49ers respond from loss to UCI with British Night win over UCR

The Long Beach State women’s basketball team split their games against UC Irvine and UC Riverside, falling at UCI 78-58 on Thursday before defeating the Highlanders at the Walter Pyramid, 65-52.

Both games featured slow starts out of the gate, with the 49ers not hitting double figures until the five-minute mark against the Anteaters. On Saturday, both teams managed to score just five points in the first seven minutes of play.

But while LBSU was unable to recover from their slow start on Thursday, freshmen Raven Benton and Anna Kim made sure the same couldn’t be said on British Night.

“Raven Benton did a really nice job,” head coach Jody Wynn said. “She got frustrated at times, but she got offensive rebounds and did a good job of controlling the glass. She finished around the rim really well, which then made her relax in terms of her perimeter game.”

Raven Benton comes off the bench to lead LBSU past the Highlanders.



49er women win close game against Hawaii, blow out Fullerton

The Long Beach State women’s basketball team got back on the winning track by taking down the Big West’s top-ranked Hawaii in a 74-72 game that was close throughout.

The Beach got things started off how it had hoped, with good post defense and constant commotion down low. Senior Jade Wilson, who set a career-high 24 points and 10 boards, played a key role in the paint production as the 49ers didn’t rely on their outside shots. – See more at

49er women win close game against Hawaii, blow out Fullerton 


Cal Poly wins game, Sanchez gets ring

Alex Sanchez, 3, is surrounded by teammates as she watches a video before being proposed to by boyfriend Chris Helmage after Saturday’s game at the Walter Pyramid.

Alex Sanchez, 3, is surrounded by teammates as she watches a video before being proposed to by boyfriend Chris Helmage after Saturday’s game at the Walter Pyramid.

Tears were shed after Saturday’s game against Cal Poly, but it wasn’t because the 49ers lost in overtime.

Long Beach State fell to the Mustangs, 107-102, in its first 100-point game in eight years, but the mood quickly turned positive as guard Alex Sanchez accepted a marriage proposal at half court after the game.

The game itself certainly lived up to its high expectations given that the reigning Big West Champs were in town with the dynamic Cal Poly lineup that yields two of the top three scorers in the Big West: Molly Schlemer (18.6) and Ariana Elegado (17.5).

The 49ers lose to Cal Poly in overtime, but the evening ends on a positive note as guard Alex Sanchez gets engaged.

49ers’ comeback effort falls short in loss at UC Davis

DAVIS, Calif. – The Long Beach State women’s basketball team was forced to come from behind for a second time in as many games this week, but the final result yielded a different outcome as it lost to UC Davis, 63-60.

Unlike the game against UC Irvine on Thursday, the 49ers were unable to extend their lead to anything of significance because of a rough night shooting and an inability to establish themselves at the free throw line.

However, despite the rough night on offense in which the 49ers shot just 35.6 percent compared to the Aggies 44.2 percent, The Beach was presented with multiple chances to take the game late thanks to a healthy combination of good team defense and unforced turnovers by UC Davis.

“We dug ourselves into a hole, and they played really well in the first half,” head coach Jody Wynn said. “We were able to recover on defense in the second half and our presses were really good.”

With about eight minutes left in in the first half, a rare four-point play by Idit Oryon sparked a 17-2 run for the Aggies and would eventually hold a 39-28 advantage at the half.

Long Beach State has a chance to send the game into overtime, but missed threes leads to a 63-60 loss. 

49er women use late runs to force overtime, beat UC Irvine

Basketball is a game of runs. For the Long Beach State women’s basketball team, it made runs when it mattered most Thursday afternoon, winning 84-75 over UC Irvine.

The black and blue rivalry game certainly fit the billing as LBSU beached the Anteaters in overtime after the 49ers made an 11-2 run to force the extra period.

With 3:30 left on the clock in the second half and the momentum in UC Irvine’s possession, the ‘Niners not only established a run to force the game to overtime, but also continued that run into overtime. A Jade Wilson jumper sparked a 12-3 run that led to the nine-point victory in both teams’ Big West opener.

Not only were their runs impressive on the offensive end, the ‘Niners made stops when they needed to and held UCI without a field goal in the final five minutes. “We didn’t quit,” head coach Jody Wynn said. “We made big plays and got big stops as time was winding down in regulation.”

Long Beach State comes back to beat the Anteaters, 84-75. 

49ers women take down RedHawks in finals week showdown


‘Twas one of the last days of finals when all through the ‘Mid, not a player was sinking shots as if there were a lid.

After a weekend in which the 49ers exchanged gifts among one another, the Long Beach State women’s basketball team continued to partake in this season of giving, handing Miami University (Ohio) its sixth loss of the season in a 76-61 game.

LBSU (6-4) used a balanced attack in the second half to make up for a first half in which there appeared to be a layer of cellophane covering the rim like holiday leftovers. However, head coach Jody Wynn credited the poor shooting effort in the first half to the Miami defense.

“They pack it in and force us to shoot a lot of shots because their defense took away a lot of our paint touches,” Wynn said. “Usually I’d have to say that [29 threes attempted] would be a few too many, however [Miami] dictated that.”

Despite the 49ers playing down to the level of competition on the offensive end at a 32.5 percent mark from the field compared to Miami’s 33.3 percent in the first, The Beach came out of the halftime break shooting a much improved 46.2 percent.

But because of poor rebounding and an injury to junior guard Alex Sanchez that sent the leading scorer in the first half to the bench prematurely, The Beach wasn’t able to close the door on the RedHawks until late.

“If we want to win day in and day out, we have to compete better off the glass,” Wynn said.

At the 3:05 mark in the second half, Miami cut the lead to ten on a three from Haley Robertson that was assisted by her sister, Hannah Robertson.

The 49ers were unable to answer back and the RedHawks scored on their following possession with a layup by Miami guard Kindsay Brandt to bring the game within eight.

But the 49ers scored nine points in the final 2:19 to give them the win in a week that includes a three game in five day stretch with the Beach Classic following their Friday night game against Richmond.

Four players scored in double figures for LBSU with freshman Raven Benton attributing 17 points in 17 minutes of action. Fellow freshman Anna Kim started her first game at point guard this season and stepped up in the absence of Sanchez, registering a season-high 16 points.

Hallie Meneses came off the bench and had her best night of the season, scoring 15 points on 5-for-9 shooting with 3-of-6 shots tickling the twine from beyond the arch.

“I knew my team needed me no matter what, starting or not starting, I just had to change my mindset.” Meneses said. “I realized that I wasn’t having my best shooting games but I just got some extra shots up with coach and he really fed in my head that I’m a good shooter and that’s something I needed.”

The 49ers will return to the court Friday to face a very physical team in Richmond that was a part of the postseason last year. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.

“Richmond is experienced, physical and tough minded. They move the ball really well and they’re a well-coached team. Our hands are gonna be full Friday night.”



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Long Beach State falls to San Diego without a shot at winning

Sometimes there’s only so much studying you can do.

Undefeated San Diego proved to be the test the Long Beach State women’s basketball team knew it would be, as the Toreros handed the 49ers their ugliest loss of the season, 68-51.

In a game that started off a four-game home stand for LBSU, few things went well for The Beach as the 9-0 Toreros – who were voted second in the West Coast Conference coaches preseason poll – extended their winning streak while handing the ‘Niners their first loss at home.

“We struggled with rebounding, and we weren’t able to put the ball in the basket,” head coach Jody Wynn said. “The effort was there, the heart was there, but we just didn’t finish possessions.”

San Diego out-shot and out-rebounded LBSU to the point that the Toreros doubled the 49ers in both departments. USD was 31-for-56 (55.4%) on the night compared to LBSU’s 16-for-59 (27.1%) shooting. The rebound department was a similar story with the ‘Niners garnering a woeful 22 boards to the Toreros’ 49 rebounds.

Scoring buckets was like pulling teeth for The Beach and picking daisies for the Toreros, as nobody in black and gold shot 50 percent while six of eight players on the opposition shot 50 percent or more.

Part of the problem could be pointed at the injury/illness bug that saw Lauren Spargo in street clothes and forced Alex Sanchez to sit out the entire second half.

But despite those glaring issues, San Diego didn’t close the door on the 49ers until late, thanks in large part to many forced and unforced turnovers by USD. The Torero starting backcourt was sloppy at times, combining for 16 turnovers with guards Amy Kame and Alysse Barlow accounting for eight apiece.

Kame made up for the turnovers with a team-high 16 points on an efficient 8-for-15 shooting performance that included eight rebounds and a game-high six assists. By comparison, LBSU was only able to manage seven assists as a team.

The door finally closed on the ‘Niners when they failed to box out their opponent at the 7:34 mark when the 49ers were making their final run. An Ella Clark jumper would have cut the game to single digits, but soon after that, the Toreros strung together a 10-3 run to close out the game.

“It’s tough to win games shooting in the twenties and giving up as many rebounds as we did,” Wynn said.

The lone bright spot for the 49ers was freshman Raven Benton, who came off the bench and scored a game-high 18 points on 4-for-9 shooting from the field and 9-for-12 shooting on free throws. After her performance in the ASU Classic last week earned her Big West Player of the Week honors, the freshman guard became the team’s leading scorer and is now averaging 13.6 points per game.

While Kame came in and showed off her scoring ability at times, other players stepped up for USD when the same couldn’t be said for LBSU.

Katelyn McDaniel was a dominating presence for the Toreros down low, grabbing 18 rebounds on the night. She was also one of four San Diego players to score in double figures with 11. Brooke Jelniker added 14 points on nine shots for the Toreros and also hauled in six boards.

The 49ers can’t forget about this one quick enough and look to bounce back with a win on Tuesday night against Miami of Ohio. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m.