Saturday, December 11, 2010

No. 21 GCU Rolls Over San Francisco State, 60-38

In its first game as a nationally-ranked team, No. 21 Grand Canyon (9-1) defeated San Francisco State (1-5) 60-38 in the CCAA/PacWest Challenge at San Francisco State University Friday.

It was GCU’s eighth straight win and first road game of the season. The Antelopes had played four home games and five neutral site games in their first nine contests.
GCU gave up a season-low 11 second-half points and also got 22 of its 60 points from the bench.

“It helps get the rest of the team motivated and it shows it doesn’t matter who is in the game; we’re going to play hard,” said sophomore center Kim Young (Glendale, AZ, Glendale, Scottsdale CC), who came off the bench and had her most productive game in her early career.

The 6-3 Glendale native played 17 minutes had four points, six rebounds and three blocked shots and was instrumental during the team’s 13-0 first-half run.

“There were moments in this game where it just didn’t matter who was in the game, they respond to one another,” said head coach Trent May.

“Something a coach looks for is the right combination. We were able to change personnel and still get good production and chemistry.”

After a slow start, Grand Canyon went into halftime with a 32-27 lead. The Antelopes trailed 17-8 at the 11:11 mark before scoring 13 consecutive points.

Samantha Murphy (Phoenix, AZ, Xavier Prep), who led all scorers with 15 points, started it off with two 3-pointers, the second coming after a steal from Young, who along with Joslynn Frazier (Sacramento, Calif., Burbank, College of Canyons) and Stevie Kamp (Mesa, Ariz., Mountain View, Nova Southeastern) combined for five free throws to give GCU a 19-17 lead. Kamp scored off a steal to finish the run, but the Gators scored the next six points to regain the lead.

Before the intermission, the lead changed hands three more times. Grand Canyon leads came on a Kristi Girdley (Aliso Viejo, CA, Aliso Niguel) 3-pointer (24-23), a Murphy jumper (26-25) and Young lay-in (28-27) off a Murphy pass. Young’s basket was the first of five straight Grand Canyon points. Just off the bench, frosh Jenna Pearson (Gilbert, Ariz., Gilbert Christian) added a baseline jumper and Rosalyn Nelson (Phoenix, AZ, Deer Valley) scored off a steal for the final points of the first half.

Murphy led all scorers at the break with 12. GCU’s bench had nine points, including four from Young.

Nelson finished the game with eight points, seven rebounds, three assists and three steals. Girdley had a team-high four steals.

Frazier led the bench scorers with eight.

“We did a good job tonight. Playing on the road, there are so many variables,” said May. “I’m proud of our girls, again, for their toughness and willingness.”

While the ‘Lopes shot just 32.9 percent from the field, they held the Gators to only 24.6 percent. San Francisco State had just four second-half field goals and shot only 13.8 percent in the final 20 minutes.

The PacWest went 1-1 Friday. Notre Dame de Namur lost to Cal State Stanislaus 81-80 in overtime.

GCU will look for its ninth straight win Saturday when it takes on Cal State Stanislaus at 4:30 p.m. PDT. All games of the challenge can be followed on San Francisco State’s Live Stats. A link to the site is on the and women’s basketball home page calendar.

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