East Bay women’s basketball team getting back on track

2015 redesigned Pioneer logo.

Tam Duong Jr.

2015 redesigned Pioneer logo.

Ikaika Nichols,

Lady Pioneers take on West Region Tip-Off Classic

The women’s basketball team has played just eight games since the season began earlier this month, but Head Coach Shanele Stires is looking to guide the two-time defending California Collegiate Athletic Association Conference (CCAA) champions to a successful back-to-back run in the CCAA and a push in the NCAA tournament.

Stires believes that the sisterhood created among a team can overcome such adversities and lead them through a successful season.

“Possible adversities may be the tournament style schedule and the fatigue of the traveling schedule,” Stires said.

The Pioneers competed in the West Region Tip-Off Classic in San Francisco at Kezar Pavilion in games against Holy Names University on Nov. 10 and the Academy of the Art Nov. 11. With two impressive wins and great all-around team effort, the Pioneers are off to a great start.

In a 71-48 victory against the Holy Names Hawks, the Pioneers had strong performances from junior forward Savannah McGill and sophomore forward Morgan Greene. McGill recorded 21 points with eight rebounds, two assists, two blocks and one steal in her 26 minutes on the court. In her East Bay debut, she also shot an impressive 9-for-10 from the field. Greene recorded a double-double in the victory with 14 points and 15 rebounds that included a career high in four assists, one block and one steal in her 28 minutes of playing time.

Defensively, East Bay held Holy Names to 38.5 percent shooting while they shot 45.4 percent from the floor. The bench players provided a spark, recording 22 points while they dominated down low. They led in rebounds 46-23, assists 21-9, points in the paint 42-28 and second chance points 20-4.

“Some team goals include setting out to be national champions, CCAA titleholder and would like to host the West Region,” Stires said. “In terms of playing time, our goal is to gain 20 assists per game.”

For the third consecutive season, the Pioneers have started the season 1-0 after participating in the West Region Tip-Off.

On Nov. 11, in a close game against the Academy of Art Urban Knights, the Pioneers pulled off the sweep to complete the weekend at the West Region Tip Off Classic. All-Tournament honors were awarded to McGill and Greene for their performances in both games.

Greene recorded her second consecutive double-double of the season with 15 points and 10 rebounds. She also added one assist, one steal and 1 block in 35 minutes on the floor. She shot 5-for-9 from the field and led the team in scoring.

McGill pulled down 25 boards and added 10 points, two assists, two steals and one block in 35 minutes of playing time. East Bay held the Urban Knights to 31.6 percent shooting for the game. They also dominated on the boards 46-31 and their bench outscored them 23-12.

The Pioneers unfortunately came up short ending in 59-78 loss in the following game against the Point Loma Nazarene University Sea Lions on Nov. 14. This was the first loss of the season for the team.

“We shot the ball well,” Stires said. “We were involved in high defense and had good depth but struggled in only playing three quarters and not being able to close out the game.”

Janae Chamois led in stats with 12 points, two rebounds and one assist in 24 minutes of play. Elayshia Woolridge also added 12 points, four assists, two rebounds and three steals in 21 minutes off the bench. Sophomore guard Kayley Hsiung brought in 12 points, two rebounds, two assists and one steal.

The Pioneers outscored the Sea Lions 32-2 in bench points but took a loss after being outshot 36-10 points in the paint and 13-9 points off turnovers. East Bay shot just 23.1 percent from the field while Point Loma shot 46.4 percent of their shots.

The East Bay women’s team also took losses against Cal State Dominguez Hills 79-80 on Nov. 17 and in a tough game against Cal State LA 52-63 on Saturday Nov. 18.

The East Bay women’s basketball team will travel for their next game today against CSU San Marcos at on Nov. 30.