In what seemed like a sure win, the Grand Rapids Community College men’s basketball team fell apart against Ancilla College in a 75-65 loss on Feb. 12 – finishing the season series 0-2.
The Raiders began the game with one of their best first halves this season, going on to shoot 64.5% from the field and six for eight (75%) behind the arc. Sophomore forward Johnny Davis (15 points and 10 rebounds) led the team’s offensive run with his fifth double-double of the season – with help from freshman forward Chandler Collins (13 points, eight rebounds, three steals) and freshman guard Darien Banks (11 points and six rebounds). With nothing short of phenomenal defense and great execution of offensive plays, the Raiders willed themselves into a commanding 50-30 lead going into halftime.
The second half quickly became the Raiders demise – shooting a season low 14% (4 for 28) from the field, 0 for 12 from behind the three-point line, and allowing the Chargers to go onto a 23-8 scoring run that cut the lead to 58-53. Collins commented on how the Raiders began to fall apart during the second half.
“I think first shot defense we’re getting stops,” Collins said. “We have to get to the glass and grab the defensive boards…they’re just getting easy put-backs and second chance points.”
Banks also weighed in, commenting that, “The team didn’t play together tonight. That’s the only way we’ll win.”
The Raiders’ mere 15 points in the second half could have been credited to the multiple early-whistles by the referees – finding themselves with six team fouls in the first four minutes. Fans, players, and coaches all began to show their frustration due to the calls that seemed to be in favor of Ancilla.
Raiders Head Coach Jeff Bauer commented on what he believed led to the poor second half.
“I thought in the second half we got away from sharing the ball well and executing plays,” Bauer said. “They (Ancilla) started to pressure us and we didn’t handle it well.”
With multiple turnovers, unable to find good shots, and no hopes of any offensive run, the Raiders saw Ancilla starting to mount a lead late which eventually led to a win for the Chargers.
The Raiders are now 13-11 for the season (9-4 at home) and are facing Glen Oaks Community College on the road Feb. 15 – winning the previous match in overtime 113-110. Their next home game will be Feb. 19 at 7:30 p.m. in the Ford Fieldhouse. Admission for the game is $3 for the public and free for any individual with a GRCC student I.D.