U of R Women's Basketball Closes out Tip-Off Classic with 79-61 Win over Illinois College

Photo credit: Maya Brito
Photo credit: Maya Brito

Four starters scored in double figures to lift the University of Redlands women's basketball team past Illinois College, 79-61, at home in the closing game of the 2018 Redlands Tip-Off Classic on Saturday night. In the first game of the evening, Chapman University defeated Linfield College (OR), 66-52.

The Bulldogs set the tone early with a suffocating full-court press. Redlands forced seven turnovers in the first three quarters and five in the fourth for a total of 25 in the game.

Junior guard Cassandra Lacey (Victorville, CA) continued her momentum from last night's 31-point performance with a steal and a jumper in the first minute of the game. After sophomore forward Camille Mosley's (Riverside, CA) jumper, fellow sophomore guard Kellis Dack (Vancouver, WA) scored on two consecutive shots to help build the Bulldogs' early 8-2 lead.

After first-year guard Alyssa Downs (South San Francisco, CA) knocked down her first of three treys in the game, Dack sank a jumper out of a timeout to push the lead to double digits at 15-4 just over five minutes into the action. The Bulldogs stretched their lead while holding the Lady Blues scoreless for almost four consecutive minutes.

IC finally gained traction with two three-pointers on back-to-back possessions to cut the deficit down to single figures at 10-19.

However, Redlands immediately responded by upping the pressure to push the advantage to 23-12 to end the first quarter.

Illinois College continued to struggle with the pressure, as first-year guard Jordan Smith (Tustin, CA) came up with a steal on the first possession of the second quarter, which turned into a layup on the other end.

Deeper into the stanza, Lacey hit a three-pointer from the left wing to extend Redlands' lead to 36-26. On the next possession, she grabbed a rebound and found sophomore guard Alyssa Lee (Monterey Park, CA) in transition for a jumper. Lacey continued to orchestrate the offense for her team, as she found Downs for a trey, which gave the Bulldogs a 41-24 advantage.

Although IC closed out the half with five straight points, Redlands entered the locker room with a 41-29 advantage.

Both teams were shaky out the break, but Dack finally scored on a jumper at the 7:49-mark in the third quarter. With continuous pressure throughout the floor, the Bulldogs built a 69-43 lead by the fourth quarter with a balanced attack from the starting unit.

Head Coach Rich Murphy took the opportunity to go deep into his bench. The Maroon and Gray did not skip a beat, as junior Lindsay Kilgore (Mira Loma, CA) knocked down a jumper off a feed from senior Brenna De La Rosa (Waipahu, HI). With a sizable lead, the Bulldogs cruised to its second victory of the season.

Mosley and Dack paced Redlands with 14 points each, while Dack added five rebounds and three assists. Lacey was effective with 12 points, seven rebounds, and six assists. Downs was the fourth starter to score double-digits with 11 points to go along with three rebounds.

As a team, the Bulldogs shot 44.9% from the field and an efficient 12-for-13 from the line for 92.3%. The defense nabbed 13 steals while converting 33 points off of IC's turnovers. Lee, Lacey, and Dack each registered three steals.

In Saturday's opening game of the Tip-Off Classic, a slow start plagued Linfield, which only scored 15 points in the first half. The Wildcats enjoyed a better second half, but a consistent Chapman squad prevailed in a 66-52 result. Junior forward Lucy Criswell (Portland, OR) led the game with 24 points on 10-for-20 shooting. She added eight rebounds and an assist. Senior guard Jaryn Fajardo (Torrance, CA) and junior guard Marissa Dunn (La Habra, CA) chipped in 13 and 12 points, respectively.

Redlands (2-0) welcomes Hope International University to Currier Gym for a non-conference tilt on Friday, November 16, at 4 p.m.