Sun Devils Sneak By Cal, 56-52

Jan. 10, 2004

BERKELEY, Calif. ( - California lost a 56-52 defensive battle with ArizonaState Saturday afternoon at Haas Pavilion. The Golden Bears dropped to 9-6overall and 2-4 in the Pac-10 after their third straight loss at home byfour or fewer points. The Sun Devils improved to 9-5 (3-3).

'I don't think either team played particularly well,' said Cal head coachCaren Horstmeyer. 'They hit a couple big shots when they needed to. Theyobviously did a good job of making us turn the ball over and taking us outof our offense. Good credit to their defense. But, we did a good job of notallowing them to shoot the ball very well.'

Cal shot 45.8 percent from the floor but scored a season-low 52 points.However, the Bears did hold ASU to 33.9 percent.

Cal led 48-44 with 6:54 to play following a layup by Kiki Williams. TheBears lost the lead and regained it at 50-49 following a layup by NihanAnaz with 3:01 to play.

'Three games Oregon State, Arizona and Arizona State, we have a lead(late), and we don't get stops on the defensive end,' said Horstmeyer, 'andwe take poor shots on the offensive end. It's a common theme in all threegames. We need to fix that, and it is fixable. We have to evaluate what'shappening.'

ASU guard Carrie Buckner countered with a basket, and the Bears missedtheir next shot. Kylan Loney hit a critical 25-foot three-pointer afterwhat appeared to be a missed travelling call to give the Sun Devils afour-point cushion. Olga Volkova brought Cal back to within two at 54-52with a layup with 34 seconds remaining, but that's as close as the Bearscould get.

Cal held its largest lead of the game at 18-14 but trailed 32-31 at thehalf. ASU led by as many as six at 38-32 with 15:46 to go in the game.

Anaz led the Bears with 11 points for her 14th double-figure scoring gameof the year. LaTasha O'Keith added 10 points for her fifth consecutivedouble-digit effort.

Betsy Boardman and Jenny Thigpin paced the Sun Devils with 12 points each.Thigpin's performance was a career high.

Two keys to the game were Arizona State forcing Cal into 26 turnovers,while committing only 20, and the Sun Devils' 40-30 edge on the glass. Calheld a 16-15 rebounding advantage at the half.

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