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The Orion

Dynamic duo take ‘Cats basketball to great heights

McKenzie Dalthrop and Analise Riezebos, both seniors, are post players and a dynamic duo for the women's basketbal team.Photo credit: Jamie Stryker

The San Antonio Spurs had Tim Duncan and David Robinson, who won

multiple NBA championships together and were a successful duo.

Now, Chico State’s McKenzie Dalthorp and Analise Riezebos, senior forwards, are mirroring the Spurs’ duo and developing their own legacy on the women’s basketball team.

Both Dalthorp and Riezebos are 6 feet tall and play the game like Robinson and Duncan. Dalthorp and Riezebos have played together for the last four years and both have furious Wildcat mentalities.

The Wildcats have had great guard play all season, but all of the dirty work has been assigned to forwards Dalthorp and Riezebos.

Dalthorp is averaging 10.2 points per game, as well as pulling in 5.4 rebounds per game, and leads the California Collegiate Athletic Association in field goal percentage — connecting on 51 percent of her shots. Riezebos is matching Dalthorp’s play with 10 points per game and hauling in 7 rebounds per game.

“Dalthorp and Riezebos are two of the better post players in the league,” said Brian Fogel, head coach of the women’s basketball team.

Dalthorp and Riezebos excel at boxing out opponents, blocking shots and battling in the paint with opposing centers. Dalthorp and Riezebos bring that aggressive play to the game and strike fear in their opponents.

“They have been a big part of our success this year,” Fogel said.

Not only do Dalthorp and Riezebos know each others’ game well on the court, they are also close off the court, as roommates.

“I love being roommates with Riezebos,” Dalthorp said. “We’re able to vent to each other and talk about our athletic and personal problems.”

“We see each other at practice and at home so we have a good relationship,” Riezebos said.

During the Spurs’ championship years, Duncan and Robinson understood each others’ roles. Duncan played from the elbow and could drive the ball where Robinson would post on the block and play near the rim.

It’s no coincidence Dalthorp and Riezebos play the same exact way. Riezebos prefers playing from the outside and driving to the rim, while Dalthorp likes playing in the paint and being strong with the ball.

“I try to get a good angle on a lot of my shots and use the backboard,” Dalthorp said.

“We focus on getting the ball in and out and constantly moving around to get good, open shots,” Riezebos said.

Without the dynamic duo, the Wildcats would be giving up second and third chances at the ball.

“Dalthorp and Riezebos are our two most physical players and they work hard every day,” Fogel said.

The Wildcats are 13-5 and in third place in the CCAA. But for the ‘Cats to make a push to the top they will need to rely on their dynamic duo to wreck havoc in the paint and put other teams’ best players in foul trouble.

Benjamin Marquez can be reached at [email protected] or @bmarq2424 on Twitter.

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