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Women's Basketball Pushes No. 2 Ventura, But Season Ends, 55-50

Women's Basketball Pushes No. 2 Ventura, But Season Ends, 55-50 image

The Pasadena City College women's basketball team played its best basketball of the 2011-2012 over the final month of the season. The 15th-seeded Lancers handled the ball well and played tenacious defense against No. 2 seed Ventura College, but it wasn't enough in a 55-50 loss to the host Pirates in Round 2 of the Southern California Regional Playoffs Saturday night.

Pasadena (17-13) made just 10 turnovers against Ventura (30-1) and forced 19 turnovers by the Pirates, including 12 on steals.

With 4:20 left in the game, PCC took a brief 47-46 lead on a driving layup by Marquetta Stokes. As the game tightened each possession, the Lancers tied it, 50-50, on a Tonisha Lacey fastbreak bucket following a steal by Destinee Sellers with 1:01 remaining.

Ventura took the lead for good, 52-50, as Rebecca Griffin threaded the lane and made a layup with 42 seconds to go. Griffin, who scored a team-high 13 points, sank two free throws with nine seconds to go to seal it.

Stokes ended her fine PCC career as the game-high scorer with 15 points. She scored 12 of those points in the second half. She converted 7-for-10 from the free throw line. Stella Ghazarian scored all nine of her points in the first half, including a 25-foot bank off the glass for a 3-pointer at the first-half buzzer. Ghazarian's shot kept PCC within three, 27-24, at the intermission.

Sellers, a sophomore forward who was instrumental in Pasadena's hot stretch entering the postseason, added seven points, nine rebounds and three steals.

For Ventura, Southern California Region State Player of the Year Destinee LaFountain was a force inside with 11 points, 14 rebounds and five second-half blockes shots. Another player who hurt PCC was Carlotta Kloppenburg, who made all three of her 3-pointers as part of her 12 points in the final 20 minutes.

"You take away the first 10 minutes of our first round game, and I don't know if we played better basketball against better teams than we did over the last 70 minutes of the playoffs," an upbeat PCC Head Coach Joe Peron said. "We really worked hard defensively, and we had a shot at winning late in the game. You can't ask for more than to be around against a top seed in the final minute. I'm proud of the way our players stepped up over the final month. We did some great things, had some great comebacks, and overall it gives us some confidence going into next season."

[Photo--Marquetta Stokes goes up for a shot in her final Lancer game, a playoff loss at Ventura Saturday night, image by Richard Quinton.]

Release Date: 02/25/12
Robert Lewis, Sports Information
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