Talon Marks

Men’s basketball acquires eighth win in a row defeating Compton College

Sophomore+guard+No.+4+Riley+Hamilton+went+up+for+the+dunk+in+traffic.+The+Falcons+won+the+game+84-72.+Photo+credit%3A+Carlos+Ruiz
Sophomore guard No. 4 Riley Hamilton went up for the dunk in traffic. The Falcons won the game 84-72. Photo credit: Carlos Ruiz

Sophomore guard No. 4 Riley Hamilton went up for the dunk in traffic. The Falcons won the game 84-72. Photo credit: Carlos Ruiz

Sophomore guard No. 4 Riley Hamilton went up for the dunk in traffic. The Falcons won the game 84-72. Photo credit: Carlos Ruiz

Carlos Ruiz and Jah-Tosh Baruti

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The Cerritos College men’s basketball team won its home conference match against Compton College 84-72.

In a nail biting first half the Falcons were neck and neck against Compton. Ahead by only two points, Cerritos ended the first half with a close score of 31-29.

During Wednesday’s game there were some aspects of the first half that some players believed were missing.

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Sophomore guard No. 4 Riley Hamilton with a clean and easy two hand dunk. Hamilton finished the game with 22 points. Photo credit: Carlos Ruiz

Sophomore guard No. 4 Riley Hamilton said, “[We had] a lack of energy and [weren’t] on our game at the beginning.

“We just picked it up in the second half and really started executing the way we wanted to.”

Going into the second half the team began to play more consistently and ended the second half adding 53 points to the scoreboard.

“We definitely picked up our energy—defended the ball and tried to limit as many open shots as we can,” said Hamilton.

Hamilton spoke on his mentality when driving to the basket, “Everyday in practice [head] coach [Russ] May and [assistant] coach [Lavell] Owens just tell me to go to the rim hard and just don’t look for a foul. I just went as hard as I could.”

Eight wins in conference now, Hamilton said, “It’s pretty relaxing, we just have a few more games left in conference and then we got playoffs so, we’re just trying to tighten some things up.”

Hamilton finished the game with 22 points, six steals and five rebounds.

Previously missing out on the home conference game against El Camino College, due to injury—Sophomore guard No. 14 Keshaun Mack made his return to the court against Compton College.

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Sophomore guard No. 14 Keshaun Mack first game back on the court following injury. Mack had 10 points and nine rebounds. Photo credit: Carlos Ruiz

Mack spoke about how he felt in his first game returning from the sprained ankle injury he suffered against Long Beach City College, saying he felt “Pretty good.

“A few slip-ups going to my weak ankle, but I’ll be better for the next game. It’s getting better continuously. I’ll be good,” said Mack.

He elaborated on his first game back, saying, “I performed pretty cool, I almost had a double-double. I had a pretty decent game back. Just missed a couple of shots I normally get,” said Mack.

Mack ended the game with 10 points and nine rebounds.

Although, Mack wasn’t the only returner, head coach Russ May also made his return from a personal leave of absence, after the passing of his brother.

May spoke about his first game back, saying, “Well, it was a tough week, me and my brother were really close, but it felt good to be back in the gym and get back to normal.”

Cerritos shot a sizzling 56.5 percent from deep, No. 3 Cody Wilkes contributed to the hot three-point shooting, as he hit 3-for-6.

The game was tied at 53 around the 11 minute mark, then the Falcons went on an 11-2 run, with Wilkes accounting for eight of those points.

Wilkes knocked down two three-pointers and a mid-range jumper during that span, he said—“It was just momentum shocks to help get the team going, because the game was tied.”

Wilkes spoke on what goes through his mind in those moments, he says, “If it’s a good shot—let it go—if it’s not get it to the people to make the right plays for the team.”

No. 1 Demetrius Thomas spoke about his performance, “I felt okay about it, nothing too special.”

Thomas had a double-double, with 20 points and 10 rebounds, he said, “Pretty solid, it was a good team win though.

“Still undefeated in conference, that’s a good sign, tryna [sic] go 10 and 0 baby,” said Thomas.

Mack talked about the first half, saying, the team “came out with no energy.”

He continued, “In the first half, our energy was bad. I wasn’t digging that. I had to hype us up pretty much.”

Speaking on achieving eight straight wins, Mack praised his coaching staff.

Mack said, “Our coaching staff pushes us pretty hard in practice and if they see something they dislike in practice, they’ll let us know about it.

May also praised the coaching staff for their work during his hiatus.

He spoke about Associate head coach Tito Ortiz, who was the interim head coach for several games, May said— “He’s awesome, he’s my right hand man. We’ve been friends since childhood, so I had no worries about leaving the team with Tito [Ortiz].”

Mack talked about the team’s work ethic as of late, he said, “We’re working pretty hard. The rest of our practices are playoff practices. We have to get ready for playoffs because we’re trying to make a deep run.”

Mack ended his remarks with “I’m praying we can go undefeated [in conference], we just gotta bring our own energy. Uplift everybody, we just gotta keep it rolling and try to keep this winning streak going. [sic]

The Cerritos College men’s basketball team will have its next conference match away against L.A. Southwest College on Feb. 9.

The Falcons previously played L.A. Southwest on Jan. 24, winning by 31 points. The team had Five Falcon’s score in double figures in that game.

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Cerritos College • Norwalk, Calif.
Men’s basketball acquires eighth win in a row defeating Compton College