DAVIS, Calif. ---
The Cal State Northridge women's basketball team (5-10, 1-0 Big West) held on for a 56-52 victory over UC Davis Thursday evening in both teams' Big West Conference opener. Cinnamon Lister scored a game-high 15 points, Ashlee Guay added 14 and set a new school career record for steals and the Matadors posted their third-straight win in Big West openers.
Leading by 11 at halftime, CSUN looked to be headed for a comfortable victory at The Pavilion. However, the Aggies came out of the locker rooms scorching and cut the lead down to one (37-36) with 14:18 left in the half.
The Matadors would build the lead back to five, but UC Davis answered once again and tied the game at 41-41 with 8:44 left. Janae Sharpe put the Matadors back up for good, successfully converting an old-fashioned three-point play to send the teams to the under-eight media timeout.
Northridge and Davis exchanged baskets, but the Aggies were able to get within one (48-47) with 3:40 left. Guay scored on a lay-up and Camille Mahlknecht hit a pair of big free throws with 57 seconds left to seal the victory.
Guay recorded four steals to go along with her 14 points and now has a school record 216 for her career. She surpassed Bridgette Ealy's former mark of 213 with a steal right before halftime. She also had four rebounds and three assists in the game.
Lister led the Matadors in scoring for the ninth time this season with her 15 points. She hit two 3-pointers, raising her season total to 39, and added four rebounds, three assists and a steal.
Sharpe was the third CSUN player to finish in double-figures, scoring 12 points. She also had four rebounds and added two assists and a steal. Mahlknecht had a strong game, grabbing 10 rebounds to go with a career-high four steals, three blocks and six points.
As a team, CSUN shot 41.2 percent (21-of-51) from the field compared to 34 percent (18-of-53) for UC Davis. Kelsey Harris led UC Davis with 12 points on four 3-pointers.
The Matadors had 15 steals in the contest and scored 24 points off turnovers. Northridge also held a 39-30 advantage in rebounding and out-scored the Aggies 30-14 in the paint.
The victory was CSUN's first in Davis since a 76-68 overtime decision on Feb. 26, 2005. The Matadors have won their Big West opener three-straight years in a row and snapped a brief three-game losing streak.
CSUN will look to keep things going when it heads to Honolulu to take on Hawai'i at the Stan Sheriff Center. Tip off on Sunday, Jan. 12 between the Matadors and Rainbow Wahine is slated for 5 p.m. (HT) // 7 p.m. (PT).