March 13, 2014
Disappointing season leads to lessons learned and brighter outlook for 2014-15
This wasn’t the kind of season first-year head coach David Howard imagined
when he was hired last summer. Through all the struggles, he and his players
learned lessons and gained takeaways for a stronger 2014-15.
Howard inherited some players with experience from the final game at nationals last year, and he had high expectations. But change is hard.
“It was a tougher transition on me and the players than I realized. The returners were used to playing a certain style and in different roles. We had to completely change everything,” Howard said. “It took far too long for everyone to get on the same page.”
The Cyclones lost too many matches based on a one possession difference because of poor starts and pushing hard too late in the game. Once they fixed those elements, the difference-maker was playing smarter. Yet the losses don’t reflect the talent of the team. Along with the heartache was resiliency in the players. They could have given up after the first big loss, but continued to push in practice and worked on improving their skills. The starters worked hard all season, earning some well-deserved accolades. Kyle Ward (Lockport) was named to the All-Conference first team, Johnte Shannon (Thornwood) had nods to the All-Conference second team and Des’nique Harris (Plainfield East) was an honorable mention for the second team.
Howard replaced coach Dedrick Shannon, who retired after nine years at the helm. Shannon led his 2012-13 squad to a championship in both the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference and NJCAA Region IV along with a trip to nationals where they were runners-up. There were high hopes for another successful season, but the Cyclones finished with an 8-22 overall record and 4-10 conference record.
“This was not even close to what I wanted. If anyone told me this would be my record, there’s no way I’d believe them. If I had to point a finger at someone, it’d be myself,” Howard said.
The players were given too much autonomy and had more input early in the season instead of earning it, he explained. Howard also didn’t make his expectations clear nor define roles earlier. His biggest takeaway from the season—stay true to himself as a person and coach.
“It was a humbling experience, a brutal learning experience, and I learned a lot. I recognize what went well so it wasn’t a complete loss. It’ll make me better and make the guys better not just in basketball, but in dealing with change and transitions,” Howard said. “It took a lot of losses to learn, but the coaches and players will be better to have dealt with this season.”
Howard would be remiss if he didn’t thank his coaching staff who covered for him when he tore his Achilles, in addition to the Athletics staff for their support all year. He also received advice from Dedrick Shannon, who relayed his own first-year woes. “I’m grateful for his wisdom and for everyone who has been so supportive. It makes me want to work that much harder,” he said. “It was a crazy year, but I’m truly blessed and grateful.”
Next season the Cyclones will play in the new Health, Fitness & Recreation Center. Howard is excited at the prospect of a new gym and fitness center with state-of-the-art equipment and more space that allows more practice flexibility for his players to get enough work in on the court and the classroom.
March 11, 2014
Two former Cyclones earn accolades
Two former Cyclones were named to the 2014 All-Mid-American Conference (MAC)
third team after impressive seasons.
Juniors Richaun Holmes (2011-12), a forward at Bowling Green State University, and Karrington Ward (2012-13), a forward at Eastern Michigan University, both received the honor. This year Holmes averaged 13.4 points and 7.5 rebounds per game and broke a school single-season record with 86 blocks. Ward averaged 12.5 points per game, 15th most in the MAC, along with 6.4 rebounds per game.
While at Moraine Valley, both players were named to the NJCAA Division II All-American first team in addition to helping lead their respective teams to Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference and NJCAA Region IV championships as well as appearances in the NJCAA championship.
February 28, 2014
Cyclones put up the good fight
When Moraine Valley first faced Kishwaukee College this season, they were
dealt a crushing blow with a 45-point deficit. Their second meeting (Feb.
27) in the playoffs yielded another loss, 89-74, but with more fight.
The Cyclones had chances and came as close as eight points. Some missed layups near the end jolted Moraine Valley’s momentum.
Cameron Juillerat led the charge with 19 points followed by Des’nique Harris (14 points, 10 rebounds), Johnte Shannon (14 points, four steals), and Kyle Ward (11 points, 11 assists, 10 rebounds).
February 21, 2014
One more win before playoffs
It’s been a hot and cold year for the Cyclones, but they finished the
regular season (Feb. 20) on a warmer note. Although they lost to Morton
College in their first meeting in January, the Cyclones fought for their
78-72 win over the Panthers before playoffs start.
The Cyclones were a strong force in the first half, going up by 20 at one point. Some miscues after the break had Moraine Valley on edge, but they maintained a lead for the ultimate victory.
Brett Kaiser had a double-double for the night with 19 points, 11 rebounds, four assists, and three blocks. Kyle Ward scored 14 with seven boards, five assists and three steals in addition to contributions from Cameron Juillerat (14 points, four assists), Johnte Shannon (13 points, four rebounds, four assists), Des’nique Harris (nine points, five boards), and Brennan Ivory (four blocks).
February 19, 2014
Cyclones lose their fight
Unlike the fighting spirit the Cyclones had in their match with Prairie
State College on Saturday, they didn’t have the same drive Feb. 18, and fell
88-77 to the Pioneers.
The Cyclones were killed on the glass and out rebounded 46-32. Johnte Shannon tallied 25 points and three assists followed by Brett Kaiser (17 points, four rebounds), Kyle Ward (11 points, eight rebounds, two blocks), and Des’nique Harris (11 points, six boards).
February 16, 2014
Defense falters in loss to Pioneers
It was only in the last couple minutes of their game on Feb. 15 that the
Cyclones were stunted offensively, but it was enough for a stinging 75-70
loss to Prairie State College.
Moraine Valley held a lead nearly the entire game thanks to some big numbers from Kyle Ward (19 points), Paulius Ostruskevicius (14 points), Jason Allen (11 points), and Cameron Juillerat (10 points). At the break the Cyclones were up 35-28. Some missed layups and defensive blunders ultimately hurt the Cyclones in the second half. With two minutes to go, the Cyclones were ahead by four, but couldn’t score for the rest of the game, giving them the narrow loss.
Ward also had eight boards, five assists and three steals for the night while Ostruskevicius added three steals.
February 14, 2014
Cyclones control Spartans
The last time Moraine Valley played Elgin Community College, it was a close
battle with the Cyclones taking the loss. In their Feb. 13 meeting, the
Cyclones took control in the second half for a more solid 82-68 victory.
Both teams put the pressure on, keeping it close in the first half. At halftime the Cyclones were down by two. By putting on a stronger defensive front, the Cyclones were able to pull away for the win.
Johnte Shannon led the charge with 23 points. Kyle Ward had a big night with 18 points, eight boards, seven assists, and two blocks. Paulius Ostruskevicius added 10 points and seven rebounds while Des’nique Harris finished with nine points and 10 rebounds, and Denton Wallace had eight points and five rebounds.
February 12, 2014
Cyclones halt skid
The Cyclones’ long winless spell ended Feb. 11 with a 78-72 victory over McHenry
County College. In the last matchup between the two conference teams on Jan.
21 the Cyclones lost.
One key to this win was that the Cyclones continued to play hard even after making mistakes that have plagued them throughout this already rough season. Kyle Ward regained his prowess on the court with 26 points, seven rebounds and seven assists followed by Paulius Ostruskevicius (16 points), Des’nique Harris (11 points, six rebounds), Brett Kaiser (10 points, seven rebounds), and Denton Wallace (10 points).
February 7, 2014
’Clones struggle in second half for loss
Another rough second half did the Cyclones in on Feb. 6 in a 65-50 loss to
Waubonsee Community College.
The Cyclones came out of the gate charging, playing well enough to hold a 26-22 lead at the end of the first half. However, Waubonsee found another speed in the second half, going on an early 17-0 run, which proved too much for the Cyclones to overcome while they struggled to make any shots.
Johnte Shannon finished with 11 points, four assists, four rebounds, and three steals; Brett Kaiser had nine points and four boards; Kyle Ward had six points, six rebounds, seven assists, and five steals for the night.
February 5, 2014
The Cyclones had a win in their hands Feb. 4, but it slipped away at the end
resulting in a painful 59-58 loss to College of Lake County at home.
Both teams had their share of turnovers throughout the game, but for most of the first half the Cyclones held a lead. Brett Kaiser was the offensive force with 14 points at halftime when Moraine Valley led 28-22. There was at least a three-minute stretch toward the end of the second half where the Cyclones did not score, missing several layups and not executing plays.
Kaiser finished the game with 24 points and six rebounds followed by Cameron Juillerat (11 points), Johnte Shannon (10 points, six steals, five assists), and Des’nique Harris (19 rebounds).
February 3, 2014
Cyclones take a hit from Oakton
Troubles continued for the Cyclones as they dropped their latest conference
matchup on Feb. 1 to Oakton Community College, 87-69.
The Cyclones got off to a poor start, trailing by 30 at halftime. Johnte Shannon had a two-handed slam dunk early in the second half as the Cyclones were making a comeback, but they could only cut the lead to 11 at one point and couldn’t make up enough ground.
Shannon finished with 16 points, five rebounds and four assists followed by Denton Wallace (12 points, five rebounds), Jason Allen (10 points), Cameron Juillerat (eight points), and Brennan Ivory (seven rebounds).
January 31, 2014
Struggles continue for ’Clones
The Cyclones had another bad start, struggling to complete shots, and took a
rough 73-52 loss from Morton College on Jan. 30.
Moraine Valley put up a fight, cutting Morton’s lead to eight late in the second half, but fell back down after the surge. Johnte Shannon lead with 18 points followed by Brett Kaiser, who racked up a double-double with 15 points, 10 rebounds and five steals. Des’nique Harris had 12 rebounds for the night.
January 24, 2014
Cyclones fight to the end
It was another close-but-no-cigar loss for the Cyclones Jan. 23 in a narrow
72-69 conference loss to Elgin Community College.
Despite a number of turnovers down the stretch, the Cyclones played well but were pitted against a tough Spartans team.
Johnte Shannon was on fire, amassing a season high 35 points along with five boards, five assists, and three steals. Kyle Ward came up with 18 points, eight rebounds, six assists, and four steals while Des’nique Harris rounded out the top with six points and 11 boards.
January 22, 2014
Cyclones denied by Scots
The Cyclones had the wind blown out of their sails Jan. 21, after a tough
matchup with conference foe McHenry County College. Moraine Valley lost
86-73 to the Scots.
Kyle Ward had 16 points, seven assists and four boards for the night followed by Paul Ostruskevicius (14 points, four boards), Des’nique Harris (12 points, eight rebounds), Brett Kaiser (eight points, seven rebounds), and Denton Wallace (eight points).
January 19, 2014
Cyclones miss opportunities
There were opportunities for the Cyclones to come out ahead Jan. 18 against
NJCAA Division II seventh-ranked South Suburban College, but they fell 66-59
in the away contest.
The Cyclones were down by one at halftime and took the lead briefly before falling in the final minutes of the game.
Kyle Ward led with a team high 25 points, five rebounds and three assists followed by Des’nique Harris (20 points, eight rebounds) and Brett Kaiser (eight points, five rebounds).
January 17, 2014
Cyclones edge out Chiefs in OT
The Cyclones snapped a four-game losing streak thanks to a big 64-58
overtime win Jan. 16 over conference foe Waubonsee Community College.
Moraine Valley had momentum throughout the entire game until the Chiefs tied things up at 55 with less than a second to go. Kyle Ward and Denton Wallace were key offensively in overtime for the Cyclones to earn the first conference win of the season.
Ward led the charge with some big numbers including 17 points, 11 boards, 10 assists, and four steals. Wallace had 15 points while Johnte Shannon finished with 11 points and five rebounds. Brett Kaiser had eight points and six rebounds and Des’nique Harris banked seven and grabbed 10 boards.
January 15, 2014
’Clones fall to Lancers
There was some fight in the Cyclones on Jan. 14, but they couldn’t catch up
to College of Lake County, losing the battle 78-62.
Down by four at halftime, the Cyclones lost their groove in the second half and struggled to come back. Kyle Ward had an active night with 14 points, six rebounds, four steals, and three assists. Paul Ostruskevicius had 13 points, seven rebounds and three steals.
January 12, 2014
Cyclones challenged in overtime
The Cyclones started conference play Jan. 11 with an overtime game, but came
up just short. Moraine Valley fell 80-73 to Oakton Community College.
Brett Kaiser led the attack with 16 points, eight rebounds and three assists followed by Des’nique Harris (16 points, seven rebounds), Johnte Shannon (12 points, four assist) and Kyle Ward (11 points, six assists, five rebounds).
January 10, 2014
Cyclones fall short
Some sluggish minutes and a struggle to bank layups cost the Cyclones in
their 81-70 loss to Olive-Harvey College on Jan. 9.
Paulius Ostruskevicius led Moraine Valley with 22 points, four rebounds and three assist followed by Brett Kaiser (12 points), Kyle Ward (10 points, 13 rebounds), Des’nique Harris (eight points, 13 rebounds), and Johnte Shannon who had a big night (nine points, six rebounds, six assists, seven steals).
December 22, 2013
Cyclones getting stronger
The Cyclones are improving one game at a time. Despite falling 82-73 in
overtime to Danville Area Community College on Dec. 21, it was a much
better performance from their first meeting earlier in December when
Moraine Valley lost 90-56.
Johnte Shannon led the fight with 25 points, seven rebounds and three steals. Two players had double-doubles for the night- Kyle Ward (22 points, 11 rebounds, five assists) and Des’nique Harris (11 points, 10 rebounds). Paulius Ostruskevicius rounded out the bunch with 10 points.
December 20, 2013
Cyclones edge out Wolves
The Cyclones may have found their groove after earning a second consecutive
win Dec. 19 over rival Joliet Junior College. It came down to the wire, but
Moraine Valley pulled out a 72-71 victory in the final seconds of the game.
At one point the Cyclones were up by 12 points, but with 20 seconds left in the matchup they were down by one. Johnte Shannon made two free throws with six seconds on the clock to put the Cyclones ahead, and the Wolves ran out of time to score.
Des’nique Harris had a double-double on the night with 15 points and 11 rebounds. Kyle Ward had a big game with 11 points, seven rebounds, six assists, and six steals. Paulius Otruskevicius was next with 13 points and five steals followed by Shannon (11 points, three steals) and Cameron Juillerat (10 points).
December 18, 2013
Cyclones earn win over Rams
The Cyclones played better basketball on Dec. 17, which showed in their
63-57 victory over Wilbur Wright College.
Although Moraine Valley had some dominating moments, they did let the Rams back into the game for a close finish. Denton Wallace led the way with 16 points and six rebounds followed by Johnte Shannon (15 points, five rebounds, three assists), Cameron Juillerat (11 points, three rebounds), Des’nique Harris (eight points, seven rebounds), and Kyle Ward (six points, 12 rebounds, three assists).
December 16, 2013
Free throws hurt ’Clones
The Cyclones put up a good fight on Dec. 13 in their latest home game
against Elmhurst College JV, but 12 missed free throws throughout the night
contributed to the 63-58 loss.
Johnte Shannon led Moraine Valley with 24 points and three rebounds followed by Des’nique Harris (11 points, five rebounds) and Cameron Juillerat (seven points).
December 9, 2013
Rough outing for ’Clones
The Cyclones always have an extra challenge when facing Danville Area Community College. Their most recent meeting on Dec. 7 was no exception as Moraine Valley fell hard, 90-56. Johnte Shannon banked 26 points for the night followed by Cameron Juillerat with 11 points and Des’nique Harris with eight points and six rebounds.
December 2, 2013
Cyclones come up short in Cincy
It was a discouraging weekend (Nov. 29-30) for the Cyclones as they dropped
two at the Cincinnati State Tech and Community College Surge Classic
The Cyclones faced a tough Cincinnati State Tech and Community College squad to begin the weekend. It was another game where Moraine Valley started flat. There were too many open looks, too much defensive pressure and not enough fight in the Cyclones’ 106-44 loss. The Cyclones are a better team than they looked, but with one of their best players—Kyle Ward—out with an injury, the team hurt psychologically, said head coach Dave Howard. Moraine Valley didn’t make enough shots early, it was an uphill battle and the lead got out of control.
Des’nique Harris led the team with 13 points and 10 rebounds while Johnte Shannon had 12 points, five rebounds and three assists, and Paulius Ostruskevicius finished with 11 points and four boards.
In their second game of the weekend (Nov. 30), the Cyclones faced Malcolm X College and had a better response despite a 116-89 loss.
Moraine Valley was down early, but fought back and before halftime the team was within seven points (28-21). At that point, the Cyclones couldn’t buy a basket, Howard said. There just wasn’t enough firepower to maintain the momentum in the second half. It was another loss, but the Cyclones fought hard and played well together in this game.
Shannon was the lead scorer with 19 followed by Harris (15 points, seven rebounds), Brett Kaiser (14 points), Jason Allen (11 points), and Cameron Juillerat (10 points, three assists). John Curran had eight boards.
“Other teams are 5-3 or 5-4, so we’re still in the mix. All these games are preparing us for the conference,” Howard said. “The scores are not indicative of who we are as a team. We need to rise to the occasion when we play better teams. Our Achilles heel is rebounding; we definitely need to work on that. They’re discouraged, but I still believe in my guys. As long as we keep working hard, we still can be in it. We have what it takes. When we play aggressively and don’t settle for jump shots and attack the rim, we’re a much better team.”
November 27, 2013
Cyclones grab victory over Chaparrals
The Cyclones have a fondness for coming from behind, and it worked Nov. 26
in their 78-66 victory over College of DuPage.
With Kyle Ward and Johnte Shannon shooting a combined 26 points, the team fed off the duo’s energy, especially in the second half. The Cyclones started the game flat and were down by halftime. But a resilient Moraine Valley team fought back to take the lead for good. If they played like they did in that second half, the Cyclones could have more wins, said head coach David Howard. Despite this needed win, not all the players were healthy at the end of the game, namely starter Ward, making for a bittersweet night.
Ward finished with 16 points, five rebounds and three assists followed by Cameron Juillerat with 15 points and three assists. Paulius Ostruskevicius had 15 points and five rebounds; Brett Kaiser scored 12 and grabbed 11 rebounds; Shannon banked 10 and had six steals, five rebounds and four assists. Des’nique Harris had eight points and nine rebounds.
November 25, 2013
Cyclones denied by Daley
Although the Cyclones had some chances to win Nov. 23, they came up short in
a 70-63 loss to Daley College.
Johnte Shannon led the charge with 18 points. Des’nique Harris had 13 points and 10 rebounds. Kyle Ward had 10 points while Brett Kaiser added nine.
November 23, 2013
Cyclones notch first win
The Cyclones earned their first win of the season on Nov. 21, a 76-44
crushing of Trinity Christian College JV.
Nick Bal was the lead scorer with 16 points and three steals. Cameron Juillerat had 11 points while Kyle Ward scored 10, had 10 boards and five assist. Paul Otruskevicius rounded out the team leaders with seven points and nine rebounds.
November 18, 2013
Close but no cigar for ’Clones
There were some close calls for the Cyclones in their Nov. 16 matchup with
Triton College, just not enough for a win. Moraine Valley fell 85-81.
Kyle Ward was the leading scorer again with 28 points, five rebounds and five assists. Johnte Shannon had 20 points and four assists; Cameron Juillerat had 12 points; Des’nique Harris had 10 points and eight rebounds; and Jason Allen had seven rebounds for the night.
November 15, 2013
Cyclones fall to Hawks
The Cyclones had some chances to win, but came up short Nov. 14 in an 88-80
loss to Harper College.
Kyle Ward had 25 points, 11 rebounds, five assists and three steals; Johnte Shannon had 22 points, six steals and four assists; and Des’nique Harris had eight points and seven rebounds.
November 4, 2013
Cyclones denied by Kishwaukee in season opener
In their season opener Nov. 2, and first test with new coaches and a new
system, the Cyclones lacked fire on the court. It wasn’t pretty as Moraine
Valley fell to Kishwaukee College 109-64.
The players and coaches lacked a cohesive vision in this first game and plan to go back to the drawing board and work harder, said head coach David Howard. “Kishwaukee is a great team that is well coached. We were out coached and out played. We have a week and a half before we play again. We must work hard and not make excuses,” he said.
In the effort, Johnte Shannon had 19 points and four assists while Kyle Ward scored 18.
October 24, 2013
The bar is set high for new coach, new season
The Cyclones completed the 2012-13 season higher than they or any other
Cyclones team has gone—runner up in the nation padded by NJCAA Region IV and
Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference championships. As a new season rapidly
approaches, Moraine Valley finds itself ranked #12 in an NJCAA
Division II poll with a new head coach, a new system
and some fresh faces, but the same high standards and goals.
Coach Dedrick Shannon hung up his playbook after nine years, leaving on a very high note. The coveted role of head coach was entrusted to David Howard, a former Cyclone who played under Shannon in 2005-06. From his playing days at Whitney Young High School, Waubonsee Community College and Moraine Valley and then injuries that led to his coaching a throng of Chicago high school teams, Howard was given this chance as head coach and couldn’t be happier. “This is like a dream come true because I wanted to coach on the collegiate level. I have this opportunity, and now I have to make the best of it. I love this. This is not a job I have to peel myself out of bed for,” Howard said. “I’m grateful that coach [Bill] Finn and Dedrick opened this door for me. This is truly a blessing for me to be named head coach.”
With a new coach comes a different system and view of the game. On the court, Howard wants his guys to use their basketball IQ and play the game more mentally. Through repetition at practice, emphasis on defense, blocking out, drills, being more competitive to meet their potential, and good conditioning, he hopes this focus will aid his smaller-sized squad. Howard said he also is allowing his players to voice their opinions on what’s going well or what might work better, but he still has the upper hand. This keeps everyone involved, engaged and ideally working harder.
Within his new system, Howard wants a melding of sport, academics and life, but doesn’t rule with an iron fist. “My philosophy is to teach life through basketball. After my ACL reconstruction, I hung up my laces. I didn’t want it to happen, but at some point you have to hang up the laces and work. I want the players prepared. I want them to work on the court and in the classroom and develop them as young men of high quality and character and top citizens as a whole,” he said. “It’s a tough task, but I welcome it, and I believe I can make a difference. We’ll learn from each other. When they look back, I hope they think it was meaningful and that they learned to be disciplined and set goals.”
The Cyclones lost some key players, including All-American Karrington Ward, who had four double-doubles in the national tournament alone. Despite the loss, a group of veterans returns and brings that nationals experience to the table. All-Conference guard Johnte Shannon (Thornwood, 6’1”) is back along with guard/forward Des’nique Harris (Plainfield East, 6’4”), guard Cameron Juillerat (Australia, 5’11”), guard/forward Brett Kaiser (Stagg, 6’3”), center/forward Derrick Lynn (Bogan, 6’6”), and guard Kyle Ward (Lockport, 6’1”), who was sidelined last year with an injury mid-season.
“I’m expecting these guys to carry the load because they gave their blood, sweat and tears last year. They know what it takes,” Howard said. “I’ll rely on them to push themselves and their teammates. This is the core group, but they can’t do it alone.”
Howard expects the incoming group of players to be invaluable to the success of the team. They are a hardworking talented bunch, and the leaders will emerge and earn their roles as the season progresses.
The effort from all sides will pay off, Howard said, and he has high expectations. “I want to do equally as well as last year. It’s a tall task, but I wouldn’t set the bar any lower. If we don’t return to nationals, I’ll be disappointed and feel I let everyone down. I’m ready to do what I have to do.”
The Cyclones open their season Nov. 2 with an away game against Kishwaukee College. Their first home game is Nov. 16.
October 17, 2013
Former Cyclone impresses at Bowling Green
Former Cyclone Richaun Holmes (2011-12) is making a statement as a Falcon. The 6-8 forward transferred to Bowling Green State University in 2012 and has put up impressive numbers for the basketball team. He is the greatest single-season shot blocker in Falcons history. In one game alone against North Dakota he had six. In only 602 minutes off the bench, he blocked 73, shattering the previous record by 14. He ranked third in the Mid-American Conference (MAC) and 36th nationally in blocked shots. Holmes also ranked second at Bowling Green and among the top 20 in the MAC for averaging five rebounds per game.
Season Record: 31-6
Conference Record: 12-2
*NJCAA Region IV Champions
*Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference Co-Champions
NJCAA Division II All-American first team: Karrington Ward
All-NJCAA Division II Tournament Team: Darryl Hervey and Ward
All-NJCAA Region IV first team: Gerald Dorsey and Ward
NJCAA Region IV All-Tournament team: Marquell Pierce and Ward
NJCAA Region IV Player of the Year: Ward
NJCAA Region IV Tournament MVP: Ward
All-Conference first team: Hervey and Ward
All-Conference second team: Pierce and Johnte Shannon
Conference Player of the Year: Ward
Region IV Coach of the Year: Dedrick Shannon
|Tues.||Oct. 30||Trinity Christian College JV (scrimmage)||Home||8 p.m.||N/A|
|Thurs.||Nov. 1||Columbia College||Home||7 p.m.||W 138-30|
|Sat.||Nov. 3||Southwestern Illinois College||Away||7 p.m.||L 71-74|
|Thurs.||Nov. 8||Trinity Christian College JV||Home||7 p.m.||W 137-67|
|Fri.||Nov. 9||Cincinnati State Tech and Community College||Away-South Suburban College||7 p.m.||W 80-79|
|Tues.||Nov. 13||Harper College||Home||7 p.m.||W 95-85|
|Thurs.||Nov. 15||Triton College||Away||7 p.m.||W 98-86|
|Fri.||Nov. 16||College of St. Francis JV||Home||7 p.m.||W 114-81|
|Tues.||Nov. 27||Kankakee Community College||Home||7 p.m.||W 72-62|
|Thurs.||Nov. 29||Wright College||Away||7 p.m.||W 93-75|
|Mon.||Dec. 3||Trinity Christian College JV||Away||8 p.m.||W 118-68|
|Tues.||Dec. 4||Olive-Harvey College||Away||7 p.m.||W 90-72|
|Thurs.||Dec. 6||Joliet Junior College||Away||7 p.m.||W 76-64|
|Sat.||Dec. 8||Mott Community College||Away||7 p.m.||L 73-82|
|Tues.||Dec. 18||South Suburban College||Away||7 p.m.||L 61-69|
|Thurs.||Dec. 20||College of St. Francis JV||Away||1 p.m.||W 75-69|
|Thurs.||Jan. 3||Kishwaukee College||Home||5 p.m.||W 83-75|
|Sun.||Jan. 13||Morton College*||Away E.C.C.||Noon||L 51-69|
|Tues.||Jan. 15||McHenry County College*||Home||7 p.m.||W 136-82|
|Thurs.||Jan. 17||College of Lake County*||Away||7:15 p.m.||W 101-39|
|Tues.||Jan. 22||Elgin Community College*||Away||7:15 p.m.||W 110-96|
|Thurs.||Jan. 24||Waubonsee Community College*||Home||7 p.m.||W 90-79|
|Sat.||Jan. 26||Conference Make Up Date||TBA||TBA||N/A|
|Tues.||Jan. 29||Prairie State College*||Away||7 p.m.||W 100-82|
|Thurs.||Jan. 31||Oakton Community College*||Away||7:15 p.m.||W 89-74|
|Tues.||Feb. 5||Morton College*||Home||7 p.m.||W 92-90|
|Thurs.||Feb. 7||McHenry County College*||Away||7:15 p.m.||Canceled|
|Sat.||Feb. 9||College of Lake County*||Home||7:15 p.m.||W 105-46|
|Tues.||Feb. 12||Elgin Community College*||Home||7 p.m.||W 104-57|
|Thurs.||Feb. 14||Waubonsee Community College*||Away||7:15 p.m.||L 94-97|
|Sat.||Feb. 16||McHenry County College* (rescheduled)||Away||3 p.m.||W 115-85|
|Tues.||Feb. 19||Prairie State College*||Home||7 p.m.||W 92-54|
|Thurs.||Feb. 21||Oakton Community College*||Home||7 p.m.||W 107-55|
|Thurs.||Feb. 28||Region IV 1st Round vs. McHenry County College||Home||7:15 p.m.||W 112-79|
|Sun.||March 3||Region IV Semi-Finals vs. Oakton Community College||Away-Illinois Valley||Noon||W 88-70|
Region IV Finals vs.
|Away-Illinois Valley||Noon||W 83-69|
|Wed.||March 20||Nationals @ Danville Area Community College vs. Grand Rapids C.C. (MI)||Away||11 a.m.||W 73-68|
Nationals @ Danville Area Community College vs. Monroe C.C. (NY)
||Away||8 p.m.||W 78-74|
|Fri.||March 22||Nationals-Final Four-vs. Brown Mackie College (Kan.)||Away||8 p.m.||W 81-75|
Nationals-championship-vs. Rend Lake College (Ill.)
||Away||7:30 p.m.||L 69-87|
*Denotes Conference Game
May 15, 2013
Karrington Ward played in the 2013 NJCAA Men’s Basketball Coaches Association All-Star game in Las Vegas at the Orleans Arena on May 11 where he scored 24 points and was named MVP of the West All-Stars team.
Former forward Richaun Holmes (2011-12), who was NJCAA Division II All-American when he played with the Cyclones, had a successful 2012-13 season with his current team at Bowling Green State University. He set a new school record with 73 blocked shots, breaking the previous record of 59 set by Cornelius Cash in the 1973-74 season. Holmes also shot 63.6 percent from the field, the fourth-best season in program history. He ranked third in the Mid-American Conference and 36th in the country in blocked shots.
March 24, 2013
Cyclones #2 in nation, finish trailblazing season
Finishing second in the nation at the NJCAA Division II Championship Tournament is quite a feat. The Cyclones were in control all season-long, but after four intense games they came up short of taking the national title home (March 23). Losing 87-69 to Rend Lake College was a tough blow, but it was the first time the men’s basketball team had advanced that far in the programs’ existence and the first time two teams from the same state played in the Division II championship.
“It was a great run, and I enjoyed every step. This was great for Moraine Valley. It was the chance of a lifetime for these guys,” said Dedrick Shannon, in what was his final game as the Cyclones’ head coach. “After the game there was no holding our heads down. These schools we played have big scholarships for players. They have recruits from all over the country. We have local kids, and our biggest guy is 6’7”. Rend Lake had five guys over 6’7”. But we played impressively.”
Despite another double-double, his fourth in the tournament, by Karrington Ward (11 points, 11 rebounds), who was named to the All-Tournament team, and a couple of strong point totals from All-Tournament player Darryl “DJ” Hervey (17) and Dave Williams (13), the Cyclones couldn’t stop the shooting barrage by Rend Lake. Moraine Valley was shut down in the first half, shooting just 23.5 percent from the field, going 3-for-18 in 3-pointers. By halftime the Cyclones were down 48-26.
The Warriors’ defense and energy continued to halt the “94-feet-of-heat.” Although the Cyclones did outscore their opponent in the second half, it wasn’t enough to make up a significant first half deficit. After three consecutive games in the national tournament, the Cyclones just ran out of gas. “Playing four games the way we play is tough. We were fatigued. Normally we’d get the ball right back, but we were dead. We couldn’t press like we usually do. Rend Lake ran us down,” Shannon said. “It’s a tough task for anyone to win four back-to-back games, but we gave it a good try.”
Being down by nearly 30 points at one time, the Cyclones pushed back, nearly doubling their point total from the first half. In every game during the tournament, Moraine Valley was down at one point and fought back. “We kept playing hard, kept fighting no matter what,” Hervey said. “But Rend Lake shot well. They were up 19-3 at the start and we couldn’t come back that day. It was their day.”
Like most of their tournament experience, the Cyclones came in as the undersized underdogs. “Every game we played everyone penciled us out. They thought we were too small and weren’t shooting well. Then we won and did it again and then did it again,” Shannon said.
The Cyclones had supporters in the stands, including former players and college president Dr. Sylvia Jenkins. Between the crowd and enthusiastic bench players, the support helped the collective winning effort, Hervey said.
Despite a loss at the highest level [NJCAA Division II] of ball, the Cyclones made the community, school and region proud, and the players were like celebrities for the week in Danville, Shannon said. “At first I was disappointed we lost. It hurt to see Rend Lake cut down the net, but the next day when you look at the whole journey, it was great to see how we made history,” said Hervey, who is looking to transfer to a four-year university. “I’m happy all the hard work paid off.”
In addition to making school history by going further in the national tournament than any previous team, the Cyclones also won more games in a season than any other Cyclones men’s basketball team, finishing up with a 31-6 overall record. They also were Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference co-champions and NJCAA Region IV champs. Throughout his coaching career at Moraine Valley, Shannon worked toward playing in the national tournament and said it was the team’s destiny. He tried to build the program back up, evidenced by two consecutive runs at nationals. “The standards are higher, that’s what I wanted, and we turned some heads. It was a team, no, a family effort for many years,” he said.
Shannon is stepping down as the head coach, but is confident the winning legacy will continue. “I had a blast. The first game I coached we lost 129-75. To be there and then coach this last game at the national championship, we did some things right. It’s exciting. The next coach will have good support,” he said. “I’m happy it’s over, and I can start a new chapter. I’m looking forward to spending more time with my sons, and I’m going back to school.”
March 23, 2013
Cyclones advance to title game
For the first time in Cyclones men’s basketball history, the team is competing for the NJCAA Division II title after downing six-seeded Brown Mackie College (Kan.) at the national tournament March 22.
The pressure was on before the game even started—Brown Mackie has made five national tournament appearances, winning the championship twice. Moraine Valley had already been written off based on size alone, said head coach Dedrick Shannon. With four main players under 6’0”, the Cyclones had to contend with taller competition.
Moraine Valley was down at the end of the first half, 44-36, shooting just 37.5 percent from the floor to Brown Mackie’s 48.4 percent. A shift occurred after halftime with Moraine Valley taking command of the basket until their 81-75 win, advancing them to the championship matchup.
Karrington Ward continued to be a force with 25 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks. Johnte Shannon helped with 14 points and four rebounds. Gerald Dorsey and DJ Hervey each scored 11 with Hervey adding six rebounds, seven assists and five steals to the mix. Other contributors included Dave Williams (nine points) and Marquell Pierce (seven points, four assists, four steals).
March 22, 2013
Cyclones in Final Four
Regardless of the ultimate outcome, the Cyclones will end their season as one of the top teams in the nation after advancing to the NJCAA Division II Final Four. Karrington Ward and Gerald Dorsey each scored 22 points to lead seventh-seeded Moraine Valley to a 78-74 upset victory over second-seeded Monroe Community College (NY) on March 21.
This is the third time the Cyclones have earned a berth in the Final Four. Athletic director Bill Finn, during his tenure as head coach, led the Cyclones to the semi-finals in 1990 and 1999.
The third time almost wasn’t a charm. After a rough first half, it looked as though the Cyclones would be playing in the consolation bracket. Moraine Valley shot just 31.6 percent from the field, falling behind 38-29 at halftime.
With rediscovered strength, the Cyclones came out strong in the second half, shooting 50 percent from the field. Monroe struggled with turnovers, having 22 compared to Moraine Valley’s 10 for the game. Ward finished with a double-double, adding 12 rebounds to his double figure scoring as well as eight blocks. Dave Williams scored 10 while Brett Kaiser had eight points and six rebounds and DJ Hervey had seven points and five assists.
The Cyclones continue their run tonight at 8 p.m. against basketball powerhouse Brown Mackie College (#6), Kan. Watch the action live at http://bit.ly/10rUiaL. If Moraine Valley wins, they play for the championship March 23 at 7:30 p.m., but if they lose, they play at 5:30 p.m. for third place.
March 21, 2013
Cyclones move to round two at nationals
It was a nail-biter to the end, but the Cyclones came out on top in the first round of the NJCAA Division II Championship on March 20 in Danville, Ill. Moraine Valley’s fast and fierce pace was too much for Grand Rapids Community College (MI), which was running on a 10-game win streak going into this competition, ousting them in a 73-68 victory.
After losing the first game in last year’s national tournament, the Cyclones were determined to make amends this time around. It was a game of ups and downs for both teams, but ultimately turnovers and free throws helped the cause. Grand Rapids had 29 turnovers compared to Moraine Valley’s 17, and some key free throws at the end of the second half kept the Cyclones ahead. Not to mention five Moraine Valley players scored in double digits, a trend this season.
By halftime the Cyclones were only up 31-30, but at one time they were down by nine points. The Cyclones slowly pulled ahead, and some free throws by Marquell Pierce and DJ Hervey with less than two minutes to go gave the team some breathing room. As he has all season, Karrington Ward led the attack with 17 points (including two dunks), 10 rebounds and five blocks. Helping the cause were Pierce (11 points), Gerald Dorsey (11 points, four steals), Brett Kaiser (10 points, three steals), and Dave Williams (10 points, four steals).
The Cyclones face Monroe Community College (NY) in round two of the NJCAA Division II Championships tonight at 8 p.m. Catch the action at http://bit.ly/ZNe4wX.
March 11, 2013
Cyclones claim region championship, head to nationals for second consecutive year
Do you believe in miracles? Yes, but this wasn’t a miracle. It was hard work and the 94-feet-of-heat mindset that got the Cyclones (28-5) a second consecutive NJCAA Region IV championship and a trip to the national tournament.
The Cyclones faced Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference foe Morton College, which took one game from Moraine Valley this season in two matchups, before running away with an 83-69 win March 9 in the regional championship game.
It was a big night for the Cyclones in this final playoff game, also lending to the first triple-double of the season for Karrington Ward. He came out fighting with 25 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists, and three steals, helping him earn Region IV Player of the Year, Region IV Tournament MVP and a spot on the Region IV first team and Region IV All-Tournament team. Moraine Valley was ready for the challenge in this hard-fought, gutsy victory. The constant Cyclones pressure wore down the Panthers, and was evident on the court. All season this has been a successful strategy for the Cyclones, contributing to a 28-5 record and co-conference championship.
Adding to this pivotal victory was the action by Marquell Pierce (13 points, six assists), who also was voted to the All-Tournament team, Dave Williams (18 points, eight rebounds) and Gerald Dorsey (10 points), who received a nod to the All-Region first team.
“It speaks volumes about the hard work and dedication these guys put in this year. It's a very exciting time for Moraine Valley. Ironically, in the past every time we've made nationals, it's been back-to-back year,” said head coach Dedrick Shannon, who received Region IV Coach of the Year. “Last year we were just excited to be there. This year it's not enough just to qualify. We want to bring home some hardware. We are playing at a very high level right now so anything is possible.”
The Cyclones start their run in nationals March 20 at 11 a.m. against a white hot Grand Rapids Community College squad in Danville, Ill. Watch all the action on www.ihigh.com/njcaatv/. Moraine Valley goes in to this first round seeded seventh out of 16 teams.
March 4, 2013
Cyclones one game away from nationals
The old adage “win or go home” is what the Cyclones are standing by in the playoffs. In a crucial 88-70 victory over Oakton Community College on March 3, Moraine Valley advanced to the NJCAA Region IV finals.
The Cyclones were focused and ready for playoff action. In what turned out to be more of a battle, the Cyclones were up 48-38 at halftime. After the half, the Cyclones came out quick and extended their lead to 25. This proved to be too much for Oakton to handle as they could not break the double digit deficit.
Karrington Ward had a double-double for the night with 27 points, 11 rebounds, three blocks, and three steals with help from Marquell Pierce (12 points, eight assists), Gerald Dorsey (11 points), Johnte Shannon (11 points), and Dave Williams (eight points, six assists, five rebounds, three steals).
Next up is rival Morton College in the Region IV finals on March 9. They’ve split wins in their two meetings this season, so the pressure is on for both teams to advance to the national championship.
March 1, 2013
’Clones run away in playoffs
The Cyclones continued their winning ways on Feb. 28, this one being an important victory to advance to the NJCAA Region IV semi-finals. Topping 100 points again, Moraine Valley toppled McHenry County College 112-79 in the first round of playoffs.
After shaking off a slow and sluggish first half, the Cyclones were able to run away with this game, winning by 35 points. The Scots were shorthanded and couldn’t handle the feisty, fast paced game that the Cyclones have established this season.
Gerald Dorsey led the way with 26 points followed by Karrington Ward (20 points), Kyle Ward (19 points), Zoran Arsenovic (12 points), and Marquell Pierce (eight assists).
February 25, 2013
Cyclones claim second consecutive Skyway co-championship
The Cyclones ended their regular season just as they started—with a 100-plus blowout win. Besides speed this season, the Cyclones demonstrated a knack for scoring more often in the century mark (12 times) than in the last five years. Their 107-55 victory over Oakton Community College on Feb. 21 also solidified a second consecutive Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference co-championship.
From start to finish Oakton was no match for Moraine Valley. Focused the entire game, the Cyclones took control and never looked back, evidenced by five players scoring in the double digits. Karrington Ward had 23 points and seven rebounds followed by Johnte Shannon (20 points), Gerald Dorsey (12 points), Dave Williams (12 points, four rebounds), Kyle Ward (11 points, five assists), Darryl Hervey (nine points, five rebounds, four steals), Brett Kaiser (seven points, 11 rebounds), and Marquell Pierce (seven points, six assists).
Moraine Valley finished the regular season with a 12-2 conference record, tying with Morton and Waubonsee Community College for first place. However, the Cyclones were seeded first in region playoffs. Karrington Ward was named Skyway Player of the Year and got a nod to the All-Conference first team along with Hervey. Pierce and Shannon were named to the All-Conference second team.
“It’s always good to finish on top. Winning a conference title is a yearly goal. Being back-to-back champions with only one returner from last year is even tougher,” said head coach Dedrick Shannon. “We’re looking forward to defending our Region IV title and possibly returning to Danville for the national championship. These are exciting times at Moraine Valley.”
The Cyclones start NJCAA Region IV playoffs at home on Thursday, Feb. 28, against McHenry County College. Get all the action on SportsTownChicago.com where you can hear the game live.
February 20, 2013
Cyclones take charge
From start to finish the Cyclones took command over Prairie State College Feb. 19 and didn’t let go. Moraine Valley’s 92-54 win was made even more poignant because head coach Dedrick Shannon was honored at the game for his impending departure post-season.
There was never a time when the Cyclones weren’t ahead, aside from a brief 12-12 tie near the 14-minute mark. A barrage of 3-pointers by Karrington Ward and a couple layups from Darryl Hervey moved the Cyclones up 22-13. With 1:15 to go in the first half Ward dunked it before a Pioneers turnover gave him a second dunk within nine seconds. At halftime Moraine Valley had a cool 46-26 lead.
It took nearly two minutes before the Cyclones scored in the second half, but easily coasted to the victory and allowed some bench players time on the floor. There was nothing but movement and flow the entire matchup.
Ward posted 26 points, 15 rebounds and four steals followed by Johnte Shannon (15 points), Brett Kaiser (11 points), and Hervey (10 points, six assists).
February 17, 2013
’Clones back on track
The Cyclones played like two different teams Feb. 16 but were able to find their stride and tack on another conference win, the 10th. Moraine Valley defeated McHenry County College 115-85.
In the first half the Cyclones had no life, no intensity, no sense of urgency, and found themselves down 49-46 at halftime. After the half, the Cyclones took a 180-degree turn for the better with more focus and efficiency on the court. Moraine Valley exploded and scored 69 points, using stifling defense to hold the Scots to 36 points.
Karrington Ward led the way with 29 points and 13 rebounds followed by Johnte Shannon (22 points), Darryl Hervey (18 points, six rebounds), Dave Williams (12 points), and Marquell Pierce (seven points, nine assists, six steals).
February 15, 2013
Nine-game win streak snapped
There was no love on Feb. 14 for the Cyclones as their nine-game win streak was snapped by Waubonsee Community College. Although Moraine Valley fought a hard battle, they came up short in the 97-94 loss. With this lost, Moraine Valley was ousted from a solid first place position in the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference.
After taking a quick lead in the first half, the Cyclones fell behind and could not regain the lead. But the Cyclones never gave up. They scratched and clawed until the end of the game and nearly came back and pulled out a victory.
Gerald Dorsey led the charge with 26 points followed by Karrington Ward (18 points, 13 rebounds, five blocks), Marquell Pierce (15 points, four assists) and Johnte Shannon (13 points).
February 13, 2013
Cyclones top century mark again
Holding on to a national ranking is something the Cyclones aren’t having trouble with this season. The ninth-ranked squad also held their place atop the conference with another 100-plus win Feb. 12 over Elgin Community College, 104-57.
Moraine Valley had its second consecutive game where quickness and endurance overwhelmed the opponent, and it showed in the final score. The Spartans were bent over and gasping for air because of the constant pressure from the Cyclones.
Karrington Ward recorded another double-double, 23 points and 15 rebounds along with four steals. He had help in the collective team effort from Johnte Shannon (21 points), Dave Williams (17 points, three steals), Gerald Dorsey (13 points), Marquell Pierce (10 points, 11 assists), and Kyle Ward (six points, 10 rebounds, five steals, five assists).
February 11, 2013
Cyclones stay on top
The Cyclones are starting to make a habit of winning with scores topping 100. In their eighth straight win Feb. 9, Moraine Valley destroyed College of Lake County in a 105-46 victory.
Maintaining speed on the court, the Cyclones didn’t let down and had seven players score in the double digits. Helped by the Lancers’ 68 turnovers, the Cyclones had a team total of 13 steals. It was a collective effort with Karrington Ward scoring 17 points, Darryl Hervey with 16, Dave Williams with 15, Brett Kaiser with 14, Gerald Dorsey and Kyle Ward each with 11, and Johnte Shannon tallying 10 points. The Ward brothers totaled 15 rebounds with Karrington blocking three. Hervey led with seven assists.
February 6, 2013
’Clones eke out 20th win
The Cyclones got their just revenge on Feb. 5 when they eked out a 92-90 victory over Morton College, the only team to have given Moraine Valley a conference loss this season. This also was Moraine Valley’s 20th win.
Despite the close finish, the Cyclones led by 18 points in the first half and at one time in the second half by 27 points. Morton kept fighting, especially when down by two. Moraine Valley had some ups and downs this game, looking solid one minute and sloppy the next, coming up with the victory. This win helped maintain a tie for first in the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference.
Karrington Ward had a big night with 23 points and 13 rebounds followed by Gerald Dorsey with 19 points and Dave Williams with 15. Kyle Ward scored eight points and grabbed eight boards while Marquell Pierce had six points and 11 assists.
February 1, 2013
Cyclones are on fire
The Cyclones are blazing a trail in conference, winning their sixth straight on Jan. 31. Holding on to a three-way tie in conference, Moraine Valley needed this 89-74 victory over Oakton Community College.
Even though the Cyclones won by 15 points, it was a much closer game. Once again, the Cyclones wore down their opponent with constant pressure and speed. For the first time this season, Moraine Valley had six players in double figures. “When a team has six players in double digits, this usually means that the team is very unselfish, which is rare nowadays,” said assistant coach Jelani Boline.
Karrington Ward topped the leader board with 19 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks followed by Johnte Shannon with 15 points and Gerald Dorsey with 14. Darryl Hervey scored 13 points along with four assists, five rebounds, and five steals. Marquell Pierce had 10 points, 10 assists and six steals while Brett Kaiser scored 10 points and had seven boards.
The Cyclones have some revenge to take tonight when they face Morton College, the only conference team to have beaten Moraine Valley so far.
February 1, 2013
’Clones grab fifth straight
Since the Cyclones started conference play in 2013, they have only lost one game, their first one. On Jan. 29 they earned their fifth straight win, a 100-82 victory over Prairie State College.
For the eighth time this season, the Cyclones put up triple digits in a win, thanks in part to a signature fast-paced style of basketball. By midway through the second half, the Cyclones were up 30 points, and it looked like the Pioneers were worn down until the end. “One thing you can count on is that when Moraine Valley has five players scoring in double figures, we usually win,” said assistant coach Jelani Boline.
The big scorer for the night was Johnte Shannon with 19 points followed closely by Karrington Ward, who had 18 points, nine rebounds, four assists, and three blocks. Brett Kaiser scored 16 while Gerald Dorsey had 13 and Darryl Hervey had 11 points, four rebounds and two steals.
January 25, 2013
Cyclones move into first
In an important game for the Cyclones, they defeated Waubonsee Community College, undefeated in the conference, 90-79 on Jan. 24. Not only was this the Cyclones’ fourth straight win, but also one that tied them for first in the conference.
Moraine Valley fought every step of the way in their latest win. There were several lead changes throughout the game with the Cyclones taking over the last part of the second half and leading by 10 points down the stretch. “It looked like Waubonsee was worn down and hadn't seen that type of pressure this season,” said assistant coach Jelani Boline.
Once again, five Cyclones scored in double figures with Karrington Ward and Marquell Pierce earning double-doubles. Ward had 25 points and 15 rebounds while Pierce had 13 points and 10 assists. Other contributors were Dave Williams with 12 points, Brett Kaiser with 12 points and five rebounds, and Darryl Hervey, who had 11 points, six rebounds and four assists.
January 23, 2013
Cyclones bringing heat
It was another 100-plus win for the Cyclones on Jan. 22 when they edged out Elgin Community College 110-96.
The Cyclones and Spartans were in a dogfight for the entire first half as Moraine Valley clung to a 53-50 lead at halftime. Midway through the second half, the Cyclones pulled away and wore Elgin down with the “94 feet of heat” style of play that has been the Cyclones' bread and butter all season. Karrington Ward led the charge with 31 points and 12 boards followed by Gerald Dorsey, who had 21 points and five steals. Brett Kaiser scored 15 while Marquell Pierce had 14 points and six assists and Darryl Hervey scored 10 points in addition to his seven assists and five rebounds.
With this win, the Cyclones advanced to 16-4 overall and 3-1 in conference play. The true test comes tonight as the Cyclones face an undefeated Waubonsee Community College team.
January 18, 2013
Cyclones trump Lancers
From the tipoff it was an easy blowout win for the Cyclones on Jan. 17 when they crushed College of Lake County 101-39.
Moraine Valley played stifling defense, evidenced by the team’s 19 steals for the game. By the end of the first half, the Cyclones were ahead 48-17. This was an easy win, which allowed bench players an opportunity to get some time on the court.
Gerald Dorsey had 30 points and four assists for the night. Johnte Shannon and Cameron Julierat had 12 and 10 points, respectively while Karrington Ward scored 11 with 12 rebounds and three blocks and Brett Kaiser had 11 points and five rebounds.
January 16, 2013
Killer win by Cyclones
What the Cyclones lacked in their first conference game they made up for in their second. In their third highest scoring game this year, Moraine Valley walloped McHenry County College 136-82 on Jan. 15 at home.
Moraine Valley was back to their typical game style, attacking on offense and defense from start to finish, or “94 feet of heat,” as the coaches term it. McHenry County College wasn't in shape to handle what the Cyclones brought the entire 40 minutes of play. Moraine Valley had six players in double figures led by Karrington Ward, who had 26 points and 16 rebounds, followed by Gerald Dorsey with 24 points, Johnte Shannon with 18, Kyle Ward with 16, Darryl Hervey with 15, and Shaun Johnson with 10 points along with seven rebounds. Marquell Pierce had a big night with 10 assists while Brett Kaiser had 10 boards.
January 14, 2013
Cyclones fall in conference opener
The Cyclones were rolling on a 13-3 record before their first conference game of the season on Jan. 13. Unfortunately Moraine Valley, still ranked 10th in the country, lacked focus and intensity in a 69-51 loss to Morton College.
There wasn’t much energy in the first half when the Cyclones scored just 24 points and did slightly better after halftime. Overall, Moraine Valley shot 1-for-29 from behind the arc and went 16-for-74 in total field goals. "The players didn't have a sense of urgency to start the conference play off with a win and set the tone for the rest of the season," said assistant coach Jelani Boline. "Instead we came out with a lack of focus and toughness and just looked disinterested in the game. That is unusual for the team I am used to watching play 94 feet of heat from start to finish. Hopefully this was a wake up call that we can't take any days off."
Gerald Dorsey was easily the top scorer and most aggressive with 18 points, four rebounds, three assists, two steals, and he went 8-for-8 from the free throw line. Karrington Ward had 11 points, eight rebounds and one steal. The next highest scorer was Brett Kaiser with five points.
January 4, 2013
’Clones start 2013 with win
The Cyclones started off the new year right with an 83-75 win over the eighth-ranked team in the nation—Kishwaukee College—on Jan. 3.
This was a big win since three starters didn't dress, but Moraine Valley still had five players score in double figures. “These are the kind of games that we need to win, especially after having some time off. Going into conference with a 13-3 record is very promising, but we must stay hungry and continue to get better to make a run in the conference and reach our goal of repeating a trip to nationals and putting ourselves in a position to go further than last year’s team. I hope our guys can stay focused in the classroom and on the court without any other distractions,” said assistant coach Jelani Boline.
Kyle Ward led the team with 22 points, six rebounds and four steals. Darryl Hervey had 16 points, three assists and three steals; Marquell Pierce scored 12 in addition to his five assists and two steals; Johnte Shannon scored 12 and stole two while Karrington Ward rounded out the bunch with 11 points, nine boards, four blocks, and four steals.
December 21, 2012
Ugly win for Cyclones
The Cyclones got their groove back Dec. 20 with an ugly 75-69 win over College of St. Francis JV.
Once again, several players were out of the lineup, including leader Karrington Ward. After falling behind for most of the game, the Cyclones clawed their way back down the stretch for the win. Darryl Hervey was the top scorer with 22 points followed by Marquell Pierce with 16 and Cameron Juillerat with 10.
December 19, 2012
Cyclones fall to Bulldogs
With three starters out of the lineup to start the game Dec. 18, the Cyclones struggled to find their rhythm and fell 69-61 to South Suburban College.
The first half was slow with the Cyclones scoring only 25 points. Holding the Bulldogs to only 15 points in the second half kept Moraine Valley in the game, but not enough to pull out a win. Karrington Ward and Gerald Dorsey led the charge with 16 points and three rebounds each. Kyle Ward scored 11 and grabbed four boards while Johnte Shannon had seven rebounds.
December 9, 2012
Cyclones denied by Mott
Moraine Valley’s matchup Dec. 8 with number four nationally ranked Mott Community College was a big test. Mott hadn’t lost a home game in 10 years, and the Cyclones couldn’t break the cycle, losing the contest 82-73, but not without a fight.
The Cyclones are ranked ninth in the NJCAA Division II and had a 10-game win streak going into this game, but injury and stunted rebounding contributed to the loss. There was a glimpse of hope at the end of the first half when Moraine Valley was ahead 41-35. However, things got shaky when leading scorer and rebounder Karrington Ward re-injured his foot shortly after halftime. Even though he wasn't having his typical game, the Cyclones looked to him to turn that around in the second half especially since teammates Gerald Dorsey, Marquell Pierce, Kyle Ward, and Darryl Hervey carried the load in the first half.
Despite the loss, the Cyclones gave Mott trouble with their speed, quickness and pressure. Moraine Valley had 17 steals and caused 23 turnovers, but Mott killed the Cyclones in rebounds, 50 to 29. Five players finished the game in double figures. Starting sophomore point guard Pierce played 37 minutes and had 11 points, four assists, four rebounds, and zero turnovers. “In a big time game and against a pretty physical team on defense like that speaks volumes of how he ran his team—with poise and very efficiently,” said assistant coach Jelani Boline.
Hervey was the next leading scorer with 15 points, four steals and four rebounds. Dorsey had 12 points, Kyle Ward scored 11, grabbed five boards and stole four while Johnte Shannon had 11 points and four steals.
December 7, 2012
Tenth straight for ’Clones
The Cyclones players are stepping up and grabbed their 10th straight win Dec. 6, a 76-64 victory over Joliet Junior College.
After a dogfight of a game against Olive Harvey, Moraine Valley had more of an ugly win with Joliet. The Cyclones shot only 21 percent from the 3-point arc and just eight total free throws. “This comes from a lack of inside presence. Hopefully, one or two of the inside players will step up and fill that void sooner than later. Until then, Moraine Valley's offense will come mainly from the perimeter. The old saying goes, if you live by the three you will die by the three,” said assistant coach Jelani Boline.
But some players are stepping up including Kyle Ward. In the last two games, Ward has been more active on the court. Against Joliet he had 15 points, five rebounds, five assists, and six steals. He also had back to back steals and dunked both times. Ward’s brother Karrington continued to lead the team, this time with 23 points, 12 rebounds and four steals. Dave Williams had 12 points for the night.
December 5, 2012
Hard-fought victory over Olive Harvey
The Cyclones 90-72 win over Olive Harvey College on Dec. 4 may look like a blowout, but it was a hard-fought, well-earned victory.
From the tip-off this was one of the most physical games of the season. Both teams got away with more than usual, but the Cyclones rose to the occasion and proved that despite a general lack of height and need for speed, they are up to any challenge no matter what.
Just up 42-37 at halftime, Moraine Valley came out for the second half more focused and thrived in a hostile environment to win big. The Cyclones really put the game away after a Karrington Ward dunk that could have been on the top 10 plays of the day on SportsCenter. He stole a pass close to half court then took off, strode inside the free throw line and did a windmill dunk to rock the house.
Ward ended the night with 23 points and seven rebounds followed by Darryl Hervey, who scored 14, grabbed five boards and had four assists. Other double-digit scorers included Gerald Dorsey with 13 points, Johnte Shannon with 11 and Marquell Pierce with 10 in addition to his six assists and five steals. Kyle Ward rounded out the bunch with nine points and 11 rebounds.
December 4, 2012
Cyclones crush Trolls
The Cyclones had all cylinders running Dec. 3 when they crushed Trinity Christian College JV 118-68.
In the first half alone Moraine Valley scored 65 points, allowing only 25 for the Trolls primarily in the last three minutes. After halftime, the Cyclones lost some steam, weren't on point defensively, didn't box out for rebounds, and became a little sloppier, but still managed to earn the victory. “Hopefully Moraine Valley gets this out of their system early in the season because against some better teams this can come back to haunt them,” said assistant coach Jelani Boline.
Karrington Ward led the Cyclones again with a double-double, scoring 32 and grabbing 14 boards. Marquell Pierce had 19 points, eight assists and for being the shortest player on the team at 5’9” an impressive two blocks, the most for a Cyclones that night. Johnte Shannon had a big night scoring 29 and getting eight rebounds. Darryl Hervey had just five points but 10 assists and seven boards.
November 30, 2012
Cyclones dominate Rams
Moraine Valley rediscovered some speed and dominated Wright College on Nov. 29 with a 93-75 win.
The Cyclones held a commanding lead, going up 55-34 at halftime. Once again, Karrington Ward led the team with a double-double, scoring 19 points and grabbing 13 boards. He also had two assists. Brett Kaiser followed with 14 points and two steals and Gerald Dorsey with 13 points and three rebounds. Marquell Pierce rounded out the group with eight points, five assists and two steals.
The Cyclones have a long week ahead of them, ending with a game against Mott Community College, a squad that hasn’t lost a home game in 10 years.
November 28, 2012
Cyclones grab ninth straight
Always a thorn in their side, Kankakee Community College became the latest victim of the Cyclones in their sixth consecutive win, this one a 72-62 victory on Nov. 27.
Some time off from Thanksgiving break slowed the Cyclones down, evidenced by their lowest points scored in a win and only two players scoring in the double digits. Despite some sluggishness and a close game, the Cyclones held a solid 43-36 lead at halftime. Karrington Ward was the big scorer of the night with 28 points added to his 10 rebounds and four blocks. Marquell Pierce was next with 12 points while Johnte Shannon scored eight.
November 17, 2012
Cyclones pressure yields another win
They may have started off sluggish, but the finish was the opposite for the Cyclones as they dominated the University of St. Francis JV on Nov. 16 in a 114-81 victory.
In the first half Moraine Valley played sloppy ball before turning up the heat after halftime, pulling away from St. Francis. Once again the pressure put on by the Cyclones wore down the Saints, especially in the last 10 minutes of the game. Karrington Ward led the charge with 27 points and 10 rebounds followed by Johnte Shannon with 17 points and Dave Williams who scored 15.
November 16, 2012
’Clones grab fourth straight win
In their fourth straight win Nov. 15, the Cyclones played aggressive ball, upsetting Triton College 98-86.
The Cyclones came out of the gate fearless, aggressive and intense, grabbing an early 20-5 lead. Some sloppy plays and a lack of discipline on defense slowed Moraine Valley down and cut their lead to 52-44 by halftime. “If Moraine Valley doesn't learn how to play aggressive on defense and apply pressure without fouling, it’s going to come back to haunt us in the future,” said assistant coach Jelani Boline. However, this was another game where five Cyclones had double digit figures. “This is how the game should be played. It seems like the players enjoy playing with each other. There is no ‘I’ in this team,” Boline said. “The future looks promising because Moraine Valley is only scratching the surface and has a lot of room for improvement.”
Leading the Cyclones once again was Karrington Ward, who scored 19 and grabbed 12 boards. Gerald Dorsey had 17 points and six assists while Darryl Hervey and Johnte Shannon each scored 16.
November 14, 2012
Unselfish ball equals win for Cyclones
After their last hard won battle against Cincinnati State Tech, the Cyclones thought they could roll through Harper College the same way. Although Moraine Valley couldn’t pull away from the Hawks, they did grab a 95-85 win on Nov. 13.
The Cyclones continued to show promise even though they lack a solid inside game, said assistant coach Jelani Boline. They put constant pressure on Harper on both ends of the floor, which can be problematic for teams not used to it. Five Cyclones scored in double figures, indicating that overall they are playing head coach Dedrick Shannon’s style of unselfish basketball.
Karrington Ward was the top scorer with 23 and seven rebounds followed by Johnte Shannon with 22 points and Gerald Dorsey, who had 14.
November 10, 2012
Cyclones gut it out
In the Cyclones’ quest for another trip to nationals, their 80-79 win over nationally ranked Cincinnati State Tech and Community College on Nov. 9 was a big step in the right direction.
The lead changed hands often as both teams played hard and tough ball, but Moraine Valley used their speed. Gerald Dorsey had a big night with 29 points. With seven seconds left in the game and the score tied at 79, Dorsey was fouled and made a free throw to put the Cyclones up for the win. Karrington Ward had 13 points with 14 rebounds for the night.
November 9, 2012
Cyclones crush Trinity
After a narrow loss in their last game, the Cyclones bounced back in a big way Nov. 8 with a 137-67 win over Trinity Christian College.
In their second blowout this season, the Cyclones used pressure which was just too much for Trinity. “The old saying is, ‘Pressure busts pipes!’ Well that’s exactly what happened in this game. One thing can definitely be said about Moraine Valley men's basketball, it is fun to watch if you are a fan,” said assistant coach Jelani Boline.
Trinity Christian struggled to get into their offensive sets because of constant ball pressure and an unmatchable offensive transition game by Moraine Valley. Karrington Ward once again led the Cyclones with 25 points, six assists and six rebounds. Gerald Dorsey was next with 17 points followed by Dave Williams with 16. Marquell Pierce had 11 assists followed closely by Darryl Hervey with 10.
November 4, 2012
’Clones fight in narrow loss
The Cyclones may not have the height, but they have the fight. Although they had their first loss Nov. 3, it was to an NJCAA Division I school ranked 20th nationally. Moraine Valley fell 74-71 to Southwestern Illinois College.
Moraine Valley fought the entire game and had to, considering their tallest player is 6-foot-6-inches while Southwestern had three players over 6-feet-10-inches tall. What they lacked in height they made up for in speed. While Southwestern wanted to pound the ball down low to their big guys, the Cyclones played fast and got the opponent out of their comfort zone with constant pressure on offense and defense. Moraine Valley was led by 6-foot-6-inch Karrington Ward with 31 points and seven rebounds. Darryl Hervey had 10 points and four assists while Brett Kaiser had nine points.
November 2, 2012
Home-opener equals huge win
The Cyclones’ home-opener Nov. 1 was an eye-opener as they dominated Columbia College in a 138-30 victory.
Moraine Valley used a balanced offensive attack and stifled defensive pressure which Columbia College could not handle. This game was controlled by the Cyclones from start to finish. The big shooters of the game were Gerald Dorsey with 21 points, Des'nique Harris with 18 and Brian Townsend with 15.
November 2, 2012
Cyclones looking for speed to defend title
The 2012 NJCAA Region IV and Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference championship Cyclones are back, but with a whole new look and strategy. Only one player from last year’s team, which played in nationals and posted a 27-9 record, returned with many transferring on scholarships to four-year colleges and universities. But the 2012-13 squad has “94-feet of heat” to bring this season.
The 2012 region and conference coach of the year, Dedrick Shannon, returns for his ninth season at the helm. Not only was last season the first time Shannon coached the Cyclones into the NJCAA tournament, but he also was selected 2012 Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Co-Coach of the Year in NJCAA Division II. He is joined by an all new crew of assistants—Jelani Boline, Aaron Green and Brandon Willaby.
Moraine Valley’s NJCAA Division II first team All-American and conference player of the year forward/center, Richaun Holmes (Lockport) is gone this season, now playing at NCAA Division I Bowling Green State University. Others who moved on are All-Region and All-Conference forward Mike Jackson (Thornridge) and All-Conference players Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont/guard/forward) and Lane Barlow (St. Rita/guard).
Of the championship squad, only guard Mike Schick (St. Laurence/5’11”) returns. Schick averaged 2.5 points per game and is a smart player who will help lead this new group.
Some strong newcomers include brothers from Lockport High School Karrington Ward (6’7”/guard/forward) and Kyle Ward (6’1”/guard). Karrington Ward is an All-American transfer from Kankakee Community College who averaged 23 points and nine rebounds per game. Shannon expects big things from guard Gerald Dorsey (Tinley Park/5’9”), a solid scorer. Guard Darryl Hervey (Rich South/6’0”) will bring some leadership to the team with Karrington Ward. Other newcomers include guard Cameron Juillerat (Australia/5’10”), forward Des’nique Harris (Plainfield East/6’4”), center/forward Shaun Johnson (Argo/6’5”), guard/forward Brett Kaiser (Stagg/6’3”), guard Marquell Pierce (Marshall Metro/5’9”), guard Johnte Shannon (Thornwood/6’1”), guard/forward Brian Townsend (Evergreen Park/6’4”), and guard Dave Williams (Tinley Park/5’10”).
After a successful 2011-12 run that included a top 16 finish in the nation and first run in 10 years in the NJCAA Division II championship, expectations run high for the Cyclones. In the pre-season, the team was ranked 11th. The only downside is they are guard-heavy and lack the height of last year. With that in mind, the Cyclones will play a different style on the court and depend on speed to outplay opponents.
“With three starters under 6-feet tall, we’re going to play fast. We’ve done a lot of conditioning for speed. No question, we are fast,” Shannon said. “We’re more athletic and can shoot the 3-pointers. They work really hard, there are no attitudes and we want to defend our title. We have a chance to do that as long as we keep together; we’re going for titles.”
Season Record: 27-9
Conference Record: 12-2
*NJCAA Region IV Champions
*Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference Co-Champions
NJCAA Division II All-American: Richaun Holmes (Lockport)
All-Region IV first team: Holmes
All-Region IV second team: Mike Jackson (Thornridge)
All-Region IV tournament team: Holmes and Mike O'Donnell (Leo)-also MVP
All-Conference first team: Holmes, Jackson, Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont)
All-Conference second team: Lane Barlow (St. Rita)
Conference Player of the Year: Holmes
Skyway Conference Coach of the Year: Dedrick Shannon
|Fri.||Nov. 4||Marshalltown at Southeastern Community College||Away||3 p.m.||W 69-58|
|Sat.||Nov. 5||Southeastern Community College||Away||5 p.m.||L 68-71|
|Thurs.||Nov. 10||Triton College||Home||7 p.m.||W 69-67|
|Sat.||Nov. 12||Saint Xavier University||Away||3 p.m.||L 77-80|
|Tues.||Nov. 15||Harper College||Away||7 p.m.||W 81-70|
|Thurs.||Nov. 17||Malcolm X College||Home||7 p.m.||W 70-66|
|Sat.||Nov. 19||Kishwaukee College||Away||3 p.m.||W 71-42|
|Tues.||Nov. 22||Parkland College||Home||7 p.m.||W 76-62|
|Tues.||Nov. 29||Kankakee Community College||Away||7:30 p.m.||L 63-70|
|Thurs.||Dec. 1||Trinity Christian College||Home||7 p.m.||W 98-34|
|Sat.||Dec. 3||Trinity Christian College||Away||5 p.m.||W 79-56|
|Thurs.||Dec. 8||Joliet Junior College||Home||7 p.m.||W 56-51|
|Fri.-Sat.||Dec. 9-10||Indian Hills Community College Tournament||Away||
67-89 vs. Indian Hills C.C.
W 101-72 vs. William Penn University JV
|Tues.||Dec. 20||Olive-Harvey College||Home||5 p.m.||W 81-68|
|Thurs.||Dec. 22||Kennedy-King College||Home||5 p.m.||L 63-68|
|Sat.||Jan. 7||Morton College*||Away||4 p.m.||W 61-46|
|Tues.||Jan. 10||McHenry County College*||Away||7:15 p.m.||L 62-67|
|Thurs.||Jan. 12||College of Lake County*||Away||7:15 p.m.||Canceled|
|Tues.||Jan. 17||Elgin Community College*||Home||7 p.m.||L 53-72|
|Thurs.||Jan. 19||Waubonsee Community College*||Away||7:15 p.m.||W 73-62|
|Tues.||Jan. 24||Prairie State College*||Home||7 p.m.||W 67-57|
|Thurs.||Jan. 26||Oakton Community College*||Home||7 p.m.||W 78-55|
|Sat.||Jan. 28||College of Lake County*||Away||5 p.m.||W 56-39|
|Tues.||Jan. 31||Morton College*||Away||7:15 p.m.||W 75-61|
|Thurs.||Feb. 2||McHenry County College*||Home||7 p.m.||W 72-40|
|Sat.||Feb. 4||College of Lake County*||Home||7 p.m.||W 68-55|
|Tues.||Feb. 7||Elgin Community College*||Away||7:15 p.m.||W 68-61|
|Thurs.||Feb. 9||Waubonsee Community College*||Home||7 p.m.||W 69-55|
|Tues.||Feb. 14||Prairie State College*||Away||7:15 p.m.||W 73-67|
|Thurs.||Feb. 16||Oakton Community College*||Away||7:15 p.m.||W 57-43|
|Sat.||Feb. 18||Conference Make Up Date||TBA||TBA||N/A|
|Thurs.||March 1||Region IV 1st Round vs. Oakton Community College||Home||7 p.m.||W 81-61|
|Sun.||March 4||Region IV Semi-Finals vs. Prairie State College||Away||4 p.m.||W 60-47|
|Sat.||March 10||Region IV Finals vs. Elgin Community College||Away||5 p.m.||W 75-64|
|Tues.||March 20||Nationals @ Danville Area Community College vs. Johnson County Community College||Away||9 a.m.||
W 67-62 vs. Rend Lake College
L 76-80 vs. Erie C.C.
*Denotes Conference Game
Double Header in Italics
April 4, 2012
Holmes named All-American, coach gets co-coach nod
Congratulations to Cyclones coach Dedrick Shannon, recently selected Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Co-Coach of the Year in NJCAA Division II. Shannon led his squad to a co-championship in the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference, a championship finish in NJCAA Region IV and opportunity to compete in the national tournament for the first time in his tenure. He also was named Skyway Conference Coach of the Year. The Cyclones finished the season with a 27-9 record.
“I’m really excited. I can only say one thing about this, you’re only as good a coach as your players. It was a great season,” Shannon said.
Richaun Holmes (Lockport) was named NJCAA Division II first team All-American, another first for Shannon. Holmes was the top blocker in the country and ranked fourth in field goal percentage with 62.3 percent.
“This was pretty exciting. He deserved it. He’s one of those kids you see once in a lifetime. I hate to see him go, but glad to see him move on to a four-year university,” Shannon said.
Holmes was chosen from players at nearly 200 junior colleges in Division II.
March 26, 2012
Cyclones finish season in top 16 nationally
Seeded seventh, the Cyclones (26-7) kicked off their first run in 10 years in the NJCAA Division II championship on March 20 in Danville, Illinois where they faced Johnson County Community College. Chalk it up to pre-game jitters and being in the spotlight, the Cyclones lost the contest 70-63.
Moraine Valley never gave up in this game, consistently fighting back and coming within three on a bucket by Richaun Holmes (Lockport) with less than one minute to go. But a slow start in the first half and too many turnovers sent the Cyclones into the consolation bracket. Holmes scored 18 with two blocks, two steals and three rebounds. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) had 15 points and two steals while Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) scored 11 points, going 2-for-2 from the free throw line and grabbing four boards.
In their second matchup on March 21, the Cyclones faced the Rend Lake College Warriors and won 67-62. Coach Dedrick Shannon said this was the first win any team from Region IV earned while competing in nationals.
Another slow start saw the Cyclones trail 29-25 at the half. To start the second half, Moraine Valley went on a 12-2 run and maintained pressure on Rend Lake. Holmes scored 23 points in addition to three blocks, two steals and five rebounds. Jackson was on fire at the free-throw line, where he scored eight of his 14 points. He also had six rebounds and one block. Mike O’Donnell (Leo) scored 13 points, going 3-for-5 from the 3-point line, and Masiulionis had 10 points, one steal and six rebounds.
On March 23 the Cyclones played their third game against Erie Community College. Despite a strong comeback, the Cyclones lost 80-69 to end their run in nationals.
Erie established a quick pace on the floor keeping Moraine Valley down 46-31 at the half. With 13 minutes left in the game, the Cyclones changed the tempo and increased the intensity of the defense to slow down the Kats’ momentum. Thanks to a couple of free throws by Holmes with less than three minutes to go, the Cyclones came within four points. Additional turnovers and Holmes fouling out of the game officially ended the hoopsters’ season. “I’m sorry to say we really haven’t put together two good halves all season, but we played tough,” Shannon said.
Mike Jackson (Thornridge) led the ’Clones with 23 points, including all six free throws, and one steal. Masiulionis (18) and Holmes (13) also reached double digit figures.
Although the Cyclones would have liked to complete their trip in nationals with more wins, they did finish as one of the top 16 teams in the country and are pretty pleased.
“It took several years of prep to get here, so I won’t complain. It’s been a great season. We had a great experience at nationals, and I don’t want to minimize that. We played tough, competed and were resilient. It was a great opportunity for the team and it should be a Moraine Valley destination every year,” Shannon said. “Holmes, Jackson and Masiulionis played nice games and well defensively, we just needed to shoot better overall. Even in those losses we fought. We had great experiences this season. It didn’t end the way we wanted it to, but how can you complain winning 27 and going to nationals?”
The Cyclones finished the season as NJCAA Region IV champs and Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference co-champs, showing an overall 27-9 record and 12-2 conference record. Holmes was the top blocker in the nation and recognized on the All-Region and All-Conference first team as well as being named the Skyway Conference Player of the Year. Jackson was named to the All-Region second team and All-Conference first team with Masiulionis. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) made All-Conference second team. Holmes and O’Donnell were named to the All-Region tournament team with O’Donnell being named MVP. Shannon was Conference Coach of the Year. With several starters transferring to four-year universities, Shannon expects to recruit an entirely new team next season.
March 12, 2012
Cyclones claim Region IV crown, head to nationals
After narrowly missing a trip to nationals in 2009 and 2010, the Cyclones finally broke through and advanced to the NJCAA Division II championship after downing Elgin Community College 75-64 on March 10 to win the Region IV District B title.
This is the first time the Cyclones have qualified for the national tournament under head coach Dedrick Shannon. The last time the men's team competed in nationals was in 2002 under former head coach and current Moraine Valley athletics director Bill Finn.
Moraine Valley took control of the region final matchup and stayed ahead of Elgin the entire game thanks in part to a standout performance by Mike O'Donnell (Leo), who was named MVP of the tournament. While the Spartans had two to three players guarding Richaun Holmes (Lockport) at any given time, O'Donnell was able to help the Cyclones stretch the lead to 17 at most. At halftime, the Cyclones were up 43-26. With more focus than they've had all year, Moraine Valley was able to maintain a lead despite attempted comebacks by Elgin.
O’Donnell was the leading scorer with 21 points. He was six-for-eight from the 3-point line, had three free throws and grabbed two rebounds. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) had 15 points, nine from 3-pointers and the rest on free throws, in addition to two rebounds. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) scored 11 points, all from free throws, and had eight assists, three steals, and two rebounds. Holmes scored nine, grabbed five boards, had five steals and a block while Avery Busch (John Hope) banked nine points. O'Donnell and Holmes were named to the All-NJCAA Region IV tournament team for their performances. Holmes and Mike Jackson (Thornridge) were named to the All-Region first and second team, respectively.
"We're really excited about nationals. This is a different group of kids. They enjoyed being around each other, worked well together, had good chemistry, and they really wanted it," Shannon said. "We can compete with anybody as long as we play like we have. We're good enough to compete for the national title. We'll see what happens."
The Cyclones (26-7) kick off their run in the NJCAA Division II championship at 9 a.m. on Tuesday in Danville, Illinois, where they face Johnson County Community College of Overland Park, Kansas.
March 5, 2012
Cyclones ready for finals
The Cyclones moved one step closer to their desired destination to nationals after a 60-47 win on March 4 in the semi-finals over Prairie State College.
There was tight defense by the Cyclones, although their offense was not as sharp as it has been, owing to more fatigue by the starters getting more playing time in the playoffs. The players worked cohesively as a team, however, to continue their playoff run. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) scored 14 points, which included eight free throws, and grabbed five boards in addition to three assists and one steal. Mike O’Donnell (Leo) followed with 13 points, five rebounds, two assists, and one steal. Richaun Holmes (Lockport) finished the night with 12 points, six rebounds, three blocks, two steals, and one assist. Avery Busch (John Hope) had nine points, all from 3-pointers; four rebounds, one assist, and one steal while Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) rounded out the bunch with seven points, two rebounds and an assist.
Moraine Valley is a mere 40 minutes away from an appearance in the NJCAA finals as they face Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference foe Elgin Community College on Saturday, March 10, in the NJCAA Region IV championship.
Cyclones get ranked
In addition to their advancement in the playoffs, several Cyclones have been ranked in the NJCAA Division II polls. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) was seventh and Richaun Holmes (Lockport) eighth for field goal percentage with a 62.78 and 62.27 percent, respectively. Jackson is ranked third for 3-point field goal percentages with a 55.56 percent while teammate Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) ranks sixth with a 51.97 percent. Holmes comes in at number one in individual blocks per game with an average of 5.633. Moraine Valley is ranked 19th as a team in the division.
March 2, 2012
Cyclones clobber Pioneers, advance to semi-finals
The Cyclones advanced one more step in the playoffs March 1 after a massive 81-61 win over Oakton Community College in the first round of the NJCAA Region IV playoffs. The Cyclones continue their quest for a trip to nationals as they hit the semi-finals on March 4 against Prairie State College.
After a two-week hiatus, the Cyclones were anxious to get back on the court and play ball. From the tip-off Moraine Valley took control of the game, leading 38-26 at the half. The Cyclones were sharp on offense all night, sharing the ball and making plays, offsetting a slightly less than stellar defensive night.
Richaun Holmes (Lockport) led the charge with 21 points, nine blocks, eight rebounds, three assists, and one steal. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) had a good night with 17 points, including two 3-pointers and five free throws, five rebounds, one steal, and one assist. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) scored 16, of which two were 3-pointers, and had six rebounds. Avery Busch (John Hope) rounded out the top scorers with 10 and one rebound.
February 17, 2012
Cyclones reign as co-conference champs
In their last Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference game of the regular season, the Cyclones solidified their status as co-conference champs Feb. 16 with a 57-43 win over Oakton Community College.
Moraine Valley shares the top spot with Waubonsee Community College, with both teams sporting a 12-2 record. Their most recent win wasn't a nail biter as the Cyclones were up most of the game. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) led the charge with 15 points, including eight free throws and a rebound. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) scored 12, going 5-for-8 from the floor and scoring two 3-pointers while grabbing one rebound and earning an assist. Mike Schick (St. Laurence) had eight points for the night, including four free throws, one assist, one rebound, and one steal.
Although the Cyclones have to share the championship, they are seeded first in the NJCAA Region IV playoffs because they defeated Waubonsee in both meetings this year.
'So far the season has been a learning process. We have grown as a team and as a family. We continue to get better each game, but we have yet to play our best basketball. We've won 11 in a row, but we can play better which is a good spot for us to be in,' said coach Dedrick Shannon. 'I'm very excited about the playoffs because I think we can make a run at the Region IV championship this year.'
The Cyclones will begin their playoff run on Thursday, March 1, at home against Oakton Community College.
February 15, 2012
Ten straight for 'Clones
Grabbing their 10th consecutive win, the Cyclones had an ugly, but effective 73-67 victory Feb. 14 over Prairie State College.
This wasn't the finest performance by the Cyclones, but enough to keep their streak going and make a stronger run for the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference championship. Moraine Valley started the game as they usually do, making too many jump shots and not attacking the basket enough. It also was sophomore night for the Pioneers, giving them a more energetic run in the first half. Within the first 15 minutes of the game the Cyclones were down 17-7, but by halftime had regained the lead 32-28.
In the last two minutes of the matchup the Cyclones were up by four points before the Pioneers ran ahead by four. A turnover and two traveling calls on Prairie State and a foul on Richaun Holmes (Lockport) helped the Cyclones surge ahead for the win.
Holmes was on fire with 29 points, seven rebounds, three blocks, and an 11-for-12 average from the free-throw line. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) had 16 points, nine of which were from 3-pointers, and two rebounds. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) scored 13 points, including 7-of-9 free throws, grabbed five boards and had three assists and one steal. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) rounded out the top scorers with eight points and had five rebounds.
Holmes also was named Skyway Player of the Week starting Feb. 12 for his game against Elgin Community College in which he scored 26 points with nine rebounds and four blocks and a game with Waubonsee Community College in which he scored 25 with 11 rebounds and six blocks.
February 10, 2012
Cyclones tie for first in conference
The stakes were high Feb. 9 for the Cyclones in their matchup against Waubonsee Community College. With Waubonsee first in the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference, Moraine Valley needed a win to tie their record and share the top standing, which they did on sophomore night. The Cyclones won 69-55 in their last home game.
Like many of their games this half of the season, the Cyclones led most of the night and at one point were up by 20 points. Despite the lead, the game proved to be intense for both teams. By halftime Moraine Valley was ahead 40-26. When Lane Barlow (St. Rita) and Mike Jackson (Thornridge) were on the bench because of foul trouble, the Chiefs went on a 14-0 run to close the gap. But the Cyclones prevailed and maintained a lead until the end. This was the second time this season that the Cyclones faced and were victorious over the Chiefs.
As he has all season, Richaun Holmes (Lockport) led the force with a double-double'20 points and 11 rebounds'in addition to seven blocks and two assists. He was 7-for-8 from the floor with six free throws. Avery Busch (John Hope) went 5-for-7 on the floor with three 3-pointers, scoring 14 points, grabbing three boards and getting three assists. Jackson scored 13 in addition to getting five assists, two rebounds and one steal. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) had 10 points, three 3-pointers and one rebound, while Barlow scored nine, all from 3-pointers, had three assists and six rebounds.
February 8, 2012
'Clones edge out Spartans
The Cyclones mindset is that they shouldn't lose any more games this season, and more so that they shouldn't have lost two conference games in the 11 played so far. They made up for it with a win over McHenry College last week and on Feb. 7 got redemption against Elgin Community College. The Cyclones won that matchup 68-61.
In another slow start, the Cyclones settled for jump shots early and had less ball movement, keeping them down by two at the half. Foul trouble for starters Lane Barlow (St. Rita) and Mike Jackson (Thornridge) also hurt the team. Moraine Valley trailed most of the game until the last nine minutes when they traded the lead on and off with the Spartans. With more aggression and attacks at the basket in the second half, the Cyclones were able to surge ahead for the win.
Richaun Holmes (Lockport) led the way with 26 points, nine rebounds, four blocks, and one assist. Barlow was next with 18 points, including five free throws, six assists, one rebound, and one steal. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) scored 16, three of which were 3-pointers, and grabbed two boards. Jackson had six points, nine rebounds and two assists.
February 6, 2012
The Cyclones earned their seventh straight victory, 68-55, over College of Lake County on Feb. 4, thanks to tough defense in the second half.
At the start of the game the Cyclones shots weren't falling, and they fell behind 18-0. But by the start of the second half, Moraine Valley closed the gap 36-37, which is the most points the Cyclones have given up in the first half all season. They were a totally different squad in the second half, allowing the Lancers only 19 points and ultimately winning the game.
Richaun Holmes (Lockport) led the field with 19 points, including five free throws. He also had five blocks and seven rebounds. Close on his heels was Avery Busch (John Hope), who added 15 points, which included three 3-pointers and two free throws, and contributed two assists, two blocks, and eight rebounds. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) had 13 points for the night, and Mike Jackson (Thornridge) scored 11 points and added two assists, one block and one rebound.
February 3, 2012
Second time's a charm for 'Clones
Unlike their previous matchup against McHenry County College, the Cyclones were anxious to prove their strength in a second meeting, Feb. 2, where the tide was turned. Moraine Valley crushed the Scots, 72-40.
The Cyclones led the entire game with Richaun Holmes (Lockport) scoring a dominating 34 points, including several slam dunks and alley-oops. He was 13-for-22 from the floor with three 3-pointers, five free throws, four blocks, and nine rebounds. The next highest scorer was Steven White (Tinley Park) with 11 points; he also had one rebound. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) came up with eight points, three assists, two blocks, and a steal, and has been pivotal with his guard play. Mohamed Abuhamdeh (Sandburg) rounded out the scoring with seven points, including three free throws. The team had just five turnovers and 17 assists.
February 1, 2012
Five in a row for 'Clones
Running on a five-game win streak, the Cyclones tacked on their latest victory over Morton College.
Moraine Valley led from the start of the game Jan. 31 and never looked back. At one point the Cyclones were up by 26 points, eventually winning 75-61 over their historically tough rival. Collectively, the team had 21 assists and five turnovers on the night.
Mike Jackson (Thornridge) was the leading scorer with 19 points, including five 3-pointers. He tacked on two assists, rebounds and steals. Richaun Holmes (Lockport) had 14 points with seven rebounds and one block followed by Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont), who scored 12 with two 3-pointers, two assists and two rebounds. Avery Busch (John Hope) had an active night with 11 points, one 3-pointer, two free throws, four rebounds, two assists, and a steal. Justas Martinkus (Lemont) also scored 11 and had an assist while Lane Barlow (St. Rita) scored eight with eight assists.
January 29, 2012
Cyclones 'D' halts Lancers
As predicted by the Moraine Valley coaches, the Cyclones are continuing their win streak, this time a 56-39 win over College of Lake County on Jan. 28.
It was a defensive match with the 'Clones holding the Lancers to 18 points at the half. Moraine Valley controlled the game from the start, allowing all players to have time on the court. Richaun Holmes (Lockport) scored 17 points, grabbed eight boards and blocked four. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) had nine points, six rebounds and a block. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) scored nine with two rebounds while Justas Martinkus (Lemont) banked eight points.
January 27, 2012
Cyclones crush Oakton
The Cyclones grabbed their third straight win Jan. 26, crushing Oakton Community College 78-55 at home.
It was a collective effort offensively and defensively by Moraine Valley with nearly every player scoring. The high-energy Cyclones held Oakton to just 14 points in the first half thanks to unshakeable defense. The Cyclones are gelling, evidenced by movement and sharing of the ball.
Richaun Holmes (Lockport) led the charge with 19 points, going 7-for-8 from the floor, grabbing seven boards and blocking three. Avery Busch (John Hope) followed with 11 points, including two 3-pointers, nine rebounds, four assists, and two blocks. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) had 10 points and Justas Martinkus (Lemont) followed with nine, all of which were 3-pointers. Mike O'Donnell (Leo) had nine points, three blocks and three rebounds, while Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) scored eight, grabbing one rebound.
January 25, 2012
Cyclones grab second straight
It's been a month since the Cyclones put together a win streak, but they grabbed their second straight Jan. 24 with a sturdy 67-57 win over Prairie State College.
The first half got off to a rough start with the Cyclones shooting 2-for-11 from the 3-point line and ultimately being down 34-29 at halftime. With a hefty pep talk at the half, the Cyclones came back with renewed intensity and outscored the Pioneers by 15 points on average. Players attacked the basket more, stopped settling for jump shots and passed more often to leading scorer, Richaun Holmes (Lockport), for layups. Holmes ended the night with 24 points, going 8-for-14 from the floor and making seven free throws. He added seven rebounds and a block to the night. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) was the next leading scorer with 20 points and eight free throws, plus six rebounds and two assists. Jackson has lately stepped up his game to become a big factor in the wins.
January 20, 2012
With starters back, Cyclones grab conference win
With two starters back in the lineup, the Cyclones returned to form Jan. 19 with a 73-62 win over Waubonsee Community College.
The Cyclones led the entire matchup and looked like a totally different team from their last game. Starters Lane Barlow (St. Rita) and Mike O'Donnell (Leo) were back on the court and brought some much needed energy to the team.
Richaun Holmes (Lockport) had 26 baskets on the night, making 12-of-15 free throws, grabbing eight rebounds, blocking four, and stealing one. Barlow scored 14 with five rebounds and one steal. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) finished with 12 points, including two 3-pointers, and three rebounds.
January 18, 2012
Big blow to Cyclones
There was little spark in the Cyclones' game Jan. 17, evident by the team's 72-53 loss to Elgin Community College.
Moraine Valley stayed competitive at the start where the score played back and forth. By the half the Cyclones were down 28-25. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) made a 3-pointer to start the second half, but a lack of rebounds and turnovers pushed the Spartans further ahead to the end of the game.
Masiulionis and Avery Busch (John Hope) were the top scorers with 10 followed by Mike Jackson (Thornridge) with eight points. Masiulionis also had three rebounds, one block and was 4-for-7 from the floor. Busch had two rebounds, one steal and had two free throws while Jackson had four boards and was 3-for-3 from the floor.
January 11, 2012
Cyclones fall to Scots
In what looked to be a win in their second Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference game turned into a mental lapse Jan. 10 when the Cyclones fell 67-62 in overtime to McHenry County College.
For most of the game the Cyclones were up by at least 10 points. In the last two minutes of the second half, Moraine Valley had too many turnovers, missed key free throws and poor shots leading to a tied game and overtime play. The Cyclones struggled to score in overtime, contributing to the loss.
Only Richaun Holmes (Lockport) and Mike Jackson (Thornridge) were able to score in the double digits, 25 and 18, respectively. Holmes also had 10 rebounds and six blocks while Jackson got seven boards, two blocks and two steals. Avery Busch (John Hope) is seeing more court action and scored six while rebounding four and blocking one.
January 8, 2012
Big conference win over Panthers
With a new year and conference play starting up, the Cyclones jumped out on the right foot Jan. 7 with a big 61-46 win over rival Morton College.
Every player had a chance to hit the court and score, giving the Cyclones a 26-22 lead at the half. The bench provided solid action, which aided in the win. Richaun Holmes (Lockport) was a force on the court with 12 points, 12 rebounds, seven blocks, and one steal. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) followed with 11 points, two rebounds and one steal, and Mike Jackson (Thornridge) grabbed seven rebounds, blocked one and scored 11.
December 23, 2011
Cyclones can't hang on
With a two-week break from games on the horizon, the Cyclones couldn't hang on to one more win, being defeated 68-63 by Kennedy-King College on Dec. 22.
Both teams battled the entire game, but some bad decisions by the Cyclones derailed any chance for a win. As he's done all season, Richaun Holmes (Lockport) led the charge with 16 points, 12 rebounds and nine blocks. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) was close on his heels with 14 points, six rebounds, two steals, and two blocks. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) grabbed two rebounds and scored 12 while Josh Freeman (Richards) scored 10 with two rebounds, assists and blocks.
December 21, 2011
Home win for 'Clones
After being up by more than 30 points, the Cyclones went on to win 81-68 in a home game Dec. 20 against Olive-Harvey College.
With three of their starters out, the Cyclones looked to a few players to step up and contribute to the victory. Moraine Valley had control of the game from the start, eventually getting sloppier in the second half with turnovers, but not enough to derail their efforts.
Richaun Holmes (Lockport) led the charge with 26 points, going 11-for-15 from the floor with four free throws, 10 rebounds, and seven blocks. Mohamed Abuhamdeh (Sandburg) made an impression with 20 points, including two 3-pointers and eight free throws, plus five rebounds, and two steals. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) banked 12 points with three free throws, grabbing 13 boards, one steal, six assists, and one block.
December 12, 2011
Cyclones break even in Iowa tourney
The Cyclones mixed things up a bit with an out-of-town tournament Dec. 9-10, breaking even for the weekend.
In the first game, the Cyclones were pitted against NJCAA Division I number-three ranked Indian Hills Community College-Ottumwa. Coming out strong in the first half, the Cyclones stayed competitive and kept the game close until Indian Hills went on a run to lead by 18 points. With five minutes left before the half, the Cyclones had a run of their own to cut the lead. Johnny Baldwin (Corliss) had some key steals and layups to close the gap to eight points. In the second half the Cyclones cut the lead to four on three separate occasions, but couldn't catch up to Indian Hills for the 89-67 loss. Early in the first half, Cyclones offensive threat and top rebounder Mike Jackson (Thornridge) was injured, which could have made a difference in the final outcome of the game, said head coach Dedrick Shannon.
The Cyclones fared better in their game the following day against William Penn University JV, winning 101-72. Jumping out from the get-go, the Cyclones were up before William Penn tied it at 15 and continued with back-and-forth play. At halftime the 'Clones were up 49-35. An early run in the second half had the Cyclones up by as much as 40 points, allowing for some bench players to see action on the court.
December 9, 2011
Scoring drought can't stop 'Clones
The NJCAA Division II 18th ranked Cyclones had their work cut out for them Dec. 8 when they faced Division III-10th-ranked Joliet Junior College. Despite some shooting deficits, the Cyclones won the battle, 56-51.
Within the first 10 minutes, Moraine Valley was up by 14 points thanks in part to the energy and intense defense on the court, which stalled the Wolves. Both teams struggled to score, but the Cyclones were still up 30-20 at halftime. The Cyclones had a scoring drought to start the second half and the defense slacked, but they still were ahead by one or two points throughout the game. With four minutes left, the score was tied at 45, but Moraine Valley prevailed.
Richaun Holmes (Lockport) led the team with 20 points, nine rebounds and five blocks. He was 6-for-7 from the free-throw line. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) followed with 15 points, three of which were 3-pointers, eight rebounds and one steal. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) rounded out the top scorers with nine points and a rebound.
December 4, 2011
Cyclones take control
After annihilating Trinity Christian College in their first matchup Dec. 1 by more than 60 points, the Cyclones let their guard down in the team's second meeting Dec. 3, but still came out with a 79-56 win.
Moraine Valley was ahead from the start and never looked back. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) led the team with 17 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, six steals, and a perfect 3-for-3 from the free-throw line. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) followed with 15 points, shooting three 3-pointers and going 4-for-4 in free throws. Both Mike Jackson (Thornridge) and Richaun Holmes (Lockport) had nine points. Jackson had seven rebounds while Holmes had four in addition to two blocks and a steal.
December 2, 2011
There was nothing short of domination for the Cyclones as they proved their skills in a whopping 98-34 victory over Trinity Christian College on Dec. 1.
The Cyclones jumped out early, leading 54-14 at the half. Everyone on the team got a chance on the court and scored. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) was lead scorer with 22, in addition to his 11 rebounds and six free throws. Richaun Holmes (Lockport) was close behind with 16 points and four rebounds, while Steven White (Tinley Park) had 15 points, seven rebounds and three free throws, and Lane Barlow (St. Rita) banked 11 with four rebounds.
November 30, 2011
Cyclones fall to Cavaliers
The Cyclones' four-game win streak came to an end Nov. 29 in part due to a rough second half that led to a 70-63 loss to Kankakee Community College.
After being up by nearly 20 points at one time in the first half, the Cyclones fell apart and lost focus after halftime. There was a little back and forth play in the second half, but there were too many poor shots and at least eight turnovers to maintain a lead. Once the Cyclones lost the lead, the game was over.
Richaun Holmes (Lockport) was once again the top scorer with 21 points. He tacked on another triple-double to his season with 12 blocks and 10 rebounds in addition to hitting 11 of his 15 free throws and one steal. Johnny Baldwin (Corliss) followed with 11 points, going 4-for-6 from the floor and 3-for-4 from the free-throw line and grabbing two steals. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) also had 11 points, banking one 3-pointer and getting two assists. Mike O'Donnell (Leo) had nine points with one 3-pointer, seven rebounds and two blocks. He went 4-for-4 in free throws.
November 23, 2011
'Clones win fourth straight
The wins continue piling up for the Cyclones who clinched their fourth straight on Nov. 22.
Although they struggled with foul trouble in the first half, it didn't offset their 76-62 win over Parkland College. At the end of the first half, Moraine Valley was down by four. Once the team regrouped at halftime, they took a solid lead with 10 minutes left in the game.
Mike O'Donnell (Leo) was on all night, leading the team with 21 points, shooting 4-for-4 from the 3-point line, hitting all three two-point shots and nailing all three free throws. He also had eight rebounds. Richaun Holmes (Lockport) had his second triple-double of the season with 19 points, 11 rebounds and 10 blocks. He was 7-for-7 at the free-throw line and had four assists. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) rounded out the leading Cyclones scorers with 11 points, going 3-for-9 from the arc with two rebounds and one steal.
November 21, 2011
Cyclones crush Kishwaukee
The Cyclones are on a roll, grabbing their third consecutive win Nov. 19 with a dominating 71-42 victory over Kishwaukee College.
Moraine Valley was the stronger team from the start, easily leading within the first five minutes. By halftime the Cyclones were up 42-18 before cruising to a nearly 30-point win.
Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) scored 23 going 9-for-17 from the floor with five 3-pointers. Mike O'Donnell (Leo) was the next leading scorer with 19 points, three blocks and six rebounds. Every player had some time on the court with all but two scoring.
November 18, 2011
Close game ends in Cyclones win
There was never a dull moment for the Cyclones Nov. 17 as they played a back-and-forth battle with Malcolm X College. But some key shots and focus gave Moraine Valley their 70-66 win.
Both teams had the lead by five points at various times in the game with neither taking total control. In the last six minutes, the Cyclones broke away and held the lead to the end. Richaun Holmes (Lockport) was the big man on the floor, getting a triple-double with 16 points, 15 blocks and 10 rebounds in addition to six assists. Mike O'Donnell (Leo) had 12 points and three rebounds, going 3-for-4 from the free-throw line. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) was 5-for-6 from the floor with 11 points, three assists, two blocks, and two steals.
November 16, 2011
Cyclones hang on to victory
Right from the start the Cyclones had the upper hand in their Nov. 15 matchup with Harper College, grabbing the 81-70 win.
Leading for most of the game by 10 points, the Cyclones lost some momentum with less than five minutes left in regulation. Harper made a late rally to tie the score at 60, but Moraine Valley made some good shots to pull ahead for the victory.
Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) led the team with 17 points, five rebounds and two 3-pointers followed by Lane Barlow (St. Rita) who also had 17 points, three rebounds, two steals, and was 3-for-3 from the free-throw line. Richaun Holmes (Lockport) had a double-double with 13 points and 10 blocks added to his six rebounds. Mike O'Donnell (Leo) rounded out the scoring with 12 points, seven rebounds, and one block; he was 6-for-11 at the free-throw line.
November 14, 2011
Turnovers and bad shots stall Cyclones
There wasn't total domination in the Cyclones' 80-77 loss to Saint Xavier University, but there were enough turnovers and bad shots in the first half to keep them down.
The Cyclones played Saint Xavier's varsity team Nov. 12, but matched their skill level and should have won the game, said assistant coach Justin Domingo. For most of the night Moraine Valley was down, but with seven minutes left in the second half the team bounced back and was up by five. With 56 seconds left, Richaun Holmes (Lockport) scored off a rebound to get within two points of the Cougars, but couldn't get another game-winning shot like during the Cyclones' Nov. 10 win over Triton College.
Holmes led the team with 28 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks. He was 6-for-8 from the free-throw line. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) followed with 13 points, eight rebounds and two steals. Mike O'Donnell (Leo) banked 12 points, going 7-for-8 from the free-throw line, with six rebounds. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) and AJ Bridges (Eisenhower) each had 10 points.
November 11, 2011
Holmes signs with Bowling Green
For the second consecutive year, the Cyclones have a player who signed a National Letter of Intent to continue playing basketball at an NCAA Division I four-year university. This year it's freshman 6'8' forward/center Richaun Holmes (Lockport).
Holmes signed Nov. 10 to play ball next fall at Bowling Green State University in Ohio under head coach Louie Orr, a former NBA player, and assistant coach Dennis Hopson, of the 1990-91 championship Chicago Bulls.
'I can't begin to put into words the excitement for the program as well as the college. It shows that hard work and perseverance pays off,' said coach Dedrick Shannon. 'I'm just thankful for Moraine Valley president Dr. Crawley, as well as Athletics director Bill Finn for giving me the opportunity to grow as a coach and leader of young men. We have tried to take the success and tradition of Moraine Valley basketball to new heights, which can't be done without great people around you.'
November 11, 2011
Cyclones take rocky road to win
The Cyclones took a little roller coaster ride Nov. 10 before edging out Triton College at home, 69-67.
For their home opener, Moraine Valley came out swinging with high energy in the first 10 minutes, opening their lead by 14 points. The players were crashing boards until they lost focus and had the lead cut to two, 35-33, at the half. Between bad shots and not taking care of the ball, the Cyclones allowed Triton to go on a 12-2 run.
The second half was more back and forth play with each team tying the score or taking the lead at one point. With 5.7 seconds left in regulation time and the score tied at 67, Richaun Holmes (Lockport) hit the game-winning jump shot.
Holmes finished the game with just nine points, but seven rebounds and four blocks. Top scorers for the night were Mike O'Donnell (Leo) and Mike Jackson (Thornridge) each with 15 points. O'Donnell was 3-for-5 in 3-pointers and 4-for-8 from the floor with eight rebounds and a block. Jackson was 4-for-6 from the floor with five rebounds. Lane Barlow (St. Rita) was 3-for-6 from the field with one 3-pointer, eight rebounds, and two steals for the night.
November 7, 2011
'Clones split opening weekend
The Cyclones opened their season out-of-state, splitting the effort but starting off on the right foot.
The first game against Marshalltown Community College was a 69-58 victory on Nov. 4. Marshalltown was up most of the game, and the Cyclones battled and were down by 14 until Lane Barlow (St. Rita) hit a 3-pointer just before halftime to cut the lead. The Cyclones found their rhythm and flow and played harder in the second half to surge ahead. Richaun Holmes (Lockport) stepped up his aggression, making more jump shots than he did in the first half. He ended the game with 17 points, four blocks and eight rebounds. Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont) was the leading scorer with 18 points, along with four rebounds. He was 4-for-7 from the free-throw line. Mike Jackson (Thornridge) also contributed 15 points, five rebounds, and was 3-for-3 at the line.
In their game against Southeastern Community College on Nov. 5, the Cyclones had to contend with tough calls, falling 71-68 in overtime. After leading nearly the entire game by at least six points, the Cyclones had a lane violation call that pushed the game into overtime. Holmes was on fire with a triple double, grabbing 15 points, 11 rebounds and 11 blocks. Masiulionis contributed 16 points, four rebounds and one steal, going 3-for-7 from the line. Both Barlow and Johnny Baldwin (Corliss) each had nine points.
November 3, 2011
New chapter, new hope for 2011 men's basketball
The slate is clean for the 2011 men's basketball team. After a rocky couple of years, head coach Dedrick Shannon recruited a new class of athletes he hopes will buy into the Cyclones tradition of excellence.
Shannon, in his eighth season at the helm, didn't return any players from the 2010-11 squad, but did see his NJCAA All-Region IV player Louis Green (St. Joseph) and All-Conference guard Morris Woods (Argo) graduate. Both are playing at Division I schools, Green is at Seattle University while Woods attends Eastern Illinois University. There were good athletes on the team last season, but they struggled to become a cohesive unit and consistently win games.
'Last year the guys didn't buy into it. They wanted to do it their way and not my way. And some guys didn't do what they needed to in the classroom either. Last year's returners were a distraction,' Shannon said. 'It's exciting because we're starting over fresh. These guys have the potential to be really good.'
The players this year are versatile, athletic and interchangeable in multiple positions. One of the top prospects is 6'8' freshman Richaun Holmes (Lockport). The forward/center has already committed to playing next season at Bowling Green University in Ohio. He along with forward Mike O'Donnell (Leo/6'5') can both go out and nail 3-pointers. Shannon also expects big things from transfers Lane Barlow (St. Rita/5'10'), Mike Jackson (Thornridge/6'3'), Modestas Masiulionis (Lemont/6'3'), and freshman AJ Bridges (Eisenhower/5'9'). Barlow and Josh Freeman (Richards/5'10') will be hounded as the guards to step up on the court. As a guard/forward, Jackson has solid shooting ability and the energy to help lead the team as well.
'We have tons of talent, and I'm not sure if they know how hard they have to work at the college level. These guys have the potential to be really good,' Shannon said. 'Our main goal is to get out of the cellar. I'm very disappointed with last season. It was the worst season of men's basketball at Moraine Valley, and I want to eliminate that. Moraine Valley basketball is better than that. That's another reason I cleaned house. They need to understand the tradition here.'
The Cyclones have a tough road ahead, but with the talent level on this team, Shannon believes they can push ahead of the pack. He has just two goals this year: play hard and play tough.