Matadors Outgun Titans, 87-82
Jan. 21, 2009
FULLERTON, CA - Cal State Northridge's Whitney Ligon posted a game-high 28 points while Jasmine Erving added 24 more to help lift the visiting Matadors to an 87-82 victory over host Cal State Fullerton on Wednesday night in a Big West Conference women's basketball match-up at Titan Gym.
The loss dropped the Titans to 6-10 overall and evened their record at 3-3 in conference play. Northridge won its second straight game in improving to 5-13 overall and 2-3 in the Big West.
Fullerton senior Toni Thomas finished with her third double-double of the year, scoring 21 points and grabbing 11 rebounds to lead the Titans in both categories. Sophomore Lyndsey Grove was also a force down low for Fullerton, setting a new career high with 20 points and adding nine rebound to narrowly miss her second double-double of the year.
The Titans cut a seven-point halftime deficit down to just two points thanks to an 8-3 run to start the second half and they trailed by just four points with 13:17 remaining. However, a 10-2 run over the next four minutes gave Northridge its largest lead at 68-56, with just over eight minutes to go.
Fullerton then tried to rally back from an 11-point deficit with just over two minutes to play, using a 6-1 spurt to bring the deficit down to single digits at 83-77 with 39 seconds to go. Two free throws by Katrina Thompson and a lay-up by Ligon rebuilt the Matadors' lead to eight as the Titans could come no closer than five thanks to a three-pointer by Thomas with 10 seconds to go.
The Titans opened the game strong, leading by as many as five points at 16-11 with six minutes gone in the first half. However, a 7-0 run by the Matadors gave them their first lead just over a minute later and the run grew to 23-8, giving Northridge a 10-point advantage at 34-24 with 6:09 to play.
Fullerton would get no closer than seven prior to the break as the two teams traded baskets over the final five-plus minutes and the Matadors took a 47-40 lead into the locker room at halftime.
Cal State Northridge shot just under 49 percent from the field for the game and hit on 55 percent from three-point range to outgun the Titans, who shot 43 percent for the game and out-worked the Matadors on the boards, holding a 47-37 advantage for the contest.
Thompson finished with a double-double for Northridge, adding 10 points and 15 boards in the win while Bridgette Conejo contributed 10 points off the bench to help the Matadors' bench outscore its Titan counterparts, 22-8.
Cal State Fullerton returns to the gym on Saturday evening (Jan. 24) at 5 p.m. as the Titans play host to Cal State Bakersfield in a non-conference match-up at Titan Gym.