Men’s basketball win semi-final round, proceed to second consecutive championship

Imani Love, Sports Editor

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Playing in a gym with a large crowd packed into the stands, the men’s basketball team took advantage of their home court, winning a close battle against St. Frances, 52-47. This win was the last step JC took to make it to the MIAA ‘A’ Conference championship game.

During the first quarter, the St. Frances Panthers came out of the cave ready to scratch up the Patriots. With two three-pointers from St. Frances junior Dayshawn Wells, a two-pointer each from juniors Tevon Saddler and Maurice White, and two foul shots made by senior Daquan Cook, the Panthers took control over JC, having a one point lead over the Patriots, 12-11. For JC, sophomore Kamau Stokes hit a three-pointer, junior Mike Owona with a two-pointer and senior Jarred Jones with three two-pointers.

During the second quarter freshman Justin Jenifer picked up his game with two three-pointers and a two-pointer. The Panthers kept their lead during the first half with a two-pointer and three-pointer from Wells, a three-pointer from Cook, and a two pointer from Saddler. White and Kirk helped their lead with making one foul shot each.

During the second half of the game, JC stepped up their offense. Owona had a dunk that had the crowd roaring. Junior Rodney Elliot made his first shot of the game with a three-pointer. Jenifer hit two two-pointers, Stokes with two three-pointers, and senior Marcus James subbed in and scored a layup off a rebounded shot missed by Stokes. The Panthers began to fall behind, but they made sure not to let the lead get out-of-control. With a two-pointer and two made foul shots, White helped keep his team in the game.

Fourth quarter JC had scored 11 out of 15 of their points from foul shots made by Jenifer, James, and Jones.  Elliot scored two two-pointers, one of which was made in the final seconds of the game. The Panthers boosted their score with foul shots made by Cook  and Saddler. Though senior Panther Josh Forney scored a two-pointer, his two missed foul shots cost the Panthers a chance at the lead. Saddler scored a three-pointer with about a minute left in the game, but it wasn’t enough – JC ended up victorious against St. Frances 52-47.

The Patriots compete in MIAA ‘A’ Conference finals on Sunday, Feb. 19. Tip-off is at 5:00pm at UMBC against Mount St. Joseph.

Imani Love is a Sports Editor for The Patriot and jcpatriot.com.