By Robert Nilsen
CYPRESS, CA – The No. 15 Cypress College women's basketball team (6-2) finished 3rd at the 33rd Annual Lady Charger Classic this past weekend. The Chargers defeated West LA before suffering their worst loss of the season to No. 2 East LA in the semi-finals. The Chargers went on to win a thrilling game against Orange Coast College to take 3rd place for the second year in a row.
Sophomore guard Dominique Culhno was selected to the All-Tournament team.
Cypress dominated the first game of the tournament with a 76-41 win over the West LA Wildcats. The Chargers led 68-24 at the end of the third quarter and cruised to victory in the fourth. Cypress used pressure defense to force the Wildcats into 27 Turnovers, allowing the Chargers to score 33 points off of them. Cypress shot 40.2% from the field with while Culhno led the way with 14 points. Joi Bertrand added 12 points on 6-of-7 shooting. Sylvia Garcia finished with 9 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, and 4 steals.
No. 2 East LA was too much to handle, as the Chargers fell in the semi-final game 94-56. The Chargers kept pace with the Huskies throughout the first two quarters as they only trailed 38-31 at halftime. The Huskies came out with more pressure to start the second half as they outscored Cypress 56-25 to roll onto the final against the Palomar Comets. The Chargers shot a season low 27.8% from the field, while the Huskies shot a blistering 56.3%. East LA finished the game with four players in double figures.
In the third place game the Chargers squared off against fellow Orange Empire Conference opponent Orange Coast College. Orange Coast started the game off quickly and built a 23-9 lead with 4 minutes left in the first quarter. Cypress fought back as they outscored Orange Coast 27-17 to narrow the gap to 4 points at the end of the second quarter. The Chargers then took control of the game as they outscored Orange Coast 28-14 to take a 64-54 lead into the fourth quarter. Orange Coast fought back late in the fourth quarter, but the Chargers used their pressure defense late in the game to force turnovers and win the game. Alyssa Movchan led the Chargers with 17 points and hit two late free throws to ice the game. Culhno added 13 points and led the Chargers with 4 assists and 3 steals.
Women's basketball returns to action this weekend (Dec. 9-11) in the LA Valley College Tournament. The Chargers open up against San Bernardino at 1:00 p.m.
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