NORTHRIDGE — UC Davis senior Blair Shinoda looked like she would be a hero on Saturday, but Cal State Northridge’s Ashlee Guay had other ideas.
Guay went the length of the floor and made a layup an instant before the final buzzer to send the host Matadors past the Aggies, 51-49, in a Big West women’s basketball matchup.
With less than five seconds to play, Shinoda’s bucket had tied the game at 49-49, but it was Northridge (13-12, 7-6) getting the win over UCD (10-14, 5-8) to earn a split of the season series.
Freshman Alyson Doherty scored 15 points and Sydnee Fipps added 10 for the Aggies, who had a 45-37 lead late in the game before the Matadors rallied with a 14-4 run down the stretch.
UCD still led 47-46 late in the final minute, but Northridge’s Breeyon Alexander hit a 3-pointer from the left wing with 30 seconds left.
But after the Aggies kept possession on a jump ball — the 12th of the game — with 10 seconds remaining, Shinoda went to work. The guard, who has shown a knack for scoring in the clutch, drove from the top of the key down the right side to lay it in and tie the game.
After a timeout, it was Guay’s turn as she took the inbounds pass up the right side and raced to the hoop, releasing the ball just prior to the final buzzer. The officials reviewed the play on the courtside monitor before calling it good.
It was a tough ending for UCD, which led by as many as eight points in the first half and never trailed by more than four. The Aggies struggled from the floor, shooting just 21 percent in the second half (5-of-24) and 29 percent (14-of-49) for the game. Another strong day from the free throw line (17-of-24) helped them forge leads and overcome a 54-41 deficit on the boards.
With the Matadors holding a 27-26 lead at intermission, the game was even until an eight-point UCD run that ended with 4:39 left broke a 37-37 tie. In the spurt, Fipps and Celia Marfone scored inside and Shinoda nailed a 3-pointer.
Fipps added nine rebounds for the Aggies, while Doherty, who was 5-of-6 from the floor, added eight. Camille Mahlknecht had 10 boards for Northridge, which held a 21-7 advantage on the offensive glass.
UCD returns home on Thursday to face UC Riverside (7 p.m.) before hosting Cal State Fullerton on Saturday at 4 p.m. in the second half of a doubleheader with the Aggie men.