Right around halftime, when the score read 27-12, the media guides were opened and the records searched.
The lowest-scoring half of women’s basketball in the history of the Stan Sheriff Center? Eleven points, by Denver against UConn in 2002.
The lowest-scoring game in the history of the Hawaii Rainbow Wahine? Twenty-five, against California in January of 1977.
UH succeeded in avoiding setting a standard in those categories on Thursday night, but that’s about all that went right for the hosts at the Stan Sheriff Center. The Wahine chipped the paint clean off both rims in a demoralizing 49-29 loss to Cal State Northridge.
It was as stunning for the circumstance of the woeful outing — five days after a rousing victory over defending regular-season champ UC Davis — as it was for the extent of the futility. The Wahine shot 12-for-54. That comes out to 22.2 percent. No one had more than five points.
Against CSUN’s zone defense, UH missed from close. UH missed from far. UH just missed. Repeatedly.
There were well-contested looks. There were open looks. There were airballs and shots off the side of the backboard.
You couldn’t even chalk it up to a dominant outing from two-time Big West player of the year Channon Fluker. Fluker came off the bench and played only 22 minutes. Her 10-point, 11-rebound outing was one of her quietest against UH, though she still was a formidable presence at the middle of the Matadors’ zone when she was in the game.
“I thought defensively, we were locked in. We held a very good post player in the nation well below her average,” UH coach Laura Beeman said. “Offensively, we were not locked in. We were not focused. And we were unable to execute any sort of a game plan.”
Not surprisingly, no players were at the postgame press conference.
Here’s the complete list of UH women’s games in which they failed to crack 30 points. You’ll notice all but one (today) came in the first few years of the program, which launched in 1974-75.
25 — vs. California, 31-25 L, Jan. 15, 1977
26 — vs. Alaska-Anchorage, 27-26 L, Feb. 25, 1975
27 — at Stanford, 65-27 L, Jan. 5, 1978
28 — at San Diego State, 80-28 L, Jan. 21, 1982
29 — vs. Cal State Northridge, 49-29 L, Jan. 17, 2019
If there ever were a time to undertake the Bird Box Challenge at a game, this was it.