Thursday, January 12, 2012

Chargers Swat Hornets in Overtime

Jensen and Walton combine for 37 to lead Cypress past Fullerton 64-59 in OT.

Box Score

Melissa Jensen
Cypress, Calif. - Cypress took over sole posession of first place in the Orange Empire Coference early season standings after dealing Fullerton College its first regular season OEC defeat since 2009 in wild come-from-behind 64-59 overtime victory at home on Wednesday.

Despite trailing for much of the game, the Chargers found themselves two free throws away from forcing overtime after Nikki Perkins drew a foul with just three seconds to go in the game. With the game on the line, Perkins drained both to make it a 53-53 contest heading into OT.

The Hornets never even stood a chance after in the extra frame. Perkins found Sloan Turner down low for a layup to give Cypress its first lead of the game with 3:43 left to play in the 5:00 overtime period. Turner came up with a huge block on the other end of the court on Fullerton's next posession, then hit one of two free throws to give the Chargers a three-point edge with 3:04 to go.

After a couple of missed three-point attempts by Fullerton, Chelsea Walton put the nail in the coffin when she drained a jumper that put Cypress ahead by five with only 58 seconds to play. Walton hit one of two free throws the next time down the court, then Melissa Jensen capped off an 8-0 run to open overtime when she sank both of her shots from the charity stripe.

The Hornets finally scored their first points in overtime with 14 seconds to go on a three pointer by Erica Jackson to make it a five-point game, but Walton hit two more free throws to stretch the Chargers' lead back to seven points at 63-56. Fullerton's Aunjanay Chambers finished 1 for 10 from beyond the arc after hitting a three to pull the Hornets to within four, but with only six ticks left on the clock, Donna Ka' anoi closed out the scoring with a free throw that sealed the Chargers 64-59 Orange Empire Conference victory over Fullerton College.

Chelsea Walton
Jensen finished with a double-double after scoring a game-high 23 points and pulling down a team-high 13 rebounds in 39 minutes of play. Chelsea Walton came up big when it counted most by scoring five of her 13 points in the overtime period. Ka' anoi and Turner both chipped in nine points and five rebounds apiece. Turner also had a game-high four blocks, while the Chargers defensive specialist Ivory Hallstein finished with three blocks and pair of steals.

Despite trailing by as much as 13 points in the first half, Cypress dug in on defense and went on a 16-5 run to get back to within a basket with a minute to go before halftime. After the break, Fullerton managed to stretch its lead back to 10 points at 44-34 with nine minutes left in regulation.

Walton's jumper with 4:15 to go made it a one-point game after a 12-3 run by the Chargers. A huge three by Jensen with three to go tied the game at 49-49, before Walton sank a pair of clutch free throws to make it a 51-51 contest. Fullerton went back on top 53-51with 22 seconds on the clock, but after Perkins' two free throws sent the game into overtime, Cypress never trailed again.

The Chargers have a bye this Friday, and will return to action on Wednesday, January 18 when they go on the road to take on Santa Ana College.

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