Sagehens Start New Year With Win, Hold Off Whittier 54-48

Sagehens Start New Year With Win, Hold Off Whittier 54-48

Claremont, Calif. - Senior guard Alexis Sones (Los Angeles, Calif.) scored a game-high 17 points and freshman forward Amelia Hummel (Glenview, Ill. - pictured) hit two clutch foul shots late as the Pomona-Pitzer Women's Basketball team broke into the win column by defeating Whittier 54-48 on Thursday evening.

With the win, the Sagehens move to 1-8 overall on the season and 1-3 in the SCIAC, while Whittier falls to 4-9 overall and 1-3 in conference play. Pomona-Pitzer's last win was also at home against Whittier, in the regular season finale a year ago.

Pomona-Pitzer appeared to have the game in hand when freshman forward Jenn Okonkwo scored on a baseline jumper to make the score 50-40 with 4:32 remaining, completing a double-double in which she finished the day with 12 points and 10 rebounds.

However, Alex Coon helped get the Poets right back in it. After Casceal Swaggard scored, Coon scored the next six Whittier points, the last coming on a steal and fast break lay-up to close within 50-48 with 1:34 left.

The Sagehens got the ball back on an offensive rebound under their own basket with a few seconds left on the shot clock and Hummel was able to force up a shot and draw a foul as the shot clock horn sounded with 1:02 to play. She made both to make it a two possession game, and Whittier was unable to hit on three attempts from beyond the arc in the final minute.

The Poets started out the game with five points in the first minute, but Pomona-Pitzer answered with an 11-0 run and never trailed again the rest of the way. The Sagehens held a 29-21 lead at the break after holding Whittier to just 9-33 shooting in the opening half.

Hummel finished with game-highs of 11 rebounds and four steals, as she and Okonkwo helped the Sagehens hold a 48-41 advantage on the boards. Freshman guard Juliah Shay Kim (Bakersfield, Calif.) also had 13 points and eight rebounds, as the three freshmen combined for 29 rebounds. Swaggard was the only player in double figures for Whittier with 10 points.

Pomona-Pitzer returns to action on Saturday for a road game at Caltech at 5 p.m.