Pasadena, CA (Women’s Basketball) -- The Citrus College Women’s Basketball team kicked off their 2011-2012 season on Friday night in the opening round of the Veterans Day Classic Tournament hosted by Pasadena City College. The Lady Owls drew the tournament host and SoCal’s #2 ranked Pasadena City College and nearly upset them in a 64-58 loss.
Citrus started off a bit sluggish on Friday night, as they fell into an early six point hole, with Pasadena scored 10 of the first 14 points in the game. Midway through the first half though, the Owls finally found their rhythm, tying the game up at 17 all with 11:45 to go after a pair of free-throws from sophomore Jasmine Cox.
Pasadena would answer with a big run that put them back up by nine with a little under four minutes to play. The Owls rallied though and scored the final seven points of the half, a run that was kick started by a jumper in the paint from freshman Gabriela Rodgers and capped off by two free-throws by sophomore Brianna Barfield. At the half, Citrus would trail just 33-31.
In the second, Citrus picked up where they left off, scoring seven of the first eight points of the half. After a three pointer by sophomore Kristine Reyes, Citrus had their biggest lead thus far leading 38-34. Pasadena would respond though tying the game back up four more times over the next 12 minutes. The first three times, the Owls would take the lead back, but the fourth time, the Lancers wrestled the lead back in their favor.
Pasadena would push their lead to six points with 4:20 to go, but Citrus came back and cut the lead to two points with 2:46 left after a fast break lay-up by Barfield. The Owls would miss their next four shots though, as the Lancers hit some free throws and a crucial trey with 1:27 left that put the game just out of reach.
In the loss, Citrus was led by Barfield who scored a team high 18 points and also grabbed eight rebounds and handed out a team high four assists. Freshman Kenya Thomas was strong in her Citrus debut with seven points and eight boards, and Cox pulled down a team best nine rebounds and also swiped a team high five steals.
With the loss, Citrus falls to 0-1 on the year. The Lady Owls will be back in action on Saturday evening when they take on Southwestern College in the consolation portion of the bracket. Tip-off is set for 5:00 PM at Pasadena City College.