Work in Sports
Third time's a charm
San Diego avenges losses, claims NCAA bid
Posted: Monday March 06, 2000 01:04 AM
SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) -- Jessica Gray scored 11 of her 15 points in the second half, and San Diego stunned top-seeded Pepperdine 68-51 Sunday in the championship game of the West Coast Conference tournament to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA.
Maria Perez-Barris added 14 points as the fourth-seeded Toreros (17-12) qualified for the NCAA tournament for the first time since 1993. Kerri Nakamoto had 11 points.
Damaris Hinojosa scored 11 points to lead the Waves (21-9), whose school-record 11-game winning streak come to an end.
Pepperdine, the regular-season champion, was defeated in the title game for the second straight year. The Waves have never appeared in the NCAA tournament.
The Waves' Rasheeda Clark, the WCC's third-leading scorer, was held to two points in the second half, and nine for the game.
San Diego, which matched a school record for victories first accomplished in 1989-90, stayed close in the second half and tied the game at 39 when Jessica Gray hit an inside jumper with 12:51 remaining.
It was still tied four minutes later, but the Toreros took a 48-45 lead when Maria Perez-Barris hit a 3-pointer as the shot clock was about to expire with 8:05 left. That basket was part of a 19-2 run that eventually gave San Diego a 60-47 lead with 2:34 to play.
The Toreros outscored Pepperdine 27-6 in the final 9:34.
There were 12 lead changes in the first half, and neither team led by more than four points. Pepperdine scored the final four points of the first half, including Anna Lembke's tiebreaking basket with 1:08 left in the half, to take a 30-26 lead at the intermission.