Poets edge Caltech in SCIAC Opener

Poets edge Caltech in SCIAC Opener

Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com

WHITTIER, Calif. – The Whittier College Women's Basketball team opened up Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) play Saturday night and came away with a one-point victory 51-50 inside of the Graham Athletic Center over the California Institute of Technology.

Whittier ended a three game losing skid and move to 1-3, 1-0 SCIAC, while Caltech remains winless on the season at 0-5, 0-1 SCIAC.

It was a tight game throughout with 11 ties and seven lead changes.  The largest lead being seven held by the Purple & Gold in the fourth quarter. 

Caltech with their large lineup of Kate Lewis (6-1), Madeline Schemel (6-0), and Elizabeth Eiden (6-3) proved tough for the Poets inside as they combined for 29 points.

Emily Underwood (Nicholasville, KY) and Carly Buechler (Greenwood Village, CO) got the Poets going with back to back triples that put WC in front 8-2 but a 9-1 run for CIT would move the momentum back with the visitors as they would grab an 11-9 lead following the first ten minutes.

Whittier would outscore Caltech 15-12 in the second quarter led by freshman Cali Cubel (Oceanside, Calif.) who went off with 13 of the 15 points, which included two corner pocket three pointers that helped give Whittier a 24-23 lead at the break.

The Beavers managed to stick around in the third forcing the game into a tie heading into the final period as Cubel would add another six.

In the fourth, Daniza Rodriguez (San Jose, Calif.) got hot knocking down back to back tres followed by an Ana Youngblood (Berkeley, Calif.) jumper that put Whittier in front by seven 47-40.  CIT continued to chip away at the lead though and stayed around however outscoring WC 5-0 over the final 4:10. 

But the comeback wouldn't be enough as Whittier would come away with the home victory and the first for Head Coach Roy Dow.   

Cubel led the Poets in scoring with 21 on 7-of-18 shooting.  Rodriguez added eight off the bench going 3-of-7 from the field, while Youngblood and Amia Thrash (Eastvale, Calif.) would each add seven.

Underwood despite having a mere three points picked up a team high five rebounds and six assists, while freshman Jazmyn Sudbrook-Johnson (Fremont, Calif.) registered six boards.

Despite being outrebounded 56-31 and being outscored 28-18 in the paint, Whittier capitalized on 23 turnovers outscoring CIT 26-4.      

Whittier returns to the court for four consecutive road games as they travel to Willamette (Friday, December 9 @ 8:00pm) and George Fox (Saturday, December 10 @ 4:00pm) before taking part in the UC Santa Cruz Tournament on December 21-22.