Cougars Drop Heartbreaker at Cal, 74-71 - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Cougars Drop Heartbreaker at Cal, 74-71

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Cal hit a late 3-pointer to give the Golden Bears a win over the Cougars. Cal hit a late 3-pointer to give the Golden Bears a win over the Cougars.

by WSU Athletics

BERKELEY, Calif. - A late 3-pointer from California's Mikayla Cowling gave the Golden Bears (11-9, 2-7) a one-point lead and sealed their victory over the Washington State women's basketball team (12-8, 3-6) Friday at Haas Pavilion. The Cougars fell to the Bears, 71-74, and were led in scoring by freshman Alexys Swedlund with16 points. After battling back from an eight-point deficit at the start of the fourth quarter, the Cougars took a four-point lead with 93 seconds left. WSU led by two points with 18 seconds to play, but Cowling's go-ahead basket gave California the final lead and the victory.

"I thought our team played their hearts out - every one of them," WSU Head Coach June Daugherty said. "We executed the game plan the way we wanted. Our team left it all out on the floor. A shot or two goes for them - doesn't go for them - and we walk out of here with a win. Loved the energy and an enormous amount of guts."

After falling into an early deficit, the Cougars' stingy defense kept them in the game. WSU forced California into a season high 27 turnovers, including 17 first-half turnovers. However, the Bears were able to take advantage of limited opportunities, shooting .574 (27-of-47) from the floor.

The Cougars entered the half trailing 26-34, but returned from the locker room to pull within three points with 3:40 to play in the third quarter. WSU's run was sparked by a 3-pointer from Louise Brown, as the Cougars finished the quarter 4-of-6 from beyond the arc. However, the Bears were able to regain an eight-point lead entering the final quarter.

Washington State took its first lead of the game with 2:21 remaining in the game on a pair of free throws from Brown. Senior Mariah Cooks scored eight fourth-quarter points for the Cougars and was complemented by freshman Borislava Hristova with six points and Swedlund with six points.

Swedlund was one of four Cougar scorers in double figures as Hristova added 15 points, Brown scored 14 points, and Cooks added 10. Hristova also led WSU in rebounding with five rebounds. Senior Dawnyelle Awa dished out a season-high seven assists and sophomore Pinelopi Pavlopoulou added five assists to tie her career high.

The Cougars will look to end their three-game losing streak Sunday at Maples Pavilion with a noon showdown against No. 16 Stanford.

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