Golden Eagles fall on ‘Homecoming Night’

Jordan Rogers (11) aims for the basket as tensions rise in the first quarter of the homecoming game.

Darwin Lopez, Staff Reporter

Cal State LA men’s and women’s basketball teams both lost in heartbreaking fashion to Cal State Monterey Bay on Thursday’s “Homecoming Night.” The Cal State LA women’s team lost 68-61 and the men’s team was beaten by a final score of 103-97. 

Despite the result, guard Nicole Flennaugh had an appreciation for the support from the Cal State LA faithful: “It’s really cool to see the school’s support. The whole community is out here to watch us. It’s very different than our typical games, so it was fun to have that energy especially in a close game.” 

Cal State LA trailed for most of the contest, as shooting woes plagued them throughout the game. 

The Golden Eagles shot 5-26 from the three point line, and went 14-23 at the free throw line. Cal State Monterey Bay also struggled shooting, but the Otters went 9-10 from the charity stripe in the fourth quarter, which ultimately kept the win out of reach from the Golden Eagles who had a late rally. 

Guard Sydney Bordonaro led the Golden Eagles with 16 points. 

Head Coach Torino Johnson expressed that the team needs to improve their “toughness.”

“It takes toughness to rebound. It takes toughness to pass the ball properly without turning it over… right now we are struggling with that piece, but we’ll grow. These are tough ladies,” said Johnson.

The Cal State LA men’s team also fell to the Otters on “Homecoming Night.” 

A three-pointer at the end of the half by forward Michael Wright gave the black and gold a 47-44 lead. The crowd energy was electric. However, scorching hot shooting by Cal State Monterey Bay dampened the energy of the crowd. 

The Otters shot an impressive 62 percent from the three point line, eventually going on a 28-3 scoring run which gave them a 93-77 lead with four minutes to go. However, after some hustle and pressure the Golden Eagles went on a 10-0 run. 

Cal State LA guards Jordan Rogers and Michael-Isaiah Ajiboye both hit three pointers, cutting the lead to 100-94. However, their valiant effort wasn’t enough as the Otters maintained the lead and won. 

Wright led Cal State LA in scoring with 20 points.  

In a high scoring game, head coach Jim Saia pointed to the team’s defense as the issue. “Our thing is our defense, and we just didn’t defend the ball. They just kicked our tail, and we didn’t defend.”

Rogers agreed with his coach about the team’s defense, saying “I think the main thing is that we couldn’t guard today. We were fouling a lot, we were being too aggressive. They got to the line, I don’t know how many times, but it was a lot and they made it.” 

Both teams look to regroup for upcoming home games on Feb. 8, against Cal State East Bay at the University Gym. The women will play first at 1 p.m., followed by the men’s game at 3 p.m.