Men’s basketball in crisis mode

The Monarchs have lost four of their last five games and their bad luck continued last weekend.

 

By Harrison McQuinn, Sports Editor

 

The Monarch men’s basketball team is officially hitting the panic button after falling 1-3 over the weekend at the West LA Tournament.

Coach Virgil Watson returned for his 13 consecutive season with Valley. Last year, the team went 11-15 and were one of the few on the bubble who ended up missing playoffs. The Monarchs seem to be backtracking this season with a current record of 2-7.

The first matchup of the weekend tournament was Thursday against West LA College. Christian Morataya and DJ Walker combined for 26 points; however, Valley ultimately fell to the Wildcats 83-64. The Monarchs struggled on the outside, shooting only 24 percent from the field. West LA faced similar trouble on offense, but a total of 25 Monarch turnovers kept Valley trailing.

Friday night brought a well-earned victory for Monarchs in overtime against the Glendale Vaqueros. Valley outscored Glendale by four buckets after regulation with a total score of 92-88. Christian Hodge lead the team in scoring with 18 points, but forward Elijah Bonds saved the night on a three-point jumper with less than 30 seconds  to spare.

Valley lost its third and final matchup against Pierce in the Consolation bracket. Although keeping their turnovers in the single digits, the Monarchs shot 18-52. The Brahmas (3-5) on the other hand, shot well from the outside, racking up 10 threes and a 59.3 field goal percentage.

The team continues to wrestle with turnovers and empty possessions. Their wide losses can be explained by the respective two areas. With only nine matchups left before the 2018 Western State Conference Games, the Monarchs will need to improve their offense significantly to turn around their below .300 start to the season.

Valley will face San Diego Miramar College on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017 at the Santa Barbara City College tournament.  Miramar (7-2) is currently second in the Pacific Coast-North division, and will be a tough opponent averaging more than 90 points per game.

 

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