Feb. 15, 2003
MALIBU, Calif. - The Santa Clara University women's basketball team fell to Pepperdine 66-64 on a last-second shot by Shanell Law this evening in West Coast Conference action at Firestone Fieldhouse in Malibu. Julie Butler scored a team-high 14 points, but the Broncos fall to 16-7 on the season and 7-3 in the league. The league-leading Waves improve to 18-6, 10-1.
Both teams showcased the talents of the WCC to 829 fans and a regional television audience on various Fox Sports Channels.
Ahead by 12 at halftime, Santa Clara did not hold onto its fourth intermission advantage this season. Additionally, it was the Broncos seventh time hitting at least 50 percent from the field, but first loss despite reaching that plateau. Seniors Tammy Annas and Kendra Rhea added 11 points each for the Broncos, and combined for 15 rebounds to lead the team defensively as well.
Law finished with 17 points to lead the Waves, while Jennifer Lacey added 10.
The Broncos opened the contest by making their first five attempts from the field, and held a 14-10 lead at the 12-minute mark. Sophomore Kayla Huss' second three-pointer of the game made it a 21-14 lead with nine minutes left in the period. The scoring slowed down, as it was 25-18 five minutes later.
Rhea hit two free throws to give SCU its largest lead, at nine points, and two more free throws by Annas maintained that nine-point edge at 29-20, heading into the final minute of the half.
Reserve guard Jennifer Bradley hit a three from the top of the key to extend the Broncos' lead into double digits at the half, 32-20. Santa Clara stopped a last-second attempt by the Waves and finished the period making 45.8 percent from the field. Pepperdine's starters went 4-22 from the field as the team was only 26.5 percent from the field. Annas had already pulled down seven rebounds by intermission.
Butler converted consecutive three-point plays in the first four minutes of the second period to keep the 12-point lead. The Waves rebounded with nine straight points to pull to 38-41 with 13 minutes remaining. It remained a close game through the next five minutes, with the Broncos holding the lead, but Pepperdine pulling as close to two, 46-48 on a basket by Law.
It was a four-point lead for Santa Clara heading into the final five minutes, but two quick baskets by Pepperdine and the game was tied at 56-56 with 4:25 on the clock.
A baseline three from Wave Keani Christianson gave Pepperdine its first lead of the game, 59-58, with 3:06 remaining. Two free throws by Jennifer Lacy extended that lead to 61-58 with at the 2:22 mark.
Rhea made two free throws, and then Annas made one of two attempts from the charity stripe in the final two minutes to tie the game at 61-61. Law hit a baseline three with 42 seconds remaining to give the Waves a 64-61 lead. SCU head coach Michelle Bento called a time out with 27 seconds remaining to set up the Broncos' final play.
Thomas responded. After missing her first three attempts from behind the arc in the first half, she kept her confidence and nailed a baseline three to tie the game at 64-64 with 13 seconds remaining.
Santa Clara returns home next week for the final two games that will be played at the Leavey Center this season. The Broncos host San Francisco on Thursday, Feb. 20, at 7 p.m. Santa Clara will honor its five seniors in their last home game of their career during the Saturday, Feb. 22 game against Saint Mary's. Tip-off for that contest has been moved up from its originally published time and is now at 2 p.m.