By Robert Barrett
Turnovers were a major factor in the women’s basketball teams’ losses last week to Cerritos College and Mt. San Antonio College.
The ELAC women’s basketball team played a competitive game against Cerritos last Wednesday at ELAC’s gym, with neither team leading by more than eight points the entire game.
For the first half, the ELAC women showed outstanding transition defense not allowing any easy baskets.
Early in the game, freshman Francis Ordonez put Cerritos into foul trouble with aggressive play in the paint.
ELAC led for most of the first half, but turnovers kept Cerritos close. Then, late in the first half, when Cerritos switched to a full court press, turnovers helped Cerritos take a four point lead going into the locker room.
The rest of the game was similar to watching two prize fighters in the middle of the ring, with players showing physical play and coaches changing team defense in attempts to confuse their opponents.
With 12 minutes left in the second half, ELAC switched to a 2-3 matchup zone, which kept Cerritos out of the lane and behind the three point line.
With the long shots came long rebounds, though, and Cerritos dominated the boards.
“The zone was successful, but we were unable to get rebounds,” said ELAC head coach Bruce Turner.
ELAC again switched their defense after a timeout with a little over six minutes to play.
“We had to get pressure another way. Sometimes you get pressure with the zone, sometimes with the man, sometimes you go matchup zone.
“You’re not really coaching against the other coach, but against the five players on the floor,” said Turner.
Out of the timeout, momentum switched back to ELAC after sophomore Shadrea Jackson hit a game-tying three pointer and then dove for a loose ball, causing a Cerritos turnover.
ELAC went into the final two minutes of the game with a one-point lead, but turnovers gave Cerritos the shots they needed to win.
“We just had stupid turnovers,” said Ordonez.
With a little over a minute remaining two three-pointers by Cerritos put the game out of reach for ELAC.
Two days later the ELAC women would travel to Mt. SAC where turnovers again haunted them.
Late in the first half a 10-2 run by the ELAC women got them back into the game, but a missed layup that turned into a transition three-pointer for Mt. SAC killed all the momentum.
ELAC’s full court press did not do the same damage it had done to Cerritos two days earlier. The press was easily broken, which led to easy shots for Mt. SAC.
Late in the second half, despite the game being out of reach, the ELAC women kept competing.
Sophomore Eva Hernandez kept taking the ball to the rim and taking physical hits in the lane but ELAC still lost the game, 87-56.
The Husky women played hard for 80 minutes over the past two games but now look ahead to Pasadena City College, whom they will meet for their final home game on Feb. 16.