March 1, 2008
STOCKTON, Calif. - Amy VanHollebeke sunk a game-winning three-pointer from just inside the midcourt line to beat the final buzzer on Saturday as Pacific rallied from a 13-point halftime deficit to edge UC Davis 72-71 in a Big West Confernce women's basketball game, ending the Aggies' seven-game winning streak.
VanHollebeke's shot came after Jessica Campbell gave the Aggies a 71-69 lead with 4.5 seconds to go on a runner in the lane. Despite the loss, UC Davis maintained its half-game lead over UC Riverside in the standings heading into their showdown on Thursday at The Pavilion with the No. 2 seed for the upcoming conference tournament on the line.
UC Davis fell to 17-10 overall and 11-4 in the Big West with the defeat while Pacific improved to 13-15 overall and 8-7 in league. Haylee Donaghe scored a game-high 19 points for the Aggies while Campbell had 18. Post Paige Mintun tallied 11 points for the Aggies while Heather Bates added 10.
Guard Kelsey Lavender hit five three-pointers and scored 17 points for the Tigers while Emma Head had 16, Janae Young scored 11 and VanHollebeke added 10.
UC Davis, which shot 51.7 percent from the field in the first half, led 43-30 at the break but Pacific rallied in the second half, primarily behind Lavender who had four of her treys after intermission. VanHollebeke's three-pointer with 3:50 to go tied the game 62-62, the first of four ties down the stretch.
Head made two free throws with 27 seconds to go that knotted the game the final time at 69-69. UC Davis ran most of the remaining clock down before Campbell took the ball from the right wing, drove to her left and then moved into the key where she scored with just under five seconds remaining.
Three timeouts were called as the teams set up for the final play. The Tigers inbounded the ball and moved to the right side before passing back over the top to VanHiollebeke who hit her running shot from about a step inside the halfcourt line.
"If you have to give up a shot, that's the shot to give up. It just went in," said Aggie coach Sandy Simpson.
"We preferred not to give up a shot obviously."
The basket capped a big second-half rally for Pacific which scored the first four points of the game but went down 15-6 after Bates capped a 10-0 run for the Aggies. Behind seven first-half three-pointers, including three from Campbell, UC Davis led for the remainder of the half, opening a 27-16 lead with 7:33 to go.
VanHollebeke's three-pointer cut the Tigers' deficit to 37-30 with 1:35 before halftime but Campbell and Bates hit consecutive treys to give UC Davis a 13-point lead at the break. Campbell and Donaghe each had 13 points in the first 20 minutes.
The Aggies held a double-digit lead eight minutes into the second half but Pacific gradually cut into the advantage, climbing to within 60-57 on Lavender's three-pointer with 7:03 to go, and then later tying it with just under four minutes remaining.
"I thought Pacific did a really good job taking advantage of the seams in the defense," Simpson said. "We had what I would consider a lot of unforced turnovers and they came down and took advantage."
The Aggies shot 49 percent for the game and had nine three-pointers, picking up 10 steals and 16 assists. UC Davis, currently No. 7 in Div. I for free throws at 79.1 percent, made just 12 of 18. Bates had a team-high six rebounds.
Whitney Price and Lavender each had five assists while Head grabbed a game-high eight rebounds for Pacific.