NORTHRIDGE, Calif. — Dye Stahley led Cal Poly with 17 points, five assists and a career-high eight steals Thursday night, but CSUN senior center Channon Fluker finished with 23 points and 20 rebounds, her seventh career 20/20 performance, as the Matador women's basketball team pulled away for a 68-52 Big West Conference win at The Matadome.
Fluker, who came into the week No. 1 in the nation averaging 3.6 blocks, also blocked seven shots. Senior guard Serafina Maulupe added 12 points along with six boards for the defending Big West Tournament champion Matadors.
Beginning with a 3-pointer by Maulupe, a Preseason All-Conference selection, on the game's opening possession, CSUN started hot, taking a 16-4 lead almost seven minutes in following a pair of free throws from Fluker, closing the period up 19-7.
Cal Poly moved within single-digits with 4:10 to play until halftime, when Stahley sank back-to-back free throws to cut the deficit to 22-13. Meghann Henderson answered with a 3 on the next possession, however, on the way to a 30-17 Matador advantage at the break.
To start the third quarter, the Mustangs scored the first three points, also narrowing the gap to 10 (32-22) thanks to two more Stahley free throws at the 8:23 mark, but CSUN responded each time, ultimately finishing the period up 46-31.
Junior forward Hana Vesela hit a 3 with 3:06 remaining in regulation to bring Cal Poly within 56-44, but Northridge (12-12, 6-4) didn't allow the Mustangs (5-16, 2-8) to pull any closer the rest of the way, using four straight Henderson free throws to push the lead back to a 16-point gap at 60-44.
Stahley primarily did her damage from the foul line, going 11-for-13 in 36 minutes. With her eight-steal performance, Stahley bumped her career total up to 147, staying in 16th in school history, now just two back of Jody Hasselfield (1987-90) for No. 15.
Stahley's eight steals are the most by any Big West player this season, as well as the 19th-highest single-game effort across the Division I ranks in 2018-19. She was only three steals back of Christina Hester's school-record 11 (vs. Cal State L.A. in 1984). Mustang junior forward Alicia Roufosse collected a team-leading 11 rebounds while scoring six points.
Cal Poly's road trip will continue traveling to UC Riverside (11-11, 5-3) for a 5 p.m. Saturday tipoff at SRC Arena.
File Photo © David E. Holmes