Monday, December 11, 2017

Mid-season equals middle of pack for Camosun Chargers basketball teams

November 28, 2014 by Mac Clohan, contributing writer

The Camosun Chargers basketball teams recently finished up the first half of their regular seasons. After seven games each, the men’s and women’s teams will take the winter break to rest up, refocus their game plans, and, presumably, write an exam or two with the rest of us.

The women’s team have had a solid season so far; ranked fourth in the PACWEST league, their record stands at 4-3. With only two home games so far, the women’s schedule was trying and their opponents tough; their three losses coming from the first, second, and third-ranked teams. The team’s impressive plus-minus of 75 shows they aren’t losing by much, and winning decisively.

First-year Camosun Chargers guard Haley Cabral (photo by Kevin Light).

The women’s team’s home opener against the Capilano Blues on November 14 saw the Chargers opening on a positive note. Out of the gate strong, the women kept the pace of the game fast, and repeatedly drove through their opponents. The majority of their points came off the dribble and helped open up a huge lead of 42-25 by the second quarter.

The second half opened up with more of the same from the Chargers, but the Blues started to put the ball outside the arc in the second half, and opened up the game. Slowly and steadily, Capilano began to chip away at Camosun’s lead through clutch shots and better rebounding.

Somehow the blowout had turned into a nail-biter with 40 seconds left to play; sloppy in-bounding by the Chargers led to a Blues three-pointer to bring the game to 72-70. With possession and 30 seconds left on the clock, Camosun moved the ball well around the outside to the hot hands of Emma Cunningham. With confidence, Cunningham dropped the dagger for three and effectively closed out the night for the Chargers. Final score: 75-70.

After the game, Allie Cooper, who led the Chargers with 25 points and 60 percent in shooting, gave credit to teamwork composure for the victory.

“We played very well as a team; I think communication was one of the biggest things we had this time,” said Cooper. “We were all really talking to each other and trying to adjust during the game; for the most part, we were able to stay calm, communicate, and work through [the pressure].”

Meanwhile, the men’s basketball team has had the same difficult away schedule, and currently sits fifth with a 3-4 record. But coming off back-to-back wins, the men can enter the break with the momentum on their side.

Two major themes dominated the home opener for the men’s team: the Chargers were always in control of the game, and everybody fouled everybody that even looked at a basketball. With both teams playing very physically, and the refs not letting anything slide, there were a total 55 personal fouls and 55 free throws.

Many of the fouls by the Blues seemed to be frustration fouls for a game that wasn’t going their way. With Camosun taking an early 9-0 lead, Capilano just never had an answer for Charger’s offence.

Whether it was in the paint or beyond the arc, Capilano watched as five players on the Chargers scored at least 10 points, and every player on the team logged at least two. Andrew Larson had an excellent performance, coming off the bench to score 17 points, going three-for-five from three-point range. The game was never in doubt as the Chargers took it 92-62.

Head coach Scot Cuaschon saw a lot of promise in the men’s play that night. “The start of the season so far has been fairly rough. This win is nice today, but now we got to build,” he said after the game. “There are no easy games in this league.”

Both Chargers basketball teams resume play in the New Year on January 9 at Interurban campus’ Pacific Institute for Sport Excellence against the Vancouver Island Mariners, who are ranked first in the men’s league and second in the women’s.

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