Feb. 22, 2014
DAVIS, Calif. - Sydnee Fipps scored a game-high 22 points and UC Davis used a key 13-2 run to take the lead for good as the Aggies upset third-place Hawai'i 56-52 in a Big West Conference women's basketball game at The Pavilion on Saturday afternoon.
UC Davis (11-14 overall, 6-6 in the Big West) ended a three-game losing streak and picked up an important win in the standings, giving it sole possession of sixth place pending the remainder of the league's games on Saturday. Alyson Doherty added 15 points.
"The last couple of games have been tough for us," Head Coach Jennifer Gross. "There was a point in the second half, where I looked in the eyes of our players and said, 'we're going to get this done.' We went out and got a stop and a score, a stop and a score and, all of a sudden, we're getting a little bit of confidence and momentum and it took off from there."
The Rainbow Wahine, who were led by 12 points from Destiny King and 10 points from Shawna-Lei Kuehu, had its three-game winning streak streak snapped while falling to 14-11 overall and 8-5 in the Big West.
Fipps finished 9-of-16 from the floor en route to her fifth, 20-point game in her last six contests, passing Brenda Wyneken (1981-84) for 11th place on the all-time scoring list. Fipps needs 20 more points to reach Colleen Turnbull's total of 1,137 points from 1999-03.
The Aggies wore pink jerseys as part of its annual "Pink Game" for breast cancer awareness. The back of UC Davis' jerseys each carried the name of former player Genevieve Costello who was diagnosed with Stage IV breast cancer last year and passed away shortly after at the age of 26. Her life was celebrated with a halftime presentation. Her parents and extended family were in attendance.
"This was definitely a pride game for us tonight, we had to dig deep," Gross said. "A lot of our players didn't have the opportunity to play with Genevieve. A lot of our staff had the opportunity to coach her, but we talk a lot about her all the time, not just on a day like today.
"It was extra special to have her family here in the stands, I just can't describe it, it was so meaningful to us," Gross said. "Obviously, the fact that we could get this one, and get it for her, was really special."
UC Davis, which led by five points early in the game before going into halftime with a 23-23 tie, trailed by as many as seven points in the second before going down 45-39 with 9:18 left. The Aggies, though, scored 13 of the next 15 points, behind seven points from Doherty and four from Fipps, to lead 52-47 with 1:33 to play.
Molly Gruebel hit a big three-pointer off the right wing with 45 seconds to go that pushed the lead to 55-49 and Hawai'i wasn't able to get closer than three points the rest of the way.
"One thing that was so special about Genevieve was she played with so much joy and passion. She loved being on the basketball court," Gross said. "The other thing about Genevieve was that she stepped up when the game was on the line and, in the big championship moments, she wanted the ball in her hands.
"I told Molly that I thought there was a little Genevieve angel on that three-pointer because Molly just stepped up and that was exactly the kind of shot Genevieve would have hit for us."
Hawai'i outrebounded the Aggies 43-24 but had seven more turnovers (16-9). Gruebel had seven boards to lead the Aggies while adding four assists.
The game was close throughout. Fipps scored nine points in the first four minutes of the matchup, including a three-pointer, as UC Davis jumped to an 11-6 lead. King, though, scored two straight baskets to tie the game, 15-15 seven minutes later and it remained tightly contested the rest of the half.
UC Davis was up 23-18 before Hawai'i scored the last five points of the half to forge the 23-23 deadlock at intermission.
The Aggies return to action on Thursday when they travel to face Cal Poly at 7 p.m.
NOTES: Alyson Doherty's one block put her one shy of Sarah Allen for 10th on the school's career list... Kelsey Harris has drained 71 three-pointers this season -- the fourth-highest single-season total in school history, standing just one back of Kimberly Smith's total in 2005 (72)... the single-season three-point record is 81 held by Karen Boisvert in 1991... with her 449 points this season, Fipps needs just 14 more to catch Staci Stevens for the most points by a junior (463 in 1986-87) in the history of the program.
HAWAI`I (14-11, 8-5)
King, Destiny 3-9 6-8 12; Kuehu, Shawna-Lei 5-9 0-0 10; Karaitiana, Ashleigh 3-12 0-0 7; Moore, Diane 2-3 0-0 5; Adolpho, Kalei 2-6 1-3 5; Haydel, Sydney 2-4 0-0 4; Wimbley, Marissa 1-2 0-0 3; Kailiawa, Pua 1-1 0-0 2; Harris, Briana 0-1 2-2 2; Mason, Morgan 0-7 2-2 2. Totals 19-54 11-15 52.
UC DAVIS (11-14, 6-6)
Fipps, Sydnee 9-16 3-4 22; Doherty, Alyson 5-10 5-7 15; Oryon, Idit 2-4 2-2 6; Greubel, Molly 1-2 1-2 4; Harris, Kelsey 1-3 0-2 3; Beyer, Lauren 1-1 0-0 2; Salvatore, Brianna 0-3 2-4 2; Marfone, Celia 0-2 1-3 1; Johnson, Heidi 0-3 1-2 1; McGuire, Taylor 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 19-44 15-26 56.
Halftime - Tied 23-23. 3-point goals--Hawai`i 3-10 (Karaitiana, Ashleigh 1-4; Moore, Diane 1-1; Wimbley, Marissa 1-2; Harris, Briana 0-1; Mason, Morgan 0-1; Kuehu, Shawna-Lei 0-1), UC Davis 3-9 (Greubel, Molly 1-1; Harris, Kelsey 1-1; Fipps, Sydnee 1-5; Johnson, Heidi 0-1; Oryon, Idit 0-1). Fouled
out--Hawai`i-None, UC Davis-None. Rebounds--Hawai`i 43 (Adolpho, Kalei 11), UC Davis 24 (Greubel, Molly 5). Assists--Hawai`i 13 (Mason, Morgan 3), UC Davis 10 (Greubel, Molly 3). Total fouls--Hawai`i 23, UC Davis 17.
Technical fouls--Hawai`i-None, UC Davis-None. A-512.