Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com
WHITTIER, Calif. –The Whittier College Women's Basketball team made a statement Wednesday night inside of the Graham Athletic Center as they rolled Caltech 75-52 winning their second straight Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) game.
The Purple & Gold improve to 8-11 on the season and move back to .500 in SCIAC play at 5-5.
The Poets were red hot all night shooting 50% from the field and 43% from behind the arc. Nine different players scored with 20 coming from the bench. Monica Hanna (Bellflower, Calif.) led all scorers with 19 on 9-of-14 shooting and posted a double double with a season high 15 boards. Cali Cubel (Oceanside, Calif.) posted 11 points in 29 minutes of action and Teani White (Burbank, Calif.) registered an impressive stat line of 10 points, three boards, five assists, and two steals.
The game was tied at 2-2 within the first :30 seconds of the first quarter but that's as close as the Beavers would get as WC would go on to add nine unanswered to go on top 11-2. Caltech stopped the run with five of their own, which included a strike from long range but again the Poets would counter with back-to-back-to-back jumpers from Kelsi Ikeda (Honolulu, HI), Hanna, and Emily Guerena (Montebello, Calif.) that opened the game up to double digits.
Mia Maglinte (Roseville, Calif.) added a triple soon after to get into the scoring category to move the score to 20-9 but again CIT would answer with four free throws from Samantha D'Costa under a minute to play to pull within seven.
Whittier continued to pour it on in the second quarter outscoring the Beavers 14-9 thanks to an opening 12-3 run that stretched the lead back to double digits at the break.
It was an offensive juggernaut in the third quarter as Whittier put up a season high 27 points across the ten minutes. Cubel sparked the scoring with an opening triple and was followed by Hanna and Ikeda with jumpers that moved the score to 41-22. With 5:43 to play in the frame Cubel sparked another run with a free throw this time being followed by Guerena with a jumper, White with a three-pointer, and Ikeda with a jumper from the baseline. Caltech strung together five straight quickly after but the Poet offense was too much to handle down the stretch. Hanna struck for a pair of jumpers followed by a Daisy Cardenas (Santa Clarita, Calif.) triple capped off with a time expiring corner pocket three-pointer from Kaitlin Eells (Granada Hills, Calif.).
This opened the game up and put it away going into the fourth as the margin stretch to 26. Caltech outscored WC 17-14 in the final period but the comeback wasn't enough to pull off the road victory.
"Right now we have the confidence going inside and outside, while at the same time moving the ball efficiently," Dow said. We have eleven new players, which includes a mid-season acquisition Monica Hanna who now understands her role. She will play a pivotal part down the stretch along with the other bigs inside because rebounding will get us into the SCIAC Post Season Tournament and winning a SCIAC Championship. Different people are stepping up with a sense of calmness and they know their purpose and they are executing."
Whittier remains at home this Saturday, January 27 as they welcome in the University of Redlands with tip-off set for 7:00pm.