Cal Women's Basketball: Anigwe Sets Scoring Record in Loss to No. 3 Oregon

Kristine Anigwe, with Colleen Galloway, whose 38-year-old record Anigwe broke on Friday.Photo by Robert Edwards- KLC Fotos

Cal star is Bears career scoring leader and within two of rebounding mark, but Bears outclassed by Ducks

Center Kristine Anigwe put her a name atop the Cal record book in one major category and closed in on another mark on Friday at Haas Pavilion, setting a school record in career scoring and getting within range of the Cal career rebounding record.

However, her accomplishment came in a losing cause, as No. 3 Oregon extended the longest winning streak in the country to 15 games with a 105-82 victory over the Bears.

Cal fell to 14-8 overall and 5-6 in the Pac-12, while Oregon improved to 22-1 and 11-0 in conference play.

Anigwe broke the school record for career points by making a free throw with 6:38 left in the first quarter. She entered the game tied with Colleen Galloway, who set the Cal record of 2,320 points from 1978 through 1981. Anigwe’s free throw was also Cal’s first point as the Ducks scored the first 12 points of the game.

"I was kind of upset, because were down, because we only had like one point at that time," Anigwe said of her initial reaction to breaking the record. "I haven't really sat and thought about breaking the school record, but I'm really grateful for my family, my teammates and my coaches, because I wouldn't be in this position without them."

(Click here for a video of Anigwe's reaction to the record.)

Anigwe finished with 23 points, and Cal guard Recee' Caldwell had 22.

Anigwe needed 20 rebounds to tie the career rebounding record of 1,219 set by Gennifer Brandon in 2009-2014, and she finished the game with 18, two shy of the record.

"I think we're watching something pretty incredible unfold," Cal coach Lindsay Gottlieb said.

Anigwe no doubt will break the rebounding record on Sunday when the Bears host No. 7 Oregon State, which will be Cal's fourth straight game against a top-10 team.

"I'm glad we don't have to play against her again," Oregon coach Kelly Graves said, "and I told her that in the handshake line. She's good."

But the story of the game was Oregon's offense. The Ducks, who lead the nation in scoring, totaled more than 100 points for the second straight game, Oregon shot 60.3 percent from the field and 60.9 percent on three-point shots (14-for-23).

"I don't think that one's getting sent to the Naismith Hall of Fame for defensive records set or anything," Gottlieb said.

(Click here for a video of Gottlieb's opening comments in her postgame interview.)

Cal shot 13-for-28 from three-point land, including 6-for-11 by Caldwell, but the Bears could not keep up with Oregon, which started the day ranked second in the nation in both field-goal percentage and three-point percentage but now leads the nation in both.

Guard Sabrina Ionescu, a Walnut Creek resident who was a first-team All-American last season, scored 27 points for the Ducks, who dominated the second half while pulling away from Cal.

Ionescu, who attended Miramonte High School in Orinda, Calif., admitted she feels at home in this arena close to her home.

"I do," she said, "especially with all my family, friends, and high school teachers that came. It was definitely a home environment, but Matt Arena (in Eugene) is home, so this isn't home."

Setou Sabally was Oregon's leading scorer with 31 points. She made 6-of-8 three-point shots, and Ionescu was 3-for-4 from long range.

Oregon broke the game open in the third quarter when it scored eight straight points, extending a six-point lead to 14 points. The Ducks pushed their lead to 17 points by the end of the third quarter, and got the margin to 24 points midway through the fourth quarter.

"It kind of snowballed in the second half," Graves said. "That's about as well as we can play offensively."

Ionescu scored 17 points in the first half, which ended with the Ducks holding a 44-36 lead.

The Ducks bolted out to a 12-0 lead that was expanded to a 13-point lead at 14-1. Cal trailed by nine points after one quarter but hit six of its first eight three-point attempts of the second quarter to take the lead briefly. Kianna Smith’s bucket from beyond the arc gave Cal its first lead at 32-30 with 5:12 left in the half, and the Bears still held a 34-33 lead one minute later.

Oregon then scored 11 consecutive points to regain control. That put the Ducks ahead by 10 before Jaelyn Brown scored just before the halftime buzzer.

"The last couple minutes of the first half were huge," Graves said. "That gave us some momentum."

"I thought we should have gone into halftime with the lead," Gottlieb said. "I thought we outplayed them in the second quarter by more than one point."

Anigwe had nine points and 14 rebounds in the first half, but Caldwell led the Bears in scoring at halftime with 11 points after going 3-for-6 from long range.

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