Scores

Final

UC Davis 66

(24-8, 10-6 Big West)

Cal Poly 49

(18-12, 12-4 Big West)

    4:00 PM ET, March 12, 2011

    1 2 T
    UCD 35 3166
    CP 22 2749

    Top Performers

    UC Davis: P. Mintun 20 Pts, 5 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Blk

    Cal Poly: R. Clancy 20 Pts, 5 Reb, 1 Ast

    UC Davis holds off Cal Poly to earn NCAA berth

    Associated Press

    ANAHEIM, Calif. -- UC Davis gave coach Sandy Simpson the ultimate retirement gift.

    Senior Paige Mintun scored 20 points and the fourth-seeded Aggies earned a trip to the NCAA tournament with a 66-49 victory over top-seeded Cal Poly in the Big West tournament championship game Saturday.

    "I was a little nervous at the start of the game," said Simpson, who had trouble sleeping Friday night. "I was hoping that I would coach a good game."

    He shouldn't have worried. With tournament MVP Mintun shouldering the offensive load at the Honda Center, the Aggies were able to focus on defense and put the clamps on Big West player of the year Rachel Clancy.

    Clancy brought a 16.7-point average into Saturday's conference championship. She finished with 20, but most came with the Mustangs (18-12) trying to overcome a double-digit deficit.

    "I think that Davis did a really good job of making the players play at angles they don't want," Clancy said. "They did a tremendous job taking away penetrating lanes."

    UC Davis (25-8) relied on defense to beat UC Riverside in Friday's semifinal victory and was ready to follow the same game plan against Cal Poly.

    "When we come out in games and we bring that defensive intensity and energy, it's hard for anybody to beat us," said Aggies senior Heidi Heintz, who joined Mintun on the All-Tournament team. "We knew that we had to bring our A game."

    The Aggies pushed Clancy to the spots on the court where she was least comfortable. They also kept her teammates from getting the ball inside. The strategy allowed UC Davis to build a 35-22 halftime, while holding Clancy to eight points.

    Clancy put a scare into the Aggies by scoring her team's first five points of the second half. Clancy had a 21-point second half in a regular-season victory over UC Davis in January and Simpson had not forgotten about that performance.

    "If you leave Rachel Clancy open, you're going to pay," Simpson said. "We paid every single time that we lost track of her. She kept them in the game. A couple of times it looked like we could extend her but she kept them in the game."

    Clancy's early second-half points and a 3-point basket by Desiray Johnston got Cal Poly to within 36-30 with 16:19 left in the game, but UC Davis was able to pull away at the free-throw line.

    The Mustangs' final threat came with 11:04 left in the game when Clancy scored to cut the Aggies' lead to 44-37, but a 3-pointer by Vicky Deely (12 points) put the Aggies back on top by 16 with 6:33 remaining.

    "The game was won by their tremendous defense," Cal Poly coach Faith Mimnaugh said. "They created a cushion that was a little bit too difficult for us to overcome."

    Clancy and Abby Bloetscher were the Mustangs selected to the all-tournament team.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

    SPONSORED HEADLINES

    Team Stat Comparison

     
    UCD
    CP
    Points 66 49
    FG Made-Attempted 19-42 (.452) 17-53 (.321)
    3P Made-Attempted 5-13 (.385) 7-19 (.368)
    FT Made-Attempted 23-26 (.885) 8-11 (.727)
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 16 (0/0) 22 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 19 0

    Game Leaders

     
    UCD
    CP
    PointsP. Mintun 20R. Clancy 20
    ReboundsH. Heintz 9A. Bloetscher 7
    AssistsP. Mintun 3D. Johnston 3
    StealsK. Riecks 3D. Johnston 2

    2010-11 Season

    DATEGAMELINKS
    Jan 8, 2011 @CP 74, UCD 65Recap | Box Score
    Feb 3, 2011 @UCD 81, CP 61Recap | Box Score
    » Mar 12, 2011 UCD 66, @CP 49Recap | Box Score