Lady Pioneers’ basketball season comes to end

Women's Basketball - Feb. 26
By Joe Thornton, reporter.

The 2017-2018 Delta College women’s basketball team has played their final game. The Lady Pioneers, who faced multiple trials throughout their season, were unable to overcome adversity in the end. This team started with the odds against them as they adjusted to a new head coach and retained few returning players. This season was a downgrade from last season when the Lady Pioneers went 20-11, but a decrease in performance is expected when transitioning to a new coaching staff.

Head Coach Shonda Long held high expectations for herself and her players as they entered the postseason. After falling short in the regular season, they firmly believed that the pieces had come together at the right time. Players were stepping up as the playoffs came nearer and everything seemed to be falling into place.

The Lady Pioneers were tasked with the challenge of matching up against the St. Clair Community College Skippers, a team that Delta was well familiar with. The Lady Pioneers split their matchups with the Skippers, losing one and winning the other. Even though the Lady Pioneers were able to pull out a win in the most recent contest, they fell short when the season was on the line, losing with a score of 63-52. This defeat marks the end of the inaugural season for Head Coach Long.

The final record amounted to 9-14 overall and a record of 7-7 in their conference. Looking back, it is easy to see how things could have gone differently for the Delta women’s basketball team. Of the 14 losses that the Lady Pioneers accrued, seven were lost by 10 or fewer points, the most important being their final game against St. Clair. If Long and her players were able to turn these losses into wins, the season could have been entirely different.

Though this season didn’t go as well as it could have, there is a great amount of hope moving forward for the Delta College women’s basketball program. Coach Long will retain most of her roster, with 10 out of 15 current players being freshmen. This gives Long the opportunity to further develop these players and prepare them for their next season.

Freshman Marisa Morton will likely be the centerpiece moving forward, a point guard averaging almost 16 points a game. Morton showcased her talents as a shooter throughout the entirety of the 2017-2018 campaign and is able to hone her skills further heading into her second year.

Although the season didn’t go according to plan, congratulations to Coach Long and all coaches, players and other supporters that contributed to the 2017-2018 Delta College women’s basketball season.

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