LA JOLLA, Calif. - The University of California San Diego women’s basketball team started postseason play by knocking out Sonoma State by a final score of 53-46 in the quarterfinal of the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Tournament, Tuesday at RIMAC Arena.
UC San Diego led by 15-points going into halftime. However, SSU came back to bring the game within three, 49-46, with under two minutes to play. UCSD held on to capture the win and advance to the CCAA Tournament semifinals for the second consecutive year.
The top-seeded Tritons improve to 22-5 on the season and will head into the CCAA semifinal with a four-game win streak. Eighth seed SSU ended the year with a 13-14 record.
Senior guard Beth Mounier and freshman forward Mikayla Williams collected 15 points each while junior Dalayna Sampton grabbed eight rebounds and tallied two blocks. Sophomore Marcella Hughes had a team-high two steals.
The Seawolves’ Carly Gill totaled a game-high 17 points and Madison Burroughs added 14.
As a team, UCSD shot 40.8 percent (20-49) while holding SSU to 27.4 percent (17-62).
The Tritons used a 14-point run to take a 20-10 lead in the first quarter. Mounier was 8-of-8 aided by two three-pointers during the stretch, while Williams added five points.
UCSD carried its momentum into the second frame, leading by as much as 16 points with 3:35 left in the half. SSU tried to close the gap, using a five-point run to come within 11, but the Tritons held a 32-17 advantage going into the locker rooms.
The Seawolves scored eight unanswered points in the third quarter to cut the lead to just one, 36-35, with 3:40 on the clock. SSU outscored UCSD 12-7 in the third frame, but the Tritons led by 10 heading into the final quarter.
With 1:32 left in the game, the Seawolves cut the lead to three, 49-46, but it wasn't enough as Joleen Yang made a jumper to give the Tritons a five-point lead and seal UCSD's ticket to the CCAA Tournament semifinal.
UCSD will play No. 4 Stanislaus State in the first CCAA semifinal game Friday, March 3 at 12:05 p.m.at The Sports Center in San Marcos. The Tritons are 2-0 over the Warriors this season. UCSD took a 69-63 win over Stan State in the first meeting, and defeated the Warriors 68-55 in Turlock.
No. 2 Cal State East Bay will play No. 3 Cal Poly Pomona in the second semifinal game at 2:35 p.m.
The winners of both semifinal games will advance to the CCAA championship game Saturday, March 4 at 5:05 p.m.