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College Basketball

UCSB Women Fall Short at Wire Against Long Beach State

UC Santa Barbara came up on the short end of a tight 58-55 women's basketball battle with Long Beach State in the Thunderdome on Saturday afternoon.

The Gaucho bench contributed with 31 points, as Jasmine Ware and Je Zhé Newton led the way with 16 points and 14 points, respectively. Ware made an impact in multiple ways in the game with a career-high eight assists and six rebounds. Newton finished with her second double-double of the season, as she paced the game with 12 rebounds.

UCSB shot 45.2 percent from the field, a large improvement over their 28.8 percent performance the last time they played Long Beach State. The turnover battle, however, played a key factor in the game with the 49ers scoring 22 of their points off 23 Gaucho turnovers.

The game came down to the wire, as a key UCSB turnover with 32 seconds gave Long Beach State the opportunity to take control of the game. And that is exactly what Raven Benton did with her three-point play after drawing contact on a layup in the key. The 49ers (19-7, 8-4)  made the score 57-55 LBSU with 17 seconds left, as the Gauchos came up short in their remaining two possessions.

With their first chance to respond, Onome Jemerigbe was blocked by Madison Montgomery on her drive and LBSU point guard Anna Kim picked up the rebound and was promptly fouled. Kim went 1-for-2 in the ensuing trip to the foul line, giving her team a three-point edge with six seconds left.

From there, the Gauchos used their final timeout to advance the ball up the floor for the game's final six seconds. The play went inside to Newton who found Coco Miller on the right wing for a deep three, which came up short at the buzzer.

UCSB (10-17, 7-6) held a 27-25 halftime lead, but came out flat in opening the third quarter. The 49ers registered the half's first nine points, but the Gauchos answered with five unanswered points of their own to make it a two-point contest.

The team stayed within one possession of the 49ers until Ware nailed a three-pointer from the top of the key to make the score 46-44, UCSB.

That trey was one of three the Gauchos hit to begin the fourth quarter. Miller connected on the first one coming in response to a Gigi Hascheff three-pointer. Makala Roper hit the third three-pointer at the 6:18 mark to put UCSB ahead 49-47.

Long Beach State would later snatch the lead back at 54-53 by the 4:17 mark with Benton sinking two foul shots. From there, the Gauchos would score only two more points with two free throws from Ware.

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