Women’s basketball loses to No. 1 in PacWest conference

The Eagles battled Hawaii Pacific University but lost 72-60.

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Andres Ramirez // THE CHIMES

Sophomore guard Aysia Johnson gets ready to shoot the ball to the basket.

Zachary Devane, Deputy Sports Editor

Women’s basketball played against the top seed in the PacWest conference, Hawaii Pacific University, on Saturday, Feb. 15. Despite making runs throughout the second half, the Eagles were unable to come back from a poor start. Junior forward Jazz Benn led the team with 27 points on 50% shooting from deep, while also grabbing six rebounds.

TOUGH START

The Eagles shot an extremely low 28% in the first half. Many of their attempts were from behind the arc, where they chucked up 17 shots and only made three. On the other hand, HPU nailed 51% of their shots and were 9-9 from the free-throw line. By halftime, the Sharks had a 39-25 lead.

“We were just inconsistent in our transition defense, we were a little inconsistent in our decision making on offense,” said head coach Alan Nakamura. “But I’m proud of the way the team banded together, they competed really hard and they really tried to be there for each other.”

WINNING MENTALITY

The Eagles fought in the second half, chopping the lead down to 11 by the end of the third quarter. They kept it close down the stretch, however, HPU’s senior guard Starr Rivera knocked down a jump shot with 2:51 left in the game to seal it. The Eagles would go on to lose 72-60.

Sophomore guard Aysia Johnson also did well, scoring seven points and adding five rebounds, while senior guard Tatum Brimley had 10 points and five assists.

There are only three more games on the regular season schedule for women’s basketball.

“We just clinched [a spot] in the PacWest tournament, so I think that’s gonna be motivating for us,” Benn said.

The Eagles (12-7 PacWest, 16-9 overall) will be back at Chase Gymnasium to face Holy Names University on Saturday, Feb. 22 at 12 p.m.