SACRAMENTO, Calif. –Cosumnes River College men's basketball team James Giacomazzi released the team's 2014-15 roster today. Giacomazzi, in his 11th season at the helm of the Hawks basketball program, released the roster of 15 players this morning.
The team returns only two players from last year's 23-9 team that advanced to the Nor Cal Regional Final, where they were one game shy of advancing to the CCCAA Final 8. CRC also returns one player who grayshirted last season following preseason knee surgery. Coach Giacomazzi's team features four sophomores and eleven freshmen, including one grayshirt who will sit out this season.
Returning to the Hawks for their sophomore seasons are guard Mitchell Love and forward David Straughter. Love, a 6'2" guard out of St. Ignatios Prep in Spartanburg, South Carolina, appeared in 32 contests as a true freshman including one start. He averaged 6.5 points per contest on 45% shooting, including 40% from three –point range, good for 11th in the Big 8 conference. Straughter, a 6'5" forward from Luther Burbank High School, appeared in 29 contests last season as a reserve. He averaged 4.4 points, 3.7 rebounds and one block per game, shooting 50% from three-point range. Both Love and Straughter will look to factor into the Hawks rotation once again.
Also returning to CRC is 6'11" freshman center Donald Mims. Mims, out of Center High School in Antelope, grayshirted last season following preseason knee surgery to repair a torn meniscus. The team will look for Mims to anchor the defense as one of the CCCAA's premier shot blockers. Cosumnes River also features a pair of transfers who will provide veteran leadership to a young Hawks team. Transferring in from Fresno Pacific is 5'11" guard Phil Randles. Randles appeared in 26 games last season for the Sunbirds, starting in two, as a combo guard. He lettered at Fresno Pacific following a standout career at nearby Edison High School in Fresno. Also transferring into CRC for their sophomore year is point guard Josh Dela Cruz. Dela Cruz, a 5'11" guard from Galt, appeared in 21 games as a freshman for Sacramento City College averaging over 3.3 assists per game.
The Hawks boast a young, but talented roster, featuring 10 true freshmen. Among the freshmen are forwards Ty'Quan Neal and Daylon Potts from Edison High School in Fresno, where they led the team to its state record tying 22nd Central Section championship. Neal, a 6'6" 215-pound forward from Madera, was named to the All-State second-team by Cal Hi Sports. He was also named the Central Section Most Valuable Player following a senior season where Edison finished 27-8 overall, and advanced to the Southern California regional quarterfinals. Potts, an All-Fresno Bee first-team selection, averaged 9.2 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.4 steals for the Tigers. The 6'5" forward was also an All-State nominee and an All-League selection this past season. Also joining Neal and Potts in the frontcourt will be Bolaji Famuyiwa and Lejae Thompson. Famuyiwa, a 6'8" native of London, England, is a reserve center with upside who provides the team with depth in the front court. Thompson, a 6'9" freshman from nearby Valley High School, will grayshirt this season and will not compete. He lettered three times for the Vikings as a power forward.
Cosumnes River also features a corps of talented freshmen guards who will look to have a large role with the team this season. Among the guards are 6'2" 175-pound guard KJ Daye. Daye recently completed his fourth season at Tracy's Merrill West High School, and his third with the varsity squad. Daye was named West basketball's "Player of the Year" for the second straight season, after averaging 18.5 points and 5.2 assists per game. Also arriving this Summer are freshmen point guards Demoriaye Hart-Spikes and Joshua Johnson. Hart-Spikes, a 5'11" guard from Fairfield High School, led the Falcons to a 25-8 overall record and a trip to the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section DIII finals. He was named Solano County Athletic Conference Most Valuable Player, as well as an All-State nominee by Cal-Hi Sports. Johnson, a 5'10" guard from Cosumnes Oaks High School, will also be counted on for lead guard duties this season. The Stockton native was a two-time All-Tri City selection. Guard Will White also joins the team from nearby Roseville High School, and will bring instant offense to the Hawks backcourt. White was a two-time Tiger Award recipient and was named to four All-Tournament teams his senior year.
Joining the Hawks in the backcourt this Fall is Trenton Anthony, a 5'10" guard from La Jolla Prep. Anthony was a two-time All-State selection following a standout career at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska, where he led the Golden Bears to the State championship as a junior. Also competing for time in the Hawks' backcourt this season is guard Elijah Calloway. Calloway, a 6'2" 170-pound guard from nearby Valley High School in Sacramento, played four years of varsity basketball for the Vikings. He served as team captain this past season, finishing in the top-20 in scoring in the Sac-Joaquin section the past two seasons, when he was named two-time All-Metro League.
"This team is deeper than we were last season," said Giacomazzi in comparing this year's team to last season's 23-9 team. "We're quicker than we were, and we'll have much more balance offensively. We expect different people to step up every night."
The Cosumnes River Hawks begin the 2014-15 season on the road at the San Jose City College Tip-off Classic on Nov. 6, when they take on host San Jose City. They'll make their home debut a month later when they open the 36th Annual James Clark Classic on Dec. 4.