The Cal Poly women’s basketball team fell for the second time in Big West Conference play in as many games Saturday night, as the Mustangs lost 78-70 at UC Riverside.
The loss cut their lead in the Big West standings over UC Santa Barbara to just one game.
Rachel Clancy did her best to keep UC Riverside from pulling away too much, essentially carrying the Mustangs by scoring 29 points on 10-of-16 shooting, including 5-of-6 from beyond the 3-point arc. She was two points shy of tying her career high.
The Mustangs also got a solid game from Abby Bloetscher, who had a team-high nine rebounds and 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting.
The rest of the team was 7 of 31.
One positive for the Mustangs was their free-throw shooting, where they made 20 of 25.
Santa Barbara 70, Cuesta 51
The Cougars (6-19, 4-8 Western State Conference) fell behind 37-19 at halftime and, despite a better offensive effort in the second half, it wasn’t enough to come back in their final game of the season.
Neither team shot very well form the floor; Cuesta was at 30 percent and Santa Barbara 37 percent, but Santa Barbara sank 10 shots from 3-point range.
Former Paso Robles High standout Kati Sheldon had a double-double for the Cougars with 23 points and 15 rebounds, leading all players in both categories. With the 15 rebounds, Sheldon, a freshman, broke a Cuesta single-season rebounding record.
Cuesta 85, Santa Barbara 73
Malte Kramer scored a game-high 24 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead the Cougars in their regular-season finale.
Former Righetti High standout Nick Sauer added 20 points and seven rebounds for Cuesta (12-17, 3-9 WSC), which led 42-21 at halftime.
USC 5, Cal Poly 2, 5 innings
The Mustangs (0-3) scored six runs in the top of the sixth inning to take an 8-5 lead before the rain intervened, causing the game to be called in the middle of the sixth.
When a game is called because of weather, the score that stood after the last fully completed inning becomes the final score.
USC took the initial lead after a four-run first inning against the Mustangs’ starter, Chase Johnson.
Cal Poly responded in the top of the second with two runs coming on hits by Bobby Crocker and J.J. Thompson.
Frank Reed replaced Johnson in the second inning and pitched the rest of the game, giving up just one run on four hits and two walks with five strikeouts.
Former Cuesta star Mike Miller had two singles for Cal Poly.
Cal Poly 5, Utah State 2; Boise State 7, Cal Poly 5
The Mustangs (2-7) split a pair of games at the UNLV-hosted Louisville Slugger Desert Classic.
In the win, Cal Poly got back-to-back home runs from Nicole Lund and Ashley Romano, as well as a complete-game victory in the circle from right-hander Rebecca Patton (1-4).
Against the Broncos, Cal Poly surrendered an early lead when Allie Crump homered off of Mustangs star left-hander Anna Cahn (1-3).
TRACK AND FIELD
Cuesta at Cerritos Invitational
Local high school graduates Paul Denlinger (Templeton) and Austin Field (Arroyo Grande) achieved four of the Cougars’ seven top-three finishes on the men’s side.
Denlinger placed second in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 9:42 and got third in the 800-meter race at 1:59.
Field won the shot put with a throw of 46 feet (fifth-longest in school history), and placed third in the discus at 140 feet, 8 inches. Derek Hinch registered a win for Cuesta in the pole vault, clearing 15-11 3⁄4.
Brecon Wilson finished behind Denlinger for third in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, and Dominic Powell placed third in the high jump at 6-6.
The Cougars’ women’s team had a second-place finish from Templeton grad Kasey Urman in the 3,000 steeplechase, and former Arroyo Grande star Rachel Murphy got third in the pole vault.