The women’s basketball team defeated the Concordia Irvine Eagles 76-65 on Wednesday night, Nov. 21, in Irvine to finish up the preseason  3-1 heading into conference play.

It was an intense battle for both the Broncos and the Eagles, however the Broncos were able to maintain the lead for the last three quarters.

The Eagles were up 18-9 at the end of the first quarter as the Broncos were only able to sink 15 percent of their shots on 3 for 19 shot attempts.

The Broncos really picked it up in the second quarter, shooting 76 percent on 10-13 shooting, to go into the half with a 36-34 lead.

“I think we were off to a really slow start and kind of faced a lot of adversity in the first half,” head coach Danelle Bishop said. “I thought our bench really stepped up and we had a great second quarter.”

Junior guard Lauryn Catching, right, leads the Broncos bench with six points a game in 19 minutes of play. (Courtesy of CPP Athletic Department)

In the third quarter, the Eagles held a slim lead of 43-42. With less than one minute remaining, the Broncos ran off a 7-0 run to enter the fourth quarter with a 51-46 advantage.

In the fourth quarter, the Broncos maintained a 10-point lead, but the Eagles fought their way back and cut the deficit to only 2 with four minutes remaining.

But the Broncos were not to be denied as they went on another run to push the lead back up to 11 points and take home the win, 76-65.

Junior guard Dominique Dotson led the Broncos with 18 points, hitting 7-9 from the field and 4-5 from the free throw line.

“I feel like we are getting there, we have so much talent on our team with all 12 of us,” Dotson said. “We all bring something different and once we get it all together I feel like we are going to be such a great team.”

The Broncos also got a strong game from senior guard Jordyn Shane with 17 points and five rebounds.

Bronco senior guard Crystal Malveaux had 12 points and junior forward Monica Todd rounded out the scoring with eight.

“Dominique on the defensive end is a work horse. She is always consistent and we know we can always rely on her,” Bishop said. “She was driving to the basket tonight and they had a hard time stopping her and she finished really well. Jordyn is getting by people almost every game right now and it just really finished well tonight, so I am really happy for her.”

The Broncos were outrebounded by the Eagles 49-32, but played tough defense and consistent offense to get the win. They ended out the night by hitting 49 percent from the field.

“I think overall we did a pretty good job, we had a couple breakdowns defensively and rebounding wise but I think we picked it up in the second half,” Shane said. “I think we made that game a lot harder than it needed to be.”

CPP forced Concordia to commit 22 turnovers in the game giving the Broncos 21 points off of the turnovers.

Not only did the Broncos outscore the Eagles in fast break points, 24-4, but the Broncos dominated in the paint with 40 points to just 24 from the Eagles.

The Broncos wrapped up their preseason with a 3-1 record and will be entering the CCAA conference play looking to improve.

The Broncos end preseason 3-1 and now head to conference play. (Courtesy of CPP Athletic Department)

“We are a smaller team this year than we have been in the past couple of years and we just have to really focus on rebounding better,” Bishop said.

“We have to get better at our rebounding and we have to get better at our free throws. We know going into conference play we are not going to be able to get away with being outrebounded like we did tonight and coming away with a W.”

The Broncos will hit the road this week to take on San Francisco State on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. before heading to Turlock to take on Stanislaus State on Saturday, also at 5:30 p.m.

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