Archive for the ‘College’ Category

Mott sophomore Devin Foster scored 14 points on seven shots with five assists in a win over Wayne on Saturday in Flint.

Mott sophomore Devin Foster scored 14 points on seven shots with five assists in a win over Wayne on Saturday in Flint.

FLINT, Michigan — Saturday’s game versus no. 8-ranked Wayne was, if there is such a thing in early February, a must-win. This one had been circled on the schedule ever since the Bears’ second half collapse cost them a win over Wayne in Detroit last month.

This time around, a healthy Mott squad put the hurt on the Wildcats, 74-58; and, in truth, it wasn’t that close.

Mott (18-4) dominated this game on the defensive end from start to finish. The Bears held Wayne to only two field goals in the first eight minutes and forced 30 turnovers in the game. Wayne only managed 21 points in the first half and trailed by 13 at the break. The Bears led by as many as 23 in the second half and didn’t let off the gas until the final three minutes.

The difference between these two top-end MCCAA teams is pretty simple: guard play. Mott has it; Wayne doesn’t. Mott’s three-headed monster in the backcourt (Malik Albert, Marcus Johnson and Devin Foster), combined for 40 points with only five turnovers. Foster played a great all-around game, showing off his tremendous transition passing ability.

Longtime Mott assistant Carl Jones told Foster after the game that Saturday’s performance is something he can replicate every game. He has the ability.

Mott shot 54 percent from the field as a team and tallied 20 total steals, a season high.

Wayne (16-3) will remain tied for first in the Eastern Conference with Oakland. Mott will have the opportunity to avenge its only other conference loss on Saturday against Oakland. The Raiders beat Mott in a triple overtime thriller last month in Auburn Hills.

With Wayne still having a road game versus Oakland on the schedule, there could be a logjam atop the Eastern Conference at season’s end.

Shaun Duncan led all scorers with 16 points for Wayne.

Mott freshman Ruston Hayward added 10 points and four rebounds despite losing the bulk of the first half to foul trouble. Hayward sat out the first game against Wayne due to a knee injury.

The Bears will return to action at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday night on the road versus St. Clair.

Mott freshman Ruston Hayward scored 24 points with six assists, five steals and four rebounds against Macomb on Thursday night. Two of his 24 came on this nasty dunk in traffic. (Photo by Gerry Leslie)

Mott freshman Ruston Hayward scored 24 points with six assists, five steals and four rebounds against Macomb on Thursday night. Two of his 24 came on this nasty dunk in traffic. (Photo by Gerry Leslie)

The No. 4-ranked Mott Community College Bears entered Thursday night’s game against Macomb (9-14) as close to full strength as they’ve been in the last couple months. With the exception of reserve forward Chester McFadden, who sat out nursing an ankle injury, head coach Steve Schmidt was fully staffed.

After struggling through the first half, the Bears turned a two-point halftime deficit into a double-digit lead midway through the second half. Mott (18-4) cruised to an 88-64 win and now turns its attention to Saturday’s showdown against No. 8-ranked Wayne (16-2).

Thursday night’s game featured an outstanding performance by freshman Ruston Hayward, including a dunk in the second half that hopefully finds its way to YouTube. Hayward scored 24 points with six assists, five steals and four rebounds.

Sophomore Malik Albert scored 20 points with five assists and four steals. Freshman Marcus Johnson added 13 points and five assists.

Mott may be without the services of sophomore Myles Busby on Saturday after he injured his ankle against Macomb. Fortunately, the Bears will have Hayward this time around.

“We didn’t have him last time, so getting him healthy is a big deal,” Schmidt said of Hayward. “It’s tough to win on the road in this conference, especially against the top teams. We are trying to defend our conference championship, and we have that opportunity ahead of us.”

Schmidt said his team is finally starting to come together after a season marked with inconsistency on and off the court.

“We’ve dealt with injuries, some poor decisions, but we have the team back together,” he said. “No more distractions. Saturday we’ll find out where we’re at. We’ll be ready.”

Truth be told, the Bears have two Saturday matinee measuring sticks this month. Wayne this Saturday and Oakland the following Saturday, both games at home. The Bears will, more than likely, need to win both to have a chance to defend their conference title.

Listen to Saturday’s game live on MRSN.us starting at 3 p.m.

Mott has had some tussles over the years on the road against Delta College (8-12). It’s rarely been easy for the Bears in Pioneer country, but they always seem to come away with a win.

A similar storyline played out Wednesday night, albeit with even more drama. The Bears overcame a 4-point deficit in the final 90 seconds to hold on to win, 63-62.

After sophomore Malik Albert made a pair of free throws, Delta had the ball and a chance to win the game with 11 seconds left in regulation. The Pioneers’ Caleb McIntosh failed to convert and Mott’s Myles Busby swept away the rebound to secure the win.

“I’ve been doing this a long time; sometimes you get outplayed and you still find a way to win a game,” said Mott head coach Steve Schmidt on the Michigan Regional Sports Network. “We made a lot of unforced errors, but I’ll take it. It feels good to win, but we could have just as easily left here with a loss.”

At one point midway through the second half, the Bears were down nine points and in danger of frittering away any chance of winning the MCCAA’s Eastern Conference. They fought back to tie the game with four minutes to go, but trailed by four in the final 90 seconds before Albert, the frontrunner for Player of the Year in the MCCAA, went on a 5-0 run by himself to put Mott up one.

Mott played with a sense of urgency in the final two minutes, holding the Pioneers scoreless.

Tre Johnson led all scorers for Delta with 24 points.

Albert had 15 points for Mott (16-4), 10 below his average. Ruston Hayward and Marcus Johnson, both freshmen, added 12 points apiece.

Tre Johnson led Delta with 24.

The Bears should have another chance to redeem themselves from their most recent uninspiring trip to Delta, as the Pioneers will host the district tournament in March.

Mott returns to action at 3 p.m. Saturday at home versus Henry Ford. Listen live on MRSN.us.

No. 11-ranked Mott earns ugly win over Alpena, 69-45

Posted: January 25, 2014 by Jared Field in College, JUCO, Mott

FLINT, Michigan — Mott Community College won its third consecutive game on Saturday afternoon, but the Bears didn’t look good doing it. Mott (15-4) managed only 23 points in the second half, while still easily putting away hapless Alpena, 69-45.

Mott led by 22 at the half after struggling through the game’s first 10 minutes. Alpena actually had a lead, 14-13, midway through the first half. Fortunately for Mott, sophomore Malik Albert was simply unstoppable. Albert led all scorers with 32 points on only 18 shots.

It’s strange to think any team could “win ugly” by 24 points, but that’s exactly what happened. As a team, Mott only tallied 10 assists to 15 turnovers. That’s bad, certainly, but it actually compares favorably to Alpena’s almost impossible 1-to-12 assist-to-turnover ratio (2 assists, 24 turnovers).

Mott made only five field goals in the second half, but the game was already well in hand. The team’s struggles are due, in large part, to its inability to finish on the break — something like I’ve never been able to say about a Mott team. It didn’t help that starting guard Devin Foster, one of Mott’s most talented players, had five more fouls than he did points.

Freshman Marcus Johnson was the only other bright spot for Mott on Saturday, scoring 17 points with two assists.

Kharri Dailey and Stephen Shepherd led Alpena (4-12) with 11 points apiece.

The Bears will have to get it together, and fast, as the meat of the schedule approaches. Mott will face Delta on the road at 7 p.m. Wednesday night before playing Henry Ford (home), St. Clair (away), Wayne (home) and Oakland (home) in four of the next five games. Those games are all winnable, and losable.

 

Mott knocks off Schoolcraft College, 84-62

Posted: January 22, 2014 by Jared Field in College, JUCO, Mott

Mott Community College earned its second win in three days, knocking off Schoolcraft College (10-7) Wednesday night, 84-62. The Bears turned in a strong night of work defensively, forcing the Ocelots into 28 turnovers.

“Not a bad effort; not where we need to be, but we’re a work in progress,” said Mott head coach Steve Schmidt on MRSN radio. “One thing you can bring every game is how hard you play. They did a pretty good job tonight. I’ll figure out a way to get these guys playing at the level they should be.”

Sophomore guard Malik Albert led the Bears with 22 points. Freshman guard Marcus Johnson chipped in with 17. Sophomore transfer Jamal Reynolds, probably the biggest bright spot for the Bears this season, continued his strong play with 11 points and seven rebounds.

Despite being in foul trouble for much of the game, Mott freshman Ruston Hayward, in his second game back since knee surgery, scored 12 points with four rebounds and four assists.

Mott (14-4) returns to action at 3 p.m. Saturday at home versus Alpena.

Mott Community College scores easy win over Kirtland, 92-53

Posted: January 21, 2014 by Jared Field in College, JUCO, Mott

Mott (13-4) had a much-needed respite Monday night after a demoralizing double overtime loss to Oakland on the road Saturday. The Bears welcomed Kirtland into the friendly confines of Ballenger Field House, and quickly dispensed with the niceties.

The Bears led by 20 at the half and cruised to victory, 92-53. Freshman guard Marcus Johnson led Mott with 19 points and eight assists. Sophomore Jamal Reynolds turned in another strong performance with 19 points and 14 rebounds.

Freshman forward Ruston Hayward, in only his second game back from knee surgery, returned to the starting lineup and poured in 16 points with five assists.

“Ruston gives us an offensive presence and a toughness that has been missing from this team,” said Mott head coach Steve Schmidt.

Sophomore guard Malik Albert, Mott’s leading scorer, finished with 13 points.

Mott’s William Abbott did not play against Kirtland. The 6-7 redshirt freshman has been suspended after violating a team rule. There is no word on a timetable for return.

Mott will be back in action Wednesday night on the road at Schoolcraft (10-6). The game tips at 7:30 p.m.

2013-14 MCCAA Men’s Basketball Standings
Eastern Conference
School MCCAA Overall GB Home Away Neutral Streak
Oakland 6-0 1.000 16-1 .941 8-0 5-0 3-1 Won 12
Wayne County 6-0 1.000 12-2 .857 5-1 4-1 3-0 Won 9
Mott 4-2 .667 13-4 .765 2.0 9-0 4-4 0-0 Won 1
Schoolcraft 3-3 .500 10-6 .625 3.0 5-0 4-6 1-0 Lost 2
Macomb 3-3 .500 9-7 .563 3.0 5-4 3-3 1-0 Lost 1
St. Clair County 2-4 .333 9-8 .529 4.0 4-3 3-5 2-0 Won 1
Delta 2-4 .333 7-10 .412 4.0 5-5 1-5 1-0 Lost 1
Alpena 2-4 .333 4-10 .286 4.0 3-4 1-4 0-2 Won 1
Henry Ford 1-4 .200 6-9 .400 4.5 4-4 2-5 0-0 Lost 1
Kirtland 0-5 .000 4-9 .308 5.5 3-3 1-4 0-2 Lost 5
Western Conference
School MCCAA Overall GB Home Away Neutral Streak
Glen Oaks 5-0 1.000 14-2 .875 9-1 5-1 0-0 Won 8
Kalamazoo Valley 5-1 .833 15-4 .789 0.5 10-1 5-2 0-1 Won 4
Grand Rapids 4-1 .800 10-4 .714 1.0 3-2 7-2 0-0 Won 3
Ancilla 4-2 .667 7-10 .412 1.5 4-4 3-5 0-1 Won 1
Lake Michigan 3-2 .600 11-7 .611 2.0 5-4 6-3 0-0 Won 2
Lansing 2-3 .400 12-6 .667 3.0 6-1 4-3 2-2 Lost 3
Muskegon 1-5 .167 8-10 .444 4.5 4-3 3-6 1-1 Lost 1
Jackson 0-5 .000 8-10 .444 5.0 4-7 4-3 0-0 Lost 5
Kellogg 0-5 .000 1-16 .059 5.0 1-2 0-9 0-5 Lost 9

No. 6-ranked Mott falls at Wayne, 85-73

Posted: January 11, 2014 by Jared Field in College, JUCO, Mott
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Mott freshman William Abbott.

Mott started the toughest stretch of the 2014 schedule this afternoon in downtown Detroit, falling to Wayne County CC, 85-73. It was the Bears’ second consecutive loss on the road to Wayne.

The Bears (11-3) led by five at the half but surrendered 50 points in the second half.

“We had a good first half and obviously got outplayed in the second,” Mott head coach Steve Schmidt told MRSN Radio after the game. “We aren’t in the type of shape we need to be in right now. We have work to do. They played with more intensity and heart.”

Malik Albert and Marcus Johnson scored 20 apiece for Mott. Devin Foster and Jamal Reynolds added 12 and 11 points, respectively.

Albert, Mott’s leading scorer, played big minutes in the first half and scored only one basket and four points in the second half.

“We depend on Malik a lot, but he just didn’t have the energy in the second half,” Schmidt said.

Redshirt freshman William Abbott, a Detroit native, scored only four points in the game after three consecutive strong outings.

Mott fell victim to a quick whistle in the first half, and the trend continued throughout the game. Mott was whistled for 30 fouls in the game. Wayne (17 fouls) entered the bonus in the game’s first five minutes.

Shaun Duncan led Wayne (9-2) with 20 points. The Wildcats have now won six consecutive games.

Mott will return to action at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday versus St. Clair.

Former Swartz Creek standout makes a poster against UDM Sunday

Posted: December 23, 2013 by Jared Field in College

J.D. Tisdale, now a freshman at Bowling Green, put one on former Oakland CC forward Ugochukwu Njoku in a win over UDM.

Mott sophomore Malik Albert scored 29 points in a win over Jackson on Saturday. His point total matched his 29 points per game average through nine games.

Mott sophomore Malik Albert scored 29 points in a win over Jackson on Saturday. His point total matched his 29 points per game average through nine games. (Gerry Leslie photo)

After nearly three hours on the road to Jackson Saturday in the midst of the season’s first winter storm, no. 11-ranked Mott grounded the Jets, 93-66. The win was Mott’s fifth consecutive, a streak that will be tested Wednesday night on the road at (9-3) Kalamazoo Valley — arguably the top team in the MCCAA’s Western Conference.

Mott (8-1) struggled early, leading Jackson 29-26 with eight minutes left in the first half. The Bears finished the half on a 21-7 run to lead 50-33. Mott freshman Malik Albert scored 20 of his game-high 29 points in the half. Albert still leads the nation in scoring at 29 points per game.

All told, five Bears scored in double figures and the team combined to shoot 24-for-28 from the foul line. Sophomore Myles Busby scored 14 points with 10 rebounds and four assists. Sophomore Jamal Reynolds scored 13 points on 5-for-6 from the field. Reynolds, a Toronto product, is leading the nation in field goal percentage at nearly 80 percent. Freshmen Marcus Johnson and Lorenzo Collier added 12 and 10 points, respectively.

“I think we can get a whole lot better,” said head coach Steve Schmidt, who held an hour-long walk-through Saturday morning. “We have kids who are getting their eyes opened to what my expectations are. I’m not happy with our defensive effort through nine games. We’re scoring a lot of points, but we aren’t where we need to be.”

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    Mott sophomore Malik Albert is getting attention from numerous D-1 schools. The combo guard from Detroit is averaging 29 points per game this season.

Mott sophomore Malik Albert is getting attention from numerous D-1 schools. The combo guard from Detroit is averaging 29 points per game this season.

It’s hard to ignore. So far this season, it has been difficult for another player in the MCCAA to get a word in on Mott sophomore Malik Albert. His game is speaking for itself, these days, with every sentence and quotation ending in an exclamation point.

Albert is the silent assassin, killing them with coyness – but killing them just the same.

“That’s just my personality,” said Albert, who leads the NJCAA in scoring this season at nearly 30 points per game. “I’m not really full of energy at times, but I just love the game of basketball. I try to lead by example instead of being vocal; I just let my game do the talking.”

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