Photo Essay: Women’s basketball battles Dons at home

CSUN+womens+basketball+plays+against+the+University+of+San+Fransisco+on+Dec.+1%2C+2022%2C+at+the+Premier+America+Credit+Union+Arena+in+Northridge%2C+Calif.

Kaitlyn Lavo

CSUN women’s basketball plays against the University of San Fransisco on Dec. 1, 2022, at the Premier America Credit Union Arena in Northridge, Calif.

Benjamin Miller, Reporter

CSUN women’s basketball continued its struggles in a defeat to the University of San Francisco, a team with only two losses on the season. The Matadors small-ball lineup came up short, unable to keep up with the Dons in a blowout that ended with a final score of 72-49.

Matadors forward Tess Amundsen scored her season high, tallying 17 points on the night with a well-rounded performance. She scored highly efficiently, shooting 55.6% from the field, while only missing one 3-pointer and a single free throw in 28 minutes of play. She shot 2 of 3 from 3-point range and 5 of 6 from the free-throw line in the game.

“I’m versatile. I love to shoot the three of course,” Amundsen said. “Any chance I get I like to flex my skills wherever I can, and I’ll do whatever is going to help the team get the win.”

In typical Matadors fashion, the team jumped out to an early lead in the first quarter, with Amundsen scoring the first five points for the team. CSUN jumped ahead 9-8 with 4:06 left in the quarter, for what was their last lead of the game.

The Dons quickly doused the Matadors’ hot start, rallying to end the quarter up 17-11. After a short scoring burst from Amundsen, the Matadors were unable to find the basket, shooting only 28.6% for the quarter.

San Francisco’s defense controlled much of the second quarter, holding the Matadors to only two shots made. Not only were the Matadors having trouble scoring the ball, but they were also consistently getting outworked near the basket. At the half, the Dons had outscored CSUN 22-6 in the paint, making it difficult for the Matadors to execute at any level.

By the end of the first half, the Matadors were trailing USF by 18 points.

The Matadors did not find much luck in the second half either. Amundsen opened the third quarter with an immediate bucket, which accounted for one of CSUN’s three made shots in the quarter. CSUN tried to rally in the fourth quarter, outscoring USF 17-14, but it was not enough to overcome the significant lead the Dons had built throughout the game.

“Just sputtering on the offensive end. We went small and started a small lineup for this game just to try and get in a rhythm, hopefully get out and get transition points, and again they just beat us off our cuts,” said CSUN head coach Carlene Mitchell. “They were super-physical with us. And when we do get open shots, we just aren’t knocking them down.”

CSUN has since gone 1-1 on a two-game road trip, beating Seattle University after losing to the University of San Diego. The Matadors next game comes at home against CSU Sacramento, at 4 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 19.