ARCATA, Calif. -
Kayla Williams hit a turnaround jumper with 1.9 seconds remaining to send Humboldt State to a 74-73 upset victory over No. 1 UC San Diego in a tightly contested affair on Wednesday evening at Lumberjack Arena.
After Daisy Feder scored to put the Tritons up one with less than 10 seconds to play, Williams drove the length of the court, spun to her left and rolled home the decisive basket to send UCSD to its first loss of the season. Feder scored 18 points to lead four players in double figures for the Tritons, but it wasn't enough as they saw their impressive 26-game winning streak came to an end.
Caitie Richards scored 21 points to lead Humboldt State, which improves to 18-7 overall and 14-7 in California Collegiate Athletic Association play. The Lumberjacks, who became the first team to defeat the Tritons in conference play since January of last season, are tied with Cal Poly Pomona for third place in the league standings with one regular season game remaining.
UCSD falls to 26-1 overall and 20-1 in CCAA play with the loss, coming within two games of a perfect regular season. The Tritons, who had already wrapped up their third conference title in four years and the No. 1 seed in next week's CCAA Championship Tournament, will conclude the regular season Friday evening at Sonoma State.
"You really have to credit Humboldt State," head coach Charity Elliott said. "They played a great game and Williams hit a really big shot. We didn't play with a sense of urgency for a full 40 minutes and didn't get that last stop when we needed to."
Feder finished 8-of-19 from the field to reach double figures for the 18th consecutive game. She also led UCSD with eight rebounds, dished out two assists and tallied two steals.
Chelsea Carlisle finished with 15 points, four boards and five assists for the Tritons, while Lauren Freidenberg totaled 13 points and six rebounds. Emily Osga scored 10 points to go with four rebounds and four assists.
Richards finished 6-of-13 from the floor and sank 5-of-7 from the three-point line to drive the Lumberjack offense. Williams scored 17 points on 7-of-15 shooting and dished out a game-high eight assists, while Lisa Petty also scored 17 after finishing 7-for-15.
The Tritons shot 48% (30-62) from the field, while the Lumberjacks finished at a 43% (28-65) clip. UCSD went 7-for-22 from behind the arc, 32%, and HSU hit 10-of-26 from downtown, 39%. The Tritons held a 38-33 rebounding advantage, but the Lumberjacks scored 15 points off 14 UCSD miscues.
Wednesday's matchup -- which featured a total of 12 ties and 14 lead changes -- was neck-and-neck down the stretch as neither team led by more than two points over the final four and a half minutes. With the game tied at 70 and 2:21 left to play, Osga made a free throw to put the Tritons up one, but Kelly Kime got into the paint and scored on the Lumberjacks' next possession to put HSU on top 72-71 with 38 seconds remaining.
After a UCSD timeout, Feder got the ball at the top of the arc, drove down the lane and scored on a scooping layup to give the Tritons the lead back with just 9.9 seconds on the clock.
Seconds away from defeat, Williams came up with a huge play for the home team, dribbling into the paint, turning and dropping home the game-winner from the elbow with less than two seconds to play.
UCSD called another timeout, but Megan Perry's ensuing inbounds pass was intercepted at half court and the Tritons tasted defeat for the first time in 2011-12.
Humboldt State led by as many as nine points in the first half, but UCSD closed the period on a 10-2 run to take a 35-33 lead at the break. The Tritons scored the first two baskets of the second stanza for their biggest lead of the evening, but the Lumberjacks came back to tie it at 39 with 17 minutes remaining and neither team led by more than three the rest of the way.
UCSD has now lost three of its last four games against HSU in Arcata, including an 82-78 heartbreaker in the CCAA Tournament Semifinals in 2010.
"We're definitely going to learn from this," Elliott continued. "We didn't play as well as we could have and we lost to a really good opponent. We'll bounce back."
Tip-off for Friday's clash with Sonoma State is set for 5:30 p.m. at The Wolves' Den on the SSU campus. The Tritons defeated the Seawolves, 73-57, in the first meeting of the year on January 20 in La Jolla.