The Pirates' women's basketball team dropped a 72-61 decision to visiting Los Angeles Trade Tech Saturday night at the Athletic Event Center. The Pirates, who yielded more than 60 points for just the second time all season, made just 27 percent of their field goal attempts with 12 turnovers in the first half resulting in a 13-point deficit. Yasmine Ahllamara came off the bench to spark a better second half with 19 points and Talia Taufaasau totaled 11 points for Ventura (14-4). Cece Quintino handed out eight assists and Kimora Pooler had 13 rebounds in the loss.
The Pirates had another poor start offensively with four missed shots and four turnovers in their first seven possessions. VC fell behind 7-1 before LaDaesha Merriweather made the team's first field goal with 5:29 left in the first quarter. The -Pirates were still well in the game when Ahllamara made a three at the 4:40 mark and trailed 8-6. The Beavers went on a 7-0 run at that point before Nikki Puga ended the skid with a triple off Quintino's assist. Despite the offensive troubles, Victoria Maciel's three at the end of the period pulled VC to within 15-12 at the quarter break.
Ventura quickly gave up seven points to begin the second quarter and trailed 25-15 midway through the stanza. Puga hit another shot from range to offer a brief respite before LATT stretched the lead to 15 points, 33-18. Merriweather's inside score on the last possession made it 33-20 at intermission.
The Pirates seemed to get untracked offensively after halftime, but had difficulty closing the gap against the Beavers. Madison Kast scored to open the third quarter, and Quintino followed with a pair of buckets, but Trade Tech sandwiched a pair of buckets around a Pirate turnover to send their lead back to 13, 39-26, with 6:23 on the clock. The VC deficit expanded to 16 points before Ahllamara connected for a 3-point play and Quintino scored a lay-up to make it 51-39 heading to the fourth.
VC went on a quick 6-0 run to open the final period with buckets from Ahllamara, Puga and Pooler, but Trade Tech answered with a 7-0 run to end the Pirate threat. Three straight 3-pointers, two by Ahllamara and one by Taufaasau, in the final minute helped bring Ventura back to the 72-61 final score.
Kast had seven rebounds and six blocked shots for the Pirates and Merriweather pulled in seven caroms in the effort. Quintino and Puga each added eight points.
The Pirates begin their abbreviated Western State Conference North Division schedule on Wednesday Jan. 22 at Oxnard College. Tip-off with the Condors is scheduled for 5:00 pm.