Cardinals swoop Rangers at home opener in Candler

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Women's Basketball Game: Oct. 11, 2017

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Criminal justice freshman Alina Falcon goes for a loose ball against Faustina Ho, business management freshman at UIW, but doesn’t retrieve it Oct. 11 In Candler. Brianna Rodrigue

Slow transitioning and defense resulted in first home game loss.

By J. Del Valle

The Rangers’ women’s basketball team home open- er against the University of the Incarnate Word Oct. 11 in Candler can be summed up in two words: nail- biting. The Cardinals won the game 73-69.

Kinesiology sophomore Kennedy McGovern won the jump ball at the start of the game, giving the Rangers first ball control of the game.

Forensic science freshman Acelynn Sepulveda scored the first basket with a quick steal from pre- pharmacy sophomore Megan Lazaga that turned into a fast-break play and finished off with a smooth layup to the basket.

Sepulveda swooshed the first 3-pointer at the 7-min- ute mark, while the Cardinals struggled with their shoot- ing in the first 5 minutes with a score of 13-9.

The Rangers woman-to-woman defense started at the inbound play, and they transitioned to double- teaming the point guard at the half-court mark, help- ing the Rangers start off strong against the Cardinals’ easy turnovers and gaining off the steals that resulted in fast break layups.

The Cardinals’ momentum started off slow with

transitioning and defense that resulted in the Rangers stealing the ball three times in the first quarter.

Kinesiology freshman Destiny Solis contributed four assists, and Sepulveda led the team with 10 points in the first quarter and first half.

The Rangers started off with a 4-point lead at the end of the first quarter 22-18.

The energy started to pick up for both teams at the start of the second quarter with international busi- ness senior Alyssa Solis chunking a half-court pass to criminal justice sophomore Hailey Gill for a wide-open layup.

The Cardinals’ defense was able to contain the Rangers’ offensive scoring with 15 points scored in the second quarter.

The Rangers’ defense started slipping on the Cardinal’s offensive shooting with 18 points added to the scoreboard.

The Rangers started hustling on defense, Rwhich resulted in four steals in the third quarter.

Psychology sophomore Shanesha Clayton contributed 3 points and four steals during the third quarter.

 Pre-pharmacy freshman Priscilla Gonzalez led the Cardinals with 13 points, and the Cardinals were 1 point ahead of the Rangers at halftime, 37-36.

In a halftime interview with women’s head coach Haley Capstapeny, she said, “not boxing-out and transitioning quick enough is causing us to be behind 1 point.”

The Cardinals dominated the third quarter with fast and wide-open layups to the basket.

Frustration and tension grew fast with the Rangers and Cardinals that showed with body contact, and it resulted in constant fouls, sending some of the players on both teams to the free-throw line. That added a couple of points to the board.

Consecutive layups and jump shots helped the Cardinals grow their lead to 10 points at the end of the third quarter 53-43.

The last quarter of the game came up short for the Rangers with foul trouble on every play. It helped the Cardinals maintain their lead for the entire fourth quarter.

Lazaga led the Cardinals with 8 points, of which 6 points were from the free-throw line.

But the Rangers were not going down without a fight at the 3-minute mark. The score was at 54-67 with the Cardinals still in the lead.

The Rangers started to pick up their tempo. Business administration sophomore Daniella Aguirre was fouled and sent to the free-throw line and made both baskets.

The cardinals were inbounding the ball when McGovern stole the ball at mid-court, turning into a fast break play to the basket. She went up for a layup and dubbed 2 points and got fouled while going up, resulting in an and-one.

Kinesiology freshman Celeste Arriaga sank a 3- pointer with 2:40 left in the fourth quarter.

When transitioning to defense, the Rangers were woman to woman and not letting their guard down on defensive plays, which resulted in a 30-second shot-clock violation on the Cardinals.

The last 60 seconds of the game, the Cardinals coach called timeout to regroup the players while the score stood at 69-71. The Rangers were 3 points behind and fouled a Cardinal, adding 2 points from the free-throw line.

Capenstany called timeout with 11 seconds left on the clock to draw up a last-second play that gave McGovern the ball at the 3-point line, but her shot was unsuccessful. The Cardinals won their first away game with a score of 73-69

“We started playing catch-up too late in the game,” Capenstany said. “Our defense picked up too late toward the end of the game.”

The Rangers’ beat the Pirates 61-59. Oct. 18 in Candler.

The next home game will be against Texas A&M University-San Antonio at 6 p.m. Nov. 1 in Candler.


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