East County Sports

Hawks basketball returns to court

Vanguard defends against the Hawks on Wednesday. / SDCC HAWKS


ECS staff report

COSTA MESA —- Perhaps they should be called “The Not-Ready-For-Prime-Time Players.”

Following a 40-day, COVID-19 delayed break, the visiting San Diego Christian College women’s basketball team returned to the court for an unusual 1 p.m. tip-off against 10th-ranked Vanguard University. Perhaps fighting morning rush-hour traffic in Orange County didn’t help, as the groggy Hawks fell to the Lions, 80-61.

The game was held at “The Pit,” Vanguard’s antiquated, band-box gymnasium which is easily the smallest in the Golden State Athletic Conference. It sill exists after school officials elected to instead construct a recently-opened Student Center.

The emotional high for their first action since early December saw the Hawks (3-3 overall) shoot a whopping 70 percent from the floor over the game’s first eight minutes. But when the Adrenalin rush ended, so did the team’s hopes of an upset, trailing 21-20 after one quarter and eventually losing touch with undefeated Vanguard.

Isabel Feller, a 5-foot-11, freshman guard from Australia, paced San Diego Christian with 20 points. However, the bigger Lions received game-highs of 28 points by Gabriela Rosas, 14 rebounds from Michaella Elad, and 10 assists by point guard Lauren Baumgartner.

For SDCC, Keren Hogue added 13 points. Meanwhile, Sammi LeMay-Zambrano scored 10, on a perfect 4-for-4 from the free-throw line, and 2-of-4 from 3-point range.

Because of the GSAC pandemic schedule, the ballgame was a non-conference, as the schools were placed in separate divisions. The Hawks’ official GSAC opener is next weekend, Jan. 22-23, with a two-game home series with Arizona Christian. Once again, the games will be early, starting Friday at 4:30 p.m., then Saturday at 11:30 a.m., both at the Kroc Center on University Avenue.

Hawks Men Fall to CBU

RIVERSIDE — The San Diego Christian College men’s basketball team also marked its first action in 37 days, but by scoring just 37 points as the Hawks fell to former GSAC rival Cal Baptist, 89-37 at the CBU Events Center on Wednesday afternoon. The host Lancers are now an NCAA Division I program. and members of the Western Athletic Conference.

The winless Hawks trailed 47-20 at the half and were never in contention. Fortunately, when an NAIA school plays a D-1 program, it does not count against its record.

Junior guard Nathan Clark led  SDCC with 8 points but came out of the contest early after just 13 minutes of action, however, his teammates could not counter his absence, as no one could muster more than five points.

Cal Baptist (6-4) had 13 players his the scoresheet, including a game-best 19 points by Tre Armstrong.

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