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Kiera Wood / Senior Staff Photographer

Junior guard Miwa Tachibana tied a career high with 17 points against Farleigh Dickinson.

The women's basketball team (1-4) will try to leave last weekend's disappointing losses behind as the Lions travel across the country to face Portland and Portland State this weekend.

Columbia will need to remedy its play on both sides of the floor. Offensive and defensive struggles plagued the team in an 80-54 loss to Cal State Fullerton and a 69-59 loss to Fairleigh Dickinson.

Still, some individuals have shined. First-year forward Tori Oliver scored 14 points against FDU, the highest total yet in her young collegiate career. In the same game, junior guard Miwa Tachibana's 17 points matched her career and senior forward Courtney Bradford pulled down a career high of 10 rebounds.

As it travels to the West Coast, the team hopes to put these individual contributions together for a more successful collective result. The trip will be a homecoming for two players, senior guard and team leader Taylor Ward and senior center Nicole Santucci, who both hail from Oregon. 

On Friday, Columbia will face Portland University (4-2). The game will be the first matchup between the Lions and the Pilots. The Light Blue will need to find a way to handle Portland's strong offensive attack led by junior guard Kari Luttinen, who ranked seventh in the West Coast Conference in scoring last season. The Pilots currently lead the conference in three-point field goals, averaging 7.4 a game to power them to four high-scoring victories this season.

On Sunday, the Lions will move on to face Portland State University (0-2). The struggling Vikings will be looking for a win after dropping their first two games at home. 

The Portland game will start at 10 p.m. on Friday, while the Portland State game is slated for a 5 p.m. start on Sunday. | @CUSpecSports

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