Cal State Bakersfield forward Aja Williams scored 27 points and the Roadrunners rallied to a 58-51 win over the University of Hawaii women’s basketball team today in Bakersfield, Calif.
The Rainbow Wahine led after each of the first three quarters, but CSUB (1-0) outscored UH (0-2) 25-15 in the fourth to pull away.
Hawaii senior Briana Harris posted her first career double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds. Junior guard Sarah Toeaina finished with 14 points and eight rebounds. Sophomore forward Lahni Salanoa added seven points and eight boards. Guard Leah Salanoa hit two 3-pointers in an eight-point second-quarter outburst.
Williams took 26 of CSUB’s 60 total field-goal attempts and hit five 3-pointers in the Roadrunners’ season opener.
Both teams struggled from the field with CSUB shooting 33 percent to UH’s 31 percent. CSUB went 11-for-14 from the free-throw line while UH was 10-for-20.
UH led 36-33 going into the fourth quarter and opened up a 42-37 lead with 6:52 left on a Harris jumper. CSUB came back and took a 50-47 lead with 3:24 left on Williams’ fifth 3-pointer of the game.
CSUB lead 52-49 when Toeaina scored off an assist from Harris to bring with to within a point with 1:07 left.
Williams missed two free throws with 27 seconds left, but Brittany Sims secured the offensive rebound on the second miss and was fouled. She made both free throws to give CSUB a 54-51 cushion.
UH came up empty on its next possession and Erika Williams and Addi Walters combined to hit four more free throws for CSUB to seal the win for the Roadrunners.
After dropping both ends of a season-opening road trip, the Rainbow Wahine make their home debut against Youngstown State on Friday in the Bank of Hawaii Rainbow Wahine Classic.