Lady Knights fight, but fall to top-ranked Panthers
The No. 15 ranked CCRI Lady Knights basketball team hosted the No. 1 ranked Panthers of Johnson County Community College (JCCC) on Saturday. In a battle of undefeated teams, the Lady Knights lost to the Panthers 60-56. With the loss, the Lady Knights fell to 7-1 on the season.
The Panthers jumped ahead of the Lady Knights quickly 16-4 after seven minutes with hot shooting and rapidly changing defenses. The Lady Knights didn’t have an answer early for JCCC and found themselves trailing 20-9 at the 11:22 mark. Johnson County took a 35-26 lead into halftime. The Lady Knights were led in the first half by Nyjah Porcher (New Britain, Conn.) with nine points and six rebounds and Treedy Ward (Boynton, Beach, Fla.), who had nine points on three 3-pointers, to keep the Lady Knights within 10 points. In the second half the Lady Knights found renewed energy as they used multiple defenses and stifled the Johnson County rhythm to chip away at the Panther lead. The Lady Knights cut the lead to 56-54 with 2:30 left on two free throws from captain Jahira Smith (Brooklyn, N.Y). The Lady Knights tied the game 56-56 with 2:15 left on a driving left handed lay-up from Lexi Barros (New Bedford, Mass.) bringing the Cullen Fieldhouse fans to their feet. But Johnson County got a steal and a basket from Sameia Kendall with 1:10 left to take a 58-56 lead. The Lady Knights had a couple chances to tie the game but could not convert and with 30 second left JCCC took a 60-56 lead on a putback by Kathleen Brisbane.
Leading the way for the Lady Knights was sophomore Porcher with 17 points and 12 rebounds. Smith had 13 points, seven rebounds and three steals. Also helping CCRI was Barros who did a little bit of everything with 12 points, nine rebounds, three steals, and two assists. Ward added nine points and captain Jess Randall (Warwick) added six rebounds and five points, including a huge second half three pointer during the Lady Knights’ comeback.
The Lady Knights’ next game will be today when they will host the Bulldogs of Dean College at 6 p.m. for their first Region XXI league game.
Lady Knights’ McGarry named All-American
The CCRI Lady Knights’ soccer team had another excellent year, posting a 10-5-2 record to capture their 12th consecutive Region XXI Title. In addition, the Lady Knights made it to the District E Championship game where they fell to District rival Monroe Community College in Rochester, N.Y. However, the Lady Knights did receive some great news on Friday afternoon with sophomore captain Caitlin McGarry (Warwick) being named NJCAA Second Team All-American.
McGarry earned her first All-American honor for the Lady Knights. She had recently earned her second All-Region XXI honor and now she has NJCAA All-American hardware to add to her trophy case. McGarry led the Lady Knights in scoring both years she played. In her sophomore campaign, she was tied for team-high with 11 goals and added a team-leading 18 assists for 40 total points. The 40 total points ranked her tied for No. 40 in the nation by the NJCAA. In addition, the 18 assists rank her No. 8 in the nation by the NJCAA. In her freshman year, she had 10 goals and a team-leading 14 assists for 34 total points. For her career she had 21 goals and is ranked second all-time with 32 assists and ranked No.8 on the CCRI all-time scoring list with 74 total points.
“Coach Bannan and I were so happy, pleased, and proud that Caitlin McGarry has been selected as Second Team NJCAA All-American,” CCRI head coach Dennis Grassini said. “Cait led our team in scoring this past season recording 11 goals and 18 assists for 40 points. In her two years here at CCRI she has scored 21 goals and added 32 assists for a total of 74 points. Caitlin is a quality player who has great skills and footwork. Her free kicks are second to none. She gave our team probably some of the best corner kicks we’ve ever had in the history of our program. Considering our record was only 10-5-2 this past season, and not qualifying for the National Tournament, it just proves what Cait’s worth was to our program. She has represented CCRI and the women’s soccer program in an admirable fashion. We are so happy that she has been recognized nationally as she really deserves this All-American honor.”
Ice cold Knights fall to Massasoit
The CCRI Knights men’s basketball team traveled to Brockton, Mass. to play the Warriors of Massasoit Community College for the first Region XXI league game last weekend. The Knights fell to the Warriors 80-64. With the loss, the Knights fell to 4-3 on the season, 1-2 in Region XXI and 0-1 in league play.
The Knights were just not in sync all night, and shot just 34 percent from the floor and 16 percent from three-point range. After a tough first half of shooting the Knights went in to the break trailing 36-29. In the second half, the Knights did manage to tie the game 39-39 with 16 minutes remaining in the game on a three-pointer by freshman Jerome Harris (Hartford, Conn.). Then, the Knights did pull ahead 45-43 with 14 minutes remaining in the game, but six minutes later the Warriors hit three of their four team three-pointers in back-to-back-to-back possessions to pull away.
Leading the way for the Knights was Harris, scoring a game-high 21 points, including three three-pointers. Pat Marchand (Cranston) scored 14 points with seven rebounds. Also contributing for the Knights was Rob Hazard (North Providence) with 10 points, three assists and three steals. In his return, sophomore Desmond Williams (Torrington, CT) scored nine points with three rebounds while his backcourt-mate Bryan Yarce (Cranston) dished out a game-high seven assists and swiped two steals. Massasoit had four players score in double-figures.
“Very inconsistent effort by our young men tonight,” CCRI head coach Rick Harris said. “Massasoit clearly was willing to work harder for this victory than we were. Our execution was unfocused as well and those two negatives by us are a recipe for a loss. As I told the team, most important is that we not dwell on how we played, but instead get rededicated to do the things we need to do to become the team we know we can become. Hopefully this loss will serve as a wake-up call to both our coaches and players.
It does not get any easier for the Knights, as their next game will also be a Region XXI league game versus Region XXI rival and No. 12 Dean College. The game will be played today at 8 p.m. following the Lady Knights.