Riverside, Calif. - The women's basketball dropped their season opener tonight, 73-46, as they played host to No. 3 Westmont College (NAIA Division I). It was also the season opener for Westmont, who open the season looking to defend their NAIA Division I National Championship from last season. Westmont opened their season with two exhibition losses to Pepperdine University (57-55) and USC (73-38).
The Warriors (1-0) jumped out to the early lead, by scoring the first seven points of the game. The Golden Eagles (0-1) settled down and eventually tied the game at 14-14, and eventually took a 19-17 lead just past the midway point of the first half. But the Warriors would regain the lead and finish the half with a 10-4 scoring run in the final six minutes to take a 35-28 lead into the half.
Westmont started the second half similar to how they started the game, quickly expanding their lead to 12 points and they never looked back from there. The Warriors took advantage of their size by collecting 26 offensive rebounds, which they converted many into second chance baskets.
In the loss, Joirdan Jones led the Golden Eagles with 12 points. Brittani Walker scored 10 points and led the team with seven rebounds. Natalia Hawthorn finished with eight points, six rebounds, and a team-high four assists.
Kelsie Sampson and Alysia Shellmire each finished with a double-double on the night, for Westmont. Sampson led all scorers with 21 points and 12 rebounds while Shellmire had 14 points and 12 rebounds. Celina Gougis also scored in double figures with 12 points.
The women's basketball team will have a day off before returning to action on Monday evening, when they host Bethesda University, at 5:30pm.