Women's Hoops Topped At Saint Mary's, 82-74

Photo Courtesy of Jaslyn Gilbert
Photo Courtesy of Jaslyn Gilbert

MORAGA, Calif. - The Pacific women's basketball team dropped a 82-74 road contest at Saint Mary's Thursday despite a career-high tying 12 points from Ameela Li.

GeAnna Luaulu-Summers led the Tigers with 17 points, while Chelsea Lidy added 13 points while Emily Simons finished with 10 points on 5-of-10 shooting.

Jenelle Grant added six points and six rebounds for the Tigers, while Callie Owens and Najah Queenland each added seven points.

Saint Mary's pulled ahead every time Pacific got close, and shot 65 percent in the second half. The Gaels converted on 25-of-54 for the game, 46 percent to the Tigers 29-of-74, 39 percent. Saint Mary's held a 50-33 rebounding edge and outscored the Tigers 30 to 8 from the free throw line.

But the Tigers stayed in it by forcing 22 turnovers while committing just 15, and turning the Gaels' miscues into 19 points.

Devyn Galland opened the scoring with a three-pointer for the Gaels, but Luaulu-Summers answered with a triple for the Tigers. Mauriana Clayton and Sydney Raggio traded lay-ups in the paint, Queenland tied the game at 9-9 with a lay-up off the glass. The Gaels took an 11-9 lead from the free throw line and Shannon Mauldin added an inside score before Li drained a three-pointer. But the Gaels led 17-14 after the first after sinking five bonus free throws to close the quarter.

In the second, Simons added a pair of jumpers, but the Gaels stretched the lead to 25-18 on four points from Devon Brookshire. Lidy drained a baseline jumper to cut the margin to four. Brookshire and Simons traded jumpers in the paint before another Simons bucket brought Pacific within 27-25. Owens connected on a three from the wing to cut the gap to 29-28, but the Gaels tallied a free throw before the half to lead, 30-29.

Pacific shot 32 percent (12-of-37) in the first half, while Saint Mary's shot 32 percent (10-31). The Gaels out-rebounded Pacific 29-19, but the Tigers surrendered just five second chance points while scoring four.

Lidy canned a baseline jumper to open the third quarter, tying the game, but Raggio answered back with a pair of baskets. Lidy connected again, but the Gaels kept feeding Raggio down low, building a 39-32 lead. Luaulu-Summers struck back with a three-pointer and Lidy rattled home a jumper to cut the margin to four. Grant's transition lay-up brought the Tigers within two, but SMC answered right back on a drive from Galland and stretched the lead to 50-41 with 3:10 to go in the quarter. Li posted a lay-up and added an and-one, bringing the Tigers within 5. The Tigers cut the margin to 52-48 headed to the fourth.

Saint Mary's picked up the first two buckets of the fourth before Grant hit a turnaround fadeaway. Simons added a jumper from the baseline. Luaulu-Summers converted an and-one to cut the gap to 60-57, but Raggio answered back to give the Gaels a five-point edge. Mauldin connected on a three-pointer as the Saint Mary's lead swelled to eight. Li drove and finished, but the Gaels stretched the lead from the line. Luaulu-Summers added a three-pointer, but a slew of free throws kept the gap at nine, 72-63 with 2:41 to go.

Owens added a late three pull Pacific within 76-68, but the Gaels closed it out from the free throw line.

Raggio finessed with 17 points for Saint Mary's, while Megan McKay chipped in 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Pacific falls to 8-14 overall, 4-7 in West Coast Conference play, while Saint Mary's improves to 13-9 overall and 8-3 in the WCC.

The Tigers will return home for a Saturday match-up with Pepperdine on National Girls & Women In Sports Day and Pacific Plays Pink. Tip-off is set for 2:00 p.m.