Jan 31, 2013
Stockton, Calif. - Erica McKenzie drained eight of 13 shots for a season-high 25 points as Pacific coasted to a 68-47 win over UC Irvine Thursday night. Three other Tigers finished in double-figure scoring, as Kendall Kenyon recorded her fourth-straight double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds.
Gena Johnson added 10 points on five-of-10 shooting, while Kendall Rodriguez chipped in 10 points and Ashley Wakefield nine points, eight rebounds and four assists.
The Tigers remained unbeaten at home at 10-0 in the Alex G. Spanos Center, and improved to 17-3 overall and 7-1 in the Big West.
McKenzie connected on six of 11 three-point attempts, one off her career high for made threes, and two off the program record. She connected on seven in the Tigers' win against Florida last season. She also grabbed six rebounds, handed out five assists and picked up four steals.
The Tigers got off to a slow start on offense, tied 4-4 through the first five minutes before Wakefield converted a pair of lay-ups and McKenzie hit a three and scored inside.
But Irvine answered with a pair of Kelly Meggs' three-pointers and a fast-break lay-up gave the Anteaters a 16-13 lead with 9:44 to go in the half.
Kenyon and Gena Johnson each posted a pair of lay-ups inside as the Tigers reeled off an 10-0 run and took a 27-19 lead on a Johnson lay-up.
McKenzie hit a pair of three-pointers to give the Tigers an 11-point lead at halftime, 37-26. McKenzie tallied 15 points in the first half, while Wakefield and Kenyon were each four-for-four from the field for eight points each.
Pacific shot 55 percent in the first half, and 16 of 20 inside the arc.
Opening the second half, McKenzie hit another two from behind the arc as Pacific led by 20, 46-26 with 16:40 to go.
Camille Buckley tallied inside twice for the Anteaters before Rodriguez hit a three-pointer, and McKenzie restored the 20-point advantage with her sixth three-pointer of the game. The Anteaters drew no closer than 17 with 4:19 to go, but the Tigers held UC Irvine scoreless the rest of the way, while Kenyon and Hailie Eackles posted buckets in the paint to put the finishing touches on the 21-point victory.
Pacific held UC Irvine to 23 percent shooting (7-of-30) in the second half and 27 percent (17-of-63) for the game.
The Tigers held a 38-22 advantage in points in the paint, and out-rebounded the Anteaters 45-41. Ashley Smith grabbed five rebounds with a pair of steals for Pacific.
Buckley led UC Irvine with 12 points and 10 rebounds. UC Irvine falls to 4-16 overall and 0-8 in Big West play.
The Tigers square off with Long Beach State on Saturday, at 5 p.m. in a doubleheader with the Pacific men's team. Saturday is the Tigers' annual Pacific Plays Pink event, where the team will don pink uniforms and donate proceeds of the event to St. Joseph's Medical Center for breast cancer treatment and research. Fans are encouraged to join Pacific and wear pink for the contest.