In the first half, the Cerritos College men's basketball team was firing on all cylinders, as their final eight baskets were from three-point range. The Falcons (12-3) still trailed visting Chaffey College (10-5), 42-34, while the second half turned out to be disastrous. The end result of their performance was a 92-65 loss, which marks the worst home loss in school history. The old mark was a 26-point defeat at the hands of San Diego City College in 1982. Cerritos will travel to Rio Hondo College on Friday for a 6:00 p.m. South Coast Conference crossover game.
During their three-point shooting success in the first half, Cerritos led 22-17, but when the Panthers scored the next seven points, they took the lead and never looked back. Several factors played huge roles in the team's loss, most notably their turnovers. The Falcons coughed up the ball 21 times and were a meager 4-for-11 from the free throw line. By comparison, Chaffey netted 28-of-36 from the charity stripe, including six in a row after a foul and pair of technical fouls were called against Cerritos. The Panthers also turned the ball over just 12 times on the night.
Sophomore Cody Wilkes (La Mirada HS) came off the bench in the first half and connected on five three-pointers, while the team converted nine shots from long range in the first 20 minutes of the game. The Panthers countered by draining 12-of-19 three pointers in the game, with Anthony Garcia making good on all nine free throws in the second half, including the six straight after the two technical fouls.
Wilkes would go on to lead the Falcons with 18 points, while freshman Chance Hunter (Inglewood HS) added 13 points and six rebounds before fouling out. Sophomore Christian Alvis-Labadie (Whittier Christian HS) finished the night with 11 points, while sophomore Tawon Elston (Roosevelt HS) accounted for 10 points off the bench. Cerritos did convert 43% of their free throws and out-rebounded the Panthers, 36-27.
Photos by Daryl Peterson