HAYWARD, Calif. – The Hawks extended their current winning streak to four games following their 83-67 victory over Las Positas in the second game of the 47th Annual Chabot Holiday Classic yesterday. They'll look to extend that streak to five games tonight, when they close out the tournament and their nonconference schedule against host Chabot.
CRC controlled yesterday's contest from the opening tip, taking a lead early and maintaining it for the duration of the game, playing a complete game for 40 minutes against a talented Las Positas team. Led by forwards Semir Cahtarevic and Jaycob Velasco (pictured right), CRC took an early double-digit lead over the Hawks of Las Positas, as the post tandem combined for 21 of the teams 42 first half points. Cahtarevic provided CRC with 10 points off the bench, converting on a pair of three-point field goals during the first 20 minutes of action, while Velasco went five of nine from the field for a team-leading 12 points. Velasco also dominated the glass, grabbing nine rebounds before intermission. While Cosumnes River had plenty of opportunities early to put Las Positas away early, the Hawks proved to be a resilient team, led by guards Davis Kimble and Steve Cazares. LPC managed to close the deficit to five to close out the period as Kimble scored a game-high 14 points in the first half, and Cazares provided 12 points for Las Positas, which included a four-point play as Cazares was fouled on a made three-pointer.
That's as close as Las Positas would get for the remainder of the game however as CRC, led by sophomore guards Rodney Cook and AJ Bridges, would take control of the contest from that point forward. Cook scored all 12 of his points in the second half, while Bridges scored seven of his 16 points down the stretch, as Cosumnes River defeated Las Positas 83-67 for their fourth straight victory. Cook also grabbed six rebounds and dished four assists in the winning effort. Velasco dominated the glass, grabbing a game-high 17 rebounds while recording three blocks, and scoring a game-high 25 points for his sixth double-double of the season. Sophomore forward TJ Williams also performed well inside for the Hawks, scoring 13 points and grabbing nine rebounds in the victory. In all five Hawks scored in double-figures putting together one of their finest offensive performances of the year, as the team shot an efficient 54% from the field including 54% from long-distance, while also recording 19 assists in the victory.
The game looked like it would get out of hand early, but Las Positas proved to be a resilient group, putting together run after run to close the gap back within single-digits. Kimble scored 22 points on the day to lead the Hawks, while sharpshooting guard Steve Cazares connected on four threes in the game, scoring 21 points in the contest. Forward Jayson Rose scored nine of his 11 points in the second half, providing the Hawks with much needed interior scoring down the stretch. LPC is now 1-1 in the Holiday Classic following the team's victory over Big 8 conference opponent Sierra in their opening game.
Cosumnes River closes the tournament against host Chabot College today, in what will be the third meeting between the two teams. CRC defeated Chabot in the team's first meeting in the championship game of the James Clark Classic earlier this season at Cosumnes River College. The two teams met once again earlier this month in the second round of the Modesto JC Tournament, a contest Chabot won en route to making an appearance in that tournament's championship game. The Gladiators (12-3) are led offensively by guard Paris Davis, who's currently averaging just under 13 points per game. Davis, an Oakland native who attended Skyline High School, is also averaging just under four rebounds a game for Chabot. Forward Ray Baldwin, and guards Greg Brown and Leo Smith, are also averaging double-figures in scoring for head Coach Denny Aye at over 10 points per game. Chabot enters the contest with a three-game winning streak, having defeated Simpson JV and Sierra in the Holiday Classic.
Tipoff for tonight's game is scheduled for 5 PM. The Hawks return to action in January on the road at Diablo Valley to open Big 8 play. They'll return home on the 10th in their conference home opener, when they take on crosstown rival American River.