A slow start with a slower finish as Falcons lose to Huskies

Clarissa+Hernandez+%28%2324%29+goes+in+for+a+layup.+Hernandez+finished+with+three+points%2C+three+rebounds%2C+two+assists%2C+and+two+steals.+Photo+credit%3A+Taylor+Ogata

Talor Ogata

Clarissa Hernandez (#24) goes in for a layup. Hernandez finished with three points, three rebounds, two assists, and two steals. Photo credit: Taylor Ogata

Terrel Emerson, Sports Editor

The Cerritos College women’s basketball team couldn’t overcome a horrendous first quarter in which it shot 2-14 from the field and committed 10 turnovers.

“That’s everything…that’s too many turnovers with a team like ELAC [East LA College],” head coach Trisha Raniewicz said.

East LA ended up getting the best of the women’s team by a final score of 59-46.

After the first quarter, the Falcons kept pace with the Huskies who made it to the state final four just last season.

In the second and third quarter both Cerritos and East LA College tied at 13 and 18 respectively.

Much behind the play of sophomore guard Kennedi Cooper.

Cooper was perhaps the most aggressive she has been all year despite playing against six foot-six inch freshman Anastasia Tsybaeva.

“I knew I could take my defender and she [Tsybaeva] was kind of slow and I knew I could get by her,” Cooper said.

Raniewicz was pleased with the play and aggression of Cooper.

“I think she needs to continue to attack. That’s when she’s the most dangerous,” Raniewicz said.

On the other hand Cooper wasn’t always in the good graces of her coach.

Raniewicz could be heard yelling from the bench for Cooper to move on defense and not to stand still as the Huskies are a great moving team on offense.

“You’ve got to dig down,” Raniewicz said.

“It’s a 40 minute game against two ranked teams, you have to dig and want it on both ends,” Raniewicz said.

Cooper understood what her coach was telling her but did mention that she was tired toward the end of the game.

“I got a little tired toward the end. But its no excuse I could’ve played harder defense,” Cooper admitted.

One reason for Cooper’s added persistence was perhaps the play of sophomore guard Clarissa Hernandez.

Hernandez ended the night with three points, shooting 1-8 from the field and 1-6 from the free throw line.

Hernandez also committed six turnovers of the team’s 29 turnovers.

After the game she said that she is nursing a bad hip and has been for some weeks now.

With the first conference game just right ahead on Friday Jan. 22 against LA Harbor, she admitted that she probably should sit out and she kind of wants to. However, she does not believe it’s an option.

Halfway through the third quarter trailing 34-20 Raniewicz called a timeout following the break, freshman guard/forward Allyson O’Brien caught fire and the team sparked an 18-8 run.

“She [Raniewicz] said, ‘Keep pushing, keep positive and keep shooting shots because they’re going to fall,’” O’Brien said.

She finished with a team-high 11 points and was the only Falcon player in double figures.

The run got the lead to within four points however, the team could not get much closer than that as more turnovers and missed execution on plays ultimately cost the team the would-be upset win.

“I have confidence in my team to pick it up but it was tough this game. I don’t know what happened this game. We’re just going to come back next game and do everything we didn’t do this game,” O’Brien said.