Comets drop fifth straight in close loss

By Joel Umanzor, Sports Editor

After trailing by five at halftime and tying the game after regulation to force overtime, the men’s basketball team (9-14 overall and 5-6 in the Bay Valley Conference) lost 83-79 to the College of Marin Friday in the Gymnasium.

The loss added to the longest losing streak of the season and put the Comets post season playoff hopes in serious jeopardy.

Coach Miguel Johnson said the team was down players, specifically, Elijah Canales, who has emerged as an intricate piece for the Comets this season. However, Johnson also attributed the five-game losing streak to a lack of size, depth and offensive execution.

“We knew that (Marin) definitely had more size on us and it would be difficult on the offensive glass. They basically beat us on the glass four to one,” he said “We’re just sputtering, we can’t get things going offensively.”

Johnson said although Marin (12-10 overall and 8-3 in the BVC) played well, every aspect of getting better at basketball that the coaching staff has been harping on this season has come back to bite the Comets during the losing streak.

The Comets have a chance to bounce back tonight at 6 p.m. at the College of Alameda (6-16, 2-8 in the BVC).

CCC fell behind early in Friday’s contest and pulled to within five points at the half.

Even after beginning the second half with an enthusiastic offensive push, the Mariners stalled whatever tempo the Comets had established and took control of the pace of the game.

The closest the CCC came to tying the game in the second half came at the 12-minute mark when they cut the deficit to four points.

That slow-down in pace affected the Comet players who were trying to establish an up-tempo push.

Throughout the season, that style of play has been a tactic the team uses to close the gap.

Guard Evan Thompson, the Comets’ leading scorer with 21 points, felt the Mariners didn’t stop the Comets as much as the Comets stopped themselves.

“We came out wanting to be aggressive and get to how we play, but I think we just away from that,” Thompson said. “I don’t think Marin made us do that so much as I feel that it was on us.”

Stylistically, the Comets have gotten out of their normal offensive rhythm. That rhythm propelled the team to a hot 5-1 start in the BVC.

Offensive inconsistency has cost CCC whatever cushion the team’s early in-conference winning streak provided. It has also been the common denominator during the five-game streak.

Comet guard Isaiah Attles said, “I just think that our inconsistencies in the first half kept us from going on a full run and winning the game.

“Right now we really need to be paying attention to every little detail in each game. Teams haven’t necessarily been better than us, often times it comes down to late game execution.
“We have to do a better job closing games out on both sides of the court,” he said.