February 21, 2009

Broncos Send Off Seniors In Style With 51-46 Victory Over USF

Feb. 21, 2009

Box Score | Video Highlights

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Senior Sara Majors led the Santa Clara women's basketball team with 13 points and nine rebounds, as head coach Jennifer Mountain received her first West Coast Conference win with a 51-46 triumph over San Francisco Saturday night.

Fellow senior Elizabeth Doran added 11 points for the Broncos (3-24, 1-11 WCC), while sophomore Lena Gipson nearly had double-double No. 18 with 11 points and nine rebounds.

"We fought hard," said Mountain. "We haven't been able to put 40 minutes together, but our players know that they are capable of doing that. We're all proud of this victory, especially since it is senior night. Our seniors played their hearts out. Liz started things off for us with back-to-back threes, Claire had two huge plays and Sara played solid defense like she has all year long."

The Broncos stormed to a 9-0 lead on back-to-back three-pointers from Doran, a free shot by Majors and a jumper from Maggie Goldenberger. The Dons (6-20, 2-10 WCC) interrupted the run with a basket from Donnisha Taylor, but the Broncos continued to hold onto the lead. USF came within four, 11-7, on free throws from Rheina Ale, yet Santa Clara held strong.

In the final 10 minutes of the first half, the Dons cut the lead to three points on four occasions. At 3:13, Shay Rollins sank a trey to make the score, 25-22. With 2:26 to play Majors was sent to the charity stripe for the fourth time. She made one of her two shots to give SCU a four-point edge, 26-22. However, Rollins and USF had the final say with a layup with 36 seconds remaining. SCU led 26-24 at the half.

At the start of the second half, USF quickly knotted the score and took the lead for the first time of the game. Yet, SCU continued to fight and reclaimed the lead, 35-32, on a jumper and a pair of free throws from Gipson. Even though the Dons tied the score four more times, the Broncos did not give up.

The game was knotted for the final time on free throws from Taylor; but, a three-pointer by Brittany Purvis and a jumper from Claire Goins put the Broncos up by five, 47-42. USF rallied to bring the score within one points, but SCU did not relinquish the lead. At 1:37, Goldenberger gave SCU a three-point lead, 49-46, with a jumper. However, it was Alyssa Shoji's free throw with 42 seconds to play that sealed the win for the Broncos, 50-46. Goldenberger gave SCU its 51 points with a free shot with nine seconds remaining.

Santa Clara takes to the road for the final regular-season weekend. The Broncos take on the Bulldogs of Gonzaga on Thursday, Feb. 26 at 6 p.m. in Spokane, Wash. SCU then faces Portland in the regular-season finale on Saturday, Feb. 28 at 2 p.m. in Portland, Ore.