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Cal Poly Women's Basketball Wins Fourth in a Row, 91-73 Over UCR

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Featuring the Mustangs' highest-scoring performance of the season, the Cal Poly women's basketball team won their fourth game in a row Saturday, 91-73 over UC Riverside, moving to 7-2 in Big West Conference play before a crowd of 1,581 at Mott Athletics Center.

The victory — which kept the Mustangs in second place in the conference standings — improved Cal Poly to 8-2 at home.

Cal Poly senior guard Dynn Leaupepe shot 12-of-17 from the floor (1-for-2 from 3-point range) and 6-of-8 from the free-throw line en route to 31 points. Leaupepe, who came into the day No. 33 in the nation in scoring (20.0 per game), also had five steals on the afternoon.

True freshman guard Ayzhiana Basallo went 6-for-8 (3-for-4 from deep) on the way to 15 points, and senior forward Lynn Leaupepe added 11 points and a team-high nine rebounds.

The Highlanders took their largest lead of the game, 16-7, on a pair of free throws by Michelle Curry 4:49 into the opening quarter. After cutting the UCR lead to 18-13 at the end of the first, Cal Poly moved in front 5:20 before halftime, 31-30 via a 3 from Basallo.

The Mustangs (13-8) capped a 14-0 run spanning just 2:31 with another 3 by Basallo, stretching the lead to 40-30 with 3:23 remaining to the break. (The 14-0 run was nearly Cal Poly's longest of the season, almost surpassing a 15-0 spree on Dec. 16 at North Dakota State.)

UCR (6-17, 3-6) wouldn't go away, however, cutting the deficit to 41-38 by intermission, and regaining the lead midway through the third period, 50-49, on a layup by Marina Ewodo. Cal Poly responded with seven consecutive points, though, to take back the lead for good, closing the quarter up 67-54.

Cal Poly led by as many as 22 — at 78-56 — on a 3 by senior forward Mary Kate Evans with 6:59 remaining.

Mustang senior guard Kelly Wong had eight points, helping to lead a 31-14 bench-scoring advantage.

Leaupepe moved past Megan Harrison (2005-09) for No. 4 in school history in career scoring, upping her total to 1,466 points. The team total eclipsed the previous season high which came in the 89-73 win at Northern Arizona on Dec. 9.

Cal Poly will have a short week ahead, visiting defending regular-season conference champion UC Davis (in first place at 8-0) at 7 p.m. Wednesday, before returning home to host Long Beach State at 2 p.m. Saturday.

The Feb. 10 game vs. the 49ers is also Play4Kay Day at Mott, as fans are encouraged to wear pink, and $2 from every ticket purchased will go directly to the Kay Yow Cancer Fund to support cancer research.

Photo © 2018 David E. Holmes