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UAA women come up short in playoffs

Mike Nesper

The UAA women's basketball team had plenty of golden opportunities but struck iron too many times Friday night.

The Seawolves shot just over 30 percent from the field in a 60-56 season-ending loss to top-seeded Cal Poly Pomona in the first round of the West Region tournament.

"We hit every single part of the rim in the first half," coach Ryan McCarthy said of the Seawolves, who were 7 of 31 on first-half field goals.

UAA (19-9) forced the tournament-host Broncos (23-6) to play at its quick pace, McCarthy said. The Seawolves just missed too many shots, especially from 3-point range, where they were 5 of 26.

"We missed some easy looks that we normally make, and they made us pay," he said.

The loss snaps a six-game winning streak in NCAA tournament first-round games for the Seawolves. UAA has made the playoffs seven of the past eight years and 13 total times.

Trailing by seven, UAA opened the second half on a 12-3 run to go up by two, 38-36. Pomona soon responded with an 11-4 run to take a 50-44 lead with less than 10 minutes left.

A KeKe Wright layup brought UAA within two points with two minutes to go. Pomona held UAA scoreless the rest of the way to earn a spot in Saturday's semifinals against Chico State.

"We just ran out of time," McCarthy said.

It was just the third time UAA was held to fewer than 70 points all season. Pomona improved to 13-2 at home and 5-1 all-time against UAA dating back to 1988. The Seawolves are now 16-13 all-time in NCAA tournament games.

Jada Blackwell paced the Broncos with 23 points. Ashley Lovett added 12 points and 11 rebounds for Pomona.

Kylie Burns went 9 of 10 from the line and led UAA with 16 points in her final game with the Seawolves. Jessica Madison added 10 points for the Seawolves, who had eight players contribute to the scoring.

Making the NCAA tournament is something second-year coach McCarthy hopes becomes an annual tradition for UAA. With 11 of 12 potential returners -- Burns is the lone senior -- McCarthy said the future is bright.

"I'm just really proud of this group," he said. "They're a great bunch of young ladies."

Reach Mike Nesper at mnesper@adn.com or 257-4335.

UAA (56) -- Devine 2-3 0-0 4, Burns 3-14 9-10 16, Buchanan 2-7 0-0 6, Robertson 1-5 0-0 2, J. Madison 3-10 3-4 10, A. Madison 0-5 0-0 0, Davis 1-4 0-0 3, Hutchins 0-1 0-0 0, Wright 2-4 2-3 6, Craft 3-3 3-6 9. Totals 17-56 17-23 56.

CPP (60) -- Lovett 5-9 2-2 12, Blackwell 8-14 7-11 23, Judge 1-8 0-0 2, Marsh 3-13 3-4 11, Goecke 1-3 5-8 8, Henry 0-1 2-3 2, Hagan 0-0 0-0 0, Dingle 0-0 0-0 0, Woods 1-5 0-0 2. Totals 19-53 19-28 60.

UAA 26 30 -- 56

CPP 33 27 -- 60

3-point goals -- UAA 5-26 (Burns 1-8, Buchanan 2-6, Robertson 0-3, J. Madison 1-6, Davis 1-2, Hutchins 0-1), CPP 3-16 (Marsh 2-9, Judge 0-2, Goecke 1-3, Henry 0-1, Woods 0-1). Rebounds -- UAA 37 (J. Madison 8), CPP 44 (Lovett 11). Total fouls -- UAA 24, CPP 19. Fouled out -- Robertson. Assists -- UAA 12 (Robertson 4, Davis 4), CPP 15 (Marsh 6). Turnovers -- UAA 12 (Robertson 3, Davis 3), CPP 14 (Goecke 5). Blocks -- UAA 2 (Wright 2), CPP 2 (Blackwell 1, Dingle 1). Steals -- UAA 9 (Burns 3, J. Madison 3), CPP 5 (Lovett 2, Woods 2). A -- 875. Officials -- Rahe, Mott, Graham.


By MIKE NESPER
mnesper@adn.com