Riverside, Calif. - The women's basketball team got into the win column tonight, with an overtime victory over Bethesda University of California. The much improved Flames were on the verge of their first win, until the Golden Eagles (1-1) staged a ferocious comeback to send the game into overtime and eventually win by a final of 70-67.
The Golden Eagles jumped out to an early 16-7 lead. La Sierra maintained the nine-point lead until midway through the first half. The Flames outscored the Golden Eagles 15-3 in the final 9:30 of the first half, to take a 29-26 lead into the half.
In the second half, La Sierra struggled to gain their footing and the Flames took advantage, pushing the lead to 41-31 just over seven minutes into the second half. The Golden Eagles cut the lead to seven points (45-38) on a free throw by Leilani Tuani-Fifita. But the Flames answered back with an 8-0 run to increase their lead to 53-38 with six minutes left in the game.
With six minutes remaining the Golden Eagles put together a 19-4 run to send the game into overtime. With 12.6 seconds on the clock, Shelby Madigan got her hand on the attempted inbounds pass that was eventually collected by Natalia Hawthorne, who drove to the basket and hit the floater to tie the score at 57-57. Bethesda was unable to get at shot up in the final 6.6 seconds, sending the game into overtime.
Madigan gave the Golden Eagles an early three-point lead in the overtime with a straightaway jumper. La Sierra pushed the lead to seven points on a steal by Hawthorne who drove the length of the floor to convert the layup. Bethesda cut the lead to one point on a field goal by Francis Ordonez with 28 seconds remaining, but Joirdan Jones knocked down two free throws to push the lead to three to seal the Golden Eagles first win of the season.
Madigan led the way with 28 points, seven rebounds, three steals, two blocks, and two assists. Madigan's career high 28 points included 15-of-16 shooting from the charity stripe.
Joirdan Jones added 15 points and nine rebounds, while Natalia Hawthorne pitched in with 13 points seven rebounds, four steals, and three assists.
Lisette Longomo who tallied a double double with 14 points and 10 rebounds led the Flames.
The women's basketball team will hit the road for the first time this season, when they travel to Cal State San Marcos on Thursday evening.