Men’s basketball hosts Thanksgiving tourney

Sidney Bryant

The San Diego City College Knights Men’s basketball team hosted its 2010 Thanksgiving Invitational at the Harry West Gymnasium from Nov.12-14 where they were crowned consolation champs.

Despite the fourth place finishing, the Knights were arguably the second best team in the tournament. Losing on opening night of the tournament seemed to stun the Knights, yet they regained composure and got positive results on their next two outings.

“The results we got from this tournament weren’t as expected, but we will take it as learning experience as we prepare for a very long season,” Terrence Boyd, sophomore guard-forward, said.

As a collective unit, the Knights in spurts played championship caliber team defense, rebounded with force and show well from the 3-point line.

“All week as a coaching staff we emphasized the importance of doing the little things,” said assistant coach Joseph D’Ambro. “Blocking out, limiting second shot opportunities, communicating more and having a good turnover to assist ratio.”

The 2010 Knights have a very deep and athletic basketball team. However, head coach Mitch Charlens made major adjustments after watching his team give out of gas in overtime against the Portersville Pirates.

“It was a very emotional game against Portersville. Having 4 of your starters foul-out, have more offensive rebounds than they did total rebounds, and take 20 more shot attempts should say enough about the only defeat we took in our invitational,” Charlens said.

After the 97-93 overtime game with Portersville on Nov. 12, Charlens and his Knights regrouped and brought much more intensity on the defensive side of things with an impressive 84-65 victory over the L.A. Pierce Brahma Bulls the next day.

“Defensive is what definitely won us this game today. I think our full-court pressure really rattled Pierce and gave us the edge down the stretch,” Charlens said.

The Brahman Bulls out of L.A. were undersized compared to the Knights. Big-men for the Knights crashed the boards with aggression and force during the second-half.

Thanks to forwards Chris Coleman and Phil Jackson, the Knights built a lead in the second-half that made it very difficult for L.A. Pierce to make a run at winning the game. Jackson and Coleman both had quiet double-doubles. Guards Steven Aldridge and Danny Teisher were also very solid from the 3-pt line which helped build a 20 point margin.

In their third game of the tournament, the Knights got the opportunity to play Palomar College which is one of the teams they will battle it out with this year for the 2010 Pacific Coast Athletic Conference crown. It was a very slow-paced game where the Knights controlled from tip-off.

“It was a much needed challenge early-on for our guys to play a conference opponent as tough as Palomar,” D’Ambro said. “Our guys competed hard.”

The Knights defeated the Palomar Comets 78-75 on the final day of the tournament.

Jackson and Teisher were named to the all- tournament team for their individual performances throughout the weekend. Teisher averaged a little over 3 ´ three-pointers a game. Jackson, well he dominated the boards the entire weekend, the 6-foot-9 freshmen forward was a day mare and nightmare all in one for opposing teams. He collected over 20 rebounds in the three games played during the tournament.

As a unit, the Knights look to build off the minor mistakes they made this past weekend.

“Overall we made progress as a team,” sophomore guard Tim Harris said. “We’re only going to get better.”

The Knights play again on Sat Nov. 20 against the Mt. San Jacinto Eagles at 7p.m. in San Jacinto, California.