Down by as many as 15 points midway through the second half, the second-seeded Bears rallied against No. 7 Washington State before losing 91-83 in the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 tournament at Key Arena in Seattle.
Ranked 2oth in the nation, Cal (21-9) trailed 78-63 with 7 1/2 minutes left. The Bears scrambled within six points in the final 2 minutes, but got no closer.
Reshanda Gray had 26 points and Gennifer Brandon 20 to lead the Bears, whose seeding for the NCAA tournament may suffer as a result of the loss. Cal entered the game projected as a No. 5 seed.
Afure Jemerigbe contributed 16 points, seven rebounds, five assists and two steals, while All-Pac-12 point guard Brittany Boyd scored nine points before fouling out with 5:47 left.
Lia Galdeira scored 27 for the Cougars (17-15), who lost twice to Cal during the regular season and hadn’t beaten the Bears since 2011.