BAKERSFIELD, Calif. – Fullerton struggled from the field on Wednesday night and took their third loss of the season at the hands of Cal State Bakersfield, 55-43.
"We had a rough shooting night for sure, but Bakersfield had a lot to do with that," said head coach Jeff Harada. "I was impressed with their length and athleticism and they really made us work for our shots."
None of the Titans reached double-figures as junior Jade Vega led the team with nine points and pulled down five rebounds. Junior Hannah Thompson was second in scoring posting eight points, all of which came in the fourth quarter. Junior Daeja Smith dominated the glass with a game-high 15 rebounds and contributed seven points in the loss.
Bakersfield was led by senior Aja Williams who was the only player for either team to get into double-figures as she put up 14 points. Second on the team was junior Alexxus Gilbert who had nine. The Roadrunners also had a player with a double-figure rebound effort as senior Jazmyne Bartee pulled down 10 board, 5 of which were on the offensive end.
The Titans got on the board first as freshman Ashlee Ane knocked down a three from the wing on the first possession. However, the offense would struggle after that shooting just 5-16 (31.3%) in the first. The defense struggled as well as Bakersfield dominated the inside game with eight of the 16 Roadrunners' points coming in the paint.
Fullerton continued to struggle in the second shooting 3-12 and the 'Runners continued to dominate inside. Overall, the Titans scored 11 points in the quarter with Vega having six of them, but allowed Bakersfield to score 13 points, 12 of them coming inside the key.
Defensively, CSF picked it up in the third as they held Bakersfield to just 10 points for the quarter. However, it was their worst offensive quarter of the night. Shooting 14%, the Titans scored just five points in the third.
Led by H. Thompson's eight fourth quarter points, the Titans tried to make a comeback but it was too late. The Bakersfield offense stood to be too much for Fullerton and the Titans would be given their third consecutive loss.
Overall, Fullerton shot just 15-57 (26.3%) from the field, 6-19 (31.6%) from beyond the arc, and 7-19 (36.8%) from the free throw line.
"I thought we started the third quarter off with some better energy but we have to find ways to be mentally tougher and fight through adversity when things don't go our way. As the head coach, that's on me, and we are still learning that. But we also need some leaders to emerge who are willing to take ownership and set the tone for what kind of season we want to have. I'm confident we will regroup and have a great practice and be ready with a better effort in our home opener on Saturday."
The home opener for the Titans is this Saturday, Nov. 22 as they will host the Pilots from the University of Portland. Tip-off is at 2:00pm PT.
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