The Lady Skippers defeated the Kalamazoo Valley Cougars 68-62 to win the Michigan Community College Athletic Association state championship title on March 2.
The victory was SC4’s third MCCAA championship and the second championship of the season for this team, making their record 28-1.
The scores stayed close during the first half, with the Skippers carrying a five-point lead at halftime. In the second period they reached double-digit leads four times, but the Cougars fought back and managed to make it a three-point game in the final minute. Continue reading Skippers claim MCCAA state championship→
Coach Mike Groulx and Coach Dale Vos honored their second year students with this season’s last home game against the Schoolcraft Ocelots.
The recognition ceremony might have given the teams the boost they needed as the Lady Skippers won 97 to 60 and the men 90 to 74. The women took the court first with a short bench as Sophomores Cianna Peterson and Teisha Knott sat out for disciplinary reasons. The Ocelots kept the game close into halftime with the score 44 to 33.
Both Skippers teams defeated the Monarchs at Macomb Community College on Feb. 27, the last games of the regular season. The SC4 women won 50-40 and the men won 85-74.
The women were playing for the Michigan Community College Athletic Association Eastern Conference title, and the victory poised them to play for the MCCAA championship on March 2.
The Lady Skippers are holding steady in their place as sixth in the nation in NJCAA Division II polls, which posted the same day as the game. The NJCAA also named Skippers forward Heidi Highstreet as its Division II player of the week for Feb. 18-24.
The Lady Skippers have been nothing but dominant since the start of the season.
Their first five games have been won by an average of 30 points, the narrowest margin of victory for the Lady Skippers, and oh yeah, they’re 5-0.
That came last Tuesday Night with Lansing CC.
Lady Skips opened up like they always have, with Head Coach Mike Groulx’s game plan of a full court press had them up early opening the game with a 9-2 run. Starting center Hiedi Highstreet was a little bit limited in the first half as she had three fouls in the first nine minutes.
LCC has been the toughest challenge for the Lady Skips so far this season, holding the Lady Skips to 58 points after scoring 89,83,87, and 66 through their first four games.
Tiesha Knott in the second half wasn’t letting the team drop one in the loss column as they were only up 9 at halftime.
“We weren’t executing like we wanted to,” said Knott, who had 10 of her 18 points in the second half, six of those 10 consecutively to open after halftime. “We stayed in control, kept communicating and that’s what got us the win.”
Groulx called the win against LCC an “ugly win.”
“They(LCC) did a real good job of slowing the tempo of the game, we like to play faster but we adjusted and pulled it out,” said Groulx.
Lady Skips’ next game is on the road Thursday in Grand Rapids, where they look to go 6-0.
In every sport, there is always the team that has nothing to lose, but everything to gain. They are called the underdogs, dark horses, long shots and the Cinderella story.
For St. Clair County Community College’s women’s basketball team, their clock had struck twelve.
The Lady Skippers basketball team made it to the NJCAA Division II National Championship in Illinois College Center in East Peoria, Illinois.
But, the Lady Skippers didn’t get their easily.
At the start of the season, SC4 hired their new women’s basketball coach, Lakita Gantz. Gantz replaced Carrie Lohr, who went to Wayne State to coach.
With a new coach and many new faces on the team, the season was unpredictable.
At the start of the season, the Lady Skippers went on a cold streak. SC4 would lose their first four conference games of the regular season. The first ten games of the season would not help the Lady Skips either, going 3-7 in conference play.
Then, the women would go on a hot streak and win four games in row putting the Lady Skippers at 7-7 for the season.
Then, all of a sudden, the unexpected happened. Lakita Gantz had resigned as head coach half way through the season, leaving the women’s basketball on the rise, but no head coach.
But that didn’t stop the Lady Skips.
Mike Groulx would take over as the women basketball head in January and the team would make the playoffs a reality. Finishing the season 16-15 overall.
Then, the Lady Skips would go through Oakland Community College, Macomb Community College and Mott Community College, winning the Region 12E Tournament and punching their ticket to the National Tournament.
But, like all sports lovers know, all good things must come to an end.
The Lady Skippers became the #11 seed in the tournament. They would lose to Kishwaukee College 47-37 and Southeast College Community College 62-53.
Even though, SC4 didn’t win the National Title in Division II, they still overcame coaching changes and cold streaks throughout the season and still came out one of the best of the year.
Win or lose, this Cinderella story ended happily ever after.
As many sport fans know, March Madness is a big time of the year for many NCAA men’s basketball teams around the country. It has to come to my attention that the NJCAA does the same thing, but in a different fashion.
Like the NCAA, the NJCAA has tournaments before the big national championship tournament. But, instead of having conferences like the NCAA, NJCAA splits schools into regions.
Also, NJCAA splits community colleges up into three divisions based on the size of the schools. Division I having a lot of students, and Division III having a low population of students.
There are, in the whole United States, twenty four different regions that community colleges can be sorted into.
St. Clair County Community College is smack dab in the middle in Region 12. Region 12 consists of 28 different community colleges in the areas of the lower peninsula of Michigan, Indiana and Ohio.
As I learned about the NJCAA, I got to thinking why they didn’t give the regions names like they do in the NCAA. The NCAA has so many different conference names from the Big Ten, Sun Belt, WAC, PAC 12, ACC and SEC.
Maybe in the future they could bring that into consideration, but for now they will stay one through twenty four.
So, each region has their own tournament just like every conference in the NCAA has their own as well. Within those regions, they have districts. The winners of the district tournament goes on to the national tournament to be the NJCAA Division I, II and III champions.
The district tournament in Region 12B startes on March 6 and goes through to the 10 at Mott Community College.
After it’s all said in done, some will win and some will lose, but only one can be called National Champion.
“We did everything we came here to do, except win the game,” Coach Dale Vos said.
After a tough overtime loss to Oakland Community College earlier in the week, the St. Clair County Community College men’s basketball team faced the number one team in their division.
On Feb. 18th, the SC4 Skippers hosted Mott Community College.
The Skippers led Mott Community College at the half with a score of 38-33. Through a hard fought battle, the Skippers went back and forth with the Bears of Mott Community College.
But at the end of the game, Mott Community College slid by on a 68-64 win over St. Clair County Community College. Also, giving Mott Community College their ninth single digit loss of the season.
With the loss to Mott Community College, SC4 record stands at thirteen wins and fourteen losses. Just below the five hundred win percentage.
Also, the Skippers have now lost two in a row.
But Coach Dale Vos, coach of the St. Clair County Community College men’s basketball team, is still a strong believer in his team. After the game he went on to say, “We’ve played two games this week that we felt like on that day, we were the better team.”
Vos would also go to say that his team played good man to man defense, and also on the rebounding aspect of the game versus Mott Community College.
Even with the two straight losses, Vos said, “I do believe that we are hitting our stride.”
After the game, Vos told his players, “We’re off tomorrow, so if you wanna lay on your couch and feel sorry for yourself, go right ahead, but you gotta be back Monday and go back to work.”
With only three regular season games left to go, the Skippers will have to heat up to have a better chance in the NJCAA tournament.
Last home game of the season will be on Feb. 29 against Henry Ford Community College at 7:30 p.m.
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