Wildcat Women Fall To Alaska Anchorage - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Wildcat Women Fall To Alaska Anchorage

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by CWU Athletics

ELLENSBURG, Wash.-- Central Washington University junior Courtney Johnson (Kentwood ) scored a season-high 27 points, but the women's basketball team lost a see-saw battle with Alaska Anchorage 82-80 Saturday night in Nicholson Pavilion.

The loss drops CWU to 5-7 overall and 0-4 in Great Northwest Athletic Conference play.

Down by five at the beginning of the second half, the Wildcats chipped away at the lead and briefly held advantages of their own. Johnson singlehandedly kept the Wildcats within arm's reach early on. Down 47-44, Johnson drove the lane for a 2-point layup and completed the and-1 opportunity to tie the game. Two possessions later, she hit a 3-pointer to help CWU take its first lead of the second half, 50-49 with 16:45 to play.

Just over a minute later, the junior hit yet another perimeter shot for the 53-51 lead and Ericka Locker extended the advantage to four with a layup of her own. Johnson -- 3-pointer -- and Ally Schmitt (Snohomish) then gave the Wildcats their largest lead of the game, 63-56 with 10:53 to go after two straight buckets.

Anchorage came roaring back, eventually tying the game at 68 apiece. Yet another Johnson three-pointer regained the lead for the 'Cats at 73-72 with less than five minutes to play, but it was the final lead of the game for CWU. The Wildcats would tie it at 78-78 with 1:22 to play after Jasmine Parker (Mead HS) hit a layup and the and-1 shot.

The Wildcats were playing catch up for most of the first half. After gaining a 2-1 lead within the first minute, CWU quickly fell behind by six points before the 15-minute mark, with the disadvantage ballooning to 13 at the 11:43 mark. However, the 'Cats slowly whittled the deficit down. Johnson and Jessica VanDyke both (Chester, MT) hit 3-pointers and VanDyke followed that with a layup to cut Anchorage's lead to seven. India Matheson (Shorecrest HS) and VanDyke then hit four consecutive shots from the free throw line to get within three, 26-23.

Once the Seawolves extended the cushion back to eight, CWU would once again change the tides, erasing the deficit and tying the game at 36 apiece with 3:18 to play in the first half before the Seawolves pushed the lead to five at half.

The Wildcats had some outstanding individual performances on the night. Johnson led all scorers with 27 points on 9-for-17 shooting from the field, including a career high 6-of-12 from behind the arc. VanDyke had 18 points. Schmitt had 15 assists, just one off her career high. Despite having just three points, Parker finished the night with 14 rebounds.

Anchorage's Alli Madison and Kylie Burns each had 19 points.

The Wildcats hit the road for two games next week, taking on archrival Western Washington on Thursday and Simon Fraser on Saturday. Both games tip off at 7 p.m.

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