HAYWARD, Calif. - Strong shooting from the perimeter led the UC San Diego women's basketball team to a 61-50 league victory over Cal State East Bay at Pioneer Gym Saturday night.
The win pushed UCSD back over the .500 mark, improving its overall record to 9-8. The Tritons, who entered the evening in a three-way tie for second place in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA), are now 7-3 in league play.
"We had a great response to a tough game last night (57-48 loss at Cal State Monterey Bay)," said UCSD head coach Heidi VanDerveer. "We came out with a tremendous amount of energy, were aggressive and really set the tone with our defense."
The Tritons drained 10 three-pointers in the game, the team's second-highest total of the season. Defensivley, UCSD forced 15 East Bay turnovers, which the Tritons parlayed into 20 points. They gave the ball up 14 times themselves, which led to 12 points for the Pioneers.
For the 11th time this season, senior guard Daisy Feder was the game's leading scorer as she totaled 19 points on 7-for-17 shooting, which included four three-pointers. Feder also chipped in with four assists and a pair of steals. Sixteen of her points came in the opening half.
Emily Osga, also a senior guard, finished with 13 points, three assists and a steal. She was 5-for-9 overall and made three of four three-point attempts. Sophomore forward McKennan Bertsch also recorded a double-figure point total, collecting 10 by making five of her six shots from the field.
The Tritons made almost 54 percent of their shots in the first half, leading them to a 39-25 advantage at the break.
Up 44-25 early in the second frame, Feder hit a three at the 17:35 mark to put UCSD up by 22 points, its largest lead of the night.
Cal State East Bay got back within eight points when Marlene MacMillan's free throws with 7:59 left brought the score to 49-41. However, junior guard Megan Perry drilled two three-pointers over the next two minutes and 21 seconds, putting UCSD back up by a comfortable 16 points (59-43) with 5:38 remaining in the game. Bertsch added four points during the same stretch.
"I thought Emily and Daisy were in attack mode," said VanDerveer. "We also got tremendous contributions from McKennan and Erin (Dautremont). Down the stretch when it got close, Megan hit two big threes to give us the cushion we needed to finish out the game."
UCSD ended up shooting 44.4 percent (24-for-54) for the game and CSUEB finished at 38.5 percent (20-for-52). The Tritons, who held a slight 33-30 edge in rebounding, made 40 percent (10-of-25) of their threes, while the Pioneers amassed 11 steals.
It was UC San Diego's ninth consecutive win over Cal State East Bay.
"I was very impressed by the character of our team tonight," said VanDerveer.
Cal State East Bay fell to 5-8 overall and 3-6 in the league with the loss. MacMillan led the Pioneers with 13 points while Brianna Terrance contributed 11.
Along with UCSD, Cal Poly Pomona and Cal State L.A. were both winners Saturday, leaving intact the three-team logjam for second place in the CCAA.
Through two contests of its season-long, six-game road swing, UCSD next plays at San Francisco State on Feb. 25 and at Sonoma State on Feb. 26. Both games are slated to tip at 5:30 p.m.
-- UCSDtritons.com --