In the midst of a 13-game winning streak deep in the middle of their competitive season, Palomar’s women basketball team has one thing on their mind: winning a state championship.
The Women Comets are holding on to a season record of 21-2, good enough for third in state rankings. While their two losses early in their season against Mt. San Jacinto College and East Los Angeles College mars their otherwise perfect season, the women on the team only blame themselves for the losses.
“No team has ever beaten us. We beat ourselves,” Co-Captain Ariana Hernandez said. “Every team wants to kill us.”
Hernandez said that every team looks to defeat them in play. Even with victories of 20 points, she said other teams look at that as an accomplishment against a competitive team that relies heavily on a full court defense.
“The score looks good but some of these teams we should be beating by 60 and we’re only winning by 20,” sophomore guard Cheyenne Ertz said.
The sophomore heavy team is lead by Hernandez, as well as Co-Captain Regina Sheffield and veteran players Ertz, Allie Israel and Roshell Lamug. The team is coming off of a 26-4 season that included winning the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference, and looks to replicate that this year while also winning state.
“We’ll be proud when we win the state championship, when we make it there,” Ertz said.
Lamug echoes these sentiments saying that they plan on making it to state and that the team is never satisfied. Being ranked No. 3 in the state is even met with tempered satisfaction as they believe they have the skills to be No. 1.
Hernandez said the team must remain in control over what they can, instead of what they cant. She believes the team was too worried about making mistakes last year, and that that’s what kept the team from winning state.
“We’re not happy with our 13 game winning streak, because it’s not the prettiest,” Hernandez said.
Ertz added that the team “looked like crap” playing against rival Mt. San Jacinto College early in the season. The Comets 66-93 loss was a wake up call for the team.
Following that loss, however, the Comets went on to beat Mt. San Jacinto College not once but twice and look to those games as their proudest moments thus far. Israel said that beating a team of their caliber was fulfilling.
While the Comets are looked at as the team to beat, the shorter stature of the team gives their rivals preconceived confidence.
“It’s not always about the height, its how you come out to play,” Sheffield said.
Israel added that although they’re shorter, their agility plays to their advantage and their full court defense as they wind up and down the court.
“We don’t dunk, we don’t do all those flashy athletic stuff, but we play hard,” Lamug said. “If you watch us play, you’ll be inspired to play basketball.”
The Comets last home game of the regular season is against College of the Desert and begins at 6 p.m. on Feb. 15 in The Dome.