SANTA ANA, Calif. – With four seconds left to go in Santa Ana's OEC matchup with the Cypress Chargers, the Dons gave the ball to their leading scorer Ramon Lopez for a chance to win it. Lopez drove right and pulled up in the key but was blocked at the last second, ending the game with the Dons trailing 74-73.
Santa Ana got off to a great start after knocking down seven threes (7-13) in the half and pushing their lead to as high as 18. It looked like the Dons were on their way to another conference win as they led 48-35 at the break but the Chargers came alive to make it a game down the stretch.
The Chargers climbed their way back into the game with a 9-0 run to tie the game at 57 with 11:32 left on the clock. From there, the teams went back and forth until the last second.
Unfortunately, the Dons were on the wrong side of the last bucket, dropping them to a record of 7-12, 1-2 while Cypress improved to 14-6, 3-1.
Freshman forward Jared Springer was lights out for Santa Ana in this one as he topped all scorers with 18 points on 6-9 shooting from beyond the arch. Chris Bailey had another solid game with 15 points and six rebounds followed by Ramon Lopez, who added 13 points and seven assists.
BY THE NUMBERS
The Dons finished with 43.5 shooting percentage from the field while 45.5 percent from three. Although they were very efficient from the field, they struggled at the stripe with 9-17 mark, which might have made the difference in the game. Cypress shot 40 percent overall and 39.3 from three along with a 68.8 (11-16) from the free throw line.
Next week, the Dons will get another chance to defend homecourt when they host Copper Mountain on Wednesday, Jan.23rd at 5:00 p.m. and finish the week with a matchup against Santiago Canyon College on Friday at 5:00 p.m.