Long Beach women’s basketball hits a skid

Beach men to host Hawaii on Thursday at 7 p.m.

The Long Beach State Women’s basketball team will try to snap a four-game skid when they travel to Hawaii on Thursday to take on the Rainbow Wahine for a 9 p.m. PT game. The game will be streamed live on ESPN+.

The Beach is coming off two losses last week in which they were outscored by 10 points in the fourth quarter of both games. UC Santa Barbara held the Beach to just two points in the fourth quarter of a 45-30 Gaucho win on Saturday. Prior to that the Beach fell to UC San Diego, 69-56, at home on Thursday.

Casey Velenti-Paea, of Australia, led the Beach with 14 points. Valenti-Paea is playing her first year for the Beach, after red-shirting last year. She transferred from Buffalo University after one injury-shortened year. Junior guard Patricia Chung scored 12 points, while Sydney Woodley added nine.

In their loss to UCSD, the Beach had no players score in double digits and as a team, they went 0-13 from the field in the fourth quarter. Defensively, they matched Santa Barbara in defensive rebounds, with 21 and also had seven blocks and eight steals, but the offensive drought was too much to overcome.

At 1-5 in Big West Conference play, the Beach is headed to Hawaii to take on the 4-1 in conference, Rainbow Wahine, who are second behind Santa Barbara at 5-1.


Beach men also drop two

The Long Beach State men’s basketball team also dropped its two Big West Conference games last week, faltering in the second half against UCSB on Saturday and against UCSD on Thursday. The Beach led Santa Barbara, 40-35, at halftime before falling to the Gauchos, 85-76. Against San Diego, the score was tied, 42-42, at halftime, but the Tritons pulled away in the second half for an 88-74 win.

The Beach leads the conference in scoring at 80.1 points per game, but also is worst in conference on defense, giving up 78.0 point per game.

The loss to Santa Barbara spoiled solid nights by senior guard Messiah Thompson, who led the Beach with 23 points and forward Aboubacar Traore, who posted a double-double with 18 points and 10 assists. Sophomore guard AJ George added 12 points.

The Beach (11-7, 3-3 in conference) will host Hawaii (7-5, 2-3) at the Walter Pyramid on Thursday at 7 p.m. in a game that will stream live on ESPN+. UC Irvine and UC San Diego currently sit atop the Big West standings, both at 5-0.