Women’s Basketball beats Sacramento City, remain top ranked team in Big 8

Gavin Rock, Assistant editor

In an intense matchup against the Sacramento City Panthers, Diablo Valley College women’s basketball team grabbed another victory with the final score 87-81. The Vikings record now sits at 17-0, and they remain the top ranked team in California.

Though DVC head coach Ramaundo Vaughn was visibly upset at the large amount of penalties called by the referees during the game, the team powered through until the final buzzer.

In response to a question regarding the impact by the officials, Vaughn said, “I played in college, I played in high school, I played professionally, I coached in college and I coached professionally, and I have never seen a game where there were 67 fouls called. So you can come to your own conclusion on that.” The officials declined a request for an interview.

Aside from guard Zahria Hendrix, all 0ther Vikings starting players received four personal foul calls each by the end, which is one foul away from ejection. Guard Daisha Abdelkader, a starter, explained how this affects their team mentality.

“The (referees) usually take us out of our game most of the time cause they’re always calling fouls,” said Abdelkader. “Its not the team but the outside noise is what gets us off our game. This bond with our team is unbreakable.”

Throughout the first quarter, both teams gained a leg over the other, with the lead changing several times. Beginning the second quarter, Abdelkader nailed a three-point shot, expanding their lead over Sacramento with the score at 28-20. Several other Vikings players, including the aforementioned Hendrix,  guard Jasmine Kong and guard Sierra Smith, made a variety of layups, free throws and jump shots throughout the second quarter. By halftime, the score sat at 53-40.

DVC held the lead for the remainder of the game, but Sacramento City did not let their victory come easily. As with the previous half, foul calls plagued both teams, to the point a DVC fan yelled “You suck!” from the stands, a sentiment clearly directed towards the referees. Free throws and inside shots helped the Panthers stay competitive throughout the third, ending the quarter with a buzzer beater layup. When the fourth quarter began, the score was 63-61.

Though the Vikings eventually came out on top with the final score 87-81, Sacramento City outscored every team DVC has played this season. According to Vaughn, defense is heavily emphasized during practice, so the lack of defensive prowess was disappointing. Assistant coach Kameo Williams echoed similar views but also reinforced his faith in the team.

“This was our worst defensive effort by far, but defensively we know what we want to do,” said Williams. “I don’t think we can do better; I know we can do better.”

Their next game is at San Joaquin Delta on Tuesday, January 15 at 7:30 p.m.