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The Hornet

Serving the Fullerton Community Since 1922

The Hornet

Fullerton dominates from start to finish in their OEC opener against Golden West

Role players Andrew Pipersburgh and Godfrey Little star on a night where six Hornets score in double figures.
Matthew Gonzalez
Hornets’ freshman center Andrew Pipersburgh gathers the ball and looks to go up over two Rustler defenders on Dec. 19, 2023.

The Hornets were able to rattle the Rustlers Tuesday inside The Hornets’ Nest, with the convincing 113-58 win. They were led by physical freshman big man Andrew Pipersburgh as well as three-point specialist sophomore guard Godfrey Little.

Little was notably on fire in this game, shooting 4/4 from three in the first half, and finishing with a game high 18 points. After each made three, Fullerton’s bench would erupt with energy, cheering on their veteran leader in Little.

“I just tried to stay as calm as possible, you know, not let any emotions get to me and just stay level headed,” said Little.

Hornets’ sophomore guard Godfrey Little blows by a Rustler, looking to add onto his dazzling offensive performance on Dec. 19, 2023. (Matthew Gonzalez)

From the jump, Fullerton controlled the game in all three phases. Defensively they were glued to their man, swiftly rotating if help was needed. Offensively they moved the ball side to side, opening gaps in the opponent’s defense. And in transition, they flew up and down the court, capping off several defensive stops with momentous flying dunks.

Golden West (1-12, 0-1) opened the game defensively in a zone, a decision that Fullerton College head coach Perry Webster had his team well prepared for.

“We were kind of prepared for it. So, we were looking at short corners and slots. There’s a lot of open threes and stuff,” said Webster. “I thought our guys were patient about allowing the game to come to them, and did a good job sharing the ball.”

In the first half, the Hornets attacked this zone, starting with Fullerton’s guard Amound Anderson drilling a 3-pointer 17 seconds into the game.

Soon after, at the 18:09 mark, Fullerton showed its interior presence as Anderson grabbed an offensive board and dished it to Pipersburgh, who finished with a layup.

Pipersburgh was the co-star of the night, grabbing a game high 16 rebounds while dropping 12 points of his own. Pipersburgh, along with his teammates, dominated inside. Fullerton outscored Golden West 64-16 in the paint.

“The game plan was to dominate inside. But also, the game plan was just to, you know, punch them in their mouth (metaphorically) and just keep punching and keep stacking and keep winning,” said Pipersburgh.

Part of the issue for the Rustlers inside was their size disadvantage. Golden West’s center was Trevor Vertiz, a 6 ‘4 sophomore who was tasked with guarding and even more importantly boxing out the 6’ 8 Pipersburgh. Again and again, when Fullerton attacked the paint and boards, they succeeded.

In addition, when Fullerton penetrated Golden West’s zone, the defense collapsed, causing the Hornets to pass it to a wide open shooter. This strategy played a large role in Fullerton shooting 40% from deep for the game, and producing 34 total assists, compared to Golden West’s 15 total assists.

Hornets’ sophomore guard Jeremiah Davis sizes up his defender attempting to get a bucket to extend the Hornets lead on Dec. 19, 2023. (Matthew Gonzalez)

The Hornets offense skyrocketed on Tuesday, jumping out to an early 13-1 lead by the 14:22 mark of the first half. The offense kept on rolling and did not look back for the remainder of the half, resulting in a 64-18 lead at halftime.

The Rustlers never stopped competing, but really suffered from a lack of outside shooting. As a team they shot 20% for the game, taking poor shots such as pull-up transition threes and end of shot clock heaves.

To start the second half the Rustlers played with even more energy than they did in the 1st half, jumping on loose balls and running the floor well. However, the effort was moot as Fullerton maintained a comfortable 81-25 lead with 15 minutes left in the game.

The Hornets bench played a vital role in sustaining their lead. Fullerton’s bench, led by Little, outscored the Rustlers bench 53- 21.

The second half continued with no real comeback in sight for Golden West. Even throughout garbage time, the Hornets maintained their 55 point lead.

Freshman guard Justin Davis looks to size up his defender and seek offensive opportunities for the Hornets against the Golden West Rustlers on Dec 19, 2023. (Matthew Gonzalez)

After Tuesday’s loss, the Rustlers losing streak had extended to nine. However, Golden West head coach Tony Jimmerson believes in his group and looks forward to trying to build a culture in his renewed basketball program.

“You know, our program is brand new still. Being gone for 18 years and being the first head coach over there, so just building a culture,” said Jimmerson.

For Fullerton (10-3, 1-0), they continued their strong play as they now have a three-game winning streak. In Fullerton’s three defeates this season, they have lost by an accumulated 12 points.

The Hornets hit the road to face off against the Santa Ana Dons (6-5)  for another conference battle on Dec. 21 at 5 p.m. as they look to continue their winning ways.

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About the Contributors
Brian Mack
Brian Mack, Staff Reporter
Brian Mack is a first semester staff reporter for The Hornet newspaper. In his free time, he loves watching anime, sports, and playing video games. He also enjoys sneakers and reading comic books. His goal in journalism is to continue to learn and improve the various skills required in to be in the field.
Matthew Gonzalez
Matthew Gonzalez, Staff Photographer
Matthew Gonzalez is a third semester staff photographer for The Hornet. Aside from being a staff reporter, he is also into sports photography. Matthew's passion in sports comes from watching and covering football, soccer, and basketball. During his free time he enjoys working out or listening to music. He is a huge Taylor Swift lover. Matthew plans on transferring to Cal State Northridge next fall to get a bachelors degree in Journalism.  His end goal is to work for a newspaper company.

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