Vaqueros leap into new season with 77-43 win against Taft College


Kevin Ham

Alondra Jimenez (No. 25) dribbles past defender Ciera Van Quick (No. 10) during the Vaqueros game against Taft College on Friday, Nov. 1, 2019, in the Sports Pavilion at City College in Santa Barbara, Calif. The Vaqueros won the game 77-43.

Sarah Maninger, Sports Editor

The City College women’s basketball team opened its season with a 77-43 win over the Taft College Cougars Friday night in the Sports Pavilion.

“It was a great way to start the season,” said Associate Head Coach Devin Engebretsen

Friday night also marked the beginning of Sandrine Krul’s sixteenth season as head coach, and the first day of the weekend-long annual MTXE Crossover tournament hosted at City College. 

The Vaqueros is one of six teams in the tournament, which brings together schools from all over the state. 

The Cougars got on the board first with a shot from the free-throw line 25 seconds into the game. 

Moments later, City College guard Sophia Torres countered with the team’s first basket of the season.

Torres, who redshirted last season, led the team with 19 points in her first collegiate game. 

“Helping out the team felt great,” she said. 

She also led the team with 17 rebounds, 13 free throws and 32 minutes played. 

“I wanted to stay in and help my team out,” she said. 

The Vaqueros and the Cougars traded fouls throughout the first quarter.

Torres made the majority of City College’s free throws, as the Vaqueros led the Cougars 17-8 at the end of the first quarter. 

The communication between players led the team to topple Taft with 19 assists and 59 rebounds. 

City College’s lead was extended when one minute and 13 seconds into the second quarter, sophomore guard Jada Forsdick-Stevenson made her first three-pointer of the game. 

From there, City College’s lead only grew. 

Taft led the game for the first 29 seconds of the first quarter but failed to keep up with City College after that. 

By the end of the first half, City College led 43-18. 

Taft was able to break into the Vaqueros’ defense slightly in the second half with three three-pointers and a handful of layups, but that didn’t stop City College from scoring 17 points in each of the last two quarters of the game. 

Torres tore it up in the first half of the game alongside sophomore guard Alondra Jimenez, who scored nine points in the second quarter. 

Torres and Jimenez were teammates at Santa Barbara High School. 

“[Jimenez] and I are really good at playing off each other,” said Torres. 

Even though she’s a sophomore, Jimenez made her City College debut Friday after playing at Vanguard University in Costa Mesa, Calif. last season. 

Torres and the Vaqueros’ offense led City College to a dominant season-opening win, where it once led the Cougars by 34 points in the third quarter. 

“Sophia lets her game do the talking,” said Engebretsen.

With the first game of the season in the rear-view mirror, City College looks to build on its fourth-place finish from last spring, and get back to the championships. 

“The season’s super long and we got a long way to go,” said Engebretsen.

Until then, the team looks to finish the MTXE Crossover strong. 

“Tomorrow is a new day,” said Torres. 

 The Vaqueros return to the court to battle Butte College at 6 p.m. on Saturday in the Sports Pavilion.