California Baptist University men’s and women’s basketball teams hosted their last opponent from Hawaii on Feb. 16, as they faced Brigham Young University—Hawaii, who came prepared for the match-ups.
The women came in fresh off a 24-point victory against Chaminade University of Honolulu.
That performance seemed to carry over as the Lancers were able to capture an 80-54 victory against BYU-Hawaii.
Right away the Lancers got off to a solid start with a 23-4 run. BYU–Hawaii’s deficit continued to enlarge as the score at halftime was 48-12. With a 36-point halftime lead for the Lancers, BYU–Hawaii was not able to fight back as the final score was 80-54 for a Lancer victory.
Jarrod Olson, head coach of the women’s basketball team, said his team got off to a powerful start.
“The first half, we came out with a lot of energy,” Olson said. “We were pressing early and were able to come out with a lot of turnovers.”
Kamille Diaz, sophomore sociology major and guard, said she and the team came out focused right away in the first half.
“When it comes to game time, we have to lock in and just focus on the fundamentals we learned in practice,” Diaz said.
For the men’s game, it was about avenging a 100-87 loss in January.
It was a back and forth game, as the Lancers were able to produce an 11-point lead at the half against No. 13 BYU–Hawaii.
The Lancers had their moments to pull away late, but a gritty BYU–Hawaii team refused to go down easily.
The Lancers at one point had a 17-point lead, but with much time still left in the second half, the lead was trimmed down.
With just under five minutes to go, the Lancers found themselves with only a three-point lead.
Jordan Giusti, junior kinesiology major and guard, was the leading scorer for the Lancers and was key with converting from the line. Ultimately, the Lancers were able to get a huge win by a final score of 84–71.
“Our team’s really clicking right now, everyone’s in the right place and we’re all playing selfless,” Giusti said.
Rick Croy, head coach of the men’s basketball team, said he was able to rally his players down the stretch.
“Our guys just rallied, stayed tough and together when it mattered,” Croy said. “We said we’re not gonna let each other down and that’s what this team is about.”