Cal women's basketball survives hostile environment

Charles Rex Arbogast/APClose one: Talia Caldwell’s 16 points were a big reason Cal was able to hang on to a win against unranked Northwestern.

Brittany Boyd and Talia Caldwell helped No. 8 Cal overcome a noisy gym and some lousy shooting.

Boyd scored 18 points and Caldwell added 16 to help beat Northwestern 71-65 on Monday, sending the Wildcats to their fourth straight loss.

“This was a game we can take a lot away from,” Cal coach Lindsay Gottlieb said. “I really credit Northwestern coming off some injuries and some rough games. Their spirit was up, they executed, they played well and the crowd was phenomenal.”

The game, which started at 11 in the morning central time, was played in front of 4,958 fans, largely from Chicago area schools, and the vocal crowd made it difficult at times for the Golden Bears.

“This is exactly why you schedule games like this,” Gottlieb said. “To be on the road in a tournament-like atmosphere and have to respond to adversity.”

Gennifer Brandon’s three-point play with 3:04 left put Cal (8-1) ahead for good. The Golden Bears made 26 for 64 (39.1 percent) from the field.

Brandon had 11 points and 10 rebounds and Layshia Clarendon scored 11 for Cal.

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