Lady Eagles start strong, but fall at Dixie

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Intensity and focus are the key to success when it comes to the College of Eastern Utah Women's Basketball team. For a brief time, the women were ranked 10th in the NJCAA.

But, with the recent two-game loss to Dixie State College, the Lady Eagles ranking dropped to 27th. The Lady Eagles are 7-2 in season play and 4-2 in league play.

Over the November 21st and 22nd weekend, the Lady Eagles started off their home series against the Lady Badgers of Snow College. These two games were successful for CEU, winning both games, 75-63, and 89-74.

The first night was an intense game. Both teams played aggressive, showing hard-core defense, but the Lady Eagles showed their determination to win and pushed ahead of Snow early in the game. Cassie Warburton led with 21 points, and Chelsey Warburton had 14. The Lady Eagles ended this game shooting at 44 percent.

Coming into the second night of play, the Lady Eagles seemed as if they didn't lose their intensity or focus. They started off in the lead early in the game, leading almost 10 point throughout the whole game. They finished this game shooting 45 percent.

It seemed as if Chelsey Jackson and Chelsey Warburton decided to take over in this game. Both of them led in points, Warburton having 20 and Jackson not too far behind with 18. "In order to be successful we have to shoot well, and we were hot both of these games," commented Head Coach Dave Paur.

After their first win in league play, the Lady Eagles felt confident traveling to Salt Lake City to compete against the Lady Bruins.

Both games were exciting, because the Lady Eagles pulled off both wins. The final scores were 85-71, and an exceptionally close one, 67-66. These two games were the first time that CEU's women's basketball team has ever beat SLCC at Salt Lake City.

This is also the first time that SLCC has lost back-to-back games, commented coach Paur. Again, Chelsey Warburton showed her intense skills leading in points in the first game with 22 points, which was only five points shy of being the game leader in this match.

According to Paur, the women played more intense and shot much better during this game. They shot at 51 percent, coach Paur said, when their shooting percentage is up, they could be unstoppable.

The second game that was played against the Lady Bruins was an extremely close game with only one point separating the winner and the loser.

It seemed as if the Lady Eagles wanted the win more, because in the last few minutes they jumped ahead to win the game. Thus handing SLCC their first back-to-back losses.

With the Lady Eagles at 4-0 and a national top-ten ranking, they were ready to play Dixie State College. Or at least they thought.

According to Paur, Dixie had not been playing well this season, and thus the Lady Eagles underestimated them. They ruined their winning streak with a loss to this team, 82-70. Chelsey Warburton led the Lady Eagles with 17 points. Cassie Warburton had 11 points and Arnoldus added 10 points.

Coach Paur said, "This was our worse shooting night of the year."

The second game, the Lady Eagles played with more intensity, but only shot at 20% during the first half. During the second half, they made 48 points, but they were so far behind, that they were not able to come close to the win. Overall, the Lady Eagles shot at 33 percent, which did not match up to Dixie's 53 percent shooting average.

The Lady Eagles are hoping to improve their national ranking with a win over their next opponents, Northern Idaho this weekend at home. Paur feels that if they can maintain a 40 percent shooting average, CEU will be hard to beat.

As they have learned from the Dixie game, they cannot underestimate their competitors, and must play hard all of the time.

The Lady Eagles only have 18 conference games left, and "no one will be undefeated this year," Paur said.

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