CRC Hawks (9-16, 3-10) vs. Modesto Junior College (9-17, 4-9)
@ Cosumnes River College
Sacramento, Calif – Cosumnes River (9-16, 3-10) looked to earn some redemption from their worst loss of the season last month at MJC (9-17, 4-9). Many Hawks players contributed tonight. Highlight performances came from guard Adam Orr's reemergence by erupting for 25 points, Kenneth Cooley scoring 22 points, and center Dillon Iyawe collecting an impressive 17 rebounds.
In first half action, the Hawks used a matchup zone against Modesto, and it proved to be disruptive early on. The Hawks also pushed the tempo offensively. Cooley, Andre Huddleston, and Alex Huber were all a large part of that. Huddleston's play in the second half of conference has been outstanding, and Huber's grit and hustle have been truly needed late in this challenging season.
CRC found themselves struggling to score and went on a drought for the last 4:29 of the half. That allowed the Pirates to pull away slowly in that time. The Hawks were looking at a 41-30 halftime deficit.
The coaching staff made some adjustments defensively and went to man defense. That change ignited a huge 11-0 run to start the second frame. It started with a steal and emphatic dunk by Cooley. Then Cooley hit a corner three on the next possession. After that, Iwaye scored on a rebound putback And-1 finish. Orr topped off the run with a corner three of his own to force an MJC timeout. With the game tied 41-41 and four straight defensive stops, the Hawks had great momentum.
With 13:49 remaining in the game, CRC held their largest lead at 53-49. There were six lead changes in the half, and both teams were desperate for a much needed win.
In the closing minutes, with the Hawks down 74-69 with 1:23 and the ball, CRC called timeout. On the next possession, the Hawks spread the floor and swung it to Cooley for a drive from the wing for a score and foul to cut the lead to 74-71. Cooley missed the free-throw, but Huber snagged the offensive rebound to give the Hawks hope. Huber passed to Cooley who scored on another drive for a 74-73 score. The Hawks had to foul to stop the clock after attempting a steal. MJC scored both free-throws to extend the lead 76-73 with 21.5 seconds left. On the next Hawks possession, Huddleston took it the length of the court and just missed a shot in the lane. CRC put MJC back on the line to stop the clock again. MJC went 1-for-2 to take a 77-73 lead. CRC missed a three by Orr, but the Hawks got the ball back when MJC stepped out-of-bounds on the rebound. With 1.7 seconds left, Cooley got fouled just as the ball was being inbounded. This put Cooley on the line with 1.4 seconds, and he made both free-throws. The Hawks fouled one final time with game at 77-75. MJC made both shots for 79-75 lead with 0.5 seconds. Orr heaved a three-quarter court shot as time expired and nailed it. Hawks took a hard fought but tough loss 79-78.
The Hawks will play their remaining two games of the season with games at rival Sac City 2/18 and at home for Sophomore Night against #11 Santa Rosa 2/21.