Highlanders Start Strong In Each Half In 64-57 Win Over Aggies

Feb. 5, 2005

Box Score

RIVERSIDE, Calif. - Guard Cassandra Reeves scored a season-high 25 points on Saturday night and UC Riverside opened double-digit leads in both halves as the Highlanders downed UC Davis 64-57 in a nonconference women's basketball game played at Student Recreation Center.

UC Davis lost its third straight game, falling to 6-15 overall while UC Riverside improved to 11-8. UC Davis guard Laura Thomas came off the bench to hit four three-pointers, tying for team-high scoring honors with Ellen Porshneva, who scored all 12 of her points after halftime. Jackie Turpin had 11 points for the Aggies.

UC Davis never led in the game, falling behind 8-0 just over two minutes into the game and later 13-3 before steadily climbing back into contention. The Aggies trailed just 22-21 at halftime but the Highlanders scored the first eight points of the second half to take a 30-21 lead with 17 minutes, 25 seconds left. UC Davis rallied again, closing to 49-47 with 4:12 to play after a three-pointer from Thomas.

However, the Highlanders were able to keep the Aggies away down the stretch.

"The first three-and-half minutes of each half are what decided this game," said UC Davis coach Sandy Simpson. "Tonight, I thought we came out a little back on our heels and we did the same thing in the second half, and we had to crawl out of a hole.

"To our credit, we did," he said.

Trailing 13-3 six minutes into the game, UC Davis went on a 13-4 run - sparked by five points each from Kimberly Smith and Turpin - to get within a point at 17-16 with 8:20 to go. A three-pointer from Thomas with 42 ticks left cut the lead to 22-21, an advantage the Highlanders took into halftime.

Reeves had just six points at halftime - both of them treys - but had five early points to start the second half as UC Riverside opened an early nine-point lead. UC Riverside led by 13 points on two different occassions and was up 49-38 with 6:34 to play before a 9-0 surge by UC Davis brought the Aggies to within 49-47 a little more than two minutes later. Porshneva had four points and Thomas another three-pointer to help UC Davis rally.



UC Riverside answered by scoring the next four points and the Aggies weren't able to get closer than four points the rest of the way, although they did get to 58-54 with 51 seconds to go after Thomas' final three-pointer.

UC Davis shot 51 percent (13 of 26) from the field in the second half after making just 29percent in the first. They also held a 32-31 advantage on the boards, five days after Cal State Northridge outrebounded the Aggies 51-29 in a 65-54 win.

Kemie Nkele, the Highlanders' leading scorer and rebounder, had 15 points and 10 rebounds while Jodi Reber and Kirsten Muir each had 10 points. Reeves made four three-pointers in her 25-point effort. Jessica Campbell had eight rebounds to lead the Aggies while Turpin had five assists.

UC Davis will play its final road game of the season when it visits Cal State Fullerton on Monday night for a 7 p.m. matchup. The Aggies beat the Titans 70-55 earlier on Jan. 8.