Gauchos Open Homestand With 85-75 Loss to California Baptist

Danae Miller (Photo by Jeff Liang)
Danae Miller (Photo by Jeff Liang)

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – The UC Santa Barbara women's basketball team (0-2) stepped on the Thunderdome court for the first time in the 2020-21 season on Friday night, but fell to California Baptist (6-0), 85-75.

Redshirt senior guard Doris Jones recorded a double-double with a team-high 23 points and 10 rebounds. Senior point guard Danae Miller followed closely behind with 20 points and held the team lead in helpers on the evening with six. Redshirt senior center Natalia Bruening led the way in rebounds with 11.

CBU led by as much as 12 in the first half and was up by 11 with 5:12 to go until halftime before the Gauchos came alive on a 15-4 run to take a one-point lead at the break.

The visitors would eventually widen the lead back out to 12 at one point late in the third quarter, before wrapping up the frame with a 62-51 advantage.

Redshirt junior guard Bri Anugwom and Miller combined for 15 points, nine of which came from a trio of Miller threes, in the early minutes of the fourth quarter to bring the deficit back down to four with just under six minutes to go in regulation, but hopes of a Gaucho comeback were dashed on a converted triple by the Lancers' Caitlyn Harper with 2:16 left to put California Baptist up 80-70.

Despite the final scoreline not being in their favor, the Gauchos outrebounded CBU by 13 and turned over the ball just three times in the fourth quarter.

"We need to have better ball movement, but [compared to the team's matchup at UCLA] we played with more discipline, we were more intentional about trying to get to the second and third side, and we had a much better effort on the glass with 15 offensive rebounds. When we make 10 threes, we have to find a way to win," said head coach Bonnie Henrickson.

"Considering everything going on, we got to play two games this week. We're grateful for even having a chance to play and for all the work that our administration, training room staff, and weight room staff have undertaken, and of course to our players for making the lifestyle changes necessary to be able to do this. I certainly don't want to underestimate our gratitude," added Henrickson.

The Gauchos return to action next week in a back-to-back series with Santa Clara on Dec. 18 and 19. Tip-off is scheduled for 5 p.m. on the 18th and 4 p.m. on the 19th. A live stream with Gerry Fall and Louis Reynaud on commentary will be available on Big West TV and live stats will be housed on UCSBGauchos.com.

Follow UCSB women's basketball on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.