Forced to be on the road against Loyola Marymount University due to poor conditions in Santa Barbara, the UCSB women’s basketball team dropped yet another match.
What was initially organized to be a home game for the Gauchos against LMU on December 8th, was then rescheduled to a road game for Santa Barbara to be played on December 18th, due to the poor air quality in the city from the Thomas Fire.
The loss drops the Gauchos to 1-9 on the season with just two games left in non-conference season while Loyola Marymount improves to an impressive 8-2 mark on the year.
Going into the game being losers eight-games straight, the road team was determined to rid themselves of their woes and get a win.
Once the game started, Santa Barbara made themselves known. Jumping out to an early lead, redshirt junior guard Sarah Porter and freshman guard Denae Miller each scored a basket from downtown.
Junior combo guard/forward Cheyanne Wallace scored a strong 5 points in the first for the home team.
After the initial five-point blast, UCSB’s scoring began to falter, being held to just six points for the remainder of the period.
The quarter then began to get away from the visitors, when the Lions ended the quarter on a 5-0 run, ending the period with a 16-11 lead.
Trailing by five for the majority of the second quarter, the LMU started to forcefully pull away. With no three-point efforts in the first period, the Lions ignited in the second going 4-for-4 from behind the arc.
One triple was scored by junior guard Andee Velasco, with the other three being secured by senior guard Makenzie Cast.
With the home team pulling away, Porter hit a three-pointer just before the half ended, bringing UCSB’s deficit to a more manageable 34-26, going into halftime.
Going bucket-for-bucket with the Lions in the third period, prevented the visitors from gaining any headway against their opponents.
Redshirt senior forward Drew Edelman for UCSB and Cheyanne Wallace for the home-team, were each heavily engaged in the third.
Edelman had another stellar double-digit performance, notching eight of her game-high 21 points in the third quarter. While Wallace contributed nine of her team-high 16 points in the third period for LMU.
The fourth quarter got interesting, as Santa Barbara began to close the gap, bringing the score within four.
However, after the visiting team’s spark in the fourth, things suddenly changed with just under four minutes to play.
The score was 62-58 with 3:58 left in regulation, when both teams began to fall short. Both UCSB and the Lions went a combined 0-for-10 from the field for the remainder of the period.
Santa Barbara’s defense was lacking, allowing Loyola Marymount to outscore them in 3 of the 4 quarters. However, they had a big fourth period, scoring 17 points over the Lions’ 14.
UCSB shot 36 percent from the field on 23-for-64 shooting, which lacked in comparison to LMU who shot 43 percent on 21-for-49 shooting.
Edelman’s game-high 21 points gave Santa Barbara a much-needed offensive spike, along with Porter’s 17 points which consisted of four downtown baskets.
The Lions had an astonishing four players who scored double digits; Makenzie Cast and redshirt junior Bree Alford gave the team 11, Andee Velasco drained 15, and Cheyanne Wallace had a dominant double-double, recording 16 points and 11 rebounds.
The home team conquered the battle of the boards, out rebounding the Gauchos 43-31.
Beyond the arc was another defeat for UCSB, as they shot a total of 33 three-pointers, and only capitalized on eight of them, ending the night on 24.2 percent three-point shooting. Whereas LMU was more selective about their three-point shots, going for 12, and scoring on 5 of them – to complete 41 percent three-point shooting on the night.
Santa Barbara will have another shot to end their losing skid, as they welcome the Aztecs at home this week.
The Gauchos will face San Diego State (6-4) on Friday, December 22nd at the Thunderdome at 7pm.