Vazquez Named SCC Women's Basketball North MVP, All-State 2nd Team

Lancer Lupe Vazquez is SCC North MVP for the 2021-2022 season (photo by Michael Watkins, Athletics).
Lancer Lupe Vazquez is SCC North MVP for the 2021-2022 season (photo by Michael Watkins, Athletics).

Rarely does a player from a last-place team get the honors bestowed on Pasadena City College women's basketball freshman Lupe Vazquez. The shooting guard was named Most Valuable Player of the South Coast Conference North Division and selected to the 2021-22 All-State Second Team, as state/conference coaches showed the ultimate respect for her talents.

Vazquez became the first PCC player to lead the state in scoring as she averaged 27.8 points a game in 21 contests played. Vazquez joined a long list of PCC players who were named conference MVPs (see list below)-12 in SCC history. She is the third Lancer to receive the player of the year award in the past four seasons as Dariel Johnson won in 2020 and Alisa Shinn took the honor in 2018. 

From Cantwell-Sacred Heart of Mary High in Montebello, the 5-foot-8 Vazquez reached the program's 500-point club faster than any in PCC history.  She produced six of the 12 highest-scoring games in Lancers history. Her high was 44 points, second-highest everat PCC, in a Dec. 2 win over MiraCosta. 

Vazquez finished fifth in the state in 3-pointers made (82), sixth in total field goals made (196), eighth in total free throws made (109) and had an efficient 79 percent accuracy from the line. She also averaged 9.2 rebounds and a team-high 3.1 assists. On Nov. 11, she tied the PCC single-game record for 3-pointers with 10 v. Imperial Valley and she had a perfect 10-for-10 free throw shooting performance v. Antelope Valley on Dec. 17. 

"Opponents set their entire game plans to try to prevent Lupe the ball," said PCC head coach Joe Peron, elated over her honors. "There were times where it seemed like she wasn't getting into the scoring column, then by the time you looked at the scoresheet, she would have 30. Lupe does other things too. She hustles to get offensive and defensive rebounds, makes excellent passing choices and is a solid defender. We didn't have much of a bench, so she played more minutes in some games that if she had some rests, it would have added to her scoring totals. Still, she had an amazing season."
While PCC finished 1-7 in the SCC North, it played several hard-fought games, including SoCal #1-seed Mt. San Antonio (57-52 loss at home). Vazquez played against four division teams that all earned postseason playoff spots--Mt. SAC, East Los Angeles, Rio Hondo and LA Trade-Tech. 
Also selected from Pasadena to the All-SCC North First Team was point guard Maiya Villanueva, who appeared in 20 games and averaged 13.6 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.8 assists. A 5-3 product from Arizona, Villanueva was second on the team in total 3-point baskets with 63, including a season-best eight in the team's season finale v. El Camino. She had a high of 28 points scored in a win v. Imperial Valley. 
Naomi Turner, the only player to play in all 24 games, came on strong later in the season and earned All-SCC North Second Team honors. From Arcadia High, Turner averaged 8.9 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 1.9 steals. She scored her career-high of 25 points in the team's final game. 
Note: Pasadena's final overall record was improved to 9-16 with a COVID-19-related forfeit victory over Contra Costa at the San Jose City College Tournament on Dec. 29
PCC South Coast Conference MVPs
2022-LUPE VAZQUEZ, guard
2020-Dariel Johnson, center
2018-Alissa Shinn, center-forward
2011-Dominique Scott, center
2007-Jeanine Deno, guard-forward (Co-MVP)
2005-Dionne Pounds, guard (Co-MVP)
2004-Dionne Pounds, guard (Co-MVP)
2003-Ariel Towns, forward
2000-Tyrea Smith, forward
1999-Tiana Sanders, forward
1998-Jackie Sadler, forward
1993-Biljana Bosanac, guard-forward
*note--only Bosanac was not guided by PCC Coach Joe Peron