Cal State men face pivotal weekend

The Cal State San Bernardino men’s basketball team is at a crossroads and it has barely started CCAA play.

The Coyotes (3-5, 1-1) will host Cal State Stanislaus and Chico State this weekend at Coussoulis Arena. Those are bottom-feeder teams. Teams any team that is going to challenge for a conference title should throttle, especially at home.

The Coyotes have the talent. They were ranked nationally the first week of the season and they were the coaches pick to win the title. But coach Jeff Oliver’s team has not lived up to that billing.

Oliver looked on as the Cal Poly Pomona men were playing a nonconference game earlier this week and talked about his team, in a not so complimentary fashion. The biggest problem is what he perceives as lack of hustle and intensity. The Coyotes just don’t seem to be really fighting for a rebound, diving for that loose ball.

It has gotten so bad Oliver is starting walk-on Michael Lucas, one of the few guys that appears to be playing hard. If you’re going down, you might as well go down with the players that care.

If the Coyotes can’t beat these two teams that won’t say much for their chances against the likes of UC San Diego, Cal Poly Pomona and the other more traditional contenders.

Tip-off both Friday and Saturday is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

Broncos cruise past Southwestern

POMONA – It’s been a long time since the Cal Poly Pomona Broncos
won a game without senior standout Larry Gordon. In fact coach Greg
Kamansky couldn’t remember the last time.

But the Broncos did that, cruising past visiting NAIA opponent
Southwestern (Kan.) 73-39 Monday at Kellogg Gymnasium in the final
nonconference tuneup.

Gordon, a first-team all conference selection the last two years,
scored just 12 points and took only eight shots but others picked up
the slack. Walter Thompson tallied a team-high 14 and Austin Swift
was next with 13. All 10 players that dressed figured in the scoring.

“It didn’t happen that was on purpose,” Thompson said of
Gordon’s more limited role. “We’re just an unselfish team. We look
for the open man and other guys were hitting some shots.”

The game may have ended up a blowout, but it didn’t start out that
way. Both teams played like they were still on Christmas vacation in
the first half. The visitors went out to a 5-0 lead on a 3-pointer by
Marcus Batiste and a pair of free throws by Tim Moore just 45 seconds
into the game.

But the Moundbuilders then went 10 minutes and 20 seconds without
scoring, going 0-for-10 with seven turnovers in that stretch. An
inside bucket by 6-10 center David King snapped the dought but the
Broncos (5-2) hardly blew the game open in the meantime.

That bucket only made it 17-7 and Southwestern got back to within
three at 25-22 with 1:40 left in the half. A 3-pointer by Jimmy
Miyasaka and a baseline jumper by Dwayne Fells gave the Broncos a
30-22 lead at the half.

It wasn’t until the second half that the Broncos turned the game
into a rout. Thompson chalked up eight in a 16-4 Cal Poly run to
start the second half, punctuated by a 3-pointer that made it 46-26.

“The first half we just didn’t shoot well,” Kamansky said. “It’s
not that we didn’t play hard. With this team it’s that simple. That’s
our style of play aznd we play good defense. We just shoot ourselves
in the foot sometimes.”

The Broncos shot 45.2 percent (28-for-62) for the game but were
just 31.3 percent (10-for-32) in the first half. They finished with a
44-28 advantage on the boards with Gordon and Tobias Jahn snagging
nine rebounds each. Swift and Dahir Nasser had four assists each.

The Moundbuilders managed just 29.1 percent (16-for-55) and had 18
turnovers.

It was the Broncos best defensive effort since they held San
Francisco State to 37 in 2001, Kamansky’s first season. It was also
just the third time a foe has been held under 40 since 1961 when
records were kevpt.

“It was good to come back and have a game like that to shake off
the rust before we go back to conference play,” he said. “We’re not
going to have any more games like that.”

The Broncos resume CCAA play Friday, hosting Chico State at 7:30
p.m. Cal State Stanislaus then comes in for a Saturday game.

RCC’s Glass headed to Hofstra

Sophomore quarterback Coy Glass of Riverside Community College has
signed with Hofstra University and will be transferring after the
first of the year.

Glass, who missed the final game of the season after breaking his leg
in the Tigers’ game against Chaffey College, became the starting
quarterback midway through his freshman season.

As a freshman, Glass, a graduate of Redlands High School, passed for
1,049 yards on 79 of 165 passing. He recorded six touchdowns against
five interceptions. This past season, Glass, who signed a full
scholarship offer, was 113 of 240 for 1,374 yards and 12 touchdowns.
He was intercepted seven times.

Hofstra, a Division I program located in Hempstead, NY, graduates its
starting quarterback, but returns three other quarterbacks–a junior
and two freshman players in 2008. Hofstra, which plays in the
Colonial Athletic Association, was 4-8 overall in 2008.

Panthers roll past West Los Angeles

The Chaffey College men’s basketball team rolled into the championship game of the 19th annual Cougar Classic, cruising past West Los Angeles 88-68 Sunday night at College of the Canyons.

It was the ninth straight win of the Panthers (15-2), who entered ranked sixth in the state. The win was especially impressive because Chaffey was coming off a draining win over No. 12 Ventura the previous night.

“It was one of the games we had a bit of a letdown after coming off a huge game,” Chaffey coach Jeff Klein said. “We were always 10, 12, 14 points up but did some good things defensively in the end to pull away.”

Chaffey led 42-30 at the half and never looked back.

Sophomore Nick Turner led the bucket brigade with 17 points, highlighted by a 5-for-10 showing from 3-point range.

Winston Robinson added 14 points and and eight rebounds. Lamar Williams, Anthony Cammon and Anthony Soares chipped in with 10 points each. Cammon and Soares also had three steals each.

On the night Chaffey hit 12 of 32 3-point tries while West Los Angeles (7-11) went 0-for-10.
Chaffey will play in Monday’s 6 p.m. championship game against either Pasadena City or host Canyons.

In other games earlier in the day Big Bend (Wash.) defeated Bartow 102-59 in consolation action.

Chaffey men surge past Ventura

The No. 6 ranked Chaffey Panthers surged to their eighth straight win, beating No. 12 Ventura 94-83 in first round play at the 19th annual Cougar Classic Saturday at College of the Canyons.

Sophomore guard Nick Turner led the Panthers with 23 points, highlighted by five 3-pointers. Also finishing in double figures were Winston Robinson (15), Anthony Soares (13) and Lamar Williams (10).

Chaffey, the second-highest scoring team in the state, only led 43-40 at the half but took control with a 20-3 run to start the second half.

Ventura, which saw an 11-game win streak snapped, was led by sophomore guard Danny Benson with 21 points. Freshman forward Randy Hunter chipped in with 14 points and 14 rebounds.

Chaffey (14-2) advances to face West Los Angeles (10-7) at 6 tonight. That school advanced with an 85-81 win over Los Angeles Harbor.

College top 10 coming up on Monday

We’re starting our top recaps of the top events in 2008. Sunday it’s the high schools that get center stage

Then on Monday the top 10 events on the local college scene will be revealed. The choice for top news story was pretty clear cut on both the Sun side and the Daily Bulletin side. The choices for No. 2 are also pretty hard to dispute. Then it gets a little tougher.

Yes, you try and be diplomatic about it. You try and have different sports and different schools represented. But certain sports carry more weight than others.

We’re lucky to have some quality schools in some quality conferences at all levels. It makes for a busy but fun year.

Broncos sweep weekly honors

Cal Poly Pomona swept both CCAA Player of the week honors as senior Larry Gordon was named top male performer with sophomore Reyana Colson earning accolades on the women’s side.

Gordon averaged 23 points, 11 rebounds and 2.5 steals in two games last week. The Montclair High School product shot 57 percent from the field and stretched his streak of double digit games to 36. He ranks sixth in the conference in scoring (16 ppg) and first in rebounding (9.5 rpg).

Colson led the Broncos to wins over Western Oregon and Northwest Nazarene, averaging 20 points, seven rebounds, four assists and 3.5 steals a game. Colson also connected on 53.3 percent of her field goal attempts and was named most valuable
player of the CCAA-GNAC Challenge.

Colson missed the first five games of the season with a knee injury but is not showing any lingering effects of that problem.

UCR basketball player honored

UC Riverside sophomore Kyle Austin (Pasadena, CA/USC/Pasadena HS) made his initial two appearances in a Highlander uniform pay immediate dividends as he earned Big West Men’s Basketball Player of the Week.  
   
Austin led the Highlanders to victories over Loyola Marymount and Montana after sitting out the past year due to NCAA transfer rules.  He averaged 19.0 points and 6.0 rebounds while shooting 45.5% (15 of 33) from the field and a perfect 6 of 6 at the foul line.  
   
In his first action of the season, Austin scored 20 points and added seven rebounds in a 59-52 win at Loyola Marymount.  He made 8 of 15 shots in 27 minutes of action.  Austin became only the second player in UCR’s Division I history to begin his career with a 20-point scoring effort, the other being Nate Carter (24 points at USC on November 22, 2002).
   
Austin helped the Highlanders extend their home court winning streak to six games as his 18 points and five rebounds were key to the 58-53 victory over Montana.  He played 32 minutes in that game, hitting all four of his free throw attempts.
   
UC Riverside owns a school Division I record-best 7-2 start to the season.

Cal Poly women win fourth straight

The Cal Poly Pomona women’s basketball team went all of last season without stringing together more than two victories. So coach Scott Davis is thrilled with his team’s most recent showing.

Sophomore guard Reyana Colson scored 14 points and snagged 10 rebounds and five steals to lead the Broncos to a 56-53 win over visiting Northwest Nazarene Saturday at Kellog Gymnasium.

It was the fourth in a row after a 2-5 start.

“It feels because we didn’t win that many in a row last year,” said Colson, named tournament most valuable player. “It’s nice to get a streak started going back into conference play.”

It was a competitive, although not necessarily well played game by either team. The Broncos won despite shooting 33.9 percent from the field (20-for-59) while the Crusaders managed 37.8 percent (17-for-45). The teams also combined for 42 turnovers.

Not surprisingly, Davis was most pleased with his team’s defense which contibuted to the Crusaders’ woes.

“We made everything difficult for them,” he said. “That’s a very good team so it was a good win for us.”

The first half feature eight ties and seven lead changes and ended with the Broncos up 27-27.
The Broncos led by as many as eight in the second half, the last time coming a 36-28.
The Crusaders stayed in striking distance and finally took its first lead of the half when Brittney Roggenkamp drained a 3-pointer to give her team a 42-41 lead with 7:48 to go. It was tight the rest of the way.

The game was even for the last time at 51 with 2:29 left. The Broncos went back in front seconds later when Stephisha Walton, 0-for-9 from the field at that point, scored inside and converted a free throw for a 54-51 edge.

Cal Poly got some breathing room on a bucket by Ally Smith off the inbounds pass from Walton to go up 56-52 with a minute left and the Broncos never looked back.
Colson was joined in double figures by Smith (13) and Megan Ford (11).

Northwest Nazarene got 15 from Lindsay Brady, who fouled out with 3:57 left and the score tied at 49.

Colson, who had 26 points and seven assists in Cal Poly’s win Friday over Western Oregeon, was joined on the all-tournament team by Ford, Brady, Roggenkamp and Katie Torland of Western Oregon.

In the other game of the day Western Oregon (5-5) beat Cal State Los Angeles 76-63. Former San Bernardino Valley standout Shy Walter had 14 points, four rebounds and a blocked shot for the Eagles (1-8)

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Former Wolverines faring well at the next level

Several players that contributed to the Foothill Conference championship by the San Bernardino Valley College women’s basketball team are excelling at their four-year colleges.

Junior forward Shy Walter has moved into the starting lineup at Cal State Los Angeles. She started the week averaging 6.6 points and 3.9 rebounds but tallied 26 points, 11 rebounds, three assists, two steals and a block in losses to Western Oregon and Northwest Nazarene.

Guard La’Quita Jordan is the leading scorer at Alaska-Fairbanks. She is averaging 13.9 points, 4.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists and has hit 11 of 27 tries from 3-point range. She has a high game of 23 and has been the team’s leading scorer in three of its last four games.

Forward Ronisha Edwards is a teammate of Jordan’s. She is averaging 9 points and 7.9 rebounds and has a high rebounding effort of 12.