Pirates Punctuate Perfect WSC Campaign With Win, Earn 26 Peat

Pirates Punctuate Perfect WSC Campaign With Win, Earn 26 Peat

by VC Sports Information

What is rare is commonplace at Ventura College.  The Pirates' women's basketball team closed out its 20th perfect Western State Conference campaign in the past 26 years, all WSC championships, with a 61-49 victory at Oxnard College Saturday afternoon.  Aubri Smith had 17 points, six rebounds, five assists and four steals while Amani White posted a double-double of 12 points and 10 boards to lead the way.  VC finished off its 26th straight conference crown with a four-game winning margin over the second-place Condors.

It took Ventura (26-4, 12-0) just five seconds of play before Aubri Smith hit Makenna Murray on the left wing for a 3-pointer.  Aubri scored a minute later as the Pirates opened up an early 5-0 lead.  The advantage stretched to 12-5 on Rhiana Dougan's drive and lay-up down the middle of the key.  VC led 14-7 at the 2:05 mark of the first quarter before Oxnard went on a 7-2 run to close the period.  

OC netted a score on the opening possession of the second quarter to tie the score at 16-16 before the Pirates took control of the game.  Tatum Maciel was fouled on a strong drive to the hoop, and made two free throws to begin a 13-0 run.  White scored inside and Carolyn Ruffinohit a three, followed by a triple from Felicia Magana., making the score 29-16 at the 5:20 mark of the quarter. Following a Condor 3-pointer, the Pirates scored the final six points of the half to take a 35-19 lead into intermission.

Ventura played without some of its key depth in the game, missing top reserves, and that may have contributed to VC's dip in offensive prowess in the second half as the Pirates were limited to seven points in the third quarter.  The defense held fast, however, keeping the Condors at bay throughout the period.  The Pirates still led 42-29 at the end of the third quarter.

Ventura continued to hold off Oxnard in the final period, maintaining a double-digit lead throughout.  The Pirate starters left the floor for the final time with 1:36 remaining and VC ahead 57-43, before OC closed the final score to 61-49.

Brooke Zamora, who was fighting an illness late in the week, contributed seven points and nine rebounds while Murray had seven points and three assists. VC also received outstanding defensive contributions from Ruffino, Magana and Maciel.

The Pirates now await their playoff seeding, to be announced Monday Feb. 22.  The most likely scenarios have the Pirates hosting a SoCal Regional Quarterfinal on Friday or Saturday, Feb. 26 or 27.