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Cuesta Spoils Sophomore Night, Hancock Men's Basketball Falls 77-73

Cuesta Spoils Sophomore Night, Hancock Men's Basketball Falls 77-73

Despite 26 points from sophomore Marcellus Garrick for the third straight game, the Allan Hancock College men's basketball dropped a 77-73 conference battle with Central Coast rival Cuesta College Wednesday evening in Joe White Memorial Gymnasium.

The Bulldogs led 73-72 with less than a minute to play after Garrick buried two free throws. However, the Cougars outscored the Bulldogs 5-0 the rest of the way to split the season series with Hancock.

The Bulldogs fell to 3-6 in Western State Conference play and 13-16 overall. Cuesta continued its hopes for a share of the conference title to improve to 6-3 in league and 13-14 overall. The Cougars trail first place Ventura by one game with one game to play on Saturday. Ventura defeated Oxnard 90-76 Wednesday to clinch at least a share of the title for the second straight year.

Garrick led all scorers with a 9-for-15 effort from the field, and 4-for-7 clip from 3-point range. He also was a perfect 4-for-4 from the line and pulled down six rebounds.

Garrick, Deon Whiteside, Kevawn Lord, Dominic Jackson and Shane Carney, all sophomores, were honored prior to their final home game of their Hancock careers.

Whiteside made 7-of-12 from the field to finish with 14 points and a team-high eight rebounds. Lord finished with 13 points and eight rebounds, seven of his boards were on the offensive end. Lord went 6-for-13 from the field.

Freshman point guard Nolan Willett had nine points, eight rebounds and six assists. Erik Kinnebrew had nine rebounds, three steals and seven points for the Bulldogs.

Hancock shot 51 percent overall by hitting 30-of-59 from the floor. Hancock went 6-for-15 from 3-point range, and 7-for-10 from the line. They assisted on 20 of their 30 buckets.

Cuesta shot 46 percent overall, including an 11-for-26 performance from 3-point range. The Cougars made 12 of 13 free throw-attempts. Karem Ozel led the Cougars with 22 points and 10 assists. Andres Aguado added 18 points and six rebounds.

Hancock trailed the entire first half, and fell behind 31-20 with 6:25 to play after Aguado buried a 3-pointer. Hancock closed out the half on an 11-5 run to trail 36-31 at intermission. In the second half, the Bulldogs fell behind 43-37 three minutes in when they went on a 12-3 run behind five points from Lord, four from Garrick and a 3-pointer by Willett. The two teams stayed within a few points the rest of the way, as Hancock led 71-67 with under three minutes to play on a bucket from Whiteside.  However, five free throws from Ozel down the stretch combined with a Hancock turnover and a few missed shots resulted in a Cuesta victory. 

The Bulldogs will finish the season Saturday at 1 p.m. at Oxnard. The Bulldogs defeated the Condors 73-62 last month behind 23 points from Garrick, 14 points and 13 rebounds from Kinnebrew, and a 19-point effort from Lord.