Women keep on winning


Photo by Tam Duong Jr.

Louis LaVenture,
News and Sports Editor

It’s starting to feel like they’re never going to lose again.

The Cal State East Bay women’s basketball team extended their winning streak to 11 games in a row after they won two road games over the weekend. The Pioneers are now 13-2 overall and a perfect 7-0 in California Collegiate Athletic Association Conference games this season.

CSUEB got things started on Jan. 7 when they took down Cal State San Marcos (3-7 overall, 2-5 conference) 57-50. Senior guard Shannon Bland was on fire for CSUEB and scored a career-high 25 points in the win. Seniors Madison Craig and Tori Breshers combined for 17 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists in the winning effort.

The momentum from that win carried over to Jan. 8 for Bland and the Pioneers when they took on Cal State Los Angeles in a close victory that pushed the winning streak to 11 games. It was Bland again who led the way for CSUEB, as she poured in 20 points in 31 minutes of playing time that included the game-winner.

“Having a great team is what allows us to have our individual success,” Bland said. “We have some good versatility on our team making us difficult to defend.”

With 11 seconds remaining and the score tied at 63 Bland nailed a shot to put the Pioneers up for good 65-63.

“Everyone was worried about our other shooters during that play allowing me to have a wide open shot,” Bland said. “The last play of defense where we buckled down and got the stop. To me that last defensive play was more stressful than the shot.”

Cal State Los Angeles had two more chances to score or tie the game but the Pioneers defense came through in the clutch and preserved the two-point victory.

“We are playing team basketball, sharing the responsibilities of scoring and defending,” CSUEB Head Coach Suzy Barcomb said. “We defend as a team. We know that our defense is going to fuel us when our offense isn’t clicking.”

Breshers added 14 points, 5 steals and 5 rebounds in a team-high 37 minutes on the floor. Senior guard Laci Effenberger also chipped in with 8 points and 4 assists during the game.

The Pioneers will put their winning streak on the line when they host two conference rivals this weekend. Tomorrow CSUEB will take on UC San Diego at 5:30 p.m. Then on Saturday they will welcome Cal State San Bernardino to Pioneer Gymnasium at 5:30 p.m.