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Long Beach State Holds Off Cal Poly Rally to Win 83-80 at Home

Long Beach State Holds Off Cal Poly Rally to Win 83-80 at Home

LONG BEACH, Calif. — The Cal Poly women's basketball team rallied to pull within one possession of Long Beach State on Saturday night at Walter Pyramid, but the 49ers held on late to edge the Mustangs 83-80, remaining alone in first place in the Big West Conference. 

Cal Poly closed the third quarter on a 9-3 run in order to start the fourth down 62-48. After the 49ers went up 76-61 on a jumper from Anna Kim with 3:52 remaining, the Mustangs went on a 19-7 surge to finish the game.

Mustang senior forward Hannah Gilbert cut the deficit to 76-71 on a jumper in the lane with exactly one minute to play. Then after Kim knocked down a pair of free throws, senior forward Amanda Lovely hit a 3-pointer to make it 78-74 with 48 seconds left.

Three ensuing free throws by Kim put Long Beach State ahead 81-74, but another 3-pointer — this time from junior Lynn Leaupepe at the 26-second mark — brought Cal Poly within a four-point gap again.

Kim sank another pair of free-throw opportunities for an 83-77 lead, but the next trip up the floor, junior guard Dynn Leaupepe made another 3 to make it 83-80 with only six seconds to go.

On the final inbound, Long Beach State (12-6 overall, 3-0 Big West) was able to play keepaway and avoid another Mustang attempt to foul to stop the clock. Kim finished with a game-high 25 points, ending 7-of-8 from the free-throw line in helping the 49ers prevail.

LBSU jumped to an 8-0 lead with just over two minutes elapsed en route to a 28-18 lead after the opening quarter.

Sophomore forward Katie Nunnelley scored on a jumper less than a minute into the second period, pulling the Mustangs within single digits (28-20). LBSU, however, used a 15-4 spree capped by a Jessica Gertz 3-pointer to take a 43-24 advantage with 4:48 remaining to the break.

The Mustangs (6-10, 2-2) shot 13-of-25 in the first half and 29-of-56 for the game.

Dynn Leaupepe finished with a team-high 23 points, six rebounds and five assists. She made all nine of her free-throw attempts on the evening, upping her season percentage to .901 (ranking in the top 15 nationally).

Gilbert added 22 points on 10-for-11 shooting to go with eight rebounds, and Lynn Leaupepe had 19 points. Now with 975 career points, Gilbert is 25 away from becoming the 13th Mustang in school history to reach the 1,000 milestone.

Cal Poly will return home to host Hawai'i in Mott Athletics Center at 7 p.m. Thursday before going back on the road to visit CSUN at 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 21.

Photo © 2017 David E. Holmes • (For more, click here.)