Women's Hoops Visits SMC, Plays Pink Saturday Vs Pepperdine

Women's Hoops Visits SMC, Plays Pink Saturday Vs Pepperdine


STOCKTON, Calif. - The Pacific women's basketball team returns to the court Thursday as the Tigers renew their rivalry with Saint Mary's on the road in Moraga. Tip-off is set for 6:30 p.m. at McKeon Pavilion. On Saturday the Tigers will return home to face Pepperdine at 2 p.m. on National Girls & Women in Sports Day, as well as Pacific Plays Pink.

Pacific will look to overcome a hard luck stretch in which the Tigers haven't pulled out close West Coast Conference games due to an inability to get to the free throw line. The Tigers opened the season at 7-7 overall and 3-1 in WCC play using dribble penetration to earn 27.1 free throw attempts per game. Pacific ranks number 11 in free throw percentage in the NCAA and averaged 17 points from the free throw line per game. But in the last seven, the Tigers have posted numbers consistent with their previous averages, aside from two-point field goal percentage and free throw attempts. The Tigers are averaging 10.9 attempts in the last seven games, falling from 78th in the NCAA in attempts to 127th.

The Tigers sit at 8-13 overall and 4-6 in WCC play. At San Francisco on Saturday, Emily Simons hit 6-of-10 from the field for a season-high points with six rebounds, while GeAnna Luaulu-Summers scored 10 points for her fifth-straight game in double-figures. Chelsea Lidy added 11 points off the bench on 5-of-8 shooting in the narrow defeat on the Hilltop. Ameela Li added eight points including a pair of big treys to go with four assists in the game.

Luaulu-Summers, who ranks fourth in the nation in free throw percentage, added a pair of three-pointers to bring her career total to 98. She's two three-pointers shy of becoming the 11th Tiger with 100 career made three-pointers.

Pacific was topped by Saint Mary's on Jan. 19 as the Gaels outscored Pacific from the free throw line 21-8, and Pacific suffered a slow start offensively. The Tigers tightened up the ballgame only to see the Gaels pull away in the third quarter.

The Gaels enter at 12-9 overall and 7-3 in WCC play. On Saturday, the Tigers will take on a Pepperdine squad that posted a 59-58 win over the Tigers in Malibu on Jan. 12. Pacific thought they had the go-ahead bucket with 30 seconds left, but didn't get a jumper in the paint off before the shot clock expired and after forcing a turnover, the Waves used fouls to give to prevent the Tigers from getting a good look at the basket on their final possession.

Pepperdine enters Thursday's game at home against San Francisco at 5-16 overall and 3-7 in the WCC.

Saturday's game at the Spanos Center will be the Tigers's annual Pacific Plays Pink game, where fans are encouraged to wear pink. Proceeds from the event will donated to Hospice of San Joaquin.

Prior to the game, the Tigers will welcome over 200 local girls as part of a National Girls & Women in Sports Day, beginning at 12:00 noon. The Tigers will provide a free clinic to participants taught by athletes from several of Pacific's women's sports programs including basketball, volleyball, and others.  Women's basketball Head Coach Bradley Davis will give a talk to all participants at the clinic as well about the importance of women in sports. National Girls & Women in Sports Day has empowered women and girls to embrace physical activity and build their courage, confidence, and character through participation in sports for over 30 years.  This year's theme is Expanding Opportunity, recognizing the progress made to ensure access to sports for girls and women through programs like Title IX.