SANTA CLARA, Calif. – In its third overtime game of the season, Santa Clara women's basketball lost to BYU by a final of 87-80. The loss puts the Broncos at 7-16 overall and 3-8 in WCC action while the Cougars are now 18-5 overall and 8-4 in conference play.
Santa Clara returns to the floor Sat, Feb. 8 at 2 p.m. vs. San Diego. The jerseys of Caren Choppelas-Horstmeyer and Liz Bruno will be honored during a halftime ceremony.
"I thought our effort was good for the majority of the game," said Santa Clara head coach Jennifer Mountain. "We started off behind but made a nice comeback and played a good first half. In the second half rebounds changed the score a little bit and we were in foul trouble. Basketball is a game of runs and it's a couple of possessions here and there that change things. Free throws were a huge reason for why we lost tonight."
Santa Clara shot 46.9% (30-64) from the field and 18.2% (2-11) from three. The Broncos had 34 rebounds, 15 assists, 14 turnovers, and 11 steals. Nici Gilday led the offense with 29 points on 10-21 shooting. Jo Paine added 15 points, five boards, and five assists.
BYU shot 41.9% (26-62) from the field and 15.4% (2-13) from three. The Cougars had 45 rebounds, 15 assists, 17 turnovers, five blocks, and five steals. Lexi Eaton led the offense with 31 points on 10-19 shooting from the field. Jennifer Hamson scored 25 points with 18 rebounds while Kylie Maeda scored 13 points on 10-10 shooting from the free throw line.
The Cougars started the game on an 11-0 run during the first 1:45. Three different Cougars made layups, with Ashley Garfield leading the way with seven points, including a three-point play. After a short jumper by Eaton, Santa Clara called a 30-second timeout to regroup.
The Broncos came back with an 8-0 run over four minutes to get within three points. BYU was 0-5 from the field with three turnovers during the run. Eaton drove to the basket for a layup to end the run at 12:21.
Marie Bertholdt stepped to the line with 9:34 on the clock and hit both ends of a one-and-one to even the score at 18-18. Bertholdt came back with a tough layup in the lane to give Santa Clara its first lead of the game. Garfield fought for an offensive rebound to tie the game again on the next possession.
With the game tied up at 20-20, Paine converted a three-point play to make the Santa Clara lead three points with 6:20 left in the opening half. Ricki Radanovich came back with a block of a three-pointer and was fouled attempting one of her own on the other end. She hit two of three to make it a 27-22 Bronco lead.
Santa Clara would go on a 9-0 run over 1:53 while holding BYU to 0-3 from the floor. Radanovich drilled a three with 2:40 on the clock to help spark the run. The Broncos would go up a game-high 12 points before Kyle Maeda went to the line and hit two to end the run.
The Broncos had possession for the final shot of the first half but couldn't convert and the teams went to the locker room with the score 40-30 Santa Clara on top.
Santa Clara shot 45.2% (14-31) from the field and 16.7% (1-6) from three in the first half. The Broncos had 21 rebounds, seven assists, seven turnovers, and two steals. Gilday led the offense with 14 points 5-11 shooting. Paine added 11 points and three rebounds while Vanessa Leo grabbed five boards to go with four points.
BYU shot 38.7% (12-31) from the field and 0.0% (0-6) from three in the first half. The Cougars had 17 rebounds, six assists, eight turnovers, three blocks, and two steals. Garfield led the offense with 10 points on 4-5 shooting from the floor with seven rebounds. Eaton added 10 points as well while Hamson scored six points with six rebounds.
The teams continued to go back and forth until BYU went on a 12-2 run over 3:32 to get within three points. The Broncos went just 1-5 from the field during the run and Kim Beeston hit the first BYU three of the game to cap the run at 12:23.
The Santa Clara lead got back out to eight points on a layup by Arteivia Lilomaiava at 9:17 but the Cougars answered with a jumper by Eaton and both ends of a one-and-one by Maeda to make the score 56-52.
The Cougars went on a 7-0 run over 1:20 to tie the game 61-61 with 5:29 on the clock. Montana Walters ended the run and put Santa Clara back on top with a jumper but Hamson answered right back.
Eaton converted a three-point play at 3:48 to give BYU a 66-65 lead. After a stop by the Cougar defense, Hamson extended the BYU lead to three points with a pair from the charity stripe.
A blocked three gave BYU the ball with a three point lead and 1:20 on the clock. After a Cougar timeout, Santa Clara came up with a huge defensive stop that led to a layup by Gilday as the shot clock was winding down. Santa Clara promptly called a timeout with 25 seconds left and the score 70-69 BYU.
Santa Clara fouled Eaton to extend the game and she hit both free throws to make it a three-point game again. Out of a timeout, Paine made a layup and Santa Clara promptly fouled on the inbounds pass. Eaton hit two more free throws with 10.2 left on the clock and BYU used its final timeout.
Gilday drained a three with three seconds on the clock to send the game into overtime with the score tied 74-74.
BYU started overtime with four free throws to get out on top 78-74 a minute and a half into the period. Gilday drove to the lane where she drew a foul and hit both free throws to get the deficit down to two.
The Cougars got their lead up to six points before Bertholdt hit a baseline jumper with 1:16 on the clock. A foul by BYU gave Bertholdt a one-and-one but she couldn't make the front end and the score remained 82-78.
The Bronco deficit grew to nine points with 16.6 left and BYU held on for the seven-point win.
Game Notes: Attendance was 326 … At 6'7" BYU's Jennifer Hamson is the tallest player in Division I women's basketball. … Santa Clara is now 0-3 in overtime this year.