OAKLAND, Calif. - Menlo College began its California Pacific Conference season in the same place it ended its last campaign: on the wrong end of a close decision against Holy Names. The Oaks fought to the end, but couldn't overcome their current nemesis in a 60-54 loss on the road Thursday night.
Menlo's loss comes on the heels of a pair of impressive wins at home a week ago, dropping the Oaks to 0-1 in the Cal Pac and 4-9 overall. Holy Names, which defeated Menlo 75-74 in the Cal Pac Tournament Championship in the teams last meeting, is 1-0 in conference and 9-9 overall. The Hawks have won the last five meetings between the schools.
In Thursday's opener, Menlo couldn't turn around an eight-point halftime deficit. The Oaks trailed 34-26 at the break. Menlo shot just 31.5 percent from the field and 18.8 percent from 3-point range, though it beat Holy Names on the boards, 37-27. The Oaks turned the ball over 25 times.
Junior transfer Stephanie Truong sent a message to the rest of the Cal Pac, scoring a game-high 19 points in her first Cal Pac contest. Truong sunk a pair of 3-pointers and was 9-of-11 from the free throw line. Menlo made 17-of-20 free throws.
Gianna Covarelli scored 10 points with four rebounds and two assists. Reigning Cal Pac Player of the Week Katelyn Guild finished with eight points and nine rebounds while Liane Kobori had seven points and eight rebounds.
Marie Vodiscka led Holy Names with 12 points, Suman Bains totaled 10 points and six rebounds, Jamie-Leigh Ronolo scored 10 points, and Lesley Vodiscka netted eight points with seven rebounds.
Menlo will look to bounce back on Saturday when it welcomes California Maritime (3-12) for its conference home opener at 5:30 p.m.