TEMPE, Ariz. – Senior center Ami Forney posted 20 points and 11 rebounds but it wasn’t enough to prevent Cal from losing to Arizona State 63-49 Sunday afternoon at Wells Fargo Arena.
The Golden Bears fifth straight loss dropped their record to 4-5 overall and 0-2 in Pac-10 play. The Sun Devils improved to 10-3 overall and 1-1 in league play. It was the Bears’ first loss this season by more than six points.
“We struggled to score in stretches, but our players didn’t give up,” said Cal coach Caren Horstmeyer. “Our defense was fairly good. I was trying to make sure the team didn’t put their heads down. We did stop Melody Johnson (7 points). A lot of credit goes to Ami Forney.”
Forney posted her second double-double of the season and ninth of her career. Cal’s next leading scorer was sophomore guard LaTasha O’Keith with 9. While Forney was the only Bear in double figures, four Sun Devils had at least 10 points. Amanda Levens led the way with 16 points, followed by Betsy Boardman, Cian Carvalho and Carrie Buckner with 12 apiece.
Cal stayed within 10 points of Arizona State for the entire first half and even led by as many as four points. Then the Sun Devils went on a 9-0 run to pull ahead 17-12 , and built their biggest lead of the first half at 28-19 before Cal freshman Jackie Lord nailed a three-pointer, her first career points, to bring the Bears within 28-22 with just under three minutes. ASU led 31-22 at the half.
Horstmeyer was unhappy with the lack of fouls being called in the first half and was whistled for her first technical foul of the season with 18.6 seconds left in the half. The Bears and Sun Devils were each only 1-of-2 from the charity stripe in the first half. For the game, Cal was 3-of-7 and ASU was 5-of-9.
Two and a half minutes into the second half, ASU wasted little time building its then-biggest lead of the game at 42-26. But the resilient Bears quickly put a 7-0 run (42-33) on the Sun Devils to close to within nine at 15:58. That was as close as Cal would get the rest of the game as their offense stalled. After ASU pulled away by 19, Cal clawed to within 13 following a layup by Olga Volkova.
The Bears were hurt by 27 turnovers, including 17 in the first half.