Waves Can't Hold on Late, Fall 74-61 to Saint Mary's

Amanda Lovely

Feb. 15, 2014

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MALIBU, Calif. – The Pepperdine women’s basketball team led as late as 6:37 in the second half, but couldn’t hold on for the win, falling to Saint Mary’s 74-61 Saturday at home.

In what was a single digit margin nearly the entire afternoon, the Waves grabbed a 54-53 lead late, but where outscored 21-7 over the final 6:37 of play as the Gaels pulled away for the win.

“The girls’ effort and heart have never been in question the entire season and today was no exception,” said head coach Ryan Weisenberg. “We played very well against one of the best teams in the league today. I felt like we frustrated them early on and late in the game had them where we wanted them, but the last three minutes just didn’t go our way.”

The teams were still even at the 3:57 mark after Ea Shoushtari (Los Angeles, Calif./L.A.C.E.S.) knocked down a three, but Saint Mary’s answered with an 8-0 run to take a 67-59 lead. Two Keitra Wallace (Brea, Calif./Brea Olinda HS) free throws were the last points the Waves could get down the stretch as the Gaels pulled away.

There were 12 lead changes and 11 ties in a game that went back and forth all afternoon.

Pepperdine built its largest lead of the night at the 13:51 mark in the second half, going up 46-39 on a Shoushtari triple. Amanda Lovely (Palo Alto, Calif./Archbishop Mitty HS) hit her second three of the game just prior to that to help the Waves put some distance on the Gaels. Saint Mary’s answered with seven straight points, tying the game with 10:38 to play.

From that point on the lead changed hands seven times before the visitors finally took control in the closing minutes.

“We can definitely use the way we played today and the way we battled as motivation to play well in our two games next week,” said Weisenberg, whose team faces BYU and San Diego at home next week.

Neither team shot exceptionally well, with the Waves shooting 34.3 percent and the Gaels shooting 41.8 percent. Pepperdine forced Saint Mary’s into 13 turnovers on the day, while committing just eight themselves, but lost the rebounding battle 43-35. Saint Mary’s also held an edge at the free throw line, getting to the stripe 25 times and hitting 22 of them. Pepperdine was 10 of 11 from the foul line.

Lovely led the Waves with 14 points and Allie Green (Sacramento, Calif./Sacramento HS) added 13. Lovely was 6 for 13 from the field and also had a team high eight rebounds.

Danielle Mauldin led all players with 22 points and eight rebounds and Kate Gazed had 16 points for the Gaels. Mauldin hit 9 of 14 shots.

The loss drops Pepperdine to 5-20 overall, 1-13 WCC, while Saint Mary’s moves to 19-6, 9-5 WCC.

The Waves have four games left in the regular season before the WCC tournament March 6-11.



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