A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

Women’s Basketball to play State semi-final match Saturday

Guard+Lucca+Lowenburg+and+Forward+Meredith+Gilbertson+celebrate+as+time+expires+in+SRJC+Womens+Basketball+team+71-46+victory+over+Laney+College+Saturday%2C+March+4+in+Santa+Rosa.+That+game+sent+the+Bear+Cubs+to+the+state+championship+tournament%2C+where+they+won+their+first+game+and+are+playing+a+semi-final+game+March+11.
Sean Young
Guard Lucca Lowenburg and Forward Meredith Gilbertson celebrate as time expires in SRJC Women’s Basketball team 71-46 victory over Laney College Saturday, March 4 in Santa Rosa. That game sent the Bear Cubs to the state championship tournament, where they won their first game and are playing a semi-final game March 11.

The Santa Rosa Junior College Women’s basketball team advanced to the 2022-23 CCCAA Women’s Basketball Semi-Finals after defeating Mt. San Antonio College 65-48 in the first round on March 10 at West Hills College in Lemoore.

The Bear Cubs will now face SoCal’s No. 1 seed Orange Coast College in the semifinals at 5 p.m. on March 11.

The tournament consists of eight teams, four from Northern California and four from Southern California. Santa Rosa is seeded second on its side of the bracket, and its first round opponent Mt. San Antonio College was ranked third.

“They’re very talented. They’re well coached, they’re very athletic, they’ve got some guards that are pretty good,” said head coach Lacey Campbell on the Mounties.

Executing the best play possible is going to be key for the Bear Cubs. “They defend really well,” Campbell said. ”They’re not going to give us anything easy.”

SRJC last competed in the state tournament in 2013 when Mt. San Jacinto College knocked the Bear Cubs out in the first round.

“There’s a little bit of nerves and kind of anxious energy around it, but they’re pretty focused on what we’re doing. They’re all watching their own film and they’re taking this seriously, they have a goal,” she said.

Sophomore Ashleigh Barr added, “I think we’re nervous. We’re also really excited. We were looking forward to this for the whole year.”

The team is confident in its chemistry. “We all have the same goals, and we all want to win and work together to do it. Everybody isn’t playing for themselves, we’re playing for each other,” Barr said.

Freshman Lucca Lowenberg noted being crowned as conference champions as a key moment this season. “We can make it to state, we can keep going, keep pushing,” she said. “We are one of the best teams.”

Lowenburg attributed the team’s success to Campbell and the coaching staff. “People might say it’s who’s on the court and I think coaches have such a big role that isn’t seen,” she said. “Even the assistant coaches, they watch so much film, they give us the best scouts, they work so hard just to give us everything we need so that we can go on the floor, and play hard.”

The Bear Cubs Women’s Basketball team has two championship banners hanging in Haehl Pavilion from the 1988 and 2011 seasons.

“This group has deserved that chance to see if they can put their name up there with those other teams,” Campbell said. “They’re a solid group of people and I just enjoy coaching them.”

Campbell believes the team compliments each other really well on the floor. “We have different ways of scoring; each kid brings something a little bit different,” she said.

“They really celebrate each other’s success and they’re also super competitive,” Campbell said. “They want to make that extra pass and see that person hit the shot, which makes it fun, because then you don’t have to worry about egos. You just worry about trying to get the best opportunity.”

The Bear Cubs mentality this season has been “focus on the night ahead,” Lowenburg said.

But she knows there is an important weekend ahead of her. “We were all super excited. It’s just a really big moment.”

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About the Contributors
Christian Vieyra
Christian Vieyra, Sports Editor, Reporter
Christian Vieyra (he/him) is in his fourth semester at The Oak Leaf and is a sports editor. He aspires to be a professional sports journalist and plans to transfer to a 4-year college this fall.
Sean Young
Sean Young, Co-Editor-in-Chief
Sean Young (he/him) is in his ninth semester at SRJC and third semester at The Oak Leaf. He plans on finishing an associate degree in communications and journalism this spring. Sean lives in Sebastopol and spends his free time listening to his vinyl record collection, practicing bass guitar and writing for The Oak Leaf. He hopes to continue to a 4-year college after graduating from SRJC to work towards a bachelor's degree in communications and journalism.

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