Trojans Catch Fire; Take First League Win

While+slicing+through+defenders+in+the+lane%2C+Derek+Brown+Jr.+uses+his+speed+to+penetrate+and+find+open+teammates+on+the+perimeter+against+Whatcom+Community+College+on+Saturday%2C+January+9th.+

Michael Rhodes

While slicing through defenders in the lane, Derek Brown Jr. uses his speed to penetrate and find open teammates on the perimeter against Whatcom Community College on Saturday, January 9th.

After a victory from the women in the first game for EvCC, it was the men’s turn in the second game to hold serve and come away with a victory. They battled the Whatcom Community College Orcas, and from the beginning it looked like it would be a long day for the Trojans. Playing on the road is never an easy task, especially against a team that features a 7 foot player off the bench.

Throughout the game it seemed like EvCC had a lot of trouble, dealing with the size and length of the Orcas. At the start of the game WCC exploded out the gate, taking an early lead of 10-2. The Trojans couldn’t hit a basket in their first six field goal attempts, while Jordan Johnson from WCC couldn’t be stopped. At one point, Johnson hit 3 three point baskets in a row finishing 3-5 from three-point range in the first half. Including a monster alley oop from Deon Thomas on a fast break. This was trouble for EvCC, as they couldn’t find an answer.

 Quadir Williams driving down the lane on a fastbreak sparking the Trojan offense against Whatcom Community College on Saturday, January 9th.
Michael Rhodes
Quadir Williams driving down the lane on a fastbreak sparking the Trojan offense against Whatcom Community College on Saturday, January 9th.

The Trojans shot an abysmal 2-16 from three point range in the first half. It wasn’t much better from inside the arc, as they only shot 22% from the field. While WCC finished the first half with a 31% three point shooting percentage, also shooting a similar percentage from two point range which was at 32%. After all the first half struggles, EvCC started to attack the basket getting to the free throw line, keeping the game close within striking distance. The score was 33-23 at the half, and the way the Trojans played, that was a victory for them.

Noah Jones, Derek Brown Jr., and Quadir Williams celebrate a huge comeback victory for a big win on the road, for their first league win with the rest of their teammates against Whatcom Community College on Saturday, January 9th.
Michael Rhodes
Noah Jones, Derek Brown Jr., and Quadir Williams celebrate a huge comeback victory for a big win on the road, for their first league win with the rest of their teammates against Whatcom Community College on Saturday, January 9th.

The second half for the Trojans was a different story altogether. EvCC came out firing on all cylinders and Derek Brown Jr started penetrating, finding wide open opportunities for teammates. One of those teammates was Quadir Williams, who hit 4 three point buckets in a row. Williams was in a zone that couldn’t be matched by anyone on the court, this sparked the Trojans and gave them momentum that wouldn’t let up. When asked what changed in the second half Williams said, “Our motto is to just keep shooting, we missed some open looks in the first half and that’s what we did, shoot. They tried to compact the middle to keep us from getting inside, so it opened up the outside for us.”

After that big spark from the outside, the Trojans took control of the game and used the speed of Derek Brown Jr to get inside, getting him to the foul line. Brown shot 14 free throws making 12 of them, giving him 21 points in total for the game. Brown Jr filled the stat sheet adding 7 rebounds and 8 assists.

Coach Larry Walker said, “We played tremendous defense in the first half, holding them to only 33 points. The first half was one of the worst shooting performances we have ever had, I knew that as long as the defense kept playing hard. We would start to shoot better and get back in the ballgame. It feels great to come out here and get a road victory for our first league win.” Walker was right, because the Trojans shot 44% from the field and shot 40% from three point range in the second half.

Quadir Williams finished with 21 points and was the reason EvCC climbed back in the game. The Trojans never lost the lead again, and closed the game with two huge offensive rebounds, while making clutch free throws to seal it. EvCC finished with 72 points to the Orcas 66. The Trojans next game will be against their rivals Edmonds Community College at home on Wednesday, Jan. 13.