But the Tigers, who have often relied on the experience, craftiness and fortitude of their leaders, have yet to put their best feet forward in league play, according to coach Elizabeth Tolleson.
“The girls are playing well, but we always have room to improve,” Tolleson said. “We plan on keeping our practices intense. We simply cannot afford to let up, or be happy with where we are at.”
The Tigers (15-2 overall, 4-0 WAC) notched two victories last week — a 55-22 defeat of host Los Banos High on Jan. 8 and a 50-29 besting of visiting Ceres High on Thursday, Jan. 10.
There was some celebration on the court following the win against the Ceres High Bulldogs, but the Tigers hope to accomplish plenty more before the regular season ends.
“We’re going into each game focused,” said Patterson sophomore Shealyn Craven. “We talk a lot about winning WAC. We’re fired up. We really are determined to finish the season strong.”
A sizeable advantage in rebounding made the difference against Ceres (1-2 WAC).
The Tigers pulled down a season-high 49 boards, preventing the Bulldogs from collecting many second-chance opportunities.
That success on the glass, in conjunction with sharp defense, carried Patterson even when its shooters slumped.
Craven (three assists) and junior Jovanah Arrington (five rebounds) led Patterson with 13 points apiece. Mele Tupouata (11 rebounds), a junior, and freshman Danielle Jenkins (nine rebounds) both added six points as the Tigers wrapped up their 14th victory in 15 games.
Juniors Dayna Hansen (nine rebounds) and Kiara Job and senior Shantel Perez (seven rebounds) all scored four points for Patterson.
“We don’t take anything for granted,” Craven said. “We are motivated to win.”
Craven poured in 23 points against Los Banos (6-9, 1-2), and Tupouata added eight.
Through four league contests, Patterson is averaging 52.5 points per game while outscoring opponents by 26 points per game.
“The girls seem as though they are ready to step up to the challenge,” Tolleson said. “I know we can be successful regardless of who we play because everyone on the team is a threat.”
Patterson will continue the conference season with a home game at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 17, against Pacheco High of Los Banos (6-10, 0-3).
The JV Tigers dropped a 43-39 decision to Los Banos High on Jan. 8 but picked up their first WAC victory of the season with a 47-13 triumph against Ceres High two days later.
Leanna Lindsey (eight rebounds, two assists) scored 11 points and Jordynn Scheuller and Maria Cortez each had 10 as they led the Tigers over Ceres.
Britnei Murray logged five points and five rebounds, and Ariyanna Cashen added four points and 10 boards.
Against Los Banos, Scheuller scored a team-high 15 points and Lindsey notched eight. Cortez, Murray and Cashen each recorded four points for the Tigers (1-3 WAC).
The freshman Tigers (0-4 WAC) lost to Ceres 39-3 on Thursday.
Ana Martin scored two points and made two rebounds for Patterson, while Paula Diaz contributed four rebounds and six steals.
Contact Marc Aceves at 892-6187, ext. 28, or email@example.com.