SRJC 47, Merced College 58
In the final round of the Merced College Tournament, the Bear Cubs (1-2) played the host Blue Devils (1-4). It took two minutes of play before the Blue Devils scored the first field goal. Eighteen seconds later Trinity Hawkins' short jumper put the Bear Cubs on the scoreboard. The Blue Devils made a field goal, and Hanna Morris caught a pass from Tal Webb near the basket and banked in the shot at the 6:00 mark. The Blue Devils tallied the next five points before Hannah Webb's basket with 2:43 on the clock. Hawkins' reverse layup with 29.7 seconds left made the score 8-11. The Blue Devils hit a 3-pointer 18 seconds later, and Ciarah Michalik made one free throw with 5 seconds remaining. By the end of the quarter, the Blue Devils were ahead 14-9.
The Blue Devils scored the first four points of the second quarter on one free throw and a 3-pointer. Trinity Hawkins drew a shooting foul and made one free throw with 8:12 on the clock. The Blue Devils' Jaydon Williams sank a pair of free throws and a field goal. Alex Ditizio scored the Bear Cubs' first basket of the quarter on a drive, releasing the one-handed shot four feet from the hoop at the 6:22 mark. The next time down Trinity Hawkins drove across the key past defenders and made the layup. Ciarah Michalik put in one free throw. Tal Webb caught a long outlet pass from Breanna Lawrence and banked in the fast break layup with 3:52 left, making the score 17-22. The Blue Devils finished the quarter on a 10-3 run, as the Bear Cubs only tallied Tal Webb's jumper and one free throw by Michalik, to widen their lead to 32-20 by halftime.
Jaydon Williams scored the first two points of the third quarter on a pair of free throws. Eighty seconds later, Lizeth Zavala hit a field goal. The Blue Devils countered with a 3-pointer at the 7:50 mark. The Bear Cubs went on an 8-0 run, beginning with Kierra Johnson's single free throw, followed by her 2-footer, Trinity Hawkins' two free throws, and Ciarah Michalik's 3-pointer with 2:54 on the clock to close the gap to 30-37. The Blue Devils scored the next four points. Michalik added the Bear Cubs' final points of the period on a fair of free throws with 47 seconds left. The Blue Devils intercepted a Bear Cubs' pass and turned it into two more points to stretch their lead to 43-32 by the end of the quarter.
The Bear Cubs made their first three shots of the fourth quarter—Trinity Hawkins' pull-up jumper, Ashleigh Barr's 5-footer, and Tal Webb's 6-footer—to close the gap to 38-45 after 70 seconds. Hannah Webb drained a 3-pointer at the 7:56 mark. The Blue Devils made their first field goal of the quarter with 6:10 on the clock. Hawkins caught the assist pass from Ashleigh Barr near the basket 14 seconds later to get to 43-47. The Blue Devils added two free throws and a field goal before Trinity Hawkins drove in, spun around, and flipped the ball in. Williams put in a 3-footer with 4:36 remaining. With 2:47 left, Kierra Johnson scored the Bear Cubs' final points on a pair of free throws. The Blue Devils finished with two more free throws and a 3-pointer, while the Bear Cubs missed their shot attempts and turned the ball over, to account for the 58-47 winning margin by the host team.
Turnovers (25) and so-so shooting (17 out of 46, 37%) contributed to the Bear Cubs' loss. The Blue Devils' full court pressure and trapping defense forced the Bear Cubs to turn the ball over and rush shots. Three Blue Devils scored in double figures—Jaydon Williams (18), A'ajah Slocum (13), and Amelia Smith (12). Slocum was awarded All Tournament honors.
Trinity Hawkins led the Bear Cubs with 15 points and 9 rebounds. Ciarah Michalik, who was selected All Tournament, finished with 8 points. Tal Webb added 6 points, Hannah Webb and Kierra Johnson 5 each. Hanna Morris, Ashleigh Barr, and Alex Ditizio each made one field goal. Ashleigh Barr pulled down 7 rebounds.