News: Men's Basketball Captures IVC Holiday Classic Title
Nine years ago to the day that a Pasadena City College men's basketball team last won a regular season tournament, the Lancers were crowned champions of the Imperial Valley Holiday Classic Sunday. PCC scored an 83-60 finals win over Glendale College (Arizona). The red-hot Lancers improved to 12-4 overall, extending their winning streak to six games.
On Dec. 29, 2004, PCC defeated Mt. San Antonio, 86-85, to win the Santa Ana Holiday Classic under then head coach Mike Jones. Ironically, the losing coach in that game happened to be current Lancers' head coach Michael Swanegan, who was then in charge of the Mounties. He became PCC's coach in 2007.
Swanegan's 2013-14 Lancers anticipate a return to the State Top 20 rankings after recording victories over San Diego Miramar, Imperial Valley and Glendale. PCC's 12-4 pre-conference record is the best opening to a season since 2003-04 (also 12-4 start). The Lancers already have four more wins than all of last season and the current 6-game win streak is the longest by a Swanegan-directed PCC team.
Sophomore forward Taj Spencer was named MVP of the IVC Holiday Classic after scoring 29 points and grabbing nine rebounds in the final. Freshman guard Adrian Miles added 20 points (including four 3-pointers) and five rebounds. Point guard Jeffrey Dockett also was selected to the All-IVC Tournament team, the fourth time this season that the sophomore has been chosen all-tournament. Dockett scored 45 points in the three games (six in the finale).
PCC led 42-31 by halftime and extended that lead in controlling the finals win. Both reserve sophomores Bryce Clifton and Rashad Smith picked up six points, six rebounds and three assists. Starting sophomore guard Brandon Joseph contributed five points and a game-high four steals. The Lancers shot a season-high 60.7 percent from the field (37 of 61 shots).
"It's a great way to end the year. The players earned that first-place trophy," Swanegan said. "We have a real dynamic duo in Taj and Jeffrey. Both are high-energy players who can score points in a hurry. Defense has been a key to the win streak as we haven't allowed anyone to score 70 in this stretch. Now we have to get ready for conference. All of this success won't do us any good if we don't finish strong in the South Coast."
Pasadena opens the 13-game, SCC schedule and the year 2014 on Wednesday, Jan. 8 when it hosts East Los Angeles College. Tip-off is 5 p.m. at Hutto-Patterson Gymnasium.
[Photo--Jeffrey Dockett (left) and Taj Spencer (right) score baskets during PCC's 23-point finals victory Sunday over Glendale of Arizona to win the Imperial Valley Holiday Classic Sunday, images by Richard Quinton, sports information photographer.]
Release Date: 12/30/2013