(DCC Athletics release)
With Miles Community College being undefeated and nationally ranked, the Lady Buccaneers of Dawson Community College knew coming into the game the odds were against them. So Head Coach Romeo Lagmay, Jr. mentally prepared them on how to approach such a task, “Much respect to the players and staff at Miles for playing how they are. There’s as much pressure on them for staying undefeated as it is for opponents facing them. Our team is trained to never back down and fight hard, swinging to the end. And that’s how we came into this game.”
Miles defeated Dawson 68-56, but not without an all-out fight by the Lady Buccaneers. DCC came out very strong in the first quarter, winning it 15-8. It didn’t take long for the Lady Pioneers to figure out they were in for a battle, as they tightened up their defensive pressure and outscored Dawson 22-7 in the second quarter. The third quarter was close again with Miles edging Dawson 18-14. The Lady Buccaneers never gave up and the fourth quarter was even 20-20. Dawson easily out-rebounded Miles 38-28, but could not handle their full court man press, resulting in 34 turnovers, and Miles converted 33 points from them. The Lady Pioneers bench also outscored Dawson 23-4.
Scoring was not balanced for Dawson either, as only two players were in double figures, while Miles had five in double digits. Alexius Foster led the game with 27 points, along with 6 rebounds and 4 steals. Sarah Miranda scored 11 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals.
Lagmay continued on Dawson’s effort, “I was thrilled to see how hard we fought. That’s all we ask of them, and everything falls into place. I can respect an individual or team that goes all out regardless of the outcome. If we can play like that from here on out, then we have lots going for us in conference tournament play.”
The Lady Buccaneers play their last game of the season at home on Sophomore Night against Bismarck State College Sunday at 2:00 p.m. They open tournament action at Miles Community College March 1-3.
In a role reversal from their earlier meeting in Glendive, the Miles Community College Pioneers used suffocating defense to win convincingly over the Dawson Community College Buccaneers 84-61 on Thursday night at the Centra. The Bucs dug themselves a twenty point hole at the beginning of the game before they even scored a point. Miles raced up and down the court and punished the visitors on the glass. Dawson really struggled from the field in the first twenty minutes shooting 29% from the 3 point line and only made 1 of 7 at the free throw line while also turning it over 10 times. The Pioneers ended the half with a three-pointer at the buzzer for Evan Harrell to give him 11 points in the half and, more importantly, give them a 47-26 advantage.
Dawson tried to get themselves going to start the second half, but Miles built their lead up to 30 points at one point and the Bucs just couldn’t get within striking distance. It didn’t help that they went 1-15 from the 3-point line in the final twenty minutes and turned it over ten times again. The Pioneers won the battle of the boards 51-38 and were led by Gedeon Buzangu and Joey Lodine who had 14 rebounds each. Miles outscored Dawson 37-35 in the second half to seal the win. Five Pioneers were in double figures led by Harrell’s 19. Only three Bucs were in double figures led by Marcus Stephens who had 17 points.
Dawson Coach Joe Peterson wasn’t pleased, “It was embarrassing for us to play like that. We didn’t come with intensity tonight on the defensive end and were way too causal. It started last game in the second half and carried over to the beginning of this game. We aren’t the type of team who can just show up and win games, we have to play hard and we have to play together if we want a chance to win. Miles played really well on both ends of the floor and beat us in every facet of the game.”
The win moves MCC up to 5-8 in conference and in a three-way tie for 5th place. DCC drops to 9-4 and down to third place. Dawson’s regular season finale will be at home on Sunday at 4:00 pm vs. Bismarck State College. The Region XIII Tournament will begin next Thursday for the men.