POCATELLO, Idaho — The Sacramento State women’s basketball team entered Thursday’s night game with the second-longest active winning streak in the Big Sky Conference. The Hornets left Reed Gym tied for the longest as the team handed defending Big Sky champion Idaho State a 73-57 loss.

Sacramento State evened its overall record at 9-9 and won its fifth-consecutive game to get to 5-4 in league play. The Bengals dropped to 12-7 overall and 8-2 in the Big Sky. The loss snapped ISU’s 10-game win streak and was the first home defeat for the team this season.

The Hornets were paced by 26 points, seven rebounds and six assists from Lianna Tillman. Isnelle Natabou posted her 10th double-double of the year with 21 points and 17 boards and freshman Katie Peneueta poured in 13 points to give the team three players in double figures.

Sacramento State shot 47.3 percent as a team (26-55) and 42.9 percent from three-points range (9-21). The big difference came on the glass where the team outrebounded ISU, 46-25. Sacramento State had 11 offensive rebounds which led to 11 second chance points.

The Hornets jumped ahead with a three-pointer from Peneueta for the game’s first points and led for 32 minutes of the 40-minute game. A 10-run late in the opening quarter pushed the lead to 17-6 before ISU rallied with a pair three’s in the final 83 seconds of the quarter.

A third-straight three from the Bengals drew the team within two (17-15) in the first eight seconds of the quarter. The Hornets withstood the punch with an 8-0 run of their own behind six points from Natabou and two from Summer Menke. The lead swung to Idaho State with a 13-0 run which was capped by a layup from Diaba Konate. A corner three from Jessica Rios was followed a jumper from ISU’s Ellie Smith. Tillman converted a traditional three-point play to give Sacramento State a 31-30 advantage with 1:06 left before Montana Oltrogge took the Bengals into the locker room with a layup.

The teams exchanged baskets early in the third quarter and Idaho State took its last lead, 40-37, with 5:36 left in the period. Peneueta knotted the game with a three, Natabou had a layup and Tillman buried a triple to complete an 8-0 Sacramento State run. That series helped spark the Hornets to a 50-46 advantage through three quarters.

Tillman and Natabou denied any hope of a Bengal comeback as the duo outscored ISU, 15-5 over the first 5:07 of the quarter. The team went 9-of-10 from the free throw line in the quarter to secure the win.

Sacramento State will next play at Weber State on Saturday, Jan. 29, at 11 a.m. PT.

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82  −  seventy seven  =