Waves women’s basketball squad wins on Senior Night

Redshirt senior Becky Obinma scored 19 points and snagged 14 rebounds, both career highs, in the Waves victory over Santa Clara. Photo by Jeff Golden.

A senior on the Pepperdine Waves women’s basketball team had her best game of the season on the squad’s Senior Night on Feb. 25. 

Redshirt senior Becky Obinma scored career highs of 19 points and 14 rebounds in the Waves’ 74-59 victory over the Santa Clara Broncos in Pepperdine’s Firestone Fieldhouse. 

Obinma, a 6-foot-2 forward, made seven of her 12 shots in the contest and splashed five of six foul shots in the regular season finale. The Menifee, California, native also recorded two steals and one assist. 

2 Graduate transfer Marly Walls had 12 assists in Pepperdine s win over Santa Clara. Photo by Jeff Golden
Graduate transfer Marly Walls had 12 assists in Pepperdine’s win over Santa Clara. Photo by Jeff Golden.

Obinma, who averages 6.5 points and 6.6 rebounds a contest, had six other games this season in which she scored in double figures. Her previous high-scoring amount this season was 13, which she reached twice. Obinma scored 15 points in a game last season. The upperclassman grabbed 10 or more rebounds in five other games this season. Before facing Santa Clara, her previous season high in rebounds was 12. She reached that rebounding number twice. 

The victory gave Pepperdine a 10-18 overall record and 5-13 record in the West Coast Conference. The Waves, seeded 10th have a matchup in the WCC Tournament in Las Vegas on Thursday against No. 7 Pacific at 8:30 p.m.

Obinma, who played two seasons at TCU before transferring to Pepperdine, wasn’t the only Wave celebrated on Senior Night to have a good game. Graduate transfer Theresa Grace Mbanefo tied her season high of 20 points. The 6-foot-1 forward made nine of her 16 shots, grabbed 8 rebounds, and dished out 4 assists. Graduate transfer Marly Walls, a 5-foot-7 guard, tallied a career-high 12 assists and scored 9 points. Walls also had a steal and 6 rebounds. 

As a team, the Waves outrebounded the Broncos 46-22 and shot a better percentage from the floor — 48.3 percent compared to 33.9 percent for Santa Clara. 

Pepperdine had leads of 11-5 and 18-16 in the first quarter. The Waves increased their lead by seven points in the next quarter before the Broncos exchanged points with them. However, Pepperdine took a 39-29 halftime lead after going on a 6-0 run. 

Santa Clara cut Pepperdine’s lead to six points in the third quarter, but then Obinma rang up six straight points to increase the Waves’ lead. After two free throws, Pepperdine had a 56-44 advantage at the end of the quarter. 

Walls swished a 3-pointer at the beginning of the fourth quarter to increase her team’s lead, but then the Bronco’s Ashlee Maldonado splashed consecutive triples. Then, Walls completed a 3-point play and Mbanefo converted a fast break layup. Santa Clara scored two points with one second left in the game, but the contest ended with the ball in Pepperdine’s possession.