HONOLULU – Celeste Claw led BYU-Hawaii women's basketball in a tightly contested 68-57 loss to Hawaii at the Stan Sheriff Center on Thursday.
Claw led all players with 21 points and added 6 assists. Kjirsten Nelson added 11 points and grabbed eight rebounds. Kalei Adolpho led the Rainbow Wahine with 20 points and seven rebounds, while Sarah Toeaina added 16 points and six board.
As a team, BYU-Hawaii was able to hold Hawaii to 31 percent shooting from the field and 24 percent from behind the arc.
The Rainbow Wahines were able to build a 36-29 lead early in the third quarter until a jumper from Claw sparked a 12-0 run to give the Seasiders control of the game. Hawaii closed the period on a 9-0 run of its own to take the lead for good at 45-41 heading into the final period of play.
The Seasiders were able to keep pace with the Rainbow Wahine taking the early 7-4 lead after a Claw 3-pointer and a K. Nelson jumper. The BYU-Hawaii was able to maintain its lead for seven minutes thanks to two 3-pointers from Claw and jumpers from K. Nelson and Jiashan Cui. A layup by Adolpho gave the lead back to Hawaii at 18-17 at the close of the first quarter.
A 6-3 run spearheaded by a jumper from Emily Nelson and supported by shots from Claw gave the Seasiders the advantage to start the second period. BYU-Hawaii's lead was briefly interrupted when another layup from Adolpho made it a 25-24 game, but K. Nelson drained a shot behind the arc to regain the lead for the Seasiders. The teams continued to trade baskets and Hawaii held the 31-29 lead going into the locker room.
After taking the lead in the third quarter, the Rainbow Wahine were able to utilize small runs to take a double-digit lead at 58-48 with six minutes remaining. The Seasiders were unable to close the gap to less than seven as Hawaii took the win.
BYU-Hawaii will return to action on Saturday with its conference opener against Hilo at 5 p.m. HST. Live stats and video will be available online.