CLAREMONT, Calif. – The No.1 seed Claremont-Mudd-Scripps beat No. 4 seed Redlands in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) women's basketball tournament semifinal, 56-49. After a close halftime score of 25-23, barely in CMS' favor, the Athenas increased their lead up to 11 points and earned the win with a seven point margin.
In the first half, CMS jumped out to an early 16-7 lead initiated by a pair of three point shots by Kris Brackmann and Kyra Ray. The Bulldogs crawled back within four points, led by Vicotoria Fakalata who had nine points in the first half. Then, the CMS defense went to work, denying Redlands' offense for over three minutes of clock time. The half wrapped up with two three-point buckets by Redlands' players Nicole Packard and Brinsley Farry to bring the Bulldogs within two points.
Brackmann led the CMS scoring in the first half and in the game, ultimately putting up 25 points. While the Athenas' rebounding was spread across seven players, Brackmann grabbed ten for herself, recording her second career double-double and first this season.
After only a few minutes of playing time during the first half due to foul trouble, Reyna Ta'Amu was the catalyst for Redlands' scoring in the second half. Ta'Amu was 3-for-4 from the field and successfully drew fouls on her aggressive drives to the basket. She was 6-for-9 in free throws, recording all 12 of her points in the second half.
During the second half, both teams increased their point production, albeit only slightly. Once again, Redlands came within four points but was held at bay by CMS' defense. Aside from Brackmann, Mara Falahee and Alyson Young were the Athenas' top rebounders in the half.
Ta'Amu and Kaity Lykins led the Bulldogs to nab 14 offensive rebounds, enabling 16 second chance points during the game. Fakalata was Redlands' second highest scorer with 11 points on the night.
The Bulldogs end their season with a 12-14 record after having participated in each SCIAC tournament since its inception in 2008.
The Athenas advance to the SCIAC Tournament Final on Feb. 28 at 4:30 pm. CMS hosts on No. 2 Cal Lutheran in the final after the Regals beat Chapman 76-61, in the other semifinal game on Thursday night. The final will be held in the Linde Activities Center at Harvey Mudd College with the winner earning the automatic qualification to the NCAA Tournament.
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