Panthers lose composure, suffer stunning loss

This is the time of year when teams want to be peaking. The playoffs are a couple of weeks away and even if you’re not going to win a conference title, you want to have all your players on the same page and focused.

The Chaffey College men’s basketball team let one get away Friday night when it suffered a stunning 100-95 overtime loss to Rio Hondo, which came into the game in sixth in the Foothill Conference and an 8-15 overall record.

Before the game Chaffey coach Jeff Klein warned that Rio was not a pushover, a handful of quality players and they had beaten a formidable Antelope Valley team. He was right.  The Roadrunners played like a tean with nothing to lose and were with the Panthers all the way. 

The surprising part was not that Chaffey lost, it was the manner in which it lost composure in the overtime. One player in particular  who wasn’t even in the game.

It had been 84-all at the end of regulation and Rio was up 86-84 when Chaffey big man Mo Hughley, who had fouled out in the closing second of regulation, was called for a technical foul. It seems he was at the end of the bench pouting a little too loudly.

Rio’s Maurice Cole proceeded to make the two free throws for a four-point lead.

That lead would swell to 96-86. And in that stretch Hughley was confronted by the referee again, and this time asked to leave the bench.

Klein said he didn’t think Hughley said anything that offensive but that the referee’s problem goes back to issues the past few games. Maybe he was paying more attention to the big man than he needed to,m given the situation.

If that is the case, than Hugley should have shut up after the first technical foul. Did he really need the embarrassment of being asked to leave the bench?

It will be interesting to see if Klein chooses to play Hughley in the next game,.Sometimes a lesson needs to be learned. What if that were to happen in a playoff game?

Maybe it was just a pair of free throws and the Panthers did end up down by 10. But the incident seemed to rattle the players on the court as well.

The Panthers have a very good team and are more than capable of making a strong playoff run. We’ll see how this one plays out.

The Panthers will be at Antelope Valley on Wednesday and close out the season with a home game next Friday against Mt. San  Jacinto. Those are both quality opponents. If the Panthers win them they will finish second in the Foothill to SBVC – a noteworthy accomplishment.



Redlands’ Harp, CMS’ Jones named the week’s best

Sophomore Tyler Harp of the University of Redlands men’s swimming & diving team garnered Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Male Athlete of the Week honors for the week of Feb. 1-7, as announced today by the conference office.
Harp captured two individual events and added a memorable anchor leg on the meet-winning relay in a thrilling 124-119 victory over Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges Saturday in Claremont to help the men’s team remain undefeated in SCIAC competition.

 He cleared the NCAA “B” qualifying standard in the 200 freestyle, blitzing the field with a winning time of 1:41.76. Harp then went on to take the 200 butterfly (1:57.80) later on in the contest. In the meet’s final event, the 400 freestyle relay, he helped the Bulldogs’ “A” squad finish first (3:08.54), anchoring with a 45.65.
This marks Harp’s second SCIAC Male Athlete of the Week recognition. He also gained the honor on Feb. 19, 2009 following his Male Athlete of the Year performance at the 2009 SCIAC Swimming & Diving Championships.
Claremont-Mudd-Scripps’ Emma Jones, a member of the Athenas’ swimming & diving team, gained Female Athlete of the Week laurels. She won two individual races and competed on the event-winning 400 freestyle relay in a 139-104 triumph over Redlands.
Redlands (6-2, 6-1 SCIAC; 7-1, 7-0 SCIAC) hosts the SCIAC Dive Prelims this Saturday and Sunday at the Thompson Aquatic Center. The meet is scheduled to commence at 11 a.m. on both days.
The SCIAC Athletes of the Week are voted on weekly by the conference’s eight sports information directors.

Danridge competing in D-League

From the “Where are They Now” department . .  .

Former Cajon High School basketball standout Tony Danridge is playing for the Albuquerque Thunderbirds of the NBA’s D-League.

Danridge, who played collegiately at the University of New Mexico, is averaging 9.1 points and 2.5 rebounds in a reserve role, although he did managed 15 points and five rebounds in a 108-93 win over the Rio Grande Valley Vipers last week.

The D-League is a minor league of sorts for the NBA. The players don’t make that much money but it is a chance to play and be seen.



SBVC football players make college choices

Four San Bernardino Valley College football players have made decisions on four-year colleges.

Defensive back Dexter Fowler (Silverado HS), a second-team All-Mountain Conference selection, is headed to Division II Southwest Missouri State. He recorded 19 solo tackles and 18 assisted ones with two interceptions, eight pass breakups and one recovered fumble.

Wide receiver Eric Charles (San Gorgonio) and defensive lineman Kemaine Thurston (Arroyo Valley) are both going to Southwest Oklahoma State. Thurston tallied 44 solo tackles and 35 assisted with 1.5 sacks and two recovered fumbles.

Wide receiver Aaron Barlow, who was injured much of last season, is headed to Division II California-Pennsylvania.


Wolverines slip past Panthers to pad Foothill lead

The Foothill Conference is perhaps the deepest in the state when it comes to men’s basketball. So it is saying something for a team to run the table. But that’s just what the San Bernardino Valley College men are now likely to do.

The Wolverines (24-2, 10-0) passed their last real test of the regular season, beating Chaffey 85-82. It looked like it was going to be easy as the Wolverines shot a sizzling 65.1 percent in the first half. They led by 19 in the second. But this IS the Foothill Conference and it IS a local rival. So it couldn’t be that easy.

Chaffey got back into contention at the 6-minute mark with some big shots and by generating some turnovers.  

But the Wolverines have made shots all year – different player, different game. They have so many weapons it has to be hard to defend. This time it was Orlando Brazier with some big plays on both ends of the floor.

Three of the four remaining teams on SBVC’s schedule are under .500 and the other is .500. These are games for coach Quincy Brewer to make his final tuneups. SBVC is three games up so they’re pretty much assured of a title repeat.

This team has so much talent and so much depth, the only thing that can stop it would be itself. If egos get in the way or players forget the team concept. 



Broncos’ win means CCAA is up for grabs

The Cal Poly Pomona men’s basketball team found a way – AGAIN!

The Broncos ventured into Cal State San Bernardino’s Coussoulis Arena and emerged with a 63-59 win. The Coyotes didn’t help themselves by clanking free throws down the stretch. But give the Broncos credit for making the plays they needed to when it mattered.

It was another case of a team, seemingly overmatched, beating what looks like a better team. That is all coach Greg Kamansky who has no peers when it comes to making something out of nothing.

Who would have thought the Broncos would be in the mix after they dropped three straight at home. Now they have done the unthinkable – win five straight on the road in a tough conference.

Now Cal State and Humboldt State are tied for first with the Broncos one game out and eight games left. Both the Broncos and Coyotes will be at home on Friday and Saturday.


SBVC men back at No. 1 . . . but not alone

The San Bernardino Valley College men’s basketball team is back in the No, 1 spot of the state poll for the third time this season. But this time they are tied for the top spot with Riverside,

SBVC (22-2) has won 10 straight games but faces a challenging week. It will host No. 14 Mt. San Jacinto (17-6) on Wednesday and No. 13 Chaffey (15-6) on Friday. Both games should be thrillers. The first time SBVC played Mt. San Jacinto it won 104-100. That’s a lot of points and a lot of action.

And the first time it played Chaffey, it was 98-96 . . . Also in overtime. It doesn’t get any better than that.

Here’s the poll . . .

1 . San Bernardino 22-2

     Riverside 19-4

3.  Ohlone 17-4

4. San Jose City 19-4

5. Citrus 21-2

6. Fresno 19-5

    Mt. SAC 20-4

8. Saddleback 20-4

9. Foothill 16-6

10. Chabot 16-5

11. Irvine Valley 20-3

12. Cosumnes River 16-5

13. Chaffey 15-6

14. Mt. San Jacinto 17-6

15. Sequoias 18-6

16. San Francisco 19-3

17. Yuba 19-4

18. Cuesta 20-5

19. Bakersfield 18-5

20. American River 14-7

Broncos, Coyotes get set to collide at Coussoulis

The Cal Poly Pomona and Cal State San Bernardino men’s basketball teams renew their rivalry Tuesday night at Cal State’s Coussoulis Arena with the Coyotes needing a win to stay in first place and the Broncos needing one to stay in striking distance.

The big question will be whether or not the Broncos can contain the Coyotes post players – Bryan LeDuc, Devon Davis and Greg Williams, When the teams played earlier this season it was a matter of men against boys as LeDuc and Davis manhandled the Broncos. Le Duc was the biggest beast with 25 points and 17 rebounds.

Where the Coyotes are strongest, the Broncos appear vulnerable. And that was before Cal Poly’s Tobias Jahn went down with a bulging disk that has kept him out of the last five games.

Sophomore Dwayne Fells has made great strides for the Broncos but he probably isn’t ready to handle the load on his own. The Broncos also have a redshirt freshman in Kevin Ryan but he wasn’t even in the mix until Jahn got hurt.

Jahn is the biggest mystery. He started progressing in the middle of last season and was a formidable presence by the time the Broncos got to the national championship game. He seemed to regress this season even before he got hurt.

Even if he can play, he probably won’t be in the best playing shape.

There is no Larry Gordon this year so the Broncos need to Jahn to at least contribute.

San Bernardino leads the all-time series 21-19 and is 28-2 in its last 30 home games.

We’ll see how the drama unfolds!


New gym at Chaffey to open Wednesday

The new gymnasium at Chaffey College will be unveiled on Wednesday as the Panthers host Victor Valley College in a men’s and women’s basketball doubleheader that will tip off at 5 p.m.

School officials had hoped to have the new facility available last month but it didn’t quite happen. The old facility is being closed down for renovation but when it is open will give the school more flexability in scheduling, not just for its competing teams, but physical education classes as well. 

Athletic director Carl Beach said formal dedication festivities will be held in conjunction with the Feb. 19 game against Mt. San Jacinto.