SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Tipping off a three-game homestand, Santa Clara women's basketball outlasted LMU 71-64 Saturday afternoon in Leavey.
Despite a slow start to the game and 15 turnovers in the first half, Santa Clara (8-7, 3-1 WCC) regrouped at the half and took control of the game in the third quarter. After a push by LMU (6-9, 1-3 WCC) midway through the fourth, the Broncos pulled away with their free throw shooting.
"It's not going to be easy in this conference," Santa Clara head coach Bill Carr said. "You have to come ready play. You have to execute and do the little things. In the second half we got better at that and made some plays around the rim. We also guarded better in that second half."
After a layup by Cheyanne Wallace tied the game at 49-all with 4:13 to go in regulation, Emily Wolph knocked down 3-pointers on back-to back possessions to put the Broncos up 55-51. They wouldn't hit another field but scored 16 points over the final 1:39 from the free throw line.
Santa Clara took advantage of 29 fouls committed by the Lions and shot a season-high 42 free throws. The Broncos also connected on a season-best 32.
"We have some players that will make some big foul shots," Carr said. "We got fouled late and into the bonus early. That was a good thing for us in the fourth quarter."
After trailing for most of the game, Santa Clara used a 14-2 run over three and a half minutes in the third quarter to build a 42-34 lead with four minutes remaining in the third quarter. Lori Parkinson led the way with six points, all from the charity stripe.
Parkinson had a double-double with 19 points and 12 rebounds. She went to the line a career-high 14 times and also set a career-best with 13 makes. She also added seven assists and five steals.
"Lori willed us to two wins this week," Carr said. "With Marie [Bertholdt] being a little banged up, Lori put everybody on her back."
Wolph led all scorers with 22 points and was 10 of 12 from the charity stripe and 4 of 8 from beyond the arc. Taylor Berry scored 10 with nine rebounds and Morgan McGwire scored eight with nine boards.
LMU got its biggest lead of the day at 22-15 with 7:09 to go in the first half on a jumper from Leslie Lopez-Wood.
Wallace scored a team-high 21 for LMU on 8 of 16 shooting from the field and collected six steals to go with five boards. Jackie Johnson scored 16 on a perfect 10 of 10 from the free throw line while grabbing seven boards.
The Broncos return to the floor Thursday at 7 p.m. vs. San Diego.
NOTES: With her 3-pointer at 8:02 in the second quarter, Marie Bertholdt became just the 23rd player in Santa Clara history with 1,000 career points.
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