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January 28, 2014 > Pioneers Silence Seawolves to open Homecoming weekend

Pioneers Silence Seawolves to open Homecoming weekend

Submitted By Scott Chisholm

January 24, 2014
CSUEB 71, Sonoma State 39

Cal State East Bay womenÕs basketball was in control from the opening tip earning a dominant 71-39 California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) home win over Sonoma State on Friday night. The Pioneer defense held the Seawolves to just 14 first half points and forced 28 turnovers in regulation.

East Bay had run out the same starting lineup for every game this season except the teamÕs season opener back on Nov. 8, 2013. The Pioneer defense held their opponent to under 40 points for the first time this season.

ÒI decided to make a tweak to the starting lineup to see if we could generate more intensity on the floor,Ó said the winning head coach Suzy Barcomb. ÒAll in all I think it worked out for us.Ó

East Bay held Sonoma State (2-13, 1-10 CCAA) to just 3-for-17 shooting from the field in the opening half. The Pioneers outscored the Seawolves 18-2 in the paint over the opening 20 minutes and Tori Breshers took full advantage scoring all 10 of her points during that stretch.

Breshers was one of four Pioneers to score in double figures led by birthday girl and senior Sarah FinlayÕs 14-point effort. Danielle Peacon scored 13 points in just 16 minutes of floor time, and Micah Walker contributed 11 points.

The only regular starter to play more than 22 minutes on Friday was newcomer Stephanie Lopez. She had an extremely effective 32 minutes dishing out nine assists, scoring eight points, grabbing five rebounds, and snatching four steals.

"Stephanie is a great floor general. Her passes ignite us. They are spontaneous and they (make us) erupt with emotion," said Barcomb. "I am happy most of our players got to rest significant minutes for tomorrow's game against San Francisco State."

Bronte Sheahan led Sonoma State with 10 points. Teammate Kristina Fahey finished with nine points including a 6-for-6 effort at the foul line.

East Bay improves to 5-1 inside Pioneer Gymnasium while Sonoma State remains winless (0-7) on the road. The Pioneers have earned back-to-back wins over the Seawolves for the first time in the Barcomb coaching era.

In the team's previous meeting East Bay held Sonoma State to just six 2-point baskets and forced 26 turnovers. On Friday, CSUEB held SSU to only seven 2-point baskets and forced 28 turnovers. Both resulted in double-digit wins for the host Pioneers.

Later Gators; Pioneers Win ÔBattle of the BayÕ opener

A dominant first half performance allowed Cal State East Bay to coast to a 74-54 win over San Francisco State inside Pioneer Gymnasium on Saturday, January 25th. The Pioneers finish the first round of California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) in second place and one game out of the top spot.

East Bay enjoyed a 47-26 halftime lead after shooting nearly 62 percent from the floor as a team. No Pioneer player missed more than three field goal attempts during the opening half. Sarah Finlay and Brianna Terrance came off the bench and combined to score 22 first half points on 9-of-12 shooting from the field.

The Pioneer defense held San Francisco State (10-8, 6-6 CCAA) to a season-low 54 points and 28 rebounds on the night. The Gators were unable to knock down the 3-point shot with any consistency going 5-for-26 from beyond the arc, including a 1-for-11 effort in the second half. Cal State East Bay made one fewer (4) 3-point baskets, but attempted 20 fewer (6) than San Francisco State.

Danielle Peacon was a force on the glass and finished her evening with 15 points and 10 rebounds in only 23 minutes. Overall the Pioneers outrebounded the Gators (10-8, 6-6 CCAA) 40-28, and outscored them in the paint by a 42-22 margin.

Stephanie Lopez finished right on her CCAA average with five assists, to go along with seven points and seven rebounds. She currently ranks second in league play and is one of only two league players averaging at least five helpers per CCAA contest.

Micah Walker finished with 10 points and led all players with her career-high four steals. She was one of four Pioneers to score in double figures along with Terrance (16), Peacon (15) and Finlay (12).

Angela Van Sickel led the Gators with 14 points, but shot just 6-for-19 from the field and 1-for-9 from three. Katie Batlin was the teamÕs leading scorer (14.4 ppg), rebounder (8.0 rpg), and passer (3.8 apg) heading into Saturday. Against the Pioneers she managed just five points, a season-low two rebounds, and three assists.

East Bay has now won the past five meetings with San Francisco State and will look to sweep the ÒBattle of the BayÓ season series during the final weekend of the regular season. For now the Pioneers are rolling into next weekend with back-to-back victories and winners in three of their past four games.

Cal State East Bay (12-7, 9-3 CCAA) will look to exact revenge against Cal State L.A. (10-6, 7-5 CCAA) on Friday, Jan. 31, in Los Angeles. The Golden Eagles handed the Pioneers their first league defeat of the season in a 51-47 game back on Dec. 7, 2013.

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