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Women's basketball falls to California

March 12, 2010

Alexis Gray-Lawson scored 15 points, DeNesha Stallworth added 14 points and eight rebounds, and California pulled away in the final minutes to advance to the Pac-10 tournament semifinals with a 60-50 victory over Arizona State on Friday. Natasha Vital scored 12 points for the fourth-seeded Golden Bears (18-12), who broke open an even quarterfinal game with 8 minutes to play.

Cal went on a 14-4 run led by Gray-Lawson, the fifth-year senior and the Pac-10's second-leading scorer. Stallworth, the Bears' promising freshman, scored 12 points in the second half.

Becca Tobin had eight points and seven rebounds for the Sun Devils (17-13), who made less than 30 percent of their shots and foundered late in their third consecutive loss.

With Gray-Lawson creating fast breaks with her usual defensive flair and Stallworth repeatedly finishing underneath, Cal ended the quarterfinal game at USC's Galen Center on a 21-11 run over the final 7 1/2 minutes.

While Arizona State finished two games behind the Bears in the Pac-10 standings, the Sun Devils beat Cal twice during the regular season, both times ending five-game winning streaks for the Bears. Arizona State had won three straight over Cal, but couldn't produce nearly enough offense in the final minutes.

Leading scorer Danielle Orsillo, who hit a buzzer beater to send the Sun Devils past the Bears on Jan. 30 in Berkeley, had just seven points on 3-of-9 shooting and committed five turnovers. Tenaya Watson had five points and six turnovers.

Arizona State fell behind 15-8 early before going on a 16-2 run late in the first half. Cal rallied with seven straight points to tie it before the Sun Devils took a 26-24 lead into halftime.