De Anza defeated by SJCC

Dons handed third consecutive loss


Rajvir Kaur

The De Anza College men’s basketball team suffered its third consecutive loss in conference play against the San Jose City College Jaguars on Wednesday Jan. 29 with a score of 71-59.

Tipping off the ball, the Dons were first to score. A few minutes into the first half, the Dons were leading 6-4.

The Jaguars gained their first lead after making a free throw, putting them ahead 9-8. Dunking the ball, Jaguars’ sophomore forward Andre Russell added another two points to that lead.

But a bucket apiece by Dons’ sophomore wing Shaquille Gilbert and sophomore post Jack Pasquini put the Dons ahead 12-11.

Both teams stayed neck and neck, each making shots one right after the other and swinging the lead back and forth. With 10:10 left in the first half, the Dons had a one point lead, 18-17.

Tipping in a shot, freshman guard Kyle Conner extended the lead to 20-17. But the Jaguars came back with four straight points and regained the lead 21-20 with 8:30 left in the first half.

The scoreboard remained unchanged until Dons’ freshman guard Dj Rodriguez made a bucket, marking the score 22-21 with 5:35 left to go.

After a free throw from Pasquini, the score was tied 23-23 with 3:40 left on the clock. But the Jaguars stepped up and went on a 9-3 run. With 24.5 seconds left in the first half, the Jaguars led 32-26.

Gilbert made a bucket and Conner made a free throw, but the Jaguars had the last possession of the ball. Right before the buzzer rang, Jaguars’ sophomore guard Bobby Gray made a bucket to give his team a 34-29 halftime lead.

In the second half, the Jaguars only strengthened the lead. Two minutes into the final 20 minutes, they lead the Dons 40-29.

The Dons tried to come back, with Conner scoring the first five points and freshman guard Mitchell Hickman adding another three points.

But as the Dons pushed, the Jaguars pushed back harder. With 13:42 left to go, the Dons were once again behind 52-41.

Gilbert made the next bucket for the Dons but in return ended up falling to the ground. His teammates had to help him limp off the court, Gilbert would not return to the game.

Back on the court, Hickman made a 3-pointer and with a shot by Pasquini, the Dons were back in action, trailing the Jaguars 54-48.

But with a few mistakes on the Dons’ part and more pushing by the Jaguars, the Dons began to lose their momentum. With 2:29 left in the game, the Dons were trailing 64-56.

Conner would be the last to score for the Dons, making a 3-pointer, and the Jaguars would go on to score seven more points.

The Jaguars were last to have their hands on the ball and as the last seconds in the game wound down, they would go on to beat the Dons 71-59.

“We made it hard on ourselves in the first half…missed a lot of opportunities to score,” said Jason Damjanovic, head coach of men’s basketball.

“They’re a good team,” he said. “We had opportunities to score and we did not take advantage of those opportunities.”