*Men’s team sets new school record with 22 wins
*Take on Spokane on Saturday in postseason play
It’s been quite a season for South Puget Sound Community College basketball, and the fun is only getting started. With an overall record of 22-6, the SPSCC men’s hoops team has set a new school record for regular-season wins.
The Clippers finished the regular season 11-3 in the Northwest Athletic Conference’s West Region. It’s the fourth-highest win total in the NWAC this season. The Clippers enter the postseason as the No. 3 seed, where they’ll battle Spokane on the road on Saturday, March 5 at 6 p.m. The two teams faced off in the championship game of the Clipper Crossover earlier this season, with Spokane coming out on top 90-80 in that one.
“We will play on the road against a really good Spokane team, but this team loves to play road games and we have been pretty good on the road so far,” SPSCC coach Aaron Landon said of his crew, which is 14-3 on the road this season. “Bottom line is we love each other and we want to extend this season as much as we can, in order to do that we need to win.”
Individually, sophomore Deiondre Bird (led the team in assists (3.1), rebounds (6.9) and field goal percentage (.550), and was second in scoring (12.7) to freshman Dez Stoudamire. Stoudamire not only led the team in scoring, but finished eighth in the entire conference with 21.2 points-per-game, adding 1.63 steals. Both were named to the NWAC All-West Region 1st Team. Bird was also named to the All-West Region Defensive Team, where he was joined by fellow sophomore Tyler Watts. Watts led the team in steals per game (1.91), a figure good for eighth in the NWAC, adding 8.5 points and 6.6 rebounds per game. Other SPSCC sophomores include Topher Burian (9.4 points), Dustin Meade (8.3 points, 4.8 rebounds) and Kyle Snyder (1.3 points while missing more than half the season due to injury).
“We’ve been one of the best teams in the NWAC this year and all the credit should go to this special group of players,” Landon said. “The leadership from our sophomores has been incredible, I am so proud of the toughness and determination they have shown all year.”
What’s most impressive about the Clippers this season, however, is their team numbers. The team averages more than 86 points per game, easily leading the West Region in scoring. SPSCC is also entering the postseason at the right time, riding an NWAC-best five-game win streak into postseason play.
The winner will go on to face the winner of Peninsula and Chemeketa on March 11 in the opening game of the NWAC Men’s Basketball Championships Tournament, held March 11-13 at Everett Community College. With the SPSCC women also advancing to the postseason, it’s the first time since 2007-08 that both teams have made the playoffs together.