The University of Redlands women's basketball squad continued Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) action on Saturday by facing off against the Occidental College Tigers. The Bulldogs rattled off their second-straight SCIAC victory after holding off the Tigers for a 71-66 victory in Eagle Rock.
The Bulldogs jumped out to an early 7-2 lead after junior forward Brinsley Farry (Ventura, CA) knocked down back-to-back buckets while making the most of a steal by senior forward Kaity Lykins (Simi Valley, CA).
However, the Bulldogs' advantage slowly began to dwindle, as Occidental grabbed a 14-13 lead with 9:50 left to play in the first half.
Bulldog senior guard Kameran Dage (Walnut Creek, CA) came up clutch with a three-pointer to bring the score within one point at 17-18 with 5:48 left in the first frame.
Minutes later, the Maroon and Gray rallied to tie the score at 20 after senior forward Victoria Fakalata (East Palo Alto, CA) converted a lay-up. Dage continued her hot hand from beyond the arc by draining a three-pointer to put Redlands up by a score of 23-20.
Dage continued to keep the Bulldogs on top by notching five more points in the half, including another basket from downtown, en route to a 33-29 halftime lead.
A quick four points by the Tigers turned the tables on the Maroon and Gray's advantage early in the second half, but Redlands' senior guard Caitlin Ciardella (South San Francisco, CA) answered by snapping the bottom of the net for a three-pointer to make it 36-33.
The teams continued to trade advantages in a back-and-forth stretch of the half, resulting in an eventual 53-53 tie with 7:43 remaining in the game.
After a key lay-up by freshman forward Reyna Ta'amu (Lakewood, CA), freshman forward Allison Siksnus (Placentia, CA) knocked down four clutch free-throws on two consecutive possessions to expand the Bulldogs' lead to 59-53.
Another Ta'amu basket made it an eight-point game but the Tigers refused to go away, firing off nine straight points.
However, Ciardella had other plans for the Bulldogs, as she hit another crucial three-pointer to put her squad up, 64-62, with 3:25 left on the clock.
After clutch free-throw shooting from the Bulldogs in the final minutes, they stayed ahead and held on to a 71-66 victory.
Dage notched a game-high 17 points after going 4-for-9 from three-point range. Lykins was two rebounds away from a double-double after dropping 15 points and hauling in eight boards. In addition, she went 5-for-7 from the charity stripe. Ciardella and Farry earned eight points on the day, while Ta'amu chipped in seven points.
The Bulldogs bettered the Tigers' shooting percentage with a 44.4% mark, as compared to Oxy's 39.9% effort. Furthermore, the Maroon and Gray fed off multiple second-chance opportunities by notching 16 points.
Redlands (9-10, 6-4 SCIAC) takes on Cal Lutheran University (12-6, 7-2 SCIAC) on Saturday, February 7, in the friendly confines of Currier Gymnasium at 5 p.m. for a SCIAC doubleheader with the men.