SRJC 62, Fresno City College 73
In the second round of the Merced College Tournament, the Bear Cubs (1-1) faced the Rams (0-1) of Fresno City College in a 10:00 am game. Ciarah Michalik started the scoring with a drive on the Bear Cubs' second possession. The Rams scored the next four points before Kierra Johnson scored from the low post, followed by Trinity Hawkins' scoring drive and Tal Webb's 1-footer for an 8-6 lead at the 5:40 mark. The Rams answered with a 3-pointer and a pair of free throws in less than a minute. Ashleigh Barr scored the Bear Cubs' final two points of the quarter on a 12-footer with 2:50 left. The Rams added a field goal 29 seconds later and a 3-pointer two seconds before the quarter-ending buzzer to take a 15-10 lead.
Again Ciarah Michalik was the first to score in the second quarter when she was fouled on a drive and made both free throws. The Rams scored 14 unanswered points before Michalik went to the free throw line and sank both at the 5:50 mark, making the deficit 14-29. A Ram field goal and two free throws increased their lead. After missing their first eight shots of the quarter, the Bear Cubs made five out of their final six, including two field goals by Tal Webb, Lizeth Zavala's reverse layup, Hannah Webb's 3-pointer, and Trinity Hawkins' 1-footer at the buzzer, to go into halftime behind 27-41.
The Rams made a field goal on their first possession of the third quarter. Kierra Johnson scored the next two field goals of the period—the first on a layup after catching the pass in stride from Ciarah Michalik, who had dribbled through the Rams' full-court pressure, and the second on a low post move 82 seconds later. The Rams then scored five points in a row. The Bear Cubs countered with Trinity Hawkins' layup and two free throws by Michalik. One of two free throws by the Rams pushed their lead to 49-35 by the midpoint of the period. During the next three minutes, the Rams added three 3-pointers and three free throws, while the Bear Cubs scored just five points on one free throw by Michalik, Rose Nevin's 1-footer, and Ashleigh Barr's 12-footer. In the final two minutes of the quarter, Michalik made one free throw, the Rams swished a 3-pointer with 16 seconds left, and Lizeth Zavala tossed in a desperation 3-pointer at the buzzer, putting their deficit at 44-64.
Hannah Webb drew a shooting foul on the Bear Cubs' opening possession of the fourth quarter and made one free throw. The Rams scored two field goals in a row during the next two minutes for a 68-45 lead. Then Trinity Hawkins switched into a higher gear, scoring eight unanswered points on a drive, one of two free throws, a 3-point play, and another drive, to cut the Rams' lead to 69-53 at the 5:58 mark. The Rams sank two free throws. Tal Webb hit a jump shot, the Rams made one of two free throws, Ciarah Michalik drained a 3-pointer, and the Rams tallied their final basket with 4:20 left and their lead at 73-58. Alex Ditizio banked in a layup after the Bear Cubs broke the Rams' full-court press, and Michalik made one last field goal with 1:22 remaining, as the Bear Cubs closed the gap to 62-73 by the end of the game.
The Bear Cubs committed 31 turnovers, in large part due to the Rams' full-court pressure. The Rams made 11 3-pointers and 12 out of 15 free throws (80%). The Bear Cubs only hit 3 3-pointers and just 13 out of 23 free throws (57%).
Ciarah Michalik had her second double-double—this time with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Trinity Hawkins was the only other Bear Cub to score in double figures with 13 points. Tal Webb added 9 points, Kierra Johnson 6, Lizeth Zavala 5, Hannah Webb and Ashleigh Barr 4 each, Alex Ditizio and Rose Nevin 2 each. Michalik also led in assists with 4 and steals with 5.