Humboldt State women’s basketball saw a 10-point lead vanish in the final 5:22 of regulation but held on to defeat Cal State Dominguez Hills in overtime, 73-63, Saturday night, at Lumberjack Arena.
Dominguez Hills scored the game’s opening basket, and the Green and Gold answered with a 9-0 run to capture the momentum early. Thrower sank a layup with 14 seconds left in the frame to take a 12-point, 21-9, advantage.
The Toros answered with improved defense in the second quarter. HSU was 1-of-13 shooting from the field and was outscored 9-7 before intermission. The Green and Gold maintained a 28-18 lead at the break. Alexia Thrower led the way with 10 first-half points and five boards for the home team.
“Going into halftime we were pleased with the lead,” HSU head coach Michelle Bento-Jackson said. “Lexi and Isa were on the bench with fouls in the second quarter. I really thought this was our best defensive game of the year.”
Both teams were held scoreless in the final 3:20 of the first half, but halftime adjustments led to a high-scoring third frame. Dominguez Hills outscored HSU 10-6 to begin the second half and trimmed the Green and Gold lead to six, 34-28, following a Nautica Morrow layup. Seven points from Isamar Conde during an 11-4 stretch for the Green and Gold extended the lead back to double digits, and the North Coast team led 50-40 heading into the final 10 minutes of action.
Tylore Bell led the Toros furious fourth-quarter rally that forced an overtime period. Bell drained back-to-back 3-pointers with Dominguez trailing by 13 with under six to play. Dominguez Hills shutout the Jacks in the final 5:28 and used a 13-0 run to even the game at 58-58 at the end of regulation.
“We had a string of turnovers, and Bell got hot from the outside and made some threes,” Bento-Jackson said. “I believe at one point we had four of six possessions that ended in turnovers. I felt like we ended regulation playing not to lose rather than playing to win.”
Conde helped the Green and Gold recover from their fourth-quarter cold spell and retake the momentum early in the overtime period. The senior scored six of the team’s 15 points and helped the Jacks sweep their weekend homestand. She finished the game with a team-leading 25 points on 9-of-18 shooting.
Three other Jacks reached double-digit scoring totals in the win. Alexia Thrower scored 20 points and registered her eighth double-double of the season with 11 rebounds, while Madeline Hatch chipped in 12 points and Turner finished with 10.
“We weathered the storm,” Bento-Jackson said. “Dominguez went into overtime with a tremendous amount of momentum. We took control of overtime right from the beginning and controlled the entire overtime.”
HSU travels to face Cal State East Bay next Thursday at 5:30 p.m.