East County Sports

No. 9 Jets hold off No. 14 Cypress


By Nick Pellegrino
East County Sports staff writer

IRVINE (5-14-2018) – San Diego Miramar College built an early 17-point cushion in the first half, maintaining the lead throughout Thursday’s (Dec. 13) contest – but barely.

No. 14-ranked Cypress College came on late to challenge Miramar, yet the No. 9 Jets hung on to claim a 68-62 decision at the PCAC-Orange Empire Challenge, hosted by Irvine Valley College.

In the second game, the host Lasers met MiraCosta.

Miramar forward Blake Seits recorded 10 of his team-high 21 points in the opening 20 minutes, as the Jets mounted 3 lead before the Chargers answered with the final basket before the intermission.

However, Cypress continued the scoring run with the first seven points after the break to close within 40-33, and it was a dogfight the rest of the way between clubs both in the Signal The Light Basketball rankings (since the official CCCAA website hasn’t posted a new poll since the preseason).

But the closest they got was 46-43 with 11:31 remaining on a tip-in by Ke’jon Barnes, then a 3-point basket by Jason McClung. The teams then kept exchanging baskets or foul shots the rest of the way to stay in the 6-to-8-point range, including consecutive treys by Beits.

For Miramar (9-2), Artis Chapman also chipped in 14 points while sharing rebounding honors with Damien Miller with 8 boards each.

Cypress guard Mike Magee led all scorers with 26 points, split evenly between the halve. He was the lone Chargers player in double figures.
Barnes was tops with 11 boards, but Cypress (7-3) was otherwise badly out-muscled by the Jets, 42-31 in rebounding, leading to a huge Miramar advantage in free throws, 31 attempts to 12. However, Miramar allowed the Chargers back into the game on turnovers (22-to-10).

MiraCosta 71, Irvine Valley 67 (OT):  Through 40 minutes of play, Spartans starting guard Devyian Roberson rarely touched the basketball and scored just 8 points. However in overtime, the freshman scored consecutive baskets to snap a thriller tied at 60-al, as MiraCosta downed the host Lasers in the PCAC-OCE Challenge on Thursday (Dec. 13).

Roberson beat his defender on a ball fake, driving to the basket for a layin to take a 62-60 lead 43 seconds into the extra session. Two possession later following a MiraCosta timeout, Roberson again scored from inside the paint for a 4-point lead.

IVC made a free throw, but MiraCosta sophomore guard Xavier Alison, the Spartans’ leading scorer with 20 points, bombed home a 3-pointer for a 67-61 cushion with 2:17 left.

Roberson finished with 14 points, including 6 in overtime for MiraCosta (7-5).

For the Lasers (3-9), David Georgiev had 15 points and 6 rebounds and Bryce Roczey finished with 13 points and 11 rebounds for IVC.

The Spartans held a narrow 25-24 lead at the half when freshman Jonathan Langston scored all of his 6 points from off the bench for MCC. Josh Walker and Kevin Olsen each have 4 points for the Lasers.

The overtime was the first for MiraCosta in three years. During the 2015-16 season, three games went the extra five minutes.

The Challenge resumes with a doubleheader Saturday at MiraCosta, as the Spartans host Cypress following the Miramar-Irvine Valley opener at 4 p.m. from Crosswoods Gymnasium in Oceanside.

Copper Mountain 91, San Diego Mesa 89: The Olympians’ best chance for their first victory was set-up on a 3-point shot by Nick Koronko with 12 seconds to play, moving Mesas to within 89-87. However, Mesa was unable to forge a last-second steal, as Copper Mountain’s Anthony Rice sank two foul shots with 7 seconds left to seal the triumph for the Fighting Cacti.

Copper Mountain moves to 8-5 overall, while Mesa fell to 0-9 in a contest held Friday (Dec. 14) at Mt. San Jacinto College in Riverside County.

Mesa guard Cameron Hill hit a mid-range jumper to five the Olympians a 61-60 lead with 11:32 remaining, but the Cacti answered with a 7-0 run to take a 6-point lead. The margin alternated between 6-to-2 the rest of the way but Copper Mountain staved off each Mesa wave.

For the Cacti, Rice made just 4-of-15 shots, yet went a perfect 13-for-13 at the foul line for a team-high 23 points. Forward Zack Kroker added 18 points, while forward Kenny Bates posted a double-double with 12 points and 15 rebounds.

All five Mesa starters scored in double figures, led by guard Aren Thomas’ career-high 25 points.

The others were Emanwel Henry (18 points), Joseph Davis (17), Adrian Lee (14) and Hill (12), as Mesa shot a season-best 54 percent from the field. However, CMC held a massive 50-20 rebounding advantage.

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