Thomas Nets Career-High 29 Points as Titans Defeat Anteaters, 76-62
Jan. 20, 2007
FULLERTON, CA - Cal State Fullerton sophomore Toni Thomas scored a career-high 29 points and senior Charlee Underwood brought down a career-best 19 rebounds as the Titans defeated visiting UC Irvine, 76-62, on Saturday afternoon in a Big West Conference women's basketball game at Titan Gym.
The victory moves Fullerton to 9-11 overall and 4-3 in the Big West while the Anteaters fell to 5-15 overall and 2-4 in league play.
Thomas' 29 points were the most for a Titan since Amber Pruitt scored 29 against Pacific on March 4, 2004. She also added seven rebounds and shot 11-of-15 from the field, including 7-of-8 from the free throw line.
Underwood notched her first double-double of the season with those 19 rebounds and 14 points to go with three blocks in 40 minutes. She finished just four rebounds shy of the school single-game record of 23 shared by three former Titans - Jean Kinn-Ashen in 1978, Linda Goeggel in 1980, and Terri Withers in 1980.
Fullerton, which shot 46 percent from the field for the game, led by as many as 24 points with 12 minutes to go in the game, but failed to put away UC Irvine as the Anteaters chipped away at the Titans' lead.
A basket by Stephanie Duda jumpstarted a run that saw UCI outscore Cal State Fullerton, 23-6 - including runs of 11-0 and 8-0 - over the next eight minutes to pull to within six points at 64-58 with 3:53 remaining.
A quick 6-0 burst by the Titans increased the advantage to 12 points with just over two minutes left and Fullerton scored six of the game's final eight points en route to the win.
Fullerton, which outrebounded UCI by a 48-32 count, led for the majority of first half, but trailed by two with just four minutes gone in the period. The Titans then exploded for an 8-0 run, getting points from four different players to build a six-point lead at 18-12 with 13 minutes to go.
After a three-pointer by Ned brought the Anteaters back to within three, Cal State Fullerton went on another run, this one a 9-0 stretch that included six points from Thomas, to build a 12-point lead at 27-15 with just over nine minutes to play.
Fullerton led by as many as 13 points late in the half and took that same advantage into the locker room at halftime, leading 39-26 at the break.
Thomas, who scored the first eight points of the game for the Titans, finished with 20 of her career-high total in the first half on 7-of-10 shooting to go with six rebounds.
Duda led the Anteaters with 16 points and 13 rebounds and was joined in double figures by Angie Ned (17 points) and Annie Mai (12 points). UCI shot 36 percent from the floor - including just 27 percent in the first half.
Cal State Fullerton takes a break from Big West play next week with a single game against future league rival UC Davis on Friday (Jan. 27) at 7 p.m. in Davis, Calif.