Feb. 12, 2015
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LONG BEACH - The Long Beach State women's basketball team earned its 20th win of the season in convincing fashion as it defeated UC Santa Barbara, 68-38, Thursday evening at the Walter Pyramid.
With the victory, LBSU improved to 20-4 overall and 7-3 in the Big West. The Beach is now tied for second with UC Davis and sits one game behind league-leading Hawai'i (8-2) in the conference standings. This also marks the 15th 20-win campaign in program history and the first since 1999-00.
It was an all-around team effort on both ends of the floor for Long Beach State. The 49ers' defense really stood out as the 38 points are the fewest they have allowed all season. The last time the Beach held its opponent to less than 40 was in a 45-39 win over Cal State Fullerton on Jan. 19, 2013.
Senior Lauren Spargo and junior Devin Hudson led the offense as they both scored a game-high tying 12 points. Hudson was 6-for-9 from the field, and Spargo was 5-of-8 with a pair of 3-pointers.
Sophomores Raven Benton and Anna Kim added eight points each, while freshman Cecily Wilson chipped in seven points. Senior Alex Sanchez also finished with seven points and five assists. Classmate Hallie Meneses matched Sanchez in the assists column with five of her own.
LBSU outrebounded the Gauchos, 43-31, with Hudson and sophomore Jewelyn Sawyer each pulling down a team-best six boards.
With a smothering defense and some strong play down low from Hudson, Long Beach State raced out to a 6-0 lead. UC Santa Barbara eventually got on the board at the 16:07 mark and would cut the deficit in half before Kim ended a nearly three-minute drought for the Beach with a pair of free throws. That started a 15-3 run that put the 49ers on top, 23-7, with 5:41 to play. LBSU continued to roll and took its largest lead of the half into the locker room at 37-16.
UCSB (0-22, 0-9 Big West) got the first two buckets of the second period, but that was the closest it would get as Long Beach State called a timeout and responded with a 12-1 run, capped by back-to-back layups from Hudson, to make it 49-21 at the 13:54 mark. The Beach led by at least 26 points the rest of the way.
Makala Roper was UC Santa Barbara's leading scorer with nine points. Clair Watkins also had six points, seven rebounds and four blocks.
Long Beach State returns to the Walter Pyramid on Saturday, Feb. 14, when it plays host to Cal Poly (11-11, 6-4 Big West) at 4 p.m. It will be the 49ers' annual Breast Cancer Awareness Game.