Feb. 14, 2009
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Freshman Alyssa Shoji led the Santa Clara women's basketball team with a career-high 18 points Saturday afternoon against Loyola Marymount; but the Lions took the West Coast Conference matchup, 71-58.
Shoji shot 4-for-9 from the behind the arc, was perfect at the charity stripe and led the game with three steals.
For LMU (17-7, 7-3 WCC), Alex Cowling posted a game-high 24 points, while Renahy Young had 22 points and Cassady Moore chipped in with 11 points. Candice Nichols led on the boards with six rebounds.
Santa Clara took an early 7-0 lead on points from Rhianna Faithfull, Maggie Goldenberger and Shoji. Even though LMU rallied to knot the score, 7-7, the Broncos reclaimed the lead, 10-7, on points from Gipson. Yet, a pair of deuces from Young started a 23-3 run that gave the Lions a 30-15 advantage. LMU led 35-21 going into halftime.
The Broncos fought hard in the second half to close the gap. At 15:04, a three-pointer from Shoji brought Santa Clara within nine points, 41-32. Yet, the Lions rallied once again to claim a 61-41 edge with 7:08 to play.
Shoji rose to the occasion once again and made it a 10-point battle with 2:21 to go with her fourth trey of the day. The Broncos trailed 63-53. The two teams traded points for the final two minutes. Young gave the Lions a final 15-point lead, 71-56, but Goldenberger had the last say for a final score of 71-58.
During the halftime, the Santa Clara athletic department recognized several Bronco alumni and announced the retirement of Bronco All-American and all-time leading scorer Melissa (King) Fisher's '93 jersey to the rafters of the Leavey Center. King Fisher is the first women's basketball student-athlete to have her jersey retired.
The Broncos bring the 2008-09 home schedule to a close on Saturday, Feb. 21. Santa Clara host San Francisco in WCC action at 7 p.m. at the Leavey Center. Saturday's game is SCU's designated PinkZone game. Fans are encouraged to wear pink to the game to support breast cancer awareness and prevention. SCU will also honor its three graduating seniors - Elizabeth Doran, Claire Goins and Sara Majors - in a pregame ceremony.