Regals Suffer Heartbreaking Loss in Home Opener

Regals Suffer Heartbreaking Loss in Home Opener

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif.– It came down the final possession in Head Coach Kelli DiMuro's debut at Cal Lutheran, but the Regals came up just short as they couldn't convert in the dying seconds of the game, falling 72-70 to Puget Sound (Wash.) inside Gilbert Arena.

"It was an exciting one," DiMuro said. "It's a little disappointing because we could've beaten that team, but I thought we did a really good job defending their big girls and that's something we've been working on for the last four weeks. I thought we did a great job in the press and disrupted a lot of plays. We were way better on offense this week as well."

Jozie Tangeman had a fantastic night shooting, going 5-6 from the floor. The junior was perfect (3-3) from beyond the arc and the free throw line (5-5) in the team's home opener to lead the Regals offensively with 18 points. 

Cameron Mallory nearly notched a double-double with 16 points and nine rebounds on the night. The forward knocked down four triples while also tallying three assists and three steals.

Also getting into double figures was Mackenzy Iwahashi who was very efficient in her first game of the season, going 6-11 from the floor while pouring in 14 points for her team.

The Regals came out on fire in the opening 10 minutes, shooting 53 percent (9-17) to take a commanding 22-14 lead after the first quarter. Mallory got things started with a three-pointer and two lay-ups to get things started for the hosts.

Heading into the second quarter, CLU would lead by as many as 10 but the Loggers would work their way back into the contest, cutting the lead to just four points at the break. Tangeman starting feeling it in the second period, going 3-3 from the field and 3-3 from the line.

A hotly contested third quarter would set up for a very dramatic final period of play. The Regals were firing on all cylinders as Iwahashi finished a strong drive in the paint to put her team up by five points. Tangeman followed that up by hitting the bottom of the net with a deep three to keep CLU out in front. However, Puget Sound would not go away, managing to cut the lead to just two points with less than five minutes to play.

Just under the two-minute mark, the Loggers took their first lead of the contest. Tangeman continued her hot shooting, knocking down yet another shot from beyond the arc to put the Regals up by two. After splitting a pair of free throws, Puget Sound got possession of the ball with less than 10 seconds to play. The visitors managed to score the game-winning lay-up in the dying seconds as Cal Lutheran were unable to hit the buzzer-beater on their final possession.

Cal Lutheran look towards another exhibition matchup with NAIA opponent Westmont Nov. 16 at 4 p.m. inside Gilbert Arena.

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Release by Jeff Rebello, Assistant Sports Information Director