Stars Shine in GSAC Challenge

Submitted by: Ron Smith - December 28th, 2012


Esther Lee

The Oklahoma City Stars (7-2), the reigning NAIA Women’s Basketball national champion, showed off their talent on Friday night in the GSAC Challenge hosted by Westmont (8-2). The eighth-ranked Stars defeated the fourth-ranked Warriors 80-48.

Senior center Katie Hall led the Stars with 15 points, making seven of 13 from the field. NAIA All-American Lauren Gober notched 14 points and pulled down six rebounds. Desiree Jeffries added another 12 points and five rebounds.

Westmont was led by WBCA NAIA Player of the Year Tugce Canitez who scored 10 points and pulled down 16 rebounds. Due to foul trouble, Canitez saw just 23 minutes of play, including only six minutes in the second half.

Three and one-half minutes into the game, the Warriors held a 7-2 lead thanks to a three pointer by Esther Lee (8 points) and two field goals by Canitez. However, the Stars scored the next 12 points as part of a 30-4 run that put the game out of reach.

Westmont shot 37.2 percent from the floor compared to 43.5 percent for Oklahoma City. The rebound stats were also close with the Stars tallying 38 and Westmont 35. The obvious statistical difference in the game was in turnovers with the Warriors committing 30 and the Stars just 12.

In the early game, #5 Westminster (11-2) of Utah defeated San Diego Christian (7-7) by a score of 60-40. Senior guard Nicole Yazzie notched 17 points for the victorious Griffins while making six of nine from the floor, including three of five from three point range. Sophomore guard Tia Pappas made six of 12 field goal attempts, recording 15 points and six rebounds.

The Hawks were led in scoring by senior guard Brittany Daniel with nine points.

Westminster made shot 44.9 percent from the floor (22 of 49) while holding San Diego Christian to 30.4 percent (14 of 46).

With the Griffins leading 12-10 with 13 minutes to play, Yazzie converted a layup to spark a 10-1 Westminster run; resulting in a 22-11 lead. The Hawks would get no closer than nine points the rest of the game.

The GSAC Challenge will conclude tomorrow with Oklahoma City taking on San Diego Christian at one o’clock and Westminster matching up with Westmont at 5:30 p.m.

[Westminster-San Diego Christian box] [Oklahoma City-Westmont box]