Melissa Jensen leads Cypress past Santa Barbara City in tourney opener.
BOX SCORE vs. Santa Barbara City
El Cajon, Calif. - Sophomore Melissa Jensen scored a team-high
18 points - and pulled down nine boards - to lead Cypress College (9-6) past Santa
Barbara City College (5-9) 51-47 in the opening round of the Grossmont
Tournament on Tuesday.
Freshman Samantha Soria chipped in 11 points - including hitting on 7 of 8 shots from the free
throw line. Lynzie Numata added eight points, and Sloane Turner finished
with seven points and seven rebounds.
The Chargers took their first lead of the game at the 16:10 mark of the first half when Soria found Turner for the score to put Cypress up 6-4. After a layup by SBCC's Keia Nobles tied the game at 6-6, Jensen finished off an assist from Chelsea Walton with a layup to put Cypress back in front by a bucket, then picked up a steal and hit a jumper on the other end to give Cypress its biggest lead of the half at 10-6.
The Vacqueros rolled off six straight to regain the lead at 12-10, but Cypress answered right back with a triple from downtown by Numata that put the Chargers up 13-12, and a jumper by Soria that stretched the lead to three.
Santa Barbara countered with two more quick buckets to gain a one-point edge at 16-15, with 5:18 to go before halftime.
Nikki Perkins hit a jumper for Cypress with a little over three-and-a-half minutes remaining to regain the lead for the Chargers, then Soria got a pair of free throws to drop to make it a three-point contest with 2:12 remaining.
A layup and two free throws by SBCC would close out the first half scoring, and send the Chargers into the locker room trailing by a point, 20-19.
Cypress kept the game close after the intermission, and tied the game at 26-26 with 16 minutes to go in regulation on a layup by Kaitlyn Roche. The Chargers grabbed a quick three-point advantage on three by Numata, but the Vacqueros would go on a 10-1 run after that to open up a 38-32 lead over Cypress. SBCC held onto that lead until Jensen hit a layup with just under eight to go to make it a four-point game.
The Chargers got back to within a point after two Soria free throws, then finally tied the game at 40-40 with 2:19 left to play when Walton drained a clutch jumper.
Cypress finished strong with an 11-7 run to close out the game that included a four-point play by Jensen that sealed the deal. Jensen hit a three and converted her free throw to put Cypress up 49-45 with only 16 ticks left on the clock.
SBCC converted a quick layup to make it a two-point game, but Soria drained both of her free throws to end the game and secure the 51-47 victory over Santa Barbara City College in the opening round of the Grossmont Tournament.
The Chargers play Citrus tomorrow in the second round of the Grossmont Tournament.