Cal Posts 64-56 Win over Washington State

Jan. 4, 2005

BERKELEY, Calif. - Senior forward Leigh Gregory and freshman center Jessica Lawson scored 14 points each to lead California to a 64-56 victory over Washington State Tuesday evening at Haas Pavilion. The Golden Bears improve to 8-5 overall (2-2 Pac-10), while the Huskies fall to 4-9 (0-4).

'I'm glad to bounce back the way we did,' Cal head coach Caren Horstmeyer said. 'It was a great team effort. I thought we played well together. I think we were playing too many people too many minutes for the style that we play, so we were able to rotate people tonight, and you will see us do that more often to keep people fresh.'

Behind three-pointers from Kiki Williams, Kristin Iwanaga and Renee Wright, Cal raced to a 15-3 advantage with 13:44 to play in the first half.

The Bears grabbed their biggest of the first half at 21-7 following a fastbreak layup from Gregory off a pass from Sarah Pool. Washington State closed to within four at 24-20 and 27-23, but Cal entered the locker room up 34-27.

Lawson, who was 6-of-13 from the floor, played only two minutes in the first half after posting two fouls in the opening minute and 10 seconds. But, she came back strong, tallying 12 of her points after the break, including the Bears' first nine points of the second half.

'This is a credit to Jessica's mental toughness,' Horstmeyer said. 'When you go out with two fouls, sometimes it can be very difficult to come back and be dominant. It's what we need. She wanted the ball in the second half, and that makes it easier for people to pass the ball.'

Another layup from Gregory following a pass from Pool put Cal ahead 47-33 with 12:42 left in the game. Lawson scored on a fastbreak layup at the 9:48 mark, giving the Bears' the biggest lead of the game at 51-36.

The Cougars then went on a 12-5 run over the next five minutes and got as close as 56-48 following four straight points from Jessica Perry. With one minute to play, WSU trailed by seven on two occasions.

Williams finished with 11 points and was 2-for-3 from beyond the arc. Iwanaga led the Bears with six rebounds and tied her career high of five steals. Wright had another strong game off the bench, adding nine points, four rebounds, two assists, one block and one steal in 27 minutes of action.

Cal shot 52.0 percent in the first half and finished the game at 48.9 percent, while WSU converted 42.3 percent of its opportunities after shooting only 39.3 percent after halftime. The Bears entered the game ranked No. 2 nationally in three-point percentage (47.5) and shot 41.7 percent (5-12) from long range against the Cougars.

Perry, Ariana Scales and Charmaine Jones paced WSU with 11 point each.

The Bears face a tough stretch of road games, playing Arizona Jan. 7, Arizona State Jan. 9 and Stanford Jan. 13 before returning home Jan. 20 to entertain USC.

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