Feb. 14, 2011
STOCKTON, Calif. - The Pacific women's basketball team goes for back-to-back wins as they continue a three-game road swing at UC Irvine on Thursday and Cal State Fullerton on Saturday.
Pacific enters Thursday's 7 p.m. tip-off against the Anteaters at 4-17 overall, 4-7 in the Big West after last Wednesday's road win at UC Davis. Pacific trailed by as many as 14, and used a 19-6 run midway through the second half to turn a 13-point deficit into a tie-ballgame. Pacific out-scored the Aggies 37-19 in the final 16 minutes of regulation.
Sophomore guard Erica McKenzie (Sparks, Nev.) tallied her first career double-double as she handed out a career-high 10 assists to go with 10 points in the win. She was instrumental in the Tigers comeback, as she recorded three of her four steals in the second half, which led to six fast-break points as Pacific used their defense to create offense during their comeback run.
Freshman forward Danielle Peacon (Sparks, Nev.) scored 20 points for the second-straight game, as she shot 10-of-16 from the field with three blocked shots. In her first collegiate start, freshman guard Gena Johnson (Elk Grove, Calif.) added a career-best nine rebounds to go with eight points. She was a basket away from extending her streak of consecutive games in double-figure scoring to five, but her fast-break lay-up with 1:51 remaining turned out to be pivotal as she drew an intentional foul, giving Pacific the ball back. With 40 seconds remaining, she gave the Tigers the lead for good, scoring in transition while being fouled.
The Tigers hit their four final free throws of the contest to seal the win, which was Pacific's second road win in a stretch of four games against the top four teams in the Big West.
"That was a great win. We needed that for positioning in the Big West. Davis is a good team, and we showed a lot of toughness coming back to win," head coach Lynne Roberts said. "Since then, we've had a week off to regroup and practice. And now we get ready to head down and play Irvine and Fullerton. In this conference they're all tough, but on the road, playing two very good teams, we know it's going to be a fight."
Pacific faces UC Irvine with the stretch for Big West seeding amping up. The Anteaters are 13-10 overall, 5-6 in the Big West. The two teams meet for the first time this season, after UC Irvine won both games last year. However, Pacific has won four of the last six in the series.
On Saturday, the Tigers wrap their road trip at Cal State Fullerton in a 3 p.m. tip-off. On January 2, Pacific picked up its first Big West win of the season at the Alex G. Spanos Center against the Titans, taking a 69-65 victory behind 23 points from Peacon and a season-high 19 points from junior forward/center Christina Thompson (Sacramento, Calif.). In that contest, Pacific also erased a 13-point deficit in the season half.
The Titans enter the weekend at 8-17 overall, 4-8 in the Big West.