The Tritons, who took out conference opponents Cal State Los Angeles and CSU Dominguez Hills on consecutive nights, have quickly jumped to No. 2 in the CCAA standings, behind the 3-0 Chico State Wildcats.
This weekend provided two crucial wins for UCSD who had struggled in non-conference play. The Tritons improve to one game under .500 at 4-5 on the season, winning back-to-back games for the first time since the NCAA Tournament last season.
UCSD 70, Cal State Los Angeles 49
The Tritons never trailed in their Friday night rout of the visiting Golden Eagles. UCSD jumped to an early 15-0 lead. It took Cal State L.A. until 14:46 left in the first half to put up their first bucket, but the Tritons never looked back en route to a 38-26 halftime lead. Senior guard Daisy Feder had 12 first-half points on her way to a game-high of 21 points. After the Golden Eagles managed to reduce the lead to eight with 16:55 to play, UCSD went on an 8-0 run and kept a strong lead for the rest of the game.
Sophomore point guard Miranda Seto tied her career high of 14 points and junior forward Erin Dautremont had 12 points and 11 rebounds for her second consecutive double-double.
Feder has led the Tritons in scoring this season, and is averaging 21.1 points per game. UCSD head coach Heidi VanDerveer thinks Feder has been effective as a team leader this season.
“As Daisy goes, we go,” VanDerveer said. “She’s actually relaxed while being aggressive and that’s helped her and helped us.”
UCSD 74, CSU Dominguez Hills 66
The Toros kept their Saturday evening game against the Tritons close with both teams trading baskets for most of the first half. Nine turnovers plagued UCSD in the first half and the Toros outrebounded the Tritons by 12 heading into halftime.
After trailing by a point at the end of the first half, the Tritons never lost the lead after a three-pointer by Seto to start the second half. UCSD’s lead was cut to three with only six minutes to play in the game, but the Tritons were able to prevent a late Toro comeback by going on a 7-0 run.
“We played with a lot more energy in the second half,” head coach Heidi VanDerveer said. “We were able to come back and grind it out and have people make big plays.”
Four Tritons reached double figures with Feder again leading all scorers again with 25 points. UCSD shot 42.7 percent from the field and 90 percent from the foul line, but was badly outrebounded 40-26.
“We need to rebound,” VanDerveer said. “Great teams rebound. We need to really work on boxing out, finding a body and getting much more aggressive on the glass.”
The Tritons won’t play again until after finals week at UCSD when they travel to CSU San Bernardino on Dec. 16.