71.7 F

Davis, California

Friday, May 24, 2024

Couldn’t beat the Beach

Redshirt freshman Morgan Bertsch navigates her way through traffic on her way to the basket. (ANH-TRAM BUI / AGGIE)

UC Davis women’s basketball team falls 75-62 to Long Beach State.

The excellent three-point shooting and high-energy full-court press of Long Beach State proved to be too much for the Aggies to handle Thursday night as they fell, 75-62, to the visiting 49ers. The Ags coughed up the ball 21 times throughout the course of the night, due in large part to the overwhelming defensive pressure provided by the Beach.

“To beat a press, you have to be confident, you’ve got be poised and you’ve got to make good decisions with the ball, and we just made too many questionable decisions,” said Head Coach Jennifer Gross. “The thing about Long Beach is they get all their momentum from their pressure and so if you’re breaking that easy, you can run offense and score in half-court, but you’re playing into their hands if you turn it over as much as we did.”


Despite the final outcome, senior forward Celia Marfone set a personal season scoring high with an efficient 18 points on 7-11 shooting while fellow senior forward Alyson Doherty tied her career high mark in rebounds with 12 boards.

In the first quarter, the Beach came out of the gates with a sense of urgency, jumping to a quick 16-7 lead and forcing six turnovers in the process, before UC Davis could call a timeout. The second part of the quarter belonged to the Ags, however, who closed out the period on a 10-0 run off including a pair of three-pointers from sophomore forward Pele Gianotti and freshman guard Kourtney Eaton, followed by a jumper from redshirt freshman forward Morgan Bertsch to pull UC Davis within one.

The Ags carried the momentum into the second quarter, taking their first lead of the game on a deep ball from Gianotti. With 6:08 to play in the half, Marfone hit a corner three to give UC Davis their biggest lead of the game (32-28), extending the scoring run to 20-5.


The Aggies could not sustain the push, however, and a combination of continued second half turnovers and lights out shooting from Long Beach insured the UC Davis defeat. The Beach claimed 33 points from beyond the arc, shooting an impressive 57.9 percent, compared to the Aggies’ abysmal 25.0 percent from long range.

The Ags struggled to get the ball down low, typically a cornerstone of their offense. The Beach consistently denied the ball into the post,

limiting season scoring leaders Bertsch and Doherty to 14 and seven points respectively.

“We have a day to make sure we sharpen up. And more than anything, to make sure our minds are right and that we’re not hanging on to this loss. Tomorrow is a new day and Saturday is another game,” Gross said. “We’ve shown that we can bounce back, so we just need to stay positive and confident and we’ll be ready to go on Saturday.”

The Aggies look for revenge Saturday afternoon as they again face Santa Barbara after falling to the Gauchos on the road less than a week and a half ago.

Written by George McConnell – sports@theaggie.org


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