Men’s basketball clinches sixth straight winning season
With a win on Feb. 12, IVCC clinched their sixth consecutive winning season, and their current overall record is 16-10 heading into the final two games of the regular season.
To finish up January, IVCC hosted Black Hawk College and lost 80-77. Alec Schwab led the team with 23 points, Corey McCrary had 20, and Michael Murray added 10. Duol Mayot for Black Hawk had a big game, with 29 points and 11 rebounds. The Eagles had the lead at half-time but could not keep it as Black Hawk put up 48 points in the second half to pull off the win.
On Feb. 2, the team travelled to play Kishwaukee College and lost the game 78-70. Schwab had 21 points, Murray had 14, and McCrary added 12. IVCC made a good comeback attempt, as they outscored the Cougars 39-38 in the second half. For Kishwaukee, Marlon Maxey led the team with 14 points off the bench, Harold Ridgeway had 12, and Taylor Lavery had 11.
IVCC continued their road trip to Highland on Feb. 5 and defeated them 81-80. Murray had a big game, scoring 36 points and collecting 12 rebounds. McCrary added 15 points and JoJo Griffin had 8 off the bench. Jerel Williams had 25 points and Patrick Onwenu had 24 for Highland.
The Eagles returned to Oglesby to host Sauk Valley and beat the Skyhawks 77-70. Schwab led the team with 24 points, Nick Finney had 16, and McCrary had 14 in the win. JoJo Griffin added eight assists in the win, as IVCC spread the ball around efficiently, posting 20 total assists to SVCC’s seven. Finney and Josh Fenoglia were excellent from beyond the arc, hitting 4-7 and 3-5 three-point shots respectively. For Sauk Valley, Jalen Riley had 19 points, Magd Owayed had 14, and Matt Groharing added 10.
Another home game came on Feb. 9 as IVCC hosted Carl Sandburg. The Eagles lost the first meeting 77-65 on Jan. 24. With center Perry Adams out with an injury, Sandburg took advantage and trounced the Eagles 77-57. IVCC was down 27 points at halftime, with the score out of hand 45-18; the Eagles rallied back in the second half, outscoring Sandburg 39-32, but it was not enough. Schwab had 16 points in the loss while Ross Arteaga, Griffin, and Fenoglia each had 6. For Sandburg, Zach Grover led the team with 28 points off the bench, Juwan Hubbard had 15, and Seth Wickert added 9.
“I learned that we have to play a lot harder when we play them.” Griffin said. “They do everything right as a team. They get the 50/50 balls, they box out, and they defend. It was a lesson learned, and if things stay the way they are now, we would play them on their court for the opening game of the regional.”
IVCC came roaring back on sophomore night on Feb. 12 at home against Black Hawk East. The Eagles won the game 85-66. Schwab led the team with 28 points and was perfect from inside the three-point arc, hitting 11 of 11 shots. Murray added 18, and Finney had 10 in the win. Every player for IVCC put points on the board. IVCC dominated the game statistically, with 32 assists to the Braves’ eight, 36 rebounds to Black Hawk East’s 25, and 11 steals to Black Hawk East’s two.
The Eagles will finish out the regular season with an away game against Black Hawk on Feb. 21 and a home game versus Olive Harvey on Feb. 23 before regional play begins on Feb. 26.