By Mike Sessions |Staff Writer|
Basketball season is here and the Coyotes are ready to take control!
Playing against Westmont College in CSUSB’s season home-opener, the Warriors didn’t stand a chance against the dynamic performance of the eager and focused Coyotes, losing the game to 81-88.
Lacey Haddock contributed a record tying 14 assists along with 15 points to help the Coyotes maintain the lead for the entire contest. His first double-double of the season, Haddock also grabbed five rebounds and managed three steals from the opposition.
Another great player for the Coyotes was Andrew Young. The 6’8 player out from Monterey cashed in a team-high 17 points and five rebounds while only playing 23 minutes in the game. He made the most of every shooting opportunity, scoring seven of his 11 shots, setting the bar for the other six Coyotes that also scored in double digits.
After suffering some losses prior to this contest to powerhouses like Washburn University and UCLA, the Coyotes were focused beyond reason to protect the home court.
Even though they were out rebounded in the match, CSUSB played well in all other aspects, especially when it came to keeping the ball moving. The Coyotes finished with a total of 23 assists, almost twice as much as the Warriors, who finished with only 12 total.
The Warriors could not keep possession of the ball, turning it over 24 times over the full period, something that probably infuriated coach Bob Chipman after looking at the stat sheet.
Haddock and freshman Khleem Perkins both played great on-ball defense to help the Coyotes tally a total 11 steals, while big man Tevin Harris blocked two shots in the paint.
C.J. Miller of Westmount, however played at a all-star level racking in 26 points, seven rebounds and three blocks over 37 minutes of play. Jason Ritchey almost had a double double for the Warriors with 12 points and nine rebounds, but fell just short of accomplishing the feat.
This game serves as the first of two consecutive home games the Coyotes are playing, with the other being against CCAA divisional opponent UC San Diego on November 21.
It is an excellent way to get the Coussolis Arena fans to anticipate more games in the coming season, especially after the departure of former Coyote star, Kwame Alexander.
But the Coyotes are more than ready to continue on with the wonderful play they have shown, even in the couple losses. You can see and feel the determination out of the players when they step onto the court every single game.
This win over Westmont College is only the beginning. If the Coyotes can continue to play excellent team basketball and keep the ball moving, while also playing solid defense, this is going to be a very tough men’s basketball team to beat this year.
Under Haddock’s stellar play as of late, you can place all faith in this team for the long run.
Let’s go ‘Yotes!