News: Rose City Classic Detours For Women's Hoops
In a tournament that has been dominated over the years by the host Pasadena City College women's basketball team, the Lancers' 15th Rose City Classic was a first for PCC and not in a good way. After a resounding win over West Los Angeles in its season opener Thursday, Pasadena suffered back-to-back losses against El Camino and Irvine Valley Colleges and settled for its lowest finish ever in the R-C-C in fourth place.
In the third place final Saturday afternoon at Hutto-Patterson Gymnasium, All-Rose City team selection and Lancer point guard Desiree Loving scored 18 points, grabbed six rebounds and made five assists but it wasn't enough as Irvine Valley defeated PCC, 70-58.
IVC went on a 22-8 run in the first half to take a commanding 30-16 lead. The Lasers were ahead by as much as 20 points in the second half and PCC got to as close as 10 at 60-50 on a Loving jumper with five minutes left. The Lancers were 0-for-16 from the 3-point line which hindered any chance of a comeback. Irvine Valley is the same program that knocked PCC out of the playoffs with the first road victory by a Lancers' opponent in HP Gym history (previously 18 straight wins) to end the 2012-13 season.
For Irvine, Jasmine Kennon led four players in double digit scoring with 16 points. The Lancers received 16 points and eight rebounds by letterman center Kaitlyn Parks.
PCC had to be feeling the effects of a surprising, 75-62 upset loss to El Camino in the championship semifinals on Friday. The Lancers and head coach Joe Peron saw the longest winning streak they had against any opponent end at 24 in a row against the Warriors. ECC had not beaten the Lancers since 1996.
In the semifinals, El Camino came out firing away as it made an impressive 15 of its first 21 shots from the floor, mostly on outside jumpers and bank shots from 16 to 18 feet. The hot shooting helped ECC take a 37-23 halftime lead.
In the second half, the Warriors, who finished 50 percent from the field (29 of 58), didn't shoot as well, but buried the Lancers thanks to four 3-point bombs. ECC reserve forward Sydney Chase made four herself out of the team's six bombs to help tie teammate Shontalene Trudeau with 14 points each.
The Lancers (1-2) went to the line frequently and made 25 of 39 attempts (64.1 percent). Skai Thompson scored 17 points (10-of-15 on free throws) and Loving added 13 points. Parks, who was saddled with four fouls in the first half, sank some late baskets to finish with 12 points. Tyler Polk drilled a pair of threes and had nine points off the bench.
While ECC shot well from the floor, the Lancers did not as the team converted only 17 field goals (six in the first half) and shot just 28.8 percent overall.
"We have some work to do," Peron said. "That's what the practices are for to help us correct our mistakes and work on the things that were not going for us well at this tournament. Shooting is one aspect of the game, but it wasn't our only problem. We're going to recover from this setback and get back to Lancers basketball."
Long Beach City College downed El Camino, 71-61, in an all-South Coast Conference final to win the tournament trophy. The Vikings were led by Shakeena Benton with 20 points.
PCC had won 10 of 13 Rose City Classics (two were pool play tourneys with no defined champion in 2010 and 2012). The Lancers next play at the Glendale College Tournament Friday-Sunday, Nov. 22-24.
15th Rose City Classic Tournament
[Photo--Desiree Loving dribbles up the court Saturday in the Lancers' third-place final at Hutto-Patterson Gymnasium, image by Richard Quinton, sports information photographer]
Release Date: 11/17/2013