saint Mary's a lead it would not relinquish.

Foul problems and poor shooting plagued CSUN in the second half. As a team, CSUN shot 29.4 percent (10-of-34) from the field and committed 23 fouls in the second half.

Camille Mahlknecht fouled out in only 10 minutes of action and was disqualified from the contest on matching technical fouls with Saint Mary's Danille Mauldin. Later in the contest, Mauldin would receive another technical foul and be disqualified as well.

Janae Sharpe led CSUN with a season-high 19 points to match her career best for the fifth time. She had six assists and a season-high three steals and three 3-pointers in 36 minutes of action.

Ashlee Guay was the other Matador to reach double-figures, scoring 12 points in 31 minutes. She added five assists, three rebounds and two steals. Guay needs just six more steals to set a new school record in the category.

Northridge led by as many as nine midway through the first half. However, Saint Mary's carried a 33-31 advantage into halftime and pushed its lead to nine with 7:16 left in the game. Before leaving the game, Mauldin led Saint Mary's with 17 points and 15 rebounds.

For the day, CSUN shot 35.9 percent (23-of-64) from the field and 32 percent (8-of-25) from 3-point range. The Gaels finished at 41.2 percent (21-of-51) from the field and held a 45-33 advantage in rebounding.

Randi Friess had eight points and two steals to go with a season-high eight rebounds. Fong posted six points, six rebounds and a career-high three assists in 18 minutes.

CSUN returns to action on Sunday, Dec. 29 with a road contest at Oregon. Tip off between the Matadors and Ducks is slated for 4 p.m.