The Diablo Valley Vikings challenged the Cosumnes River College Hawks at home on the annual Breast Cancer Awareness night, Feb. 12.
The Hawks struggled from the tipoff, where Vikings’ freshman Annelise Ito took control, and passed the ball to sophomore teammate Wilicia Featherstone, who fired it back to Ito to charge down the center for a layup, scoring her first two of 23 points in the game.
Hawks’ sophomore guard Alexis Mendez immediately responded with a shot of her own to tie the game.
After each team scored, freshman Elena Ala of Diablo Valley capitalized on the Hawks’ poor ball control. With her third steal five minutes into the game, she dribbled down the court for a layup, increasing the Vikings lead by four points, 12-8.
After a timeout, the Hawks attacked the Vikings with a full-court press, and put pressure on the Vikings side of the court.
But the plan backfired and caused Hawks’ freshman forward Alexis Haffner and freshman captain Brooke Fletcher to both foul twice, which caused Fletcher to be benched for the remainder of the half. The Vikings ended the half on a 21-14 run.
The Hawks went into the locker room trailing the Vikings 34-24.
After the half the Hawks came back with new energy, took charge of the court and maintained backcourt pressure. Freshman guard Samantha Reeder scored the first points of the half. Mendez then drew two fouls in under three minutes and made three of four free throws. Fletcher also drew a foul of her own and made both baskets.
“CRC attacked the paint very well,” said Vikings’ assistant coach Jennifer Marvin.
After both teams traded buckets, the Vikings called for a full timeout and returned to the court ready to battle.
Both teams were aggressive on the ball and the Hawks steadily closed the lead. Finally with 11 minutes left in the game Hawks’ freshman guard Miya Oakes received the ball and drove down the center for a layup, tieing the game at 46.
It looked like the Hawks were bouncing back until Reeder suffered a head injury rebounding a missed shot by Ito and took an elbow to the head and fell to the ground. She was assisted off of the court and did not return for the rest of the game.
Vikings’ freshman Adrianna Juaquin then gained momentum and scored 11 points in a row, nine of which were 3-pointers, with six minutes left in the game.
The remaining five minutes ticked by with few points scored on either side but the Hawks gave up three points in free throws, and in the end the Hawks fell to the Vikings 63-69.
“We have a tough game on Thursday against Sierra, a huge rivalry. We just have to continue to have that aggressive nature on offense and defense and play with our hearts and as a family,” said Hawks’ assistant coach Shantel Thomas.