By: Ethan Fuller
BOSTON, MA — Boston University women’s basketball came within a seven-point deficit six times over the final seven minutes of action, but could not break through late, losing the second half of their West Coast swing to the University of California-Berkeley, 73-62.
The Terriers have dropped their last three games, falling to 3-4 on the young season, while the Golden Bears improved to a strong 6-2.
BU could not derail the disciplined Cal offense. The Golden Bears turned the ball over just seven times on the night and the Terriers, who entered Saturday averaging over seven steals per game as a team, did not record a single swipe.
Cal also dominated the glass. Against a strong rebounding team in BU, the Golden Bears pulled down 42 boards to the Terriers’ 33 and led 18-7 in offensive rebounds. Together, the possession control counteracted the team’s iffy 38.8 percent shooting clip.
Freshman Sydney Johnson fought the Golden Bears with her best scoring performance since the season opener. Johnson led the Terriers with 19 points, including the team’s first eight of the contest, and later added five straight to keep the team in the game during the second half.
Katie Nelson also impressed with a strong all-around performance. The junior floor general scored 14 points while adding a team-high nine rebounds and seven assists. Together, the Terriers’ starting backcourt accounted for over half of their total points.
But BU struggled to find scoring anywhere else. Nia Irving got into foul trouble early and played a shortened game. Bench spark Maggie Pina shot just 2-8 from the floor after an electric performance against UC Davis. The Terriers also turned the ball over 16 times on the night.
Sophomore forward Chiara Tibbitt did step up in her growing role, scoring eight points and making four of her five shots. But Tibbitt also fouled out in just 15 minutes of play, limiting her ability to contribute.
Cal, meanwhile, featured balance scoring throughout the roster. Four players reached double figures, with Jaelyn Brown and Alaysia Styles each scoring 11 points while CJ West and Jazlen Green added ten apiece.
The Terriers have had to retool during the California road trip. Freshman starter Annabelle Larnard is out with an injury and junior wing Tenisha Pressley has stepped in for the last two contests. Pressley has provided a boost on defense, but she did not attempt a shot against Cal.
BU will look to end their three-game losing streak during a rare Wednesday morning matinee with UMass Amherst. Tip-off for the first of four remaining non-conference home games is scheduled for 11:00 a.m.
Featured image courtesy of Hannah Yoshinaga.