PASADENA, Calif. – Whittier used timely shooting and defense to knock off Caltech 61-52 Saturday evening in a SCIAC women's basketball match-up at the Braun Athletic Center.
Whittier (12-10, 6-5) forced Caltech into 19 turnovers which bolstered them into a 17-7 advantage in points off of turnovers. Caltech's (0-22, 0-11) strong inside game produced a plus-15 rebounding edge and a 15-9 edge in second chance points. Caltech also had a 26-16 edge in points in the paint.
Less than midway through the first half the Poets held an 18-13 lead before Caltech mounted a comeback. The home squad went on an 8-2 scoring spurt in taking a 21-20 lead with 4:54 left until halftime. The Poets responded with nine unanswered points to regain the lead at 29-21 with 1:27 remaining until the halftime horn. Caltech dwindled away their deficit before halftime as the Poets went into the locker room with a 31-26 lead.
The Poets opened the second half on a 12-4 run as they took a 43-30 lead with 14:30 left in the contest. A resilient Caltech team chipped away at their deficit. Krissy Dahl's mid-range jumper with 7:47 remaining got the Beavers within single digit at 50-41. However, that nine-point spread was a barrier the Beaver couldn't overcome down the stretch.
Kourtney Zilbert capped off an 11-4 scoring run with a jumper with 2:48 left that gave Whittier their largest lead of the night at 61-46. The Beavers scored the last six points of the contest with the final three coming from an Erin Hoops shot from behind the arc with 25 seconds left.
The Poets 34.5 shooting percentage (20-for-58) was just enough to outlast Caltech. The Beavers were able to get off 64 shots but converted 21 of those attempts (32.8 percent). The 64 shots represented the second most attempts the Beavers have had this season.
Whittier's bench gave them a big boost as they outscored Caltech's reserves 18-7. The Poets non-starters were led by Alex Bassett's 13-point, five-rebound night.
Dahl led the Beavers charge as she tallied a personal season highs in points (18) and rebounds (12). It was her second double-double of the season. Fellow post player Paige Logan scored 12 points while grabbing eight rebounds.
Hoops dished out a Caltech season best nine assists in 39 minutes of action.