CLAREMONT (12-9) – UC Santa Cruz finished up their two-game trip to Southern California as they took Claremont-Mudd-Scripps in Claremont. The Stags outscored the Banana Slugs by twelve in the first quarter and defeated the Banana Slugs 67-51.
In the first quarter, the Athenas started the game on a 12-5 run capped by a Kate Parrish layup with 3:20 left in the quarter. The closest the Banana Slugs would come would be five, at 12-7, on a Katherine Mauldin jumper with 3:04 left in the quarter. The Athenas ended the quarter on a 9-2 run, capped by a Maya Love jumper with thirty-seven seconds left, to give the Athenas a 21-9 lead at the end of the first quarter.
In the second quarter, the Athenas would add to their advantage. The closest the Banana Slugs would come would be twelve on two occasions; the second occasion at 23-11 on a Kaylee Murphy jumper with 8:34 left in the half. The Athenas gained their largest lead of the half at nineteen, at 33-14, on a Gloria Bates layup with 3:06 left in the half. The Athenas led 35-18 at halftime.
In the third quarter, the Athenas would hold the Banana Slugs at arms' length. The Athenas gained their largest lead of the game at twenty-two, at 40-18, on a Lindsey Cleary free throw with 9:20 left in the quarter. The Banana Slugs would come as close as fourteen, at 51-37, on an Ashley Kowack three pointer with one second remaining in the quarter.
In the fourth quarter, the Banana Slugs would trim the Athenas' lead. The Banana Slugs would come as close as nine, at 52-43, on a Kowack layup with 7:59 left. The Athenas would gain their largest lead of the quarter at eighteen, at 67-49, on a Lia Gagliuso free throw with thirty-four seconds left.
Murphy had eleven points to lead the Banana Slugs. CJ Catina and Kowack both had ten points in the loss. Parrish had a game-high eighteen points for the Athenas.
The Banana Slugs shot 30.4% (17-56) from the field, 20% (3-15) from the three-point line and were 63.6% (14-22) from the free throw line. The Athenas shot 41.4% (24-58) from the field, 22.2% (2-9) from the three-point line and 81% (17-21) from the foul line. UC Santa Cruz's defense forced twenty-one Athena turnovers scoring seventeen points off the turnovers while the Athenas' defense forced sixteen turnovers by UC Santa Cruz scoring sixteen points off the turnovers. Claremont-Mudd-Scripps outrebounded UC Santa Cruz 48-31 and the Athenas had twenty-one more points off the bench (34-13) than did the Banana Slugs.
The next game for the Banana Slugs will be next Sunday as they will take on Luther College at Kaiser Permanente Arena as they start a seven-game homestand. Tipoff is set for 6 pm.