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Santa Rosa Junior College Athletics

Women's Basketball: Bear Cubs fall in second round against Diablo Valley

Women's Basketball: Bear Cubs fall in second round against Diablo Valley

SRJC 55, Diablo Valley College 84

             For their Second Round game of the NorCal Regional Playoffs, the #15 seeded Bear Cubs (12-15, 6-8) traveled to Pleasant Hill to face a familiar foe from Big 8 play, the #2 Vikings of Diablo Valley College (21-5, 11-3). Both teams were led by two Big 8 All-Conference players. Nia Johnson, who was also selected First Team All-State, and Ra'Anna Bey for the hosts, and Lani Lincoln and Trinity Hawkins for the visitors. The Bear Cubs were able to stay with the Vikings for most of the first half. But the Vikings dominated the scoring in the second half.

            The Bear Cubs got on the scoreboard first on Trinity Hawkins' cut and assist pass from Kassi Agapoff after 80 seconds of play. The Vikings scored two 3-pointers and a field goal before Kassi Agapoff lobbed an assist to Kierra Johnson in the low post with 4:10 on the clock. The Vikings scored the next two field goals, and then Lani Lincoln swished a 3-pointer to get to 7-12 with just under two minutes left. The Vikings made one free throw, and then Trinity Hawkins scored four points in a row on a pair of free throws and a 10-footer to close to 11-13 with 34 seconds left. The Vikings sank a 3-pointer 10 seconds later to take a 16-11 lead by the end of the quarter.

            The Bear Cubs scored the first two points of the second quarter on Kassi Agapoff's two free throws. Nia Johnson sank a field goal just eight seconds later. Then Lani Lincoln and Kassi Agapoff drained back-to-back 3-pointers to take the lead 19-18 with 8:03 on the clock. A minute later Hanna Morris made one free throw. Eighty-five seconds after that Nia Johnson hit another field goal to tie the score. Amaya Macandog cut and caught the assist pass from Kassi Agapoff at the 4:52 mark to put the Bear Cubs back in front. The Vikings sank two 3-pointers and a field goal before Kierra Johnson's 18-footer with 2:15 left. Ra'Anna Bey scored a field goal and her third 3-pointer to widen the Vikings' lead to 34-24. Lani Lincoln scored on a drive to make the Bear Cubs' deficit 26-34 going into halftime.

            Trinity Hawkins drew a shooting foul on the Bear Cubs' first possession of the third quarter and made both free throws. Nia Johnson was fouled and sank one free throw, which was followed by Lani Lincoln's 3-pointer with 8:23 on the clock. Nia made two 3-pointers and two free throws in the next minute, and Hawkins sank two more free throws. During the next two minutes the Vikings added one free throw and two 3-pointers, while the Bear Cubs only tallied one free throw by Hanna Morris. Trinity Hawkins' successful "and-one drive" at the 4:58 mark was the Bear Cubs' final field goal of the quarter and made the deficit 37-49. The Vikings outscored the visitors 16-6 in the remainder of the period, as the Bear Cubs missed seven shots, but Kierra Johnson made 3 out of 4 free throws, Trinity Hawkins 1 out of 2, and Daniela Bangsberg 2 out of 3, to end the quarter in a 43-65 hole.

            Ra'Anna Bey took the Vikings' first shot of the fourth quarter and sank the field goal. Yanirah Gabourel made her only basket of the game—a 3-pointer—64 seconds later. Kierra Johnson's putback 16 seconds after that was just the Bear Cubs' third basket of the half. Jasmine Kong made one free throw and Nia Johnson one field goal and one 3-pointer for a 76-45 lead with 4:59 on the clock. Trinity Hawkins scored the next five points on a 15-footer and a 3-point play. Bey answered with her fifth 3-pointer, and then Kierra Johnson drew a shooting foul. She made just the first free throw. Nia sank her sixth 3-pointer, followed by Hawkins' spinning drive with 1:12 left. Loran Clark sank the Vikings' last field goal 16 seconds later. Amaya Macandog tallied the final two points of the game on a couple of free throws, making the final score 55-84. The loss ends the Bear Cubs' season, while the Vikings advance to the Third Round and host #7 City College of San Francisco.

            The Bear Cubs committed 20 turnovers and shot poorly, making only 15 out of 61 shots (25%). The Vikings made 13 out of 34 shots (38%) in the first half but found the shooting touch in the second half, as the made 16 out of 32 (50%). The Bear Cubs only sank 4 3-pointers, while the Vikings put in 15 of them. Three Vikings scored in double figures: Nia Johnson 38, Ra'Anna Bey 21, and Jasmine Kong 13.

            Trinity Hawkins, who picked up her third foul with 4 seconds left in the first half, led the Bear Cubs in scoring with 21 points, including 9 out of 10 from the free throw line. Lani Lincoln made one field goal and three 3-pointers for 11 points. Kierra Johnson registered her 13th double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds. Kassi Agapoff contributed 5 points and 3 assists. Amaya Macandog added 4 points, Daniela Bangsberg 2, and Hanna Morris 2. Hanna Morris grabbed a season-high 10 rebounds. Lizbeth Zavala, who was hampered by a sore leg, didn't score but passed for 3 assists.

            Lani Lincoln finishes her freshman season as the Big 8 Conference leader in both 3-point field goal percentage (79 out of 193 for 40.9%) and free throw percentage (25 out of 29 for 86.2%). Kierra Johnson (14.0 points per game, 10.2 rebounds per game) is one of only three players in the Big 8 to average a double-double. Chelsea Shirley from Cosumnes River College (11.5 ppg and 11.6 rpg) and Kiki Griffin from Sierra College (11.3 ppg and 11.4 rpg) are the other two. Three Bear Cubs are in the top 15 in scoring average: #8 Lani Lincoln 14.4 ppg, #10 Kierra Johnson 14.0 ppg, and #13 Trinity Hawkins 12.3 ppg. Kierra Johnson (10.2 rpg) is third in rebounding and Trinity Hawkins (9.4 rpg) is fifth.