Women’s Basketball Splits Games

By Michael Zavala

Staying in contention on the road has been difficult for the
women’s basketball team, but Cal Poly made strides with its first
road split of the season.

“It was one of the team’s best road trips [this season],” said
head coach Michelle Fortier.

The Broncos (7-16, 6-12) lost to No. 16 Chico State Saturday,
53-73. The loss came one night after Cal Poly defeated Cal State
Stanislaus, 78-62.

Cal Poly kept pace in the first half Saturday, shooting 43.5
percent overall compared to 44 percent for Chico State. However,
offensive struggles enabled the Wildcats to outscore the Broncos by
15 in the second.

Junior Ashley Moody led Cal Poly with 12 points.

Junior Vanessa Dominguez scored 11 points, and sophomore Lauren
Kitaguchi added 10 points.

Cal Poly began strong, taking a 15-13 lead with 8:23 left in the
half following a Moody layup.

Fortier was pleased with how difficult Cal Poly made post play
for Chico State in the first half.

“It was our best defensive effort this season,” said
Fortier.

Early in the second half, the Broncos cut the Wildcat advantage
to four, 31-35, but Chico State went on an 11-0 run to take a 46-31
lead with 12:27 left in the half.

After a 3-pointer from junior Casey Brick brought Cal Poly to
within eight with 10 minutes left in the game, the Wildcats ran off
another 11-0 run to increase their lead to 17 points, from which
Cal Poly could not recover.

Foul trouble was part of what hurt the Broncos in the final
minutes, according to Fortier.

“Certain players were on the bench (…) and Chico took
advantage of that,” said Fortier.

On Friday, Cal Poly led the game wire-to-wire, shooting 52.6
percent overall from the field and out-rebounding Cal State
Stanislaus 40-23.

Dominguez led the team with a season-high 22 points to go along
with seven rebounds.

Junior Porsche’ Kirksey scored a season-high 21 points and
pulled down nine rebounds.

Stanislaus kept the game close in the early going, coming to
within four at two different points in the first half, though the
Broncos held off the Warriors and took a nine-point lead into
halftime.

Cal Poly attacked Stanislaus with the same strategy it employed
earlier in the season and were successful even in the face of
adjustments made by the Warriors.

“We wanted to establish a post presence, because we’re bigger
than Stanislaus,” said Fortier. “They played more man-to-man than
we expected them to do, which worked to our advantage.”

Despite an early charge by Stanislaus in the second, Cal Poly
kept them at bay, running up a 22-point lead at one point before
taking home the 16-point victory.

The Broncos return to action at home Friday against UC San Diego
and Saturday against Cal State Dominguez Hills.

Michael Zavala can be reached by e-mail at
sports@thepolypost.com or by phone at (909) 869-4630.

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