Cal Poly

Illinois blows past Cal Poly in women's basketball

The Cal Poly women’s basketball team was overwhelmed by Illinois on Monday, 104-63, at Assembly Hall in Urbana-Champaign, Ill.

A year ago, the Mustangs lost just 56-47 to Illinois at home. In last year’s matchup, though — which had been the program’s first against a Big Ten Conference opponent since 1981 — Cal Poly had star forward Kristina Santiago, who went on to win the Big West Conference Player of the Year award.

Santiago, a senior, is now redshirting this year after suffering a season-ending knee injury just two minutes into the Mustangs’ season opener Nov. 12.

Cal Poly guard Desiray Johnston tied her career high with 16 points on 5-of-8 shooting, including a 2-of-3 showing from 3-point range.

Rachel Clancy added 15 points, and Abby Bloetscher had 11 points and six rebounds for the Mustangs (2-2). Former Santa Ynez High star Christine Martin had eight points for Cal Poly on 3-of-6 shooting, while Righetti High grad Molly Schlemer had two rebounds and a block in three minutes of court time.

Karisma Penn had 30 points and 10 rebounds to lead Illinois (2-2), which shot 45 of 73 (61.6 percent) for the game.