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Grand Canyon Holds on Late to Edge Cal Poly in Phoenix, 64-59

Grand Canyon Holds on Late to Edge Cal Poly in Phoenix, 64-59

PHOENIX — Lynn Leaupepe had a double-double for the second consecutive game Saturday afternoon, leading the Cal Poly women's basketball team at Grand Canyon, but the Lopes held on for a 64-59 win at GCU Arena to claim the first-ever meeting between the two schools.

Leaupepe had 14 points and 13 rebounds (tying her career high on two previous occasions) for the Mustangs, who were coming off a 62-52 win over Pepperdine on Dec. 3. It's the sixth career double-double for the junior, and her third this season.

Cal Poly junior forward Mary Kate Evans was next with a career-high 11 points, going 3-for-7 from 3-point range and 2-for-2 from the free-throw line.

The Mustangs scored the game's first four points (all free throws by Leaupepe in the first 86 seconds), but Grand Canyon moved in front with a 7-0 run en route to ending the quarter up 16-11.

A layup by Leaupepe brought the Mustangs within 26-19 at the half. Cal Poly (4-5) would cut the deficit to a four-point margin at four instances midway through the third quarter — 27-23, 29-25, 35-31 and 37-33 — but GCU regrouped to close the period strongly with a 10-2 stretch, heading to the fourth ahead 47-35.

The Mustangs' 24 fourth-quarter points — capped by Evans' third 3 of the day with seven seconds remaining to produce the final score — were their second-most in the final period this year. 

Marina Laramie, the reigning WAC Player of the Week, led the Lopes with 21 points and 11 rebounds, while Vanessa Murphy added 15 points and 10 boards for GCU (5-4).

Two second-year Mustangs had career-best rebounding efforts, as sophomore forward Katie Nunnelley grabbed six boards and redshirt freshman guard Breezi Holt secured five.

The Mustangs will return to Mott Athletics Center to host their last home non-conference game of the year on Saturday, Dec. 17, welcoming San Francisco for a 4 p.m. tipoff.

The game vs. the Dons will also be Youth Basketball Night, as all fans ages 13-and-under receive free admission, and a free clinic for all in eighth grade and younger will be put on at 1:30 p.m.