(Hawaii Athletics) - Sarah Toeaina and Lahni Salanoa each matched their career-high scoring outputs to lead the Hawai'i women's basketball team to an 81-75 win in a back-and-forth battle with Montana State in the Stan Sheriff Center on Monday night.
Toeaina went 10-of-12 from the field and finished with 25 points while Salanoa added 19 points on 7-of-10 shooting including 4-of-6 from 3-point range. Julissa Tago added 21 points for the Rainbow Wahine, who led for the final 11 minutes after 13 lead-changes through three quarters.
Makenna Woodfolk added 10 points and five rebounds for Hawai'i (5-3), and Tia Kanoa finished with four assists in 22 minutes of play after sitting the final 18 minutes of the first half with two early fouls.
The Bobcats (5-4) opened the second half on a 9-3 run to take their largest lead of the game, 49-44, with 6:33 left in the third quarter. UH, however, responded with a 3-pointer from Lahni Salanoa and a three-point play from Woodfolk on back-to-back possessions to keep pace.
The 'Bows took the lead for good on Woodfolk's layup with just over a minute to play in the third. Montana State pulled within one point twice in the fourth quarter, the final occasion with just 1:54 to play, but UH went 8-for-10 from the free throw line in the final 75 seconds to fend off the Bobcats.
The 'Bows shot a season-high 55.6 percent (30-of-54) from the field to neutralize 10 Bobcat 3-pointers. UH, which entered Monday as the Big West leader in fewest turnovers per game, finished with a season-low 11 turnovers despite committing seven in the first quarter.
Montana State held a 29-28 edge on the glass and finished with just 10 turnovers. Hannah Caudill led four Bobcat double-digit scorers with 19 points, connecting on 5-of-14 3-pointers in the game. Oliana Squires fouled out with 14 points for Montana State. MSU shot 47.5 percent from the field and 38.5 percent (10-of-26) from 3-point range in the game.
Hawai'i will wrap up its seven-game home-stand on Dec. 8 when Idaho State visits the Stan Sheriff Center. The Bengals represent the third and final Big Sky Conference opponent on the Rainbow Wahine slate this season.