WHITTIER, Calif. (Dec. 3, 2016) – Senior Kate Lewis (San Antonio, Texas / Ronald Reagan) became the third player in Caltech women's basketball history to score 1,000 points in a career with her 25th career double-double in a one-point defeat at Whittier College in the SCIAC opener on Saturday.
Lewis tied her season high with 16 points and matched that output on the glass to lead the Beavers to a whopping +25 rebound margin, but the Poets forced the visitors into 23 turnovers, allowing Whittier to overcome a slight shooting disadvantage by getting off an additional 10 shots.
Both teams started a bit slow, with the Poets leading just 5-2 after the opening five minutes. Whittier stretched that margin to six before Caltech pulled even and then went ahead 11-9 at the end of the first quarter.
Lewis made a layup 12 seconds into the second quarter but Whittier immediately responded with seven unanswered points to go back ahead by three. Caltech regained the lead over the next four minutes, with Lewis notching four straight points to take the Beavers ahead by four at 23-19. A thre-pointer and layup in the final minute staked Whittier to a one-point halftime lead, however, at 24-23. The teams continued to trade the lead throughout the third quarter, with Caltech again going up by four and Whittier recovering to lead by three before yet another tie at 39-39 as the final period approached.
The Poets opened the fourth quarter on fire, hitting back-to-back three-pointers and adding a pair of layups on four consecutive possessions to surge ahead by a game-high seven points at 49-42 after just three minutes. Caltech's defense locked in from that point, limiting Whittier to a single basket the rest of the way and giving Lewis the chance to make it a one-possession game at 51-49 with 2:03 remaining. A missed layup and turnover on the Beavers' next two possessions left Caltech having to foul to try getting the ball back. With just one team foul in the quarter, however, the Beavers watched as the clock ticked down a second or two on every inbound until, with 10 seconds left and Caltech about to put Whittier on the free-throw line, the Poets bench was called for a technical foul, instead sending freshman Samantha D'Costa (San Jose, Calif. / St. Francis) to the charity stripe with a chance to tie it. The rookie calmly converted the first, but her second was off the mark. The rebound went Caltech's way as both teams fought for it, but a last-gasp three-pointer after the ensuing inbound clanged off the iron to take Whittier off the hook with the 51-50 win.
D'Costa just missed a double-double of her own with nine points and rebounds, while sophomores Madeline Schemel (Westport, Conn. / Staples) and Elizabeth Eiden (White Plains, N.Y. / Holy Child) pulled down 11 and nine rebounds, respectively. Eiden and Lewis blocked a combined five shots, while D'Costa also dished out three assists.
Head Coach Sandra Marbut and the Beavers break for finals before hosting St. Katherine College on Monday, Dec. 12 at 5 p.m.