Feb. 18, 2012
MORAGA, Calif. - Redshirt junior Alex Cowling poured in a game-high 21 points to break the LMU women's basketball career-scoring record, but the Lions came up just short in a near upset bid as they fell 61-56 to Saint Mary's Saturday at McKeon Pavilion.
With just over a minute remaining, Cowling hit a 15-foot jumper to tie the score, 56-56. The Gaels' Carli Rosenthal responded with a jumper of her own and, following an LMU turnover, Jackie Nared hit one of two free throws to push the Saint Mary's lead to three, 59-56.
Cowling had a good look at a game-tying three with 16 seconds remaining, but the shot would not fall and the Lions were forced to foul on the defensive rebound. Saint Mary's left the door open for one final Lion attempt however as Rosenthal missed both double-bonus free throws.
With one final possession, the Lions got the ball to Taylor Anderson on the left baseline, but her three-point attempt bounced long and the Gaels' Hayley Hendricksen put the game in hand by sinking two free throws.
Cowling came into the game needing 18 points to tie and 19 points to break the LMU career-scoring record of 1,662, held by Bryn Britton (1998-02). She managed just seven points in the first half on 1-of-5 shooting from the field and 4-of-4 from the free throw line.
But as the Lions mounted their second-half comeback, Cowling came alive as well, hitting five field goals, including a trio of three-pointers. Her two free-throws with 5:49 remaining were good for her 18th and 19th points of the game, sending her past Britton's nearly decade-old record.
Cowling led LMU (7-20, 3-12 WCC) with 21 points and 12 rebounds for her 10th double-double of the season. Hazel Ramirez added 11 points and Anderson chipped in a career-high 10 points.
Saint Mary's (19-8, 10-4 WCC) was led by Nared's 18 points and 11 rebounds while Rosenthal added 15 points and 12 boards.
The Lions conclude West Coast Conference regular season play on Thursday, Feb. 23, traveling to face cross-town rival Pepperdine. The game, also part of the Third Annual Wells Fargo PCH Cup, tips off at 7 p.m.
- GO LIONS -