The Pierce College men’s basketball season ended after the Brahmas lost in the second round of the playoffs against Saddleback College in Mission Viejo, Calif. on Saturday, Feb. 28.
Despite the disappointment, the Brahmas still felt a sense of accomplishment after the 78-52 loss.
“Making it this far was a great accomplishment, especially with all the trials and tribulations we’ve been through,” said Pierce head coach Ed Babayan. “I’m proud of them for getting to this point. I’m just disappointed that it had to end like this.”
Pierce sophomore post Trey Archambeau, who led the team in scoring and rebounds, recognized how much his team overcame.
“It feels good to be here. We had to overcome a lot of things, and we shouldn’t even be here,” Archambeau said.
Archambeau shot 6-14 and grabbed six rebounds in the game.
Early in the first half, the Brahmas put defensive pressure on the Gauchos, which caused them to miss several shots. Aside from a one-point lead, the Brahmas just couldn’t push pass the Gauchos.
“We had them and then kind of went flat,” Archambeau said.
The second half started with the Brahmas down by six, but the Gauchos were able to increase its lead to 15 by the middle of the half. The game was physical, with both teams drawing a total of 23 fouls each.
During the game both teams were penalized with one technical foul each. For Pierce, it was coach Babayan who drew the technical for his courtside conduct, while Gauchos’ guard Maleke Haynes was penalized for unsportsmanlike behavior.
“Size inside was the difference,” said Saddleback head coach Andy Ground. “We went to the foul line a lot. Pierce did a good job defensively and caused us a lot of problems.”
Pierce point guard JR Williams was the second leading scorer for the Brahmas with 11 points and two assists.
“We had a chance to pull off the upset,” Williams said. “As a team we didn’t execute the things we needed to. They just played a better all-around game. With the adversity we faced at the beginning of the season, we played a hell of a season.”
Returning players will work to improve their game for next season, while others, like sophomore Archambeau, will decide on the next destination to showcase their basketball skills.