Women’s basketball struggles in away trips

Gauchos 63 – 43 Highlanders

The women’s basketball team hit the road again for the second consecutive game. This time they travelled to Santa Barbara, where the Gauchos hosted the Highlanders at the Thunderdome. The Highlanders were still aching after the hard defeat against Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and were looking to get back on the winning track against the Gauchos.

The game started really balanced as both teams scored and defended relatively well. UCR’s Dynese Adams scored the first five points for the Highlanders, while UCSB’s Sweets Underwood took the first eight points for the Gauchos, putting the score sheet at 8-5 after five minutes of play. UCSB controlled the pace of the game by defending well and counterattacking brilliantly, the Gauchos scored six of the next eight points. The Highlanders reacted immediately and scored eight unanswered points, six of those by Natasha Hadley, to shorten the Gauchos’ lead to two points. UCSB put on an astonishing offensive display on the last minutes of the first half and took a lead of eight points at the end of the first half, putting the score sheet at 31-23.

The Highlanders and Gauchos came back to the court sharper for the second half as both teams hit four of four field goals each, yet the difference was two three-point shots by the Gauchos who widened their lead to twelve points. UCR reacted quickly as Dynese Adams scored the next five points, cutting the lead to just seven points. The dynamism of the game was reflected in the next offensive series where both of the teams traded points back and forth. However, the Highlanders were never able to cut the Gauchos’ lead to less than 10 points. UCSB then went into a 9-0 run that killed off the game completely for the Highlanders with two minutes left on the clock. UCR lost by 20 points, with a final score of 63-43. UCR remains the only winless team in the Big West conference with a conference record of 0-6 and an overall record of 2-15.

Mustangs 71 – 43 Highlanders

The women’s basketball team travelled to San Luis Obispo to face the Mustangs in what was the sixteenth fixture of the season. UCR was thrashed by Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in what was a record-breaking game by the Mustangs. The Highlanders came into the game with a record of 2-13 overall and 0-4 in league play. UCR presented a short squad made up of only eight players due to the increasing accumulation of injuries.

The game started really slowly for both teams. The offenses were not as sharp at the beginning and after four and a half minutes of play, the score was 4-2 in favor of the Mustangs. The Highlanders’ defense lacked solidity and allowed six straight points in two minutes. UCR’s offense was unable to respond immediately but as the ball kept moving, they were able to close the gap to five points with a couple of jumpers by Natasha Hadley.

Cal Poly again took an extended lead, scoring the next eight points and opening up a gap of 10 points between the two teams. The scoring pace of the Mustangs and the solid defensive display was too much for the Highlanders. Cal Poly got a twenty-point lead over the Highlanders thanks to an astonishing display by Kristina Santiago who scored a game-high 24 points. The Highlanders just couldn’t stop the Mustangs and by the end of the game, they reached a 36-point lead. The Highlanders tried to fight back with a couple of jumpers and layups by Dynese Adams, but it was too late and too big of an advantage for the Mustangs. UCR got the last points of the game, but they were not enough as they just narrowed down the loss to a 28-point difference. The final score was 71-43 in favor of the Mustangs.

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