Final Score: Riverhawks 67, Chesapeake College Skipjacks 71
Updated Records: AACC 7-6 overall, 3-3 conference. Skipjacks 5-8 overall, 4-2 conference
Location: Anne Arundel Community College – Arnold, MD
Box Score: Found here.
Media: Video here.
The Riverhawk men's basketball team kept fans on edge to the very end this past Wednesday night (1/9), but early struggles would prove damaging enough as they fell, 71-67, in the exciting finish against the NJCAA DII Region XX Skipjacks of Chesapeake College.
The Skipjacks would open the night with an unanswered 6-point scoring bout, displaying their range with a 3-point bucket from well beyond the arc. Regaining their composer, the Riverhawks would close the gap and then continue to stay within reach of the Skipjacks finding themselves all tied-up (21-21) after fourteen minutes of action. Able to score a few quick buckets before time would expire, Chesapeake would hold a 6-point lead (34-28) after the first half.
With each team battling for the Maryland Junior College Athletic Conference (MD JUCO) win, Chesapeake would slowly begin to pull away – finding their largest lead of 12 points, just 5 minutes into the second half. After leading the first half for the Riverhawks with 12 points, Walter Tolliver (Parole, MD/Annapolis) would get some assistance from Dayvon Cuffey (Glen Burnie, MD/Glen Burnie) and Jacoby Rojas (San Angelo, TX/Northeast) who were uncharacteristically quiet in the first twenty minutes of play. Once again closing gaps and fighting to slow the Chesapeake offense, the Riverhawks continued to stay within reach.
Knocking down jump-shots and finishing on fast break opportunities, the Riverhawks had fought back to cut the Skipjack lead to just 3 points (65-62) with only 1:12 left on the clock. As AACC would fould in their attempts to control the clocl, Chesapeake would finish three times at the free-throw line, but answering by Clinton Smith (Old Mill/Glen Burnie, MD) sinking a big 3-point bucket followed by a timeout – the Riverhawks still in reach, down 3 (68-65) with 11 seconds remaining.
The Riverhawks would capitalize at the free-throw line themselves as Deondre McNeill (Pasadena, MD/Chesapeake) would bury two, putting them now just one possession behind Chesapeake (69-67) with 6 seconds remaining. Despite their efforts, the clock would be against AACC – as the Skipjacks would successfully take advantage as the Riverhawks sent them to the free-throw line. With the final seconds expiring, Chesapeake would earn the 71-67 win.
Tolliver would finish with 15 of his 19 points on the night coming from the 3-point line to lead AACC on the night. Cuffey would finish with 13 points and 9 rebounds, and Rojas would finish with 10 points. Stepping up was Joseph Chase (Glen Burnie, MD/Churchville Christian), who would finish by contributing 12 of the 18 points that came from the Riverhawk bench.
The Riverhawks will hit the road for another conference match-up, facing the NJCAA DI Region XX Panthers of Baltimore City Community College this Friday night (1/11). Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. within the Jenkins Gymnasium of the Anne Arundel Community College campus in Arnold, MD.
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