LOS ANGELES, CA. – Anita Romero's late bucket gave the Pomona-Pitzer Women's Basketball team their first road Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) win of the season over Occidental 52-51 on Saturday afternoon at Rush Gymnasium.
Season Impact: With the win, The Sagehens improve to 4-11 overall and 2-5 in SCIAC play. This also marks the first win over the Tigers for second-year Head Coach, Jill Pace.
The Sagehens were led by Romero who tallied a game-high 20 points and 10 rebounds for her seventh double-double of the season and her third 20 and 10 game this year. Keilani Ikehara added 13 points in the win and Emma Godfrey chipped in with 12 points and seven rebounds as well.
The Sagehens opened up the first quarter and stayed right with the Tigers early on as the two teams found themselves tied at 10-10 midway through the first quarter. Hot starts by Godfrey and Romero kept the Sagehens close but the Tigers ended the quarter on a 6-1 run to take a 16-11 lead heading into the second.
Pomona-Pitzer closed the gap early on in the second quarter as they cut the deficit down to 19-18 after a made free-throw by Godfrey but Occidental once again got hot to end the quarter as they went into halftime with a 29-22 lead.
The Sagehens made up their ground in the third quarter as they outscored the Tigers 18-12 and shut down the Occidental offense limiting them to just 25% from the field and 0-4 from beyond the arc. Pomona-Pitzer wasted no time cutting the lead down to one point at 34-33 after a pair of made free-throws by Renae Tamura with 5:26 left in the third. Occidental did a good job of maintaining their small lead late in the third but the Sagehens got some momentum late in the quarter as Alexa Bayangos hit a big three-pointer with 13 seconds left in the third as Occidental held a 41-40 lead heading into the fourth.
Pomona-Pitzer hung around with the Tigers early in the fourth but Occidental extended their lead to five points at 49-44 after a made layup with 4:14 left to go. The Sagehens came back with six-straight points to take their first lead of the second half at 50-49 after Romero buried a jumper with 1:43 left to go.
Occidental retook the lead on their next possession and held a 51-50 lead and forced Pomona-Pitzer to take a timeout with 28 seconds remaining. Coach Pace dialed up a play for her leading scorer that paid off as Romero got a good look at a layup and put the Sagehens up one with 15 seconds left on the clock. The Tigers would then turn the ball over as Tamura came up with a huge steal to lock up the game for the Sagehens and earn their second SCIAC win of the year.
Up Next: The Sagehens continue SCIAC play as they next host La Verne on Wednesday, January 17th at 7:00 p.m.