UCSD Loses Focus in Loss

    Women’s Basketball — One night after beating a team tied for
    first place in the California Collegiate Athletic Association, the Tritons
    suffered a loss to a seventh-place team to stay in a tie for third place in
    conference. UCSD put together a convincing 66-56 win at Cal State San
    Bernardino on Feb. 23, dropping the Coyotes into second place in the CCAA. The
    Tritons followed up that game with a 72-55 loss to Cal Poly Pomona University
    on the road on Feb. 24, in a game where UCSD led by as many as 11 points in the
    first half but let a win slip away.

    The Tritons started out the game well against Cal Poly
    Pomona, taking a 14-7 lead off …senior guard Alexis Mezzetta’s free throws with
    13:40 left in the half. Jump shots from senior forward Meaghan Noud and junior
    forward Michelle Osier as well as free throws from sophomore guard Laura Moore
    extended UCSD’s lead to 22-11.

    Sophomore forward Erin Noonan only scored seven points in the Tritons’ two games over the weekend, but made her presence in other ways, grabbing fifteen rebounds, blocking a shot and making three steals. (Sanh Luong/Guardian File)

    The Broncos would not go down easily, as they rallied back
    before the half. Cal Poly Pomona cut the Triton lead to 33-29 at the half, as
    UCSD could not head into the break on a good note.

    The Broncos’ momentum from the first half continued into the second. Cal Poly Pomona quickly tied
    the game at 35 less than five minutes into the half and a three-pointer gave
    the Broncos their first lead of the game at 40-37. UCSD retook the lead on an
    Osier jumper midway through the second half, but the Broncos quickly recovered
    and took control of the game.

    Cal Poly Pomona took a 10-point lead with 4:18 left, sealing the loss for the Tritons
    and handing UCSD its sixth conference loss of the year.

    “[The Broncos] had 18 offensive rebounds in the game,” head
    coach Charity Elliott said. “We gave them extra opportunities that we didn’t
    need to give them.”

    Led by Osier and Noud, the Tritons had different results in
    their game against Cal State San Bernardino. UCSD started out the game in an
    8-0 hole before Osier’s layup put the Tritons on the board with 16:20 left. Noud and Osier took turns hitting
    shots for the Tritons, and Noud’s three-pointer with 7:22 left in the half gave
    the Tritons a 18-16 lead — their first of the game.

    The teams fought hard in the last several minutes and UCSD
    ended up taking a 25-24 lead going into the break. Osier and Noud combined to
    score 20 of the Tritons’ 25 points in the half.

    The Tritons and Coyotes played a close beginning of the
    second half with the Tritons, holding onto a slim lead throughout. Noud’s
    fourth three-pointer of the game gave the Tritons a little bit of separation
    from the Coyotes, pushing their lead to nine points with 11:56 left in the contest.

    With Osier and Noud continuing to score basket after basket
    for the Tritons, UCSD’s defense was able to hold off Cal State San Bernardino’s
    center and best player to give the Tritons a strong chance at winning. With the
    Tritons still holding onto the lead in the last few minutes of the game, the
    Coyotes were unable to knock their shots down and UCSD was able to convert on
    its free throws to give the Tritons a 66-56 win.

    “The game was an accomplishment especially since we knocked CSUSB
    out of first place,” Osier said.

    Osier led all scorers with 30 points and Noud added 27
    points. UCSD also held Cal State San Bernardino’s center Vanessa Wilt to only
    seven points in the game. The win gave the Tritons a season sweep over the
    Coyotes and dropped Cal State San Bernardino into second place.

    “We played a phenomenal defensive game,” Elliott said. “It
    was only the second time all year that [Wilt] didn’t have a double-double.”

    The Tritons will take to the road for their last two regular
    season contests against Cal State
    Monterey Bay

    on Feb. 28 and San Francisco State
    University
    on Feb. 29. These games
    are important for UCSD, which needs to be one of the top four seeds in the
    first round of the CCAA tournament in order to host its first-round contest.

    “We’re still in good shape,” Elliott said. “We need to take
    care of business in our next games and have some momentum heading into the
    tournament.”

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