By Cesar Gonzalez
Daily Titan Staff Writer
The Cal State Fullerton women’s basketball team played the Lions of Loyola Marymount University at Titan Gym Wednesday night, and they were unable to comeback from a deficit, losing 66-64.
The Titans were led by sophomore guard Megan Richardson, who had 17 points on 7 of 16 shooting, including 2 of 3 from behind the three-point line.
Junior guard Lyndsey Grove added 14 points on 6 of 13 shooting from the field.
The Lions were led in scoring by sophomore guard Alex Cowling on 9 of 13 shooting.
“It was a good effort; we played tough and made mistakes, and our shots were just not falling tonight,” Richardson said, adding that that they dug themselves into a hole despite playing better than the last game.
The first half was a game of cat and mouse as both teams traded baskets until the Titans had their own run with about 14 minutes left in the half as Grove hit a jumper and the next possession she made a lay-up.
Junior forward Katie Avila also scored on a lay-up during their 6-0 run, which cut the Lions lead to 16-12 with 13 minutes left in the game.
In the remaining 13 minutes, each team traded baskets and the Titans trailed 30-23 at the half.
The leading scorers for the Titans at the half were Richardson and Grove with six points each. The Lions were led by Cowling.
At the start of the second half, the the Titans went on a 8-0 run with three-pointers by Grove and junior guard Britt Peters in a one-minute span that cut the Lions lead to one.
CSUF took their first lead of the game two minutes into the half.
The Lions responded with four straight points to regain the lead at 36-31.
The Titans tried to get back into the game, but the Lions scored on almost every possession down as they took a seven-point lead with 12 minutes left in the game.
CSUF answered with a three-pointer by senior guard Jasmine Scott to cut the lead to four points.
They tried to stay close with an attempted run at the final minutes of the game, but losing 59-56
with 1:32 left in the game, the Titans turned the ball over and had to foul in order to extend the game.
They fouled Lions’ senior guard Lisa Helmers, who calmly knocked down two free throws to give the Lions a lead at 61-56.
The Titans pushed the ball up the court and Peters launched a three-pointer and junior forward Jenna Breite got the rebound and laid the ball in to cut the lead to three, with 46 seconds left to play.
Again, the Titans fouled and the pressure was on junior guard Renahy Young to make two free throws which she did and extended the lead back up to five.
CSUF took their final timeout and got a quick three-pointer by Scott and cut the lead to 63-61 with 21 seconds to play.
After the score, CSUF fouled and hoped Young would miss one of two free throws to make it a three-point game and give the Titans a chance to tie the game and send it to overtime.
Young missed the first free throw and made the second to give the Lions a three-point lead.
With no timeouts left, the Titans pushed the ball looking for a three-pointer to tie the game but were unable to get someone open at the three-point line.
Richardson drove to the basket looking to score, got fouled and went to the line.
Richardson missed the first free throw and made the second to cut the lead to two.
The Titans fouled again and Lions’ sophomore guard Candice Nichols knocked down both free throws to give the Lions a four-point lead with four seconds to play.
Grove knocked down a jumper when the game was almost over.
“One play never makes or breaks a game. Our goal is to be better the next game,” Grove said.
Grove added that they wanted to win but were pleased with their performance last night.
After the game, Titan Head Coach Marcia Foster said, “I loved my team’s effort. Loyola Marymount is a good team, and our goal is to be better every time we play.”
Foster also added that their next game versus Brigham Young University is going to be tough.