East County Sports

Novsek closes door on Hawks career, season

Vanguard shoots against San Diego Christian on Thursday.


Courtesy, GSAC media relations

COSTA MESA (3-1-2019) – Vanguard University saluted its seniors Thursday night (Feb. 28) with a final win in The Pit after taking down San Diego Christian College, 81-53, to send off Malachi Hoosein, Deven Riley, Mario Soto, Jadan Anderson, Geremy McKay and Connor Kennedy with a victory.

The 10th-ranked Lions finish the regular season with a 25-5 overall record (13-5 GSAC). and will advance to the Golden State Athletic Conference Tournament. They will be the second seed behind 5th-ranked The Master’s.

Senior guard Derek Novsek, the leading scorer for San Diego Christian, closed his Hawks career with a team-best 24 points, as the ballclub finished 9-18 (5-13, 8th in GSAC).

Honestly , I have a lot of emotions going into this game,” said Hoosein. “I kind of felt all over the place. I love Vanguard. I came in here a wide eyed freshman and wasn’t the biggest fan of the place and now I’m someone who calls this place home. I appreciate everyting this school has done for me and this program has done for me and sad to say it’s my last game in The Pit.” 

Hoosein made a three-pointer to put the Lions on top, and after the Hawks tied it 7-7, one from Kennedy moved VU back in front. Soto followed with a layup before Brandon Brothers banked a three-pointer to make the score 15-11.

Points from Isaiah Gentry and Anderson helped Vanguard establish a 7-point advantage, but San Diego Christian used a 6-0 run to come within one.

Hoosein hit a deep shot to slow down SDCC, and baskets from McKay and Jonah Tolmaire with Hoosein’s third three-pointer of the night made the score 37-27 VU. Riley nailed two free throws to end the half with a 39-29 Lion lead.

The Hawks reduced the Vanguard lead to seven at the start of the second, but Riley responded with a layup to maintain Lion control. With the Hawks closing in behind three-point plays, points from Tolmaire and Gentry cultivated the Lions’ 51-39 lead with 11:34 to play.

Free throws from Brothers and a shot behind the arc from Anderson off James Moore‘s rebound advanced the Vanguard lead to 17 with eight to go. Vanguard built on their lead with a 7-1 run, highlighted by an explosive dunk from Riley. Aaron Byrne sank a three-pointer and Anderson added a layup to send off the seniors with the 81-53 win. 

Hoosein had 17 points and five rebounds while Brothers posted 13 with two rebounds. Anderson added 10, shooting .500 from three-point range.

Vanguard shot 43.5 percent as a team with 50 boards, nine steals and four blocks. 

The GSAC tournament will be held in Rocklin and begins March 7.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *