This archived article was written by: Katie James
The Utah State University- College of Eastern lady Eagles had a few rough games the past two weekends going 0-3. College of Southern Idaho, North Idaho College and Colorado Northwestern Community College took it to the Eagles as their games seem to unravel.
On Feb. 4, CSI came to town. The beginning of the game started strong with back-and-forth scores until halftime. Coach Dave Paur said, “We knew they would full-court press us, but we were ready and neutralized it.” CSI got a run leaving the Eagles trailing by 13, having a score of 39-26. “We just basically didn’t shoot well. The game is simple, put the ball in the hoop to win.”
The Eagles struggled to gain ground back. Despite the efforts, CSI held the lead. The game ended 77-53. Offensive coordinator Adjalma Becheli “Coach Vando” said, “We played more physical against CSI and had a better game. We played really good until the second half. We took the challenge and played them at a much better level.”
Paur said, “CSI has depth and athleticism. They are hard to match up with.” Bruna Deichmann contributed 25 points with Priscila Santos producing 13. Daiana Ferreria had two of the teams four blocks.
The next day the Eagles played North Idaho. “NI is extremely talented with 11 players of national experience,” said Paur. With NI, the Eagles kept a tighter hold on the score. By halftime, the Eagles were only down two, 31-29.
With 10 minutes left, the Eagles were down by eight. Time crept on and the Eagles could not hold it together. Defense broke down and the Cardinals gained a 20-point lead. The final score was 80-54, Cardinals.
“We played both NI and CSI for 30 minutes. We just haven’t been able to put together a full 40 minutes against them,” said Paur. Santos put up 26 points. “North Idaho, we played hard the first half and played equal with them. Second half we couldn’t execute on offense and couldn’t get a stop on defense. Paur put in the bench to gain experience. In the games we have coming up, we are going to need everybody,” said Coach Vando.
This past weekend, the Eagles hit the road to face the Spartans from CNCC. Back-and-forth, the Eagles fought the Spartans. Defense lacked as the Spartans hit three threes in the first half. At halftime, the score was tied 20-20.
Coach Paur said, “We didn’t shoot well. We made 12 of 24 foul shots; we out rebounded them, and took more shots. They even had more turnovers.” The second half was just as much a battle as the first. The Spartans were determined to keep close to the Eagles. With a few minutes left in the game, the Spartans went on a run.
They took the lead by three with 10 seconds left. The Eagles tried to get a quick three up, but to no avail. They gave the win to CNCC, 50-47.
Although the loss was tough, the Eagles had some members ill and some injuried. “I thought not having Abbie Kay was pretty pivotal, and with Elyse Ivy not being there it hurt the team,” Paur said. Santos and Deichmann lead with 17 and 12 points respectively.
“Priscila’s injury with a sprained ankle didn’t help either. Her injury towards the end affected her being a strong threat,” he said. Ferreria had three of the team’s five blocks. “The last game against Colorado, we faced missing players with illness, even Priscila was sick. We can’t afford to have players missing, or get sick. The other teams are so talented we need everyone to be there. This whole year has been a struggle with injury,” said Vando.
The Eagles continue with their last two home games against Salt Lake Community College on Friday, Feb. 18, at 5:30 p.m. and Snow College Saturday, Feb. 19 at 3 p.m. “We will be playing Snow in the SWAC Tournament first round. We will beat Snow. Then we will possibly play SLCC or NI,” Paur said.