The American League Championship Series came to a close on Saturday, Oct. 19 in Boston, Massachusetts, as the Detroit Tigers fell to the Boston Red Sox in game six of the seven-game series, losing 2-5.
The Port Huron Hospital Women’s Wellness Place benefited from the Skippers’ basketball game on Feb. 9. The “Think Pink” games raised $247 to promote breast cancer prevention.
At the women’s game, the Skippers played in pink uniforms, and Coach Mike Groulx wore a pink shirt. The referees also used pink whistles in recognition of the event.
Most of the men’s basketball team wore pink socks.
Both Skippers teams played the Oakland Community College Raiders.
The women’s team defeated the Raiders 84-59.
At the end of the first half the Lady Skippers led by 21 points, which they built on into the second. However, the Raiders picked up the offense in the second period.
Groulx was critical of the Skippers’ performance in the second half.
“I think we played a great 30 minutes of basketball,” he said afterward. “We defended well; we rebounded well; we scored well. The last ten minutes we got a little less vigilant and they took advantage of it. I wish we’d tightened up a little bit.”
Groulx spoke supportively of the Think Pink event, saying he was glad to be a part of it.
“I think the breast cancer awareness was a great cause,” he said, adding, “We were hoping for a bigger turnout.”
The men’s team lost 109-103 after a close fight through the last five minutes.
“A lot of this game’s gonna be decided by the rebounds,” Coach Dale Vos said before the lineups. “This is a really good rebounding team. It’s gonna hinge on that.”
Throughout the game the Skippers’ chant remained “defense,” and both teams had to work to score in the paint. In the second half, Skippers guards Johnnie Mills, Deion Stegall and Corey McKinney made too many fouls and were taken out of play.
“They just lost a tough game,” said Vos, who declined further comment directly after the game to take care of the team.
The Raiders’ Coach Antoine Joubert called it “a nerve-wracking game,” and said, “I was so glad that #2 and #5 fouled out.”
Both the Skippers and the Raiders played “very hard and very well,” Joubert said.
“I’m glad that both teams played good and nobody got hurt.”
Eventually all good things come to an end. To the Skippers, that means their mid-to-late March surge is over.
The SC4 men’s baseball team (8-20) has been getting roughed up since beginning MCCAA conference play on March 24.
Losers in seven of their last eight contests, the Skippers have been outscored by opponents by a combined score of 19-30.
Their lone conference victory came Saturday, March 31, in a 4-3 nail-biter at the courtesy of Ancilla College.
Head Coach Mike Greene has been very critical as of late.
“Each loss is worse than the other,” he said. “I haven’t seen something like this in my 25 years in this sport.”
The once hot Skipper’s bats have gone cold in recent weeks. Their season has taken a painful downturn ever since closing non-league play on an incredible run last month.
“We haven’t figured out how to get outs or base hits when we need them,” Greene said. “This is the most frustrated I’ve been as a coach.”
Centerfielder Charles Melvin and Catcher Kyle Holtman have been the offensive standouts for the Skippers. Melvin has set the table walking 17 times. The offensive catalyst is hitting .329 with an OBP of .468. Furthermore, he currently sits at eighth place in the NJCAA with 24 stolen bases.
Holtman (.361/.384) is no slouch at the dish either. He currently leads the young squad with three homeruns and 20 RBI’s.
Second baseman Tyler Castro has also infused himself into the offense. Since joining the starting lineup in early March, he is 14/39, with an average of .359 and OPB of .509.
Other notable contributors on offense are Blake Harrell (.316/.337), Kellan Holliday (.281/.351/17 RBI’s) and first baseman Donavon Rigel (.281/.323/1 HR/11 RBI’s).
Despite the recent lack of offense, the SC4 pitching has been solid.
Lefty ace Tim O’Callaghan (1-4), has pitched well despite owning a losing record. His 2.97 earned run average leads the staff. He has also struck out 25 batters in 36.1 innings of work.
Mickal Helton (3-2) and Layton White (3-4) are tied for the team lead in games won.
Helton possesses a 3.65 ERA and 25 strikeouts through 32 innings pitched. White’s stat line has been similar. Through 45 innings, he has managed a 3.60 ERA and struck out 29 opposing batters.
Greene has expressed the importance of a turnaround for the remainder of the season if the team wants to make the Region XII playoffs in Battle Creek.
“We need to go on a real big run here to do something special,” he said.
The SC4 men’s baseball team (7-13) has been on a roll as of late. The Skippers bats have caught fire and there is no telling if, or when, the inferno will go out.
Victorious in six of their last seven contests, these sultans of swat have managed to defeat opponents by a combined score of 82-22.
Their most recent victory came Tuesday, March 20, in a 28-4 thumping of Rochester College.
Head Coach Mike Greene was extremely proud of the victory, “Hitting seems to get contagious. Everything we hit last night was finding a hole.”
The Skippers offense exploded for 22 hits.
Leading the way at the plate was Kyle Holtman. The freshman catcher belted four hits and six RBI’s, including a two-run homerun. However, he was not the only player that brought his whooping stick with him. Corner infielders, Luke Jones and Donavon Rigel, also combined for five hits and eight RBI’s.
Mickal Helton (3-2) picked up the win, striking out five batters and allowing just four hits over four innings of work. Tim O’Callaghan came in to pitch an inning of relief, managing two strikeouts.
“The pitching has been really good. We don’t have a lot of relief right now, but we are going to scrimmage more and give some guys a chance to step up,” said Greene.
The pitchers have since improved the staff’s strikeout-to-walk ratio to 2.3 to 1.
The defense has also shored up, in part due to the transition of Luke Jones to shortstop. Since his move to the middle of the diamond, the team’s errors have dropped to one per game from four.
Centerfielder Charles Melvin and Holtman are the offensive standouts for the surging Skippers.
Melvin has set the table walking 18 times. The offensive catalyst is hitting .351 with an OBP of .507. Furthermore, he currently sits at seventh place in the NJCAA with 19 stolen bases. Holtman (.406/.442) is no slouch at the dish either. He currently leads the young squad with two homeruns and 18 RBI’s.
Rigel, a second-year first baseman said, “The team is starting to mesh together really well. We have been playing with a purpose and executing the little things. All of our hitters have been stringing hits together, and our pitching is dominant. It feels great to finally come together as a family and play baseball the way it should be played.”
Second baseman Tyler Castro has also infused himself into this high-octane offense. Since joining the starting lineup in early March, he is 14/33, with an average of .424 and OPB of .547.
“We are getting on base and knocking ‘em in,” says Greene, “We went back to situational hitting. You get a guy on and move him over. Then we’re hitting line drives.”
The skipper’s non- conference schedule is coming to a close, and they are set to begin league play on Saturday, against Kalamazoo Valley Community College.
Hugging in the beginning, but defeat haunted at the end.
On Wednesday, Feb. 29, the St. Clair County Community College men’s basketball team celebrated Sophomore Night, but took another single digit loss to end the regular season.
Playing their final game of the regular season, the Skippers kept in the thick of things against Henry Ford Community College by finishing the first half with a score of 37-36.
Down by just one point, the Skippers tried to keep on battling the Hawks through the second half.
Even though SC4 played good and hard throughout the game, the end result was one they had seen over the course of the season. Even with a final second three pointer from Johnnie Mills, the result was defeat.
The final score was 84 to 82 Henry Ford Community College.
The skippers ended their season with a final record of fourteen wins and sixteen losses, putting them below the five hundred mark on their up and down season.
When asked what could have been done Coach Dale Vos said, “I don’t know. That’s what I’m so frustrated with. There’s a button somewhere that we’re not pushing. I don’t have an answer. I just don’t. It’s frustrating.”
Vos would go on to say, “It seems almost insanity to keep doing the same thing, but at the same time what we’re doing has us one possession from winning big games.”
In fact, out of the sixteen losses the SC4 men’s basketball team has had, nine of them have been by single digits.
Big scorer in the Skippers defeat was Johnnie Mills, going seven for nine from beyond the arc and total scoring 32 points.
Sure, the Skippers men’s basketball team can keep it close, but just can’t find ways to get the W.
“We didn’t hit well, but from the beginning of the trip till’ the end there was a noticeable difference in our at-bats,” said Head Coach Mike Greene.
The St. Clair County Community College baseball team returned to campus from their spring trip in Tennessee, bringing with them a disappointing record of 1-10.
The lone win for SC4 came in the second-to-last game of the trip, against Mississippi Delta Community College. The Skippers won the game by a score of 5-2, en route to earning their first victory of the 2012 season.
According to Greene, the pitching staff pitched well. He further contributed that Tim O’Callaghan, Luis Mella, Caesar Perez and Mickal Helton all provided quality innings for the Skippers.
“Tim pitched very well for us. He even carried a no-hitter into the fifth inning of one of the games,” said Greene.
Charles Melvin, a second-year outfielder at SC4, led the team in hitting throughout the 11 game trip, spanning through Tennessee and Mississippi with a .286 batting average. He also compiled five bases on balls leaving him with an On-Base Percentage of .375. He was followed closely by OF Blake Harrell, who hit .272 for the trip, and OF Cam Ciaciuch, who returned from Tennessee with a .258 AVG and .395 OBP.
First Baseman Donavon Rigel also showed some punch at the plate, providing a homerun and solid hitting during the trip.
Greene also said that he still thinks the team is going to do well. He expects that the team will be competing at the end of the season for a spot in the NJCAA Region 12 Playoffs, in Battle Creek.
“We just have to do a better job of playing together as a team. We have to walk twice for every one time we strike out at the plate, and our pitchers must do the opposite. They must strike out two for every one guy they walk. We have to improve upon or defense and limit the errors. Those things are key to improving our record,” he said.
Despite a rough start to the season, Greene and the Skippers are not panicking.
With 12 games left before the Michigan Community College Athletic Association team begins league play, Greene fully expects his players to work out the kinks and turn their hitting woes around.
These SC4 “boys of summer,” begin a 16 game road trip on Monday, March 5, with a double header at Indiana Institute of Technology. The trip will also see them clash with the perennial NCAA Division III powerhouse that is Adrian College.
“I still think we are going to be one of the best teams in the league,” said Greene.
This past Friday, the St. Clair County Community College baseball team packed their mitts and bats, tossed on their caps and ditched the friendly confines of campus for the fresh, smooth, green grass of the “Volunteer State.”
Led by new Head Coach Mike Greene, SC4’s boys of summer have hit the road for an 11 game spring trip throughout Tennessee to kick of the 2012 season.
“I’m excited for down south,” said Greene.
He expects to return from the trip with a record of 8-3, and possibly even 9-2.
The Seattle, Washington, native replaces former coach Dennis Dwyer, hoping to bring an end to the coaching carousel that ensued in recent years after the departure of long time head coach, Rick Smith.
Along with Assistant Coach Andrew Buelow, the anxious Greene hopes to bring stability to the program and improve upon the dismal record of 39-101 that reflected the previous three seasons.
“I wanna be here for a while and more,” said Greene, who also believes the team will be competing this season for a Michigan Community College Athletic Association championship.
Hoping to advance to the NJCAA Region 12 Playoffs, in Battle Creek, Greene leads the well- balanced 25 man roster into the season, intending to build upon an impressive fall campaign. He plans to take advantage of being overlooked by the other teams in the conference. With a favorable non-league schedule, the Skippers look to get off on a very hot start.
After receiving the job late, Greene was forced to leave the state to recruit.
“We had to recruit from outside of the state because I got the job after all the Michigan kids had already signed,” Greene said. The team consists of four players from Seattle, one from Mississippi and one from Texas.
The pitching staff is led by left handed ace, Tim O’Callaghan. The imposing, 21 year-old sophomore leads a tall group of pitchers that throw in the mid 80’s range. Greene is very high on the staff and expects it will catch a lot of teams by surprise.
There are also high hopes for O’Callaghan. The lefty is expected to win, and eventually transfer to play at a four year college.
“He’s a lefty with upgrade…..awesome curveball. He’s gonna go somewhere,” said Greene.
First Baseman Donavon Rigel returns to lead a young but talented Skippers infield. The former Auburn Hills Avondale stand-out provides excellent leadership, as well as ability.
The Skippers possess a speedy outfield that will make it tough on opponents looking for hits. The squad is centered by sophomore Charles Melvin from Redford, Michigan. He is a speedy leadoff hitter who can hit and bunt, and hopes to be SC4’s offensive catalyst.
Mickal Helton, a pitcher from Tacoma, Washington, enjoys playing for Greene despite the cold Michigan weather. He is enthusiastic for the opportunity and is excited to be part of the SC4 team.
“We have alotta guys from outta state. We’ve become close and are all really good friends, great teammates and just can’t wait to play ball,” said Helton.
The Skippers home opener is scheduled for March 3 at 2 p.m., against Grand Valley State Club. The game will be played at Sanborn Park.
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