Dons Weekly Roundup

Luana Leite blows by Liliana Marques and Da’Miyah Lewis to get to the basket. Photo courtesy of Chris M. Leung/Dons Athletics.

A new season of athletics is in full effect on the Hilltop as winter sports kick off and fall sports take the backseat. 

The Dons’ women’s basketball team started their season at 1-1, after falling to the University of California, Santa Barbara on Nov. 8 at the Thunderdome and following that game with a 22-point victory over Stanislaus State University on Nov. 9 at War Memorial Gym. In both games, the Dons were led by the 2022-23 West Coast Conference (WCC) Sixth Woman of the Year, Jasmine Gayles. Against UC Santa Barbara, Gayles posted a career-high 30 points, to go along with five assists and one steal, on 40% shooting from the field (10 for 25). Gayles continued her dominance on the Hilltop, as she finished with 21 points with three assists and three rebounds, which helped the Dons secure their first win of the season. Following Gayles’ scoring displays, on Nov. 13, the WCC announced Gayles as the Credit Union 1 WCC Player of the Week. With back-to-back 20-plus point performances, she leads the Dons in scoring and also leads the conference in scoring at 25.5 points per game.

In Idaho, the undefeated Dons’ men’s basketball team went to battle with the Boise State University Broncos on Nov. 12. In their first game on the road, the Dons aimed to build on their two early wins against Bethesda University and Saint Francis University. In enemy territory, the Dons and Broncos went down to the wire. Through the first half, the lead was close between USF and Boise State, as the Broncos exited the first half with a 32-24 lead. Both teams exchanged runs, with the Dons responding to an offensive surge from the Broncos, as USF went on an 8-0 run to bring them within two points with 15 minutes left in the game. The teams went blow-for-blow for the remainder of the game, with the Broncos prevailing 63-58, giving the Dons their first loss of the season. Mike Shravjamts, Johnathan Mogbo, Ndewdo Newbury, and Isaiah Hawthorne starred for USF. For the third straight time this season, four Dons finished in double digits, Sharavjamts led the team with 13 points, followed by Newbury with 11, and Mogbo and Hawthorne with 10 apiece. Mogbo finished with a season-high nine rebounds, while Newbury recorded a career-high three blocks.

The USF men’s soccer team wrapped up their season on Nov. 11 in Portland, as they took on the number 13 NCAA nationally ranked University of Portland Pilots. The Dons and Pilots had a defensive battle as both teams tallied a combined six shots in the first half, with the first two coming from USF’s own Gabriel Bracken Serra and Max Chretien. None of the shots found the back of the net for either side, as both teams headed into the second half, scoreless. The Pilots made the first scratch with a 49th minute goal from midfielder Nick Fernandez. The Pilots struck again with an 84th minute goal, ultimately sealing the win. The Dons ended their season with a record of eight wins, four losses, and five ties. Though neither of the Dons soccer teams made the postseason, men’s goalkeeper Eric Waltz recorded five saves in the game, bringing his total to 45 on the year, which ranks fourth overall in the WCC. 

Women’s and men’s basketball teams continue their season as the women head to Hawaii to take on the University of Hawaii Rainbow Warriors at 5 p.m. on Nov 17 on ESPN+. On the same day, the men’s team will head to Phoenix to take on the Grand Canyon University Antelopes, on CBS Sports at 5 p.m.

Students can attend all home games for free, with the use of their One Card.

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