Women’s basketball falls to Golden Bears

Cougars shot 35 percent from field in close game, outscored by nine points in fourth quarter against Cal


GEORGE RODRIGUEZ | Daily Evergreen file

Utah sophomore guard Megan Jacobs dribbles the ball past a WSU player on Jan. 7 at Beasley Coliseum. Cougars have now lost three in a row after loss to University of California, Berkeley, on Sunday.

AVERY COOPER, Evergreen reporter

WSU women’s basketball lost a back-and-forth game 66-60 to University of California, Berkeley, on Sunday. The defeat means the Cougars’ losing streak has now reached three games.

Golden Bears (13-4, 4-2) junior forward Kristine Anigwe scored a game-high 30 points and picked up 17 rebounds. WSU (8-10, 1-5) redshirt sophomore forward Borislava Hristova led the Cougars in scoring, racking up 25 points.

WSU Associate Head Coach Mike Daugherty said the Cougars need to execute better down the stretch if they want to come out on top in close games.

“I thought we did a great job defensively all night,” Daugherty said. “When we were down [by] two, we didn’t make the play we needed to make. We need to learn from that.”

It was a close start to the first quarter, but a 13-2 run that lasted until 6:43 in the second quarter gave WSU a 24-19 lead. The team would later stretch that lead to six points, but a 7-0 run in the final two minutes of the first half gave the Golden Bears a 32-31 lead at halftime.

California and WSU swapped leads 12 times in the second half. There were 16 lead changes and 12 ties in the game.

The Cougars’ largest lead in the second half was five points, after senior guard Pinelopi Pavlopoulou scored on a layup six seconds into the fourth quarter.

The Golden Bears responded with a 6-0 run of their own to give them a 51-50 lead, after a pair of free-throws from freshman guard Kianna Smith, with just under eight minutes remaining in the game.

WSU would retake the lead 57-55 with 3:22 remaining after a three-pointer and a two-point jump shot from redshirt junior forward Louise Brown. Brown finished the night with 10 total points and seven rebounds.

“I think we’re making progress, it was good to see Lou hit a big shot in big time,” Daugherty said.

The Cougars had four players with four fouls with four minutes left in the game. Senior guard Caila Hailey fouled out with 1:38 left and the game tied at 60.

Cal would then go on a 7-0 run to win the game, totaling a 12-3 run in the final 3:22.

WSU was down by two points with 27 seconds remaining, but Smith stole the ball from the Cougars’ sophomore guard Chanelle Molina with 13 seconds remaining to seal the victory for the Golden Bears.

“We had plenty of time to get a good shot,” Daugherty said. “We didn’t do what we were supposed to. When you don’t do what you’re supposed to, you pay the price. We had good looks in the fourth, and they didn’t go down.”

38 of the Golden Bears’ points came in the paint. WSU shot just over 35 percent from the field and were outscored by nine points in the final quarter.

Daugherty said the difference in the game was the ability to make shots. “In the fourth quarter, again we didn’t shoot well,” he said. “They shot it well, but they were two feet from the basket.”

Daugherty also added that the team has the talent to make a run in the Pac-12, but they need a win to gain confidence.

“We need to get [in] a little bit of a rhythm,” Daugherty said. “So, we need to win some basketball games and start feeling good about ourselves, and not just good about the effort.”

WSU will host its rival, University of Washington, for its next game at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Beasley Coliseum.