Photo by David Nurse
VENTURA - For the second night in a row the Marauder men's basketball team played poorly, shot dismally and trailed at halftime and it showed as it lost its second game in a row with a disappointing, 74-67, loss at the hands of host Ventura College, Saturday evening.
Entering the tournament the Marauders (1-2) were the favorite to win the tournament, again. They entered the tournament having been in the finals, five of the last six years.
In its three games over the past three days, AVC has really only put together one good half, and that came in the second half of its only victory after outscoring Orange Coast College, 54-32.
"I feel like we come out with energy, but it seems like we lose the energy," Antone Warren said. "We played a heck of a game tonight and we're coming together. It's still early. Our free throws are killing us though. We have to stay on the gas pedal and don't let up. Better now than later."
To their credit, the Marauders do have a relatively young team and return only two players, Cory Dollarhide and Nevell Lenard. It's obvious they have not developed that team chemistry to go with their preseason No. 11 ranking.
As it has done in each game this season, AVC has yet to lead a team at halftime. The Marauders did outscore Ventura in the second half, however, a nine-point halftime deficit proved too much to overcome.
The Marauders for the third time this season had a different leading scorer. Jailen Gill led AVC with 18 points and also finished with seven rebounds. The fact that the Marauders have had three different leading scorers does bode well for the team as it is not relying on one individual player.
"This a new team. We're still trying to figure each other out," Gill said. "We still have a lot of work to do. We play next week and we'll be ready for Saddleback. This was a wake up call for us."
AVC shot poorly from the field for the second game in a row as it finished shooting only 36 percent from the field and 24 percent from 3-point range.