RENO, Nev. – Hannah Friend scored a career-high 34 points and pulled in a team-leading eight rebounds as the Sacramento State women's basketball team rolled to their first win of the season, 99-72 over UC Riverside.
The game was Sacramento State's (1-5) second in this Thanksgiving weekend Nugget Classic tournament at the Lawlor Events Center in Reno. UC Riverside, who also lost Friday to SMU, falls to 1-5.
The Hornets finish the Nugget Classic 1-1 after falling to Nevada on Friday. The championship game is scheduled for this afternoon between Nevada and SMU.
In this morning's game, Hannah Friend came out firing for Sacramento State, scoring 13 in the first quarter. For the game, the sophomore guard was 9-18 from the floor (50%), including 5-13 (38%) from beyond the arc. In addition, Friend shot 11-16 (69%) from the free throw line.
Friend has now led the team in scoring four times this season. In addition, her eight rebounds also led the team for the third time this year. With today's game, Friend is averaging a team-best 16.8 points and 6.2 rebounds per game.
Her 34 points are a career-high and the most by a Hornets player this season. They are also the most in a game since former Hornets star Brianna Burgos scored 34 at Montana State on Feb. 6 of last season. Among active Hornets, only Maranne Johnson's 37 points at Stanislaus State (11/29/16) are more.
Speaking of Johnson, the star senior guard put up a season-high 28 points while shooting 4-9 from three and 10-17 overall. With four more made three-pointers, Johnson now has 235 career made-threes, just three back of program leader Alle Moreno (238).
Sacramento State led for nearly the entire game, taking a 12-11 lead five minutes into the game and never giving it back. In total, the Hornets led for 37:02.
The Hornets set a slew of season-highs in this one, including total points (99), shooting percentage (46.8%), made three-pointers (11), shooting percentage from three (37.9%), made free throws (30), and assists (17). They also had 35 rebounds and 12 steals.
Eight of those 17 assists came from Tiara Scott, who played a career-high 35 minutes. She scored nine points on 3-8 shooting. Her 23 assists on the season are now the most on the squad.
Not to be lost in the high-scoring of Friend and Johnson is freshman Dana DeGraffenreid, who, with 12 more points in today's win, is now averaging an even 12 points per game and has hit double-digits in each of her first six career games.
UC Riverside shot 38% (28-74) overall just were just 3-13 from beyond the arc. They also struggled at the line, shooting 48% (13-27) in the game. Starting guard Lauren Holt led the Highlanders with 22 points while also pulling in six boards. Starting forward Skyler Lewis turned in a double-double for the Highlanders, scoring 11 points and collecting 14 rebounds.
The Hornets return to the Sacramento area for their next game, a Thursday night matchup at UC Davis. Sacramento State will be looking to make it three straight wins on the road against the Aggies Thursday, Nov. 30. Tip off is scheduled for 7:05 pm PT.