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Rustlers Fall Short in Exciting Finish

Rustlers Fall Short in Exciting Finish

Huntington Beach, Calif. - Golden West women's basketball (11-7, 1-3 OEC) fell short in a close finish against the Cypress Chargers (7-11, 3-1 OEC) Friday night, 77-73.  

The two Orange Empire Conference squads met Friday night for a conference battle. Turnovers were the key factor early in the game. Steals and rebounds dictated each side's opportunities at the basket. It was a back and forth one score game at the tail end of the first quarter. To close out the first ten minutes, the visiting Chargers separated themselves to lead, 15-19. Out of the gate in the second quarter, the home team found three points from Princess Mccauley to put themselves within one point. Successful ball movement was the most important element of the game for the first half. Golden West struggled to maintain possession which had them trailing at half, 43-32.

The Rustlers worked quickly to get back into the game. Behind by nine points to start the final half, they looked for big momentum shifting plays. Midway through the third quarter they did just that. A Ty Adam's three shot put the home team within five points and a Kayla Terry layup made the scoreboard a one score game. Terry repeated with a layup to tie the score at 47 apiece and knotted the matchup. Two buckets from Mccauley and Laoren Jordan made it a two possession game with a four point advantage. Golden West worked to put away the Chargers as they led at the end of the third frame, 53-50. 

Mccauley and Kim Rivera opened the final quarter scoring with two jumpshots to put the Rustlers up eight. A deep three from the visiting squad would make it a one point deficit for the Chargers. The high intensity finish allowed for a thrilling close. Makayla Heffernan did her part with a corner three shot to extend the Golden West lead. However, Cypress climbed back into the game and got back on top with four minutes left in regulation. A successful layup and an "and one" opportunity from Terry gave the lead back to the home team. Jordan came down with a huge rebound in the paint which gave way to a lead swapping jumper. With a turnover and two points by Mccauely able to extend the advantage. 

Less than two minutes in the matchup, both sides exchanged the lead with impactful buckets. Missed shots and opportunities by the Rustlers in the last minute gave way for the Chargers to finish the matchup. Golden West would fall short and lose their third conference game, 77-73. Terry earned a double-double with her team leading 21 points and collected 15 rebounds. Mccauley also collected a double-double as she found the bucket for 15 points and rebounded eleven times. Golden West fell to 1-3 in the OEC and 11-7 overall. 

NEXT UP: The Rustlers will host their next conference matchup against Riverside on Wednesday, January 25th. Tipoff will be at 6pm.