SEATTLE (Nov. 23) – Seattle University women’s basketball fell, 79-71, to Portland State at the Connolly Complex Wednesday night. Four Redhawks scored in double figures in the non-conference game.
“When you’re trying to turn a program around, you’re going to go through some tough lessons,” said Coach Suzy Barcomb. “We’ll see how we respond the next time we’re in a situation like this.”
After putting up 24 first-quarter points and 42 first-half points at Boise State on Sunday, the Redhawks (1-4) were even more productive in the opening 20 minutes on Wednesday. SU shot 70.6 percent (12-17) from the floor in the first period, scoring 29 points. It cooled off a bit in the second frame, but took a 44-37 advantage into halftime.
Joana Alves scored inside to open the contest, and after the Vikings took a brief lead, Seattle U followed with an 8-0 run to take control. Alexis Montgomery drained a three-pointer and then a jumper. Kaylee Best sank a trey, with Wilma Afunugo assisting, for a 10-5 margin at the 6:07 mark.
Portland State (2-2) answered with a three of its own, but the SU bench was ready to lift the Redhawks. Genessa Bedoya set up a Jacinta Beckley corner triple for a 13-10 difference. Afunungo then scored on a putback. After a visitor basket, Shaylin Heredia got behind the defense for a transition layup and a 19-14 lead. The Vikings scored again, but Beckley pulled down an offensive rebound and scored. Off another visitor hoop, Heredia again beat the opposition down the floor for a lay-in and a 23-18 lead.
Kamira Sanders hit a jumper, with Beckley assisting, and then Beckley made a layup to take a 27-18 with 44 seconds to go in the frame. Beckley then converted a pair of free throws, extending the lead to 11. Portland State scored the final four points of the period, but SU finished with 17 bench points, led by Beckley’s 11.
In the second quarter, Sanders grabbed a steal and scored and then blocked a shot less than a minute later. Heredia scored on the ensuing possession, and after a Viking free throw, Sanders assisted on an Alves jumper as Seattle U went ahead, 35-23, with 7:22 remaining in the half.
Portland State came back with six straight points, but Claire Metoyer set up a Heredia trey with 4:20 left. The Vikings trimmed their deficit again, but Sanders continued her strong half, recording two lay-ins and a pair of foul shots for a 44-35 difference.
Alves made a jumper to start the second half, but the Vikings rallied, cutting the SU lead to 46-45 before Best sparked the SU attack. She sank a triple at the 6:40 mark. The senior drilled another three a few minutes later, as the Redhawks looked to gain some breathing room. After PSU cut the lead, Best hit two free throws and a minute later, she canned another three-pointer, giving Seattle U a 57-50 margin late in the quarter. The visitors made a pair of foul shots as SU took a 57-52 lead into the fourth.
The Vikings scored to start the final period, but Afunugo assisted on a Beckley hoop to make it 59-54 with 8:52 to play. PSU eventually claimed a 68-61 lead with 3:43 to play. SU tried to rally, with Best hitting two free throws and a triple, but the Vikings made enough foul shots to hold off the Redhawks.
Best led with 21 points, as she made five threes for the third time this season. Beckley matched her career high with 13 points, adding seven rebounds and three assists. Sanders and Montgomery each added 10 points, while Heredia tallied nine off the bench. Sidney Rielly and Ashley Bolston combined for 43 points to lead Portland State.
“Kaylee and Kamira played incredible basketball,” said Coach Barcomb. “They show up and compete for us every day.”
SU hosts #13 Washington on Saturday, Nov. 26. Tip-off is slated for 4 p.m. at the Connolly Complex.