Jan. 12, 2008
SANTA BARBARA, CA - Cal State Fullerton junior Toni Thomas scored a game-high 24 points and grabbed a season-high 16 rebounds, but it wasn't enough to keep the Titans from suffering their second consecutive one-point defeat as host UC Santa Barbara rallied for a 59-58 victory in overtime on Saturday afternoon in Santa Barbara, Calif.
Fullerton (2-12, 1-2 in the Big West Conference) suffered its second-straight one-point defeat after falling 55-54 on Thursday at Cal Poly and its third in the last five games. The Gauchos improved to 9-6 overall and remained perfect at 4-0 in the Big West.
For Thomas, it was her first double-double of the year and the first for a Titan in 2007-08 as Fullerton was the lone Big West school without a double-double this season.
The Titans built a big advantage, leading by 10 points at 46-36 with just 5:37 remaining in regulation after a jumper by junior Daviyonne Weathersby. However, UCSB clawed its way back into the contest, scoring 12 unanswered points to take its first lead of the game with 1:35 to play.
Sophomore Jasmine Scott answered for the Titans to tie the game with a jumper on their next possession and Thomas hit a pair of free throws with 35 seconds remaining as Fullerton regained the lead.
The Gauchos responded to tie the game once again as Kat Suderman scored down low with 17 seconds left out of a timeout and a steal by Jessica Wilson prevented a last-second game-winner by the Titans with two seconds remaining, sending the game into overtime.
Wilson gave UCSB the lead for good in the extra period, sinking a pair of free throws less than a minute in and gave the Gauchos their biggest lead at four points after converting on a jumper in the lane with 1:24 remaining.
The two teams traded baskets the rest of the way before Fullerton freshman Lauren Chow, who finished with 10 points, hit a long three-pointer with two seconds remaining for the final totals.
Cal State Fullerton led most of the way as UC Santa Barbara struggled out of the gate, missing 12 of its first 14 shots and turning the ball over eight times in the first 10 minutes. The Titans led by as many as nine points in the first half and led 27-21 at the break.
The Titans shot just over 36 percent from the field for the game to the Gauchos' 34 percent and matched UCSB on the boards with 42 rebounds.
Wilson led the home side with 17 points and 11 rebounds while Suderman finished with 14 points for the Gauchos.
Fullerton returns home next week for another pair of conference games, hosting league newcomer UC Davis on Thursday (Jan. 17) at 7 p.m. before welcoming Pacific to Titan Gym on Saturday evening (Jan. 19) at 5 p.m.