SCIAC semifinal: 5 things to know

The Chapman bench celebrates a basket.
Photo by Larry Newman

ORANGE, Calif. – The Chapman University women's basketball team kept its streak alive with its seventh consecutive trip to the SCIAC Postseason Tournament. The Panthers enter the tournament as the No. 3 seed with a 16-9 overall record and an 11-5 record in the SCIAC. They travel to take on second-seeded Pomona-Pitzer (20-5, 14-2 SCIAC) at 7 p.m.

5 Things To Know

  • The Panthers have made the SCIAC Postseason Tournament in each of their seven seasons in the conference, dating back to 2012-13. Of those seven trips, Chapman has made the championship game four times and won the tournament last season. Comparatively, Pomona-Pitzer has never made the SCIAC Postseason Tournament. Third year coach Jill Pace has turned the program around from finishing 1-15 in the SCIAC in her first season to 14-2 this year.
  • Thursday's semifinal will feature three of the four major award winners from the 2019 All-SCIAC teams. The Athlete of the Year and Newcomer of the Year will lineup opposite each other in the back court. Senior guard Jaryn Fajardo made her third All-SCIAC honor the best as she finished her career as the SCIAC Athlete of the Year. The Sagehens' freshman guard Carly Leong garnered Newcomer of the Year honors after guiding her team to its best finish this century. Pace was named Coach of the Year.
  • Fajardo has a chance to reach another career milestone as she is just four assists shy of 400 assists in her career. The standout senior has already surpassed 1,000 career points, 500 career rebounds and 200 career steals. She would be the first Panther in history to surpass the milestones in all four statistical categories.
  • The Sagehens swept the season series from Chapman. The Panthers last trip to the Rains Center resulted in a 76-61 loss – the worst SCIAC loss for the Panthers since a 16-point tournament loss to Cal Lutheran in 2016. The matchup at Hutton Center featured a much higher scoring affair with the Sagehens coming away with a 90-83 win. Fajardo scored 30 points and Leong scored 26 points to lead their teams.
  • Thursday's matchup features the two highest-scoring teams in the conference. During the SCIAC season, Pomona-Pitzer scored 76.3 points per game to lead the conference and Chapman was second with 69.4 ppg. The Sagehens sank a SCIAC-leading 144 threes at a 40.7 clip to fuel the high-powered offense. The Panthers shot 41.5 percent as a team through the SCIAC season and both teams shoot over 71 percent from the free throw line.

By Steven Olveda
Sports Information Director

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