TORRANCE, Calif. – El Camino College shot the lights out in the second half and nearly overcame a tremendous deficit but eventually fell to West Hills Coalinga 116-111 in a non-conference tilt Saturday night at the ECC South Gym.
Justin Chambers poured in 27 of his 32 points in the second half for the Warriors (4-10) as the team battled back from a 33-point deficit with 17:50 remaining in the game. Chambers was nearly flawless from the field, going 9-for-11 including 7-of-8 from beyond the arc in the second half alone. As a team, the Warriors shot 64.7 percent (22-for-34) in the second half and went 13-for18 (72.2%) from distance while connecting on 19 of their 26 free throws, outscoring the Falcons (9-2) 76-55 in the period.
Unfortunately for the Warriors, they dug themselves too big a hole in a shaky first half that saw them shoot just 12-for-39 from the field and 6-for-19 from 3-point range. It resulted in a 61-35 halftime deficit as the Falcons dominated the Warriors on the inside with a 54-10 advantage in the paint in the first half.
The Falcons came out and built their lead up to 33 after a layup from Winder Joseph made it 69-36 with 17:50 left. At that point, the Warriors caught fire as they outscored West hills 75-46. They trimmed the deficit down to three points with 11 seconds left after Isiah Armstead drilled a 3-pointer but they were unable to turn the Falcons over and sent Lloyd Hanna to the line, where he hit one of two shots.
The Warriors came down the floor after the make looking for a quick score, but Joseph stripped Nijel Jones as he was rising up for a 3-pointer to seal the win for West Hills.
Joseph finished with 25 points and 12 rebounds to lead the way for the Falcons. Eric Hollins-Hamilton added 19 points and 11 rebounds while Ricardo Time went for 10 points and eight assists.
The Warriors will return to action on Wednesday, Jan. 10 on the road against Mount San Antonio College. Tipoff is set for 5 p.m.