But even with their star in sweats, the Raiders pulled out a 56-49 crossover league win – that was old.
“A 'W' is a 'W' and we are going to take it,” Reed coach Sara Ramirez said. “We have to focus and down here. This a hard shooting gym … they did good.”
Reed improved to 13-2, 9-2 in league games while Carson fell to 10-10, 6-5 in league contests.
With its star keeping stats on the bench instead of taking jumpers, Reed turned to seniors Tyler Sumpter and Tina Vernon for offense. The duo combined for 36 points, the rest of the team scored 20.
Vernon, a post, finished with a game-high 19 points.
“Tina had a big, big game,” Ramirez said. “And that’s what we need from her. She needs to have big games. I mean, she’s a good post player. She just needs to start having some faith in herself. We were finding her and she was working inside and going up. She wasn’t looking to kick it out.”
Leading just 40-36 going into the final period, Krystal Noose started a 12-0 Reed run with a 3-pointer that put the Raiders in front 52-36 with five minutes left.
The Senators closed the gap to 52-45 with 2:26 left but Vernon’s consecutive buckets put the game out of reach with 90 seconds left in regulation.
“I think we’re used to looking up at the scoreboard saying ‘oh, we’re up, (we can) relax,’ but that’s not the case,” Ramirez said. “I told them 10 points isn’t the time to say ‘oh good we have a cushion.’ Ten points can go like that.”
Trailing 8-4 early in the first quarter, Reed took a 12-10 advantage into the second period, after a burst led by five points apiece from Sumpter and Vernon.
Again trailing in the second quarter, 20-19, Reed closed the half on a 7-1 run (four from Vernon and three from Sumpter), to take a six-point lead into the half.
Reed led by as much as nine in the third quarter before the hosts worked their back within four going into the final period.
Carson was also without its best player, senior Savannah Smith, who remains on crutches after an ACL injury. Smith was averaging 14.6 points per game before the injury.
Madison Preston (12 points) was the only Senator to reach double digits. Natali Salas and Michelle Perry both chipped in eight.
Brooke Cervantes (five points) was the only Raider other than Sumpter or Vernon to score more than four points.
The Raiders play again Friday at Hug with a 5:15 p.m. tipoff.