Poets top Hiram in OT 60-57

Poets top Hiram in OT 60-57

Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com

ORANGE, Calif. – It came down to extra time Friday night inside of the Hutton Sports Center as the Whittier College Women's Basketball team came away with the 60-57 overtime win over Hiram College.

Hiram was coming off a huge win 69-65 over Chapman University the night before but this evening it was all Purple & Gold who came away with their fourth win on the season moving to 4-7, 2-2 SCIAC.  The Terriers drop to 6-8. 

With 1:46 to play in regulation the Purple & Gold saw themselves trailing 48-40.  But over the final 1:32 WC would rattle off eight straight.  Freshman Teani White (Burbank, Calif.) sparked the run with a triple and was followed by freshman Kami Taylor (Bakersfield, Calif.) with a layin on the Poets next possession.  Then with :28 seconds to play, freshman Emily Guerena (Montebello, Calif.) came up with her biggest shot of her career as she knocked down the game-tying three-pointer that sent the game into overtime.

In extra time it was all Whittier outscoring the Terriers 12-9.  White, Cali Cubel (Oceanside, Calif.), and Guerena added the first six points in the period keeping the Poet run intact at 14 straight. 

Erica Johnson for Hiram and White swapped baskets over the next two possessions keeping the game differential at six but the Terriers managed to find a spark with back-to-back baskets to pull within two at the :26 second mark.  But that's as close as they would get as Guerena would secure the win with four free-throws down the stretch. 

Whittier was held to a mere eight points in the first quarter but came alive in the second outscoring the Terriers 14-7 to take a 22-19 lead at the break.  Hiram managed to outscore the Poets 15-10 in the third keeping them in the game but were held under double digits in the fourth as the Poets defensive unit stood strong. 

White finished with 14 points shooting 50% from the field.  Cubel added 14 points as well playing 34 minutes with a career high six steals and four boards.  Guerena tossed in nine off the bench with eight boards and Monica Hanna (Bellflower, Calif.) provided a seven point; 15 rebound effort.

The Poets finished the game shooting 31% from the field, which included 25% from deep.  Hiram managed to outrebound Whittier 57-44 but turned it over 24 times, which led to 18 Poet points.          

Whittier goes on break starting tomorrow and will begin preparations for two games next week after the Holidays.  The first will occur on Thursday, December 28 when they host Webster (3:00pm).  The second will be New Years Eve against Pacific Lutheran on December 31 (2:00pm).