Photo by Curtis Ashley
By Curtis Ashley
After securing two season sweeps in their last two games, the City College Men’s basketball team has the tables turned on them. The guys headed to the Bronx to take on the Lehman College Lightning, and like their match-up earlier in the month, City lost. This game wasn’t nearly the heart-breaker the January 3rd contest was, losing 80-85 on Saturday’s match-up.
It’s been a weird season for the Beavers. Their 11-9 overall record, along with their 6-6 conference record, denote that they have made some improvements since last year. But then you hear about games like this, and the one at Brooklyn, and versus Baruch, and versus Connecticut College, and you wonder how good this team actually is, or can be. Then after that, you think back to how the team plays; with so much aggression and determination, making you think the team really is getting better. It’s tough to comment on the team sometimes, after their wins and their losses. Simply put, consistency has been an issue.
That’s overall, but for the independent players, they have been nothing short of phenomenal, including in the loss against Lehman. Che McCoy, in just his second game since returning to the team, had a team high 21 point, off 6-of-8- shooting from the perimeter. Khalil Hamer had a double-double, with 13 points and 10 assists. Mark Richards and Robert Dionisio had big scoring outputs as well, with 15 and 12 points, respectively.
“Che played real well. He came in, it was a real big spark. He was basically on fire for a little while shooting from the perimeter. We needed that for sure. We need somebody else to give us a push offensively from time to time,” Head Coach Tom Green said after the game. “Che gave us a really, really big lift. This game wouldn’t have been this close if it wasn’t for Che.”
It was Che’s offensive production that gave City their largest lead of the game. He drained a three to give City a 59-49 lead with just under 13 minutes remaining in the game. The team looked as though they could hold on to the win for the most part, going up by nine points with only three minutes left. But after two three-pointers from Lehman to put them right back in the game, it seemed as though nothing would go right for the Beavers. The team wouldn’t score for the remainder of the game, indicative of the game at Brooklyn when the team went completely ice-cold for the last seven minutes of the match.
“I put the one at Brooklyn to rest in my mind, after digesting it for a while. I told the guys before the ball-game that this is the most important game of the season, because it happens to be the next game on our schedule,” Green said. “It’s a disappointing loss, but we just gotta regroup and come back.”
The team will certainly need to regroup and be ready for their next opponent, the Dolphins from the College of Staten Island. City shocked them in their own gym when they faced them earlier this season, with a 81-76 victory. CSI will definitely be looking to get some sweet revenge. But CCNY will be looking to pull themselves together for this final stretch of the season.
“Right now, the most important game of our season is CSI on Tuesday, because it happens to be the next game on the schedule. We got four more conference games to go, and then a non-conference game next Saturday,” Green mentioned. “I think we’re having a good year for the most part. It could be significantly better, but it could be significantly worse as well.”
After seeing how the team has played in the second half of the season, the only thing they really need to work on is their ability to finish, whether they’re winning or losing. It’s about the guys keeping their head in the game. Though school is back in session, and there are a bunch of other things to think about, the Beavers can’t lose sight of their goals. Also, they can’t allow to let a season with any big accomplishments to be overshadowed by these persistent issues. This truly makes Tuesday’s game the most important of the season.