NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — For a coach whose team just got outrebounded 66-33, shot 28 percent from the field, missed all eight of its 3-point tries and 13 of 26 free throws, Karen Barefoot could hardly have sounded happier.
"We set the tempo of how we were going to play this game," Barefoot said after the Lady Monarchs pulled within four of No. 10 California with 8½ minutes left, then didn't score again in a 63-47 loss.
"It was just hard-nosed defense and we made them get uncomfortable," the second-year coach said.
Barefoot wasn't the only one smiling.
Senior Jackie Cook has never been part of a Lady Monarchs team that beat a ranked opponent, and came away from the game with the idea that the once-elite program is on its way back up the ladder. Seeing a lot of Old Dominion's tendencies in the way California plays the game only enhanced that viewpoint.
"They played great defense. That's what we want to be as a team. We want to be that physical. We want to be bangers like that," she said.
Layushia Clarendon scored 15 points for the Golden Bears (6-0) and keyed the game-ending 12-0 run. Brittany Boyd added 11 points and Gennifer Brandon had nine points and 17 rebounds as California won despite committing 25 turnovers and missing 16 of 32 free throws.
Old Dominion (4-1), which opened with four wins for the first time since the 1998-99 season, trailed almost throughout, but pulled to 51-47 on a free throw by Galaisha Goodhope with 8:26 to play. Goodhope missed the second, but the Lady Monarchs maintained possession until Clarendon stole it for Cal.
The senior made a pair of free throws at the other end, and the Lady Monarchs didn't score again.
They made an impression, though, on Golden Bears coach Lindsay Gottlieb.
"I'm really impressed at the turnaround they have made in a year," she said, referring to last season when the Lady Monarchs finished 11-21. "This team's going to win a lot of games."
Junior college transfer Shae Kelley led Old Dominion with 21 points and seven rebounds.
The Golden Bears led 31-20 after a sloppy first half.
Cal used a 9-0 run to break away from an 8-all tie and led the rest of the way. The taller, more athletic Golden Bears could have all but put the game away before halftime because they dominated the boards, outrebounding ODU 38-18 and grabbing 14 on the offensive end, but they missed repeatedly from in close. They scored 22 points in the paint in the half, but just 10 off second-chance opportunities.
Brandon was especially dominant with 14 first-half rebounds, but made just 3 of 12 shots.
The Lady Monarchs closed to 19-13 with just under seven minutes to play in the opening half, but Brandon had six points in a 12-5 run that rebuilt the Golden Bears' lead to 31-18.
A late basket by Myeisha Hall nudged the Lady Monarchs above 20 percent shooting in the half. They finished 6 for 29 (21 percent), while the Golden Bears were 12 for 33 (36 percent).
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