After losing in the second round of the SoCal playoffs and finishing No. 9 in the final state poll with a 22-7 record, the women’s basketball team hopes to rebound this season with a stronger team.
“We have a better team that last year,” said head coach Joe Peron, who is in his 18th season as head coach with a 412-117 record. “This team is faster and stronger than the teams I had in the last two years.”
With six returning sophomores, the Lancers will have a lot of experience on the court this season. Peron said that center Kaitlyn Parks had matured and would be surrounded with other tall forwards to help her with rebounding.
“There is a lot of talent on this team,” Parks said. “Last season, we had a small number of sophomores and that probably hurt down the stretch. However, this season, our smallest player is 5’7”. We have more depth and I expect us to win a championship this season.”
PCC played in a pre-season tournament where they won seven out of the eight games.
“I put my best team out there and they played like it,” Peron said. “The team has a nice balance with the six sophomores and seven new freshmen players.”
The Lancers had four players move on to universities after last year. Two of them were Marquetta Stokes and Stella Ghazarian, PCC’s No. 1 and No. 2 on the all-time scoring list, and one was on-court leader Shay Jackson. Peron felt confident that Desiree Loving could more than pick up where Jackson left off.
“Loving learned a lot from [Jackson],” Peron said. “She was my backup point guard and she is going to do really well this year. She will be an impact player.”
Loving said that there would be more athleticism on this season’s team and that even with 3-point specialist Ghazarian and Marquetta gone, the Lancers wouldn’t be hurting scoring-wise.
“[Peron] has had us practicing out foot work,” Loving said. “We are hoping to be quicker than we were and we added two new shooters to the team. All we have to do now is remain healthy for the entire season.”