Men’s and Women’s basketball advance

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Men’s and Women’s basketball advance

PHOTOS BY KEDAR DUTT/THE PIONEER

PHOTOS BY KEDAR DUTT/THE PIONEER

PHOTOS BY KEDAR DUTT/THE PIONEER

By Marcos Sanchez, CONTRIBUTOR

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Home court advantage was an understatement as the No. 3 seed California State University, East Bay won their first California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) playoff game this week.
The Pioneers dominated the No. 6 seed California State University, Dominguez Hills in the quarterfinals of the CCAA Tournament. The Pioneers defeated the Toros 68-54 in the Pioneer Gymnasium, where the rest of the CCAA tournament will be hosted.
The Pioneers came out swarming on defense, holding the Toros to 28 percent shooting from the field, going 6-26 from the three-point line. The Pioneers slightly out-rebounded the Toros (39-38) to contribute to their success. Junior forward Ant Navarrette had a game-high of 10 rebounds, including his 10 points giving him another double-double for the season.
In the first half, the game was back and forth as both teams exchanged baskets. The Pioneers went on a run when Sophomore guard Nai Carlisle had an electrifying dunk to get the home crowd on their feet. Carlisle scored 15 of his game-high 21 points in the first half. The Pioneers went into the half leading the Toros by five points.
As the second half started, CSUEB took a commanding lead by going on a 17-8 run, which extended the lead to 17 points. Senior guard Juawan Anderson led the charge with 12 of his 14 points coming in the second half.
Halfway through the second half CSUDH came out with a full court press to disturb CSUEB’s offense. They were successful in causing a few turnovers but the poor shooting from the Toros could not get them back into the game.
Anderson spoke on the full court pressure that the Toros implemented.
”They were in desperate mode and trying to get any deflection that they could get,” he said. “Just being strong with the ball and coming back to the ball” helped defeat the full court press.
CSUEB’s win was largely dedicated to the points inside. They outscored CSUDH inside the paint 28-14. Additionally, the defense created offense through turnovers. The Pioneers scored 22 of their 68 points off of turnovers.
The Pioneers are now in the semifinals of the CCAA tournament. They will be playing the No. 2 seed University of California San Diego in the semifinal round. CSUEB split the two-game series against UCSD this year.
Nai Carlisle believes that home court advantage will play in CSUEB’s favor as they face the returning CCAA Tournament champs at 5:35 p.m. on Friday, March 8 at the Pioneer Gymnasium. The winner of the game will continue on to the the CCAA Touurnment finals on Saturday, March 10 at 7:35 p.m.
CSUEB’s women’s basketball team also advanced past the first round of the CCAA playoffs with their 72-62 victory over Humboldt State on March 5. Guard Regina Sankey led the Pioneers in scoring with 16 points, as the Pioneers shot 57 percent from the field as a team. CSUEB’s bench outscored the Lumberjacks’ bench by the wide margin of 31-3.
CSUEB women’s basketball will take on Cal Poly Pomona in the semifinals on Friday, March 8 at 2:35 p.m.