The Lady Oaks entered Haynes-Prim this evening looking to bounce back after a tough 11-point loss suffered at Simpson in their last time out. Menlo used a fast start, dominant play by Erika Garcia, and lights out shooting to put away William Jessup tonight, by a final of 66-59. With the win the Oaks improve to 5-2 in conference as they continue to put pressure on undefeated and top seeded Cal Maritime.
"We played hard tonight and did a good job of taking care of the ball," commented an upbeat Shannon Osborne, head coach of the Lady Oaks. "Beating a tough team like Jessup twice is always a challenge and I think we did a good job of coming out and playing with focus and intensity."
After a back and forth affair early, that saw Menlo hold a 13-12 lead with seven minutes gone by in the first half, the Lady Oaks turned it on. Senior guard Erika Garcia helped spur a 14-4 run over a six minute stretch to give Menlo a comfortable 27-16 advantage with 7:17 remaining in the first half. Garcia knocked down six of the Oaks' 14, on her to way to a first half high 14 points on 6-of-10 shooting.
The solid spurt gave Menlo a chance to navigate their way through the rest of the half as the Oaks led 41-29 at the break. Aside from Garcia's first period brilliance, Menlo received key contributions from junior forward Carly Tristao and freshman forward Laurel Donnenwirth. The dynamic power duo chipped in with 17 points in the game's first 20 minutes, combining with Garcia's 14 to account for 31 of the Lady Oaks' 41 points. Menlo shot 55.6% percent from the floor in the first stanza.
The Lady Oaks built their lead up to 19 in the second frame before coasting to the eventual 66-59 victory. In the win Menlo saw five players score at least nine with Garcia paving the way with a team high 18. Laurel Donnenwirth added ten, and Jenna Marinaro, Carly Tristao, and Lauren Adamek each had nine. Jessup senior guard Cassie Davidson scored an impressive 30 points in defeat.
Menlo will try to get to 6-2 in the Cal Pac as they travel to Pacific Union this Saturday, February 4th to take on the Pioneers. Action will tipoff at 6:30pm.