THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. - Following a month hiatus from competition inside Gilbert Arena the CLU women's basketball team enjoyed its return home putting up a season-high scoring total during a 90-56 win over Rensselear.
Box Score: CLU 90, RPI 56 - F
Cal Lutheran's ability to control the paint and force turnovers on the defensive end paved the way to back-to-back wins for the first time this season.
Starla Wright and Brianna Parker contributed 35 points and 22 rebounds, including 13 on the offensive glass. As a team CLU outscored RPI 52-22 in the paint and 23-6 in second chance points.
On the other end Cal Lutheran used 19 steals to force a majority of 28 Rensselear turnovers, as well as holding everyone but the team's season leading scorer Sarah Wetmore under 10 points.
Entering tonight's game the Engineers had been on a 20-day layoff and were missing three players back home in New York.
CLU head coach Roy Dow was prepared to play a full RPI roster but understands that teams, including his own at times must play shorthanded.
Early on both the lack of recent competition and players showed as Cal Lutheran took advantage by opening the game on a 9-0 scoring run.
Rensselear battled back to within 12-11 following a Katie Hansan three-pointer but CLU countered with 15 unanswered points in taking control for good.
Cal Lutheran led 37-24 at the break with Wright and Parker combining to score as many points as the entire opposing roster over the first 20 minutes. Their scoring effort was aided in part to grabbing eight of the team's 14 first half offensive rebounds allowing for putback layups and second chance points.
While the usual suspects for the Regals doing their damage, Wetmore for the Engineers was held to just six first half points. The junior guard finished with a game-high 23 points, and team-highs with seven rebounds and three steals.
The third member of the CLU main scoring trio ended any hopes of a RPI comeback as Erica Whitley scored 15 of her 17 points in the second half, leading the Regals to their highest scoring output of any half with 53 over the final 20 minutes. The sophomore led the team with five steals, three blocks and contributed four assists.
All 16 active players on the Regals roster saw floor time with 13 contributing to the scoring column. Newcomers Jessica Pruitt, Julia Cratty and Nicole Fountain all scored their respective first collegiate points in Monday's victory.
Cal Lutheran (3-5) will host Marietta on Tuesday, Dec. 28 at 7:30 p.m.