Cal Poly Women’s Basketball lost to Denver 96-66 on Sunday, Nov. 17 inside Hamilton Gym. The Mustangs have now lost three straight non-conference games to open the season. Denver, who advanced to the second round of the National Women’s Invitational Tournament last season, entered the game with a record of 1-2.

Redshirt freshman point guard Abbey Ellis led Cal Poly with a team-high 19 points. The Australia native has increased her points scored in every game as a Mustang. Senior Guard Jonni Smith led Cal Poly in rebounds (5) in her home town of Denver.

Despite a close score at the start of the game, Denver went on a 10-0 run six minutes into the first period to go up 17-8. A foul that sent redshirt junior forward Sierra Campisano to the free throw line ended the run, but Denver quickly responded with two three-pointers to extend their lead to 23-9. Denver held the lead to the remainder of the game

Ellis caught fire in the second period and scored five points in roughly 45 seconds. Earlier in the quarter, she hit a three-pointer to slow down the Pioneers’ momentum.

Denver went on a 9-0 run before a three-point play from junior guard Hannah Peterson closed the half at 51-32. 

The Mustangs struck first in the second half with a Campisano layup, but Denver responded with a 9-2 run that was started by a three-pointer from guard Briana Johnson. The trend continued as Denver outscored Cal Poly 24-13 in the third quarter.

The fourth quarter got underway with Cal Poly trailing 47-75. Campisano and junior guard Gianna Silvestri got the offense going with a handful of successful mid-range jump shots. Cal Poly did not allow a run of more than four points by Denver and broke even in scoring during the fourth quarter at 21-21. The game closed with a Silvestri three-pointer, but the 30-point deficit was too much to overcome as Cal Poly fell 96-66. 

Despite the late three-pointer by Cal Poly, Denver dominated the statistics from outside the arc, putting up 36 points off three-pointers compared to Cal Poly’s 18. 

Denver got the most out of their bench, which totaled 25 points. Cal Poly’s substitutes scored 19 points.

Cal Poly returns to Mott Athletic Center to take on Sacramento State Wednesday, Nov. 20 at 11 a.m.

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