Season ends with semifinals loss

Freshman+Keymonta+Johnson+of+Decatur+lays+one+up+for+the+Eagles

Akari Oya

Freshman Keymonta Johnson of Decatur lays one up for the Eagles

Tyler Towne, Sports writer

Upon the beginning of the season, the Eagles knew they were already at a disadvantage. With only one sophomore on the team, they knew their backs were against the wall.

Eleven freshmen led the Eagles to a 17-13 regular season record, a major step forwards compared to last year’s team.

They found themselves on the NJCAA rankings a few times throughout the season with after several quality wins.

Scoring
This season, the Eagles were led in scoring by the lone sophomore, Rickey Calvin. Calvin played every game like it was his last and when that was actually the case in the playoffs, he truly stepped up.

During the regular season Calvin averaged 14.9 points per game, ending his IVCC career on a high note. The Eagles also received key scoring contributions this year from Brady Huebbe who averaged 13.5 points per game as well as Decatur MacArthur standout Keymonta Johnson with 12.3 points per game.

Hot Start
The Eagles season was broken down into two “halves” this year. The two months before winter break, and the two months that followed.

Akari Oya
DeMonte Sims Enjoys his time on the court as a Super Eagle.

The first half of their season was absolutely fantastic. The Eagles went 12-4 in the early going and after beating Parkland, a nationally ranked school, on the road they became nationally ranked themselves. They were on fire heading into their break, and while breaks for most people tend to be positive things, this break unleashed turmoil on a team that was riding high.

Not So Happy New Year
The Eagles came back to work in the New Year with goals of climbing up the leaderboards in the NJCAA.

Unfortunately they were slow out of the gate, losing 6 of their first 7 games, two of those loses being conference games. The Eagles ended finishing 4-6 in conference games, putting them middle of the pack in the conference race.

Home Sweet Home
The Eagles played their best basketball when at the Eagle’s nest. With a strong 11-5 record, Coach Chris Herman would have definitely liked a few more home games on his schedule. The away games are what hurt the Eagles as they finished 6-7 away from home.

Playoff Run
The Eagles were the four seed in their regional at Waubonsee Community college this year. That seed landed them with a first round matchup against Morton.

They had beat them earlier in the year 86-57 and were looking to repeat that same success. And, of course, the Eagles did.

 

The Eagles blew Morton out of the gym with a promising 94-54 victory in the regional quarterfinal. It was their first playoff victory since 2014, something that all of the Eagles were truly proud of. Sophomore Ricky Calvin was clearly not ready for his Eagle career to come to an end as he went off for 26 points.

The End to a Fantastic Season
After their victory against Morton, the Eagles were set to square off against yet another team that they had beaten earlier in the season, the Waubonsee Chiefs. After a back and forth effort, the Chiefs eventually prevailed, moving on to the Regional

Championship against Triton.

This loss, however, was not to be blamed on Calvin, who played phenomenally; he scored 27 points.

Unfortunately, his efforts fell short as the Eagles lost 74-67.

Final Wrap
After clearing a majority of their roster that had a dismal season last year, the IVCC Eagles finished the season respectably.

An overall record of 18-14 with a playoff victory was a season that the Eagles were definitely happy about, yet not satisfied with. Look for a majority of those 11 freshmen to come back with a vengeance next year and carry the Eagles to a tremendous season.

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