Hawks take a tough loss against the Pirates


Kainoa Nunez

Hawks guard Onkar Sidhu playing defense against the Modesto Pirates

Men’s basketball loses 69-66 in a tough matchup against Modesto.

The men’s basketball team hosted their third home game of the year against the Modesto Pirates on Jan. 13 but they loss 69-66.

Modesto Junior College is ranked second place behind Santa Rosa Junior College in the Big 8 conference, and Cosumnes River is ranked seventh behind Sierra College.

“[The message was to] do your job, and play hard, stick to the scout and follow your responsibility,” said Assistant Coach Mathew J. Bradley. “Defensive rebounding are gonna be the key to the victory we know we’re gonna do well on the offense, so [that] was our main focus.”

As the first half began, the Hawks attacked and dominated early taking a 10-4 lead, forcing the Pirates to take their first time out just two minutes in the game.

The Hawks were building their momentum up by passing and communicating with each other, shooting four three-pointers in the first half. Two of them were shot by guard Jordan Roberson.

“It was decent, I felt like, as a team, we need to be on the same page,” Roberson said.

The Pirates had their opportunities to take their shots, but the Hawks rebounded and created open drives to attack in the paint to score off the missed shots.

With the Hawks leading 38-30 with seven seconds left before the end of the first half, Modesto inbounded the ball quickly , drove down half court and from 25-feet shot the ball to make it 38-33.

“We’re kind of a small team, so us guards got to step up for rebounds ,” Valverde said.

The Hawks have struggled in the past to keep up their momentum going in the second half, but they were hungry and focused to change that.

“We just got to learn how to keep it up as a team, we got to think about how we played in the first half and bring it into the second half,” Jalen Valverde said.

They did just that by shooting two three-pointers in the opening drive to add to their score, and those shots were from Valverde and guard De Rajaee Austin.

“We worry about ourselves, and as long as we do what we do we will come out with a win,” Austin said.

Throughout the half, the Pirates were forcing the Hawks to turn over the ball and was catching up to tie the game.

The Hawks led 63-62 with less than three minutes left, and the Hawks had to play defense in order to keep their lead.

Modesto went to attack the paint, but the Hawks late fouled them to allow the Pirates to go the free throw line. With that, the Pirates took the lead making it 64-63.

Modesto guard Anthony Lewis shot a three-pointer but missed. A late foul was called, so Lewis went to the free throw line and made all three free throws.

With 17 seconds left, the Hawks inbounded to Roberson as he drove down the court to wait for the last shot and send the game into overtime. Roberson shot a three-pointer but missed the shot, which made the final score 69-66.

“We just have to focus on all the positives that we did tonight, and there were a lot of them, and we need to continue building on those positives,” Bradley said. “We played well for 37 minutes, and despite the four losses we have played pretty darn well.”