December 20, 2013

Mahlknecht Sets Blocks Record as CSUN Downs NAU

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. ---

Camille Mahlknecht blocked a season-high six shots to set a new school career record and help lead the Cal State Northridge women's basketball team (4-7) to a 64-52 victory over Northern Arizona Thursday evening at The Matadome. Janae Sharpe and Randi Friess each scored 11 points and Mahlknecht added 10 for CSUN in the victory.

Mahlknecht passed former teammate Jasmine Erving and now has 152 for her career. For the season, Mahlknecht has 32 blocks to lead the Big West at an average of 2.9 per game. She finished 5-of-9 from the field and added nine rebounds and two steals in 24 minutes.

Coming off a nine-day hiatus, the Matadors came out firing and led nearly the entire night. CSUN built a 20-4 lead off a 17-0 run early in the first half. NAU fought back, but Breeyon Alexander grabbed an offensive rebound and her put-back beat the buzzer to give Northridge a 37-25 advantage at halftime.

The Lumberjacks got within five (41-36) with 13:06 left in the second half. CSUN answered to push the lead back to 13 (55-42) after an Ashlee Guay lay-up with 7:33 left. Again, NAU cut the lead to five (57-52, 4:13) before Mahlknecht answered with consecutive lay-ups to seal the victory.

CSUN displayed a balanced scoring attack Thursday in defeating NAU for the first time since 2000. Ten different Matadors scored and the 11 points represented a new season high for both Friess and Sharpe.

In 29 minutes off the bench, Friess was 3-of-6 from the field and knocked down two 3-pointers. She also totaled five rebounds, two assists and three steals. Sharpe was 2-of-6 from the field, but knocked down six free throws to reach double figures for the 32nd time in her career. She added six rebounds and five assists in 35 minutes.

As a team, Northridge shot 37.3 percent (22-of-59) for the game compared to 30.9 percent (17-of-55) for Northern Arizona. Amanda Frost scored a game-high 20 points for the Lumberjacks.

Holding a 48-39 advantage in rebounding, CSUN totaled 15 second-chance points on 17 offensive rebounds. The Matador bench outscored NAU's 26-9 for the contest and CSUN forced 27 Lumberjack turnovers.

CSUN returns to action Saturday, Dec. 21 against Saint Mary's. Tip off between the Matadors and Gaels is slated for 4 p.m.