ORANGE, Calif. – The Chapman University women's basketball team secured its second win of SCIAC play in a 74-59 win over Caltech earlier this evening. After recording a career-high night just over a week ago, sophomore Lucy Criswell set a new career best with 20 points against the Beavers.
Criswell scored 16 of her points in the first half alone, draining four three pointers to lead the Panthers. The sophomore also tallied seven rebounds and three blocks in Chapman's third home victory of the season.
The Panthers started off strong, scoring the first few points of the game to take an early lead. The two teams traded points for the next few minutes until Criswell made her first three pointer to extend the Panthers' lead to five points. Criswell drained another two threes to put the Panthers up 19-6 with just over two minutes left to play in the quarter. A couple of layups from sophomore Rachel Williams and a made layup from Criswell brought the score to 25-7 heading into the second quarter.
A three pointer from sophomore Marissa Dunn extended Chapman's lead to 20 points with just over six minutes left to play in the half. Beaver junior Elizabeth Eiden made a layup in the final 25 seconds of the half to cut the Panthers' lead to 17 heading into halftime.
The third quarter was all Caltech action as the Beavers went on an 11-0 run to cut down Chapman's lead to just six points. The push was led by junior Nika Haleftiras, who had five of her 17 points in Caltech's run. Sophomore Grace Peng put up a layup with three and a half minutes left to play, cutting the lead to four points, but a couple of made three pointers from senior Jaime Hum-Nishikado and Dunn put the Panthers up 49-39 with just under two minutes left in the third quarter. The two teams traded a couple of points, bringing the score to 51-41 heading into the final quarter of play.
The fourth quarter saw Chapman and Caltech trading points, but the Panthers were able to keep their lead throughout. Freshman Taylor Hextrum hit the final jumper for Chapman, helping them run away with the 74-59 victory.
Beaver sophomore Samantha D'Costa had a strong game on both sides of the ball, tallying 20 points, seven steals and five rebounds. She was followed by Haleftiras, who posted 17 points, four rebounds and two steals. Panther freshman Brittany McPherson recorded 12 points and three rebounds, while sophomore Paige Endo distributed eight assists to help Chapman. Williams was just two points shy of a double-double, tallying 10 rebounds and eight points.
Chapman heads out on the road for its next three games, but comes back to Hutton Sports Center on Wednesday, Jan. 10 at 7 p.m. to face off against Whittier in another SCIAC game.
by Katie Bell
Sports Information Assistant