Poets edged 55-53 by Occidental

Poets edged 55-53 by Occidental

Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com

WHITTIER, Calif. – In a big Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) showdown Saturday night, the Whittier College Women's Basketball team was edged 55-53 inside of the Graham Athletic Center by Occidental College.

The loss snaps a two game winning streak for the Purple & Gold as they drop to 6-9, 3-3 SCIAC, while Occidental improves to 6-5, 1-2 SCIAC. 

It came down to the last shot for the Poets as Oxy managed to go in front 55-53 with a lucky roll off a jumper from Alyssa Ramlochan with 1:05 to play.  After a missed three-pointer from Mia Maglinte (Roseville, Calif.) and a big defensive stop by the Purple & Gold, they had one last look for the game-winner or equalizer with under :10 seconds to play.

Out of a timeout, sophomore Cali Cubel (Oceanside, Calif.) got the call and was able to get to the rack putting up a tough contested layup but it would roll out as time expired allowing the Tigers to escape with the win.  A minute earlier Cubel dropped a nice layin that tied the game up at 53-53 but couldn't get the last one to fall despite her amazing ball handling skills through the paint.

Whittier was outscored 17-8 in the first quarter but rebounded nicely in the second tying the game up at 19-19 outscoring the Tigers 11-2 over the opening six minutes capped off with a triple from Daisy Cardenas (Santa Clarita, Calif.) and a layin by Teani White (Burbank, Calif.).

But over the final three minutes the tides turned as Oxy would finish off the period on their own 9-1 run, which included a three-pointer from Madison Toy with :16 seconds remaining giving the Tigers a 29-20 lead at the break. 

It has been a story of two halves for the Poets all season and once again they came out of the break firing on all cylinders outscoring Oxy 17-11to pull within three at 40-37. Then in the fourth, they kept the momentum going despite seeing the Tigers open up a seven point lead in the early stages of the frame.  With 4:37 to play in the game Maglinte knocked down a huge three-pointer that pulled WC within four.  Shortly thereafter Emilee Dy (Chino Hills, Calif.) responded with her own triple, which got a 7-0 run started with Kelsi Ikeda (Honolulu, HI) and Cubel adding buckets that tied the game but that's as close as Whittier would get as Oxy would add the eventual game-winner on their next possession. 

White led the Poets with 12 points, picked up four boards and had six steals.  Maglinte added 12 points off the bench and Monica Hanna (Bellflower, Calif.) chipped in with a double double with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

Whittier finished shooting 31% from the field and was at a 28% clip from behind the arc.  They were outrebounded 47-24 but forced 24 turnovers, which led to 23 points.              

Whittier has one game this upcoming week as they travel to Chapman University on Wednesday, January 10 with tip-off set for 7:00pm.