CRC came home for 4 straight home games starting with the 2nd place team in the Big 8 in NorCal ranked #14 Modesto. The Hawks started off with three strong defense stops by causing quick contested shots and a turnover. They capitalized by going on a 10-4 run to open the half. The Hawks continued that momentum by nailing 4 threes in the half…one by Gor Mikayelyen and De'Rajaee Austin, and two by Jordan Roberson. Moreover, the Hawks produced open looks by dribble attacking the paint on numerous possessions. They made shots by creating opportunities for teammates and compiled that with stellar defense and forcing missed shots by Modesto. CRC held a 38-30 lead with 2 made free throws under with 7 seconds left in the half. Modesto inbounded the ball quickly to their guard, he put his head down, and dribbled down the floor for a highly contested, off-balance 3 from about 25-feet and hit it at the buzzer to cut the lead to 38-33 at the half.
The Hawks came out hungry and intense in the second half by getting two quick defensive stops and back-to-back threes by Jalen Valverde and De'Rajaee Austin. That created a quick 11-point lead and forced a Modesto timeout. Throughout the half, Modesto went on short runs to cut into the deficit, including two bank-shot threes that were lucky to fall, but CRC responded with composure and sticking to their strength of attacking the paint with their quickness off the dribble. This allowed the Hawks to carry the lead for first 37 minutes of the contest. The Hawks led 62-61 with less than 3 minutes remaining and needed another important stop on defense. However, after a missed three by Modesto, CRC didn't secure the rebound and fouled Modesto in the paint. Modesto went 2-2 from the line to take their first lead of the game. CRC responded on the next defensive possession by Jordan Roberson securing a tough rebound and sending a length-of-the-court outlet pass for an uncontested layup by Onkar Sidhu. This gave the Hawks a 63-62 lead. Unfortunately, a combination of tough shots and untimely turnovers as well as Modesto making free throws in the closing moments cost the Hawks a much needed victory. Jordan Roberson had a tough, double-pumping three to send the game into overtime, but the shot missed left. The final score ended at 69-66.
CRC falls to 2-5 in the Big 8 Conference and 6-11 overall. The Hawks stay home for three more Big 8 games and look to break a 4-game losing streak. Next game is Tuesday at 5:30pm vs Sierra.