The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

Men’s basketball cuts win streak short with a home loss to Irvine Valley

El Camino freshman guard Jedaiah Mortimer looks to set up the offense with guard Shamar Carter (23) during a previous Warrior game against Desert of the College on Nov. 15. (Renzo Arnazzi | The Union)

After a 108-point outing for the Warriors on Friday, Dec. 8, the scoring came to a halt in a matchup against the Irvine Valley Lasers.

The Warriors, coming off two road victories in the week prior, didn’t come out with the same intensity on their home court.

Both teams started sloppy with the Warriors turning the ball over twice and the Lasers missing some open shots.

The Lasers were able to grab some early offensive rebounds, which helped catapult them to an early 9-3 lead to start the first half.

Along with the offensive glass, the Lasers were dominating the Warriors with points in the paint, scoring 16 of their 33 first-half points in the paint.

Meanwhile, the Warriors were finding open looks all around the court, but couldn’t convert, shooting 27% from the field, 28% from three, and just 50% from the free-throw line in the first half.

18 of the Warriors’ 30 total field goal attempts came from behind the arc in the first half due to the Lasers’ intense defense around the rim.

“I think we were just a little stagnant on offense and not really looking at mismatches,” Warriors guard Shamar Carter said. “The bigs were open a lot, but we weren’t looking inside, we have to do better at that next time.”

Missed threes and seven turnovers cut offensive possessions short for the Warriors in the first half, leaving them with a score of 33-23 favoring the Lasers as they headed to the locker room.

The Warriors performed much better in the second half but it wouldn’t be enough to come out on top, as the Lasers defeated the Warriors 71-58.

Guard Jedaiah Mortimer was able to get the scoring started and bring some much-needed energy for the Warriors with a made jump shot in the 15th minute.

“We have to have more energy before the game and from practice,” Mortimer said. “I was trying to be aggressive, but they’re a smart team, so we were looking to punish the big men.”

Mortimer used his aggressiveness to draw a shooting foul on the very next possession, sparking a little bit of fire in the hearts of his teammates.

Following Mortimer’s lead, the Warriors were able to string together good possessions on both ends of the floor, cutting the Lasers’ lead to just 10 with five minutes left in the second half.

However, the press defense the Warriors played allowed Lasers players to find themselves wide open in the paint every time they came away with a defensive rebound.

“We were giving up so many layups off of our press breakdowns,” Warriors coach Robert Uphoff said. “Anytime we made a mistake, they punished us.”

Ultimately, it was the Warriors shooting struggles that kept them out of the game.

They ended the game shooting 33% from the field, 26% from three, and 56% from the free throw line.

“Our problem was our shooting,” Uphoff said. “[26%] from three is horrible, especially for us because we have guys that can make shots, but we just didn’t do that tonight.”

Carter led the scoring for the Warriors, with 20 points on four made threes, behind him was forward Aaron Cortes with eight points and four rebounds.

For the Lasers, guard Roman Swizek ended with 22 points (7-15 FG, 2-8 3PT, 6-6 FT), while forward Jesse Stines put up a double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds.

The Warriors look to get back on track with another home matchup against Grossmont College on Wednesday, Dec. 20. at 5 p.m.

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