The Cuesta College women’s basketball team lost in the first round of the playoffs 72-57 to No. 3-seeded Mt. San Jacinto in San Jacinto on Friday night.
The Cougars lost earlier this season to Mt. San Jacinto by 29 points.
Cuesta was done in by poor free-throw shooting, as the Cougars shot 35.3 percent (6 for 17) for the game.
“The missed free throws were like a turnover,” coach Ron Barba said. “There was like three or four possessions where we missed the front end of 1-and-1 and they would come down hit a 3-pointer. That’s a five-point swing right there.”
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Cuesta guard Alyssa Palma, playing her final game for the Cougars (19-11), scored a game-high 32 points and had six rebounds. Courtney Chadwick had seven points and five assists, and Aria Johnson had nine points and seven rebounds.
Kerah Natividad led Mt. San Jacinto (27-2) with 22 points and 15 rebounds, and Tina Fantroy had 27 points.
Faith Fantroy had 10 assists, and Destiny Melton had 13 rebounds.
Cuesta shot 39.7 percent from the field but stayed close by forcing 22 Mt. San Jacinto turnovers, while committing 15. Mt. San Jacinto shot 45.8 percent from the floor.
Junior right-hander Austin Voth (2-1) allowed one run and six hits in 7 1⁄3 innings for the win with one walk and nine strikeouts. Tyler Kane pitched the final four outs for his second save.
Cuesta 6, Monterey Peninsula 3
Andrew Nelson struck out 11 over seven shutout innings as the Cougars (6-7) wrapped up its nonconference schedule with a win over the No. 9-ranked Lobos.
Monterey Peninsula scored three runs in the eighth, but Alex Fagalde closed out the win in the ninth to pick up his first save of the season for Cuesta.
Leadoff man Zack Dominguez had two runs scored, Steve Herting was 2 for 3, also with two runs scored, and Marco Murillo was 2 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored for the Cougars.
Scott Shields was 2 for 4 with an RBI, and Nicolas Rossa added a fifth-inning RBI double for Cuesta.