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College Basketball

Westmont Women Rally to Defeat Menlo

(SANTA BARBARA, Calif.) Outscoring the Oaks of Menlo (13-3, 1-1 GSAC) by a score of 22-10 in the fourth quarter, #14 Westmont Women's Basketball (9-4, 2-0) posted a 60-51 Golden State Athletic Conference win on Saturday afternoon. Sophomore Joy Krupa led the Warriors both in scoring and on the boards, posting a double-double of 17 points and 16 rebounds.

"Joy has been really sick," noted Westmont head coach Kirsten Moore. "Last game she could barely get up and down the floor and just wasn't herself. With just and extra day, she was feeling so much better.

"What we saw today was the Joy that we are used to seeing every day in practice. She is capable of being an impact player in this league and in the NAIA. What you don't see on the stats sheet is the impact she makes defensively. In the second half, she held (Celine) Pagan, their leading scorer, to three points."

Also scoring in double digits for the Warriors were senior Morgan Haskin (11 points, 8 rebounds), sophomore Maud Ranger (11 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists) and Lauren McCoy (10 points, 5 rebounds).

McCoy's 10 points ran her career total to 1,200 points. The senior from Arcata has averaged 10.7 points and 8.3 rebounds per game over her four-year career and has recorded a field goal percentage of .498 (458 of 920).

"I can't say enough about the defensive game our team played today," said Moore. "Menlo is so dangerous offensively and has so much firepower. We held them to more than 30 points under their average and held them to under 30 percent shooting. That's a phenomenal effort by my team defensively."

The Oaks entered the game as the fourth best scoring team in the NAIA, averaging 83.53 points per game. As for accuracy, Menlo was tied for first in field goal percentage in the NAIA at .490.

The Oaks were led by Pagan with 14 points and nine rebounds, Alexis Delovio with 12 points and three boards, and Aliyah Brantley with 11 points and six rebounds.

Menlo took a 13-7 lead in the first quarter as Westmont struggled offensively, making just three of 16 attempts from the floor (18.8 percent). The Warriors battled back in the second quarter, outscoring the Oaks 14-10, but still trailing at the intermission 23-21.

The third quarter saw both teams improve their offensive output, with Menlo edging out Westmont 18-17 to take a 41-38 advantage headed into the final frame. The Warriors began finding the hoop more consistently in the third quarter, making eight of 16 (50.0 percent), and then matched that production exactly in the fourth.

Brantley put the Oaks up 43-38 with a layup to start the fourth quarter. Over the next six minutes, however, Westmont produced a 12-0 run to take a 50-43 lead. Krupa scored on a jumper and two layups during that span while McCoy added two layups and Haskin one.

The Oaks narrowed Westmont's advantage to four points twice over the next minute, resulting in a score of 53-49 with 2:35 remaining in regulation. However, Westmont closed out the game with a 7-2 run to secure the victory.

"I believe that we work as hard or harder than any team in the country in practice every day and in conditioning in the preseason," said Moore about why her team excels in the fourth quarter. "I think it shows in the fourth quarter. We are ready for the wear and tear of the fourth quarter. The fourth quarter is our time that we train for and that we prepare for."

The Warriors will be on the road for the next two weeks beginning with a game at San Diego Christian on Thursday and at Arizona Christian on Saturday.

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