The CB Women’s Basketball team started off the New Year with a big win over rival St. Francis. The Christian Brothers Lady Falcons started the new year off right, defeating the St. Francis Troubadors, then ranked No. 5 by the Sacramento Bee, 89-50. Both teams were energized and pumped as they entered into this game […]
The CB Women’s Basketball team started off the New Year with a big win over rival St. Francis.
The Christian Brothers Lady Falcons started the new year off right, defeating the St. Francis Troubadors, then ranked No. 5 by the Sacramento Bee, 89-50.
Both teams were energized and pumped as they entered into this game — they knew that bragging rights were at stake and what they needed to do to win.
The game started out close with the Troubadours right on CB’s heels, but by halftime the Falcons led 43-30 and never looked back. While CB continued to hit shot after short, St. Francis went cold and all that was heard was the clanging of the ball hitting the rim.
By the end of the third quarter, the Falcons increased their lead to 67-44. CB didn’t let up, however, as they only gave up 6 points in the fourth quarter. The Falcons dominated every facet of the game and scored over 20 points in each quarter.
While the fans continued to look at the scoreboard to calculate the Falcons ever-growing lead, senior point guard Niel Valmores (’13) admits she “didn’t even look at the score.”
“All of a sudden in the third and fourth quarter, we were up by 20 then 30, and I didn’t even pay attention to the rest,” she said.
The Troubadours’ gymnasium was packed to capacity, with both sides bringing loud and rambunctious cheering sections. In the beginning, it looked like the Falcons would have a hard time hearing their coaches, but their strong play soon quieted the St. Francis crowd.
[pullquote] “Working together was what really pulled us through, whether it was the starting team [to] the bench.”[/pullquote]
“Communication really was the key tonight even when it was hard to hear,” Niel stated.
The bench played an extremely important role in the win, with every single member of the team contributing, from the freshman all the way to the seniors — every Falcon had a point in the books.
“The bench played a big role,” head coach Ron Gully commented. “Our young girls did real well. I don’t think we turned over the ball that much, and [the bench] gave us solid minutes here and there when we needed it.”
“I’m proud of my entire team,” Valmores explained. “Working together was what really pulled us through, whether it was the starting team [to] the bench.”
Freshman Dominique McNeely (’16) had a breakout game off the bench, scoring 18 points to lead CB scorers. Sophomore Kira McKechnie (’15) finished with 16 points and 11 rebounds, and Valmores rounded out the top three scorers with 15 points after returning from a serious concussion.
“It’s very nice [to be the top scorer]. It was certainly unexpected since I usually don’t play very well,” the humble McNeely explained. “All the energy in the room certainly helped, and I just powered through when the other team had their runs.”
“Dominique did really well tonight,” complimented Valmores. “She’s always been a hard worker and it always pays off. It has just shown tonight. She works hard. She sticks with it, and she’s just an all-around good player.”
The Falcons needed this win, as they were coming off tough non-league schedule that featured match-ups against some elite teams. Going into the game, they were 7-6, but five of those losses were without co-captain Valmores. All six losses were to highly ranked teams in either the Sacramento’s Bee Top 20 or in NorCalPrep.com’s Top 20 rankings.
“This is a huge confidence builder,” co-Athletic Director Mr. Dan Carmazzi (’71) stated. “They had a really tough schedule thus far and some injuries. They rebounded [from the tough losses], which shows their tenacity and gives them a great boost going into league. It just shows how all of the hard work they have put in pays off.”
“This is such an emotional game, [and] they got to feel just amazing,” added co-Athletic Director Mrs. Jill Bennett. “St. Francis always has a great team, [but] we came in here and dominated them. [CB has] got to feel that we can really compete with anyone. This really shows how good we are.”
Coach Gully only had glowing comments to say about the girls’ confidence levels.
“The girls’ confidence as a team is going to go through the roof all the way to the moon,” said Gully.
Despite such a tough loss, St. Francis’s head coach Victor Pitton looks to learn from this loss and build from it.
“Well anytime you have a defeat like this, you have to find the resiliency of the team,” the Troubadours’ head coach explained. “These will either build your character or destroy your character.”
The Falcons are looking forward to an exciting and hopefully long season. Their goals include winning league, winning sections and making a deep run in NorCals. Be sure to go out and support our Lady Falcons.