Deja Vu Finish Against Dons
Deanna Johnson led LMU with 16 points and Taylor Anderson chipped in a career-high 14.
March 6, 2014
LAS VEGAS - For the second time in six days, the LMU women's basketball team faced off against the San Francisco Dons in a hotly contested battle from tip off to final buzzer. In near deja vu fashion from last Saturday's meeting, however, the Lions came up on the short end of a one-point final decision, falling 63-62 in the first round of play at the 2014 West Coast Conference Championship at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.
A pair of Deanna Johnson free throws with 7:48 to play put the Lions on top 56-49. But LMU would go on a four-minute scoring drought as USF reeled off eight straight, capped by an Alexa Hardick three to give the Dons a 57-56 advantage with 3:02 to play.
The score would change hands back and forth over the next minute-and-a-half and a Johnson jumper would give LMU its final lead, 62-61 with 1:36 on the clock.
Missed shots and turnovers would eventually put the ball in the Dons' hands with 14 seconds remaining. And Taj Winston would play hero for USF for the second straight meeting. After allowing just eight second-chance points to that point, Winston powered her three layup chances and two offensive boards before sinking the game-winning bucket with one second remaining.
The Lions had one final opportunity to go the length of the court for a desperation shot, but the Dons would pick off the pass at mid court to seal the game.
Johnson led LMU with 16 points while Taylor Anderson chipped in a career-high 14 off the bench. Sophie Taylor also came off the bench to score 11 points while Mackenzie Kerins pulled down a game-high 15 boards.
Winston led the Dons with 16 points, just four in the second half, including a pair of free throws and the game-winning bucket. Taylor Proctor had 13 points and Hardick added 12 on four three-pointers.
The Lions, who finish the season 9-20 overall, overcame a slow start to the game that saw them not hit a field goal until just inside five minutes of play, to eventually take a 34-27 lead into the break.
Trailing 10-4 early, Leslie Lopez-Wood got the LMU offense going with a pair of threes sandwiched by a USF jumper to bring the Lions to within two, 12-10. Dikes would respond for the Dons, but buckets by Emly Ben-Jumbo, Sophie Taylor and Deanna Johnson led LMU to its first lead of the game, 18-17, with 7:34 to go.
Proctor's layup with 3:44 not he clock would tie the game for the third time, 24-24, but LMU would close out the half on a 10-3 run, using its defensive intensity to create turnovers and missed opportunities for San Francisco (12-18)
Hazel Ramirez closed out her career in a Lion uniform with six points and seven assists, bringing her LMU record single-season total to an even 200 and her school career record total to 476. Leslie Lopez-Wood concluded a brilliant rookie season with an LMU record 70 three-pointers, including two in today's game.