Ventura shuts down Pierce in blowout

Pierce College women’s basketball team fell to the Ventura College Pirates in a blowout Wednesday by the score of 114-39, buckling under the heavy defense brought by the 23-3 team.

The game started with Ventura taking the tip-off at five o’clock. The score went back and forth for the first ten minutes, with a foul being called against the Pirates and a warning to the seated Ventura players.

Several fouls marked the first half, including a hit to the eyes for Pierce’s forward, Breana Calahan. The last few minutes before halftime saw Ventura pull ahead, their defense putting pressure on the Brahmas and forcing them to take risky shots. The score at the buzzer was 60-29 to the Pirates, who lead the division in 3-point shots and defensive rebounds per game.

Starting off the second half, Pierce threw some reckless passes, squeezing in a few more points before Ventura widened the gap. Ventura’s tough defense continued on to the second half where they forced three shot-clock violations and continued to challenge the Brahmas’ offense. The game ended with 17 fouls to the Pirates and 16 to the home team. Pierce’s guard, Monica Jackson, took the lead for the Brahmas with 21 points in the game. Ventura’s shooting guard, Cynthia Hernandez, and Micaela Pericone-Kapp, guard, scored highest, with 19 points apiece.

This game continues Ventura’s 12-game win streak, bringing them closer to the playoffs.

“We took Monday and Tuesday and prepared specifically for Pierce,” Ventura’s head coach Ned Mircetic said.  “On defense we were solid. The most important thing was that we held together as a team”.

The team’s practice leading up to the game included a heavy concentration on defense, according to Brooke Dixon, forward for the Pirates.

“When it comes to a game, we play it just like it’s just another one,” she said. “We did a lot of defensive drills. We did work on defense a majority of the time.”

Mircetic also cited this as a good time for the Pirates to improve.

“We have to sharpen the skill set that we have and execute for both offense and defense,” he said.

Starting out against Ventura, Pierce had only seven players to the larger team’s 12.

“This is going on like three games already,” said Calahan about the disadvantage. “In practice, it helps us focus on the next game. We just have to work on our defense more. We have to talk more.”