Regals Basketball come up short against Occidental for the second time this season


Photo by Marcel Hurtubise - Reporter

The Regals responded to this loss by beating Caltech 81-58 away from home on Saturday, Feb. 4.

Marcel Hurtubise, Reporter

California Lutheran University’s Regals basketball team fell 60-61 against the Occidental Tigers. This was the Regals’ second loss to the Tigers this season. 

As the game was tied eight times throughout, it came down to the wire. Occidental took the lead early, but the Regals came back in the second quarter, ending the first half 34-31.

The game went back and forth in the third and fourth quarters, with the Tigers getting a three-point lead with 36 seconds left on the shot clock. The Regals pushed until the end, finding a layup in the final 18 seconds, but could not get the final shot that would have secured the win.

Head Coach Kelli DiMuro said that the Regals started off with solid defense.

“Our strengths are: we kept our head up, we’re pushing through all the adversity…unfortunately it didn’t turn into our way, but I think we pushed through it,” DiMuro said.

First-year point guard Janna Holley said that the Regals’ first quarter was not their best, and they tried their hardest to pick it up in the rest of the quarters.

“Especially at the end, I feel like we really worked our hardest, you know? Played defense. A lot of us were in foul trouble, so I think that it kind of hindered the aggressiveness,” junior forward Naomi Gipson said. “There’s definitely a lot of things we could have done better, but I still feel like we played as a team, and on offense, we were looking for each other.”

Many of the games the Regals have played have been close matches decided by only a few points

“Just SCIAC is really hard. Every single team is dangerous,” DiMuro said. “I thought Oxy played a great game and they came out ready to win.”

The Regals did not have a conventional winter break, as they spent it training, traveling and competing.

“We were up in Santa Cruz where we went one and one and then we were in Washington and we beat the team up there,” Gipson said. “We were grinding every day, lifting and practicing…It’s definitely an interesting and difficult time.”

However, for Holley, it was an enjoyable time.

“I think it’s more fun cause there’s no school, so we get to relax after, relax before and just hang out with each other even more,” Holley said

DiMuro said that the training trip helped the team bond.

“We were trying to form a sisterhood and I think they have that,” DiMuro said. “That’s really important for us; is to create that bond and create that togetherness and that’s why we travel, that’s why we love to travel.”

Holley said she is confident in the Regals’ performance in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference this season. She also said that they just need to keep pushing onward.

“We’re definitely a strong-bodied group, both on and off the court and everyone’s got each other’s back no matter what,” Holley said.

This game marked the beginning of the Regals’ rematches against teams.

“We’ve played everyone now once, so we pretty much know each other. It’s just whoever’s gonna step up and really want to dig deep and have heart and win those fifty-fifty balls,” DiMuro said.

This loss keeps the Regals fourth with a record of 5-6 in SCIAC as they look forward to their next games.

“We’ve just gotta take the fire of losing and go win the next game,” Gipson said.

The Regals’ next game at home is on Wednesday, Feb. 8 at 7 p.m. against the University of La Verne.