Fresno Pacific roundup: Women's basketball clinches winning conference season

The Fresno BeeFebruary 27, 2014 

Fresno Pacific's women's basketball team rallied for a 63-56 win Thursday at Hawaii Hilo, a victory that secured the program's first winning season in conference play since 2002.

The Sunbirds (11-14, 11-8 PacWest) closed on an 8-0 run in the final 3:33.

Keairra White had a team-high 16 points, and Patrice Saindon added 11.

The Vulcans (9-14, 8-11) came out after halftime and raced to a five-point lead, but the Sunbirds grabbed the lead for good on a White jumper with 3:11 to play.

White scored her 16 points on just 10 shots. Her 70% shooting percentage is a career high, eclipsing her previous best of 66.7 set earlier this season against Chico State.

"She is one of the players who is able to get to the rim and create her own shot and still do it out of what we are trying to do as a team," said first-year coach Lindsey Wilson.

Fresno Pacific, picked in the preseason to finish 11th in the conference, is tied for sixth in the PacWest. The Sunbirds close the season Saturday at Chaminade.

Baseball team loses at home

Fresno Pacific ace J.D. Salles endured his roughest start of the year, lasting 82/3 innings but allowing four runs on 12 hits as the Sunbirds lost 7-2 to Hawaii Hilo in a PacWest Conference baseball game.

The Sunbirds (6-8, 1-4) led 2-0 until the fifth inning when two errors were followed by a home run by Kyle Watase, who finished 3 for 4 with three RBIs.

Michael Hostetler and Baron Bower had three hits each for the Sunbirds.

Joshua Banuelos had a pair of hits and an RBI.

Hawaii Hilo is 2-3 and 1-0.

The two teams match up again Saturday for a doubleheader beginning at 4 p.m.

Longtime track, cross country coach leaves

Longtime Fresno Pacific coach Eric Schwab was hired as the Tabor College cross country coach for both the men's and women's programs.

Schwab spent the past 20 years as the Sunbirds head coach in cross country and track and field, and was a 10-time Golden State Athletic Conference Coach of the Year. Schwab will leave near the end of March and assistant Ray Winter will take over as interim coach for the remainder of the season. Tabor College is in Hillsboro, Kan.

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