Home » College basketball | After Sophomore Night wins, CR’s focus turns to potential playoff selections

College basketball | After Sophomore Night wins, CR’s focus turns to potential playoff selections

College of the Redwoods basketball teams honored sophomores before the home games against Shasta College on Wednesday evening. After a couple of ceremonies, and a couple of Corsair wins, the focus turns to the playoffs with both teams hoping to see their name in the California Community College Athletic Association state playoffs that will be announced this weekend.

The women’s team got a 51-33 win with the defense keeping the Knights uncomfortable on offense all night. The game got off to a slow start, with the Corsairs taking a lead into the second quarter. In the second, things connected for CR, winning the quarter 22-6 thanks to steals by freshman Olivia Railsback and a pair of baskets by freshman Moriah Bowles.

The Corsairs maintained a lead for the second half. The Corsairs wrap up Golden Valley Conference play tied for second place at 5-3 while sitting at 11-14 on the season.

Along with the win, the team celebrated its four sophomores who all got the starting nod Wednesday.

“It was good to have some success for them because last year was so tough. Lily Shelton had an injury that she didn’t play last year; Molly Slayton actually is playing with a torn ACL right now. So seeing her finish it out and then seeing Ronnee (Norwood) and Lily Hoban who worked their butts off last year and had to do a lot of different things,” Corsairs’ women’s head coach Jain Tuey said of her sophomores enjoying a winning conference season after going 1-9 in the GVC last year. “It feels good to have them experience that here.”

Slayton was injured in November and has been limited to 11 games this season. After getting an MRI, she was informed that the surgery would still be “months out” so she’s got a brace and is back out on the court for the Corsairs.

“She’s a little bit slower but she does all the right things, she plays well, she’s such a smart kid,” Tuey said of the sophomore Slayton. “Molly’s one of the toughest kids I know. … You give her a task and she’s going to do it and put her all into it.”

Despite the team not playing as crisply as Tuey would have liked to see, they still managed to get the 18-point win. On Sunday, the CCCAA will announce the playoff bracket with a first-round matchup likely coming on Wednesday.

“The resilience of knowing that we weren’t playing at our best and they were able to still stick it out, battle through it and get the win,” Tuey said. “We’re the most successful when we make the other team uncomfortable.”

The four College of the Redwoods women’s basketball team players honored for Sophomore Night before Wednesday’s win for the Corsairs over Shasta College. From left to right are Lily Shelton, Molly Slayton, Ronnee Norwood and Lily Hoban. (Photo: College of the Redwoods’ Athletics)

CR’s men’s team moved to 7-3 in the GVC with a 101-74 over Shasta, the win likely concludes an unbeaten two years at home for the seven Corsair sophomores honored pregame, except for an “almost zero” chance that the team hosts a playoff game, the Corsairs will finish the season 10-0 at home.

After a so-so first half for the Corsairs, holding a 37-36 halftime lead, the highlight was when freshman Mason Mottashed got out on a fast break and set up an alley-oop off of the backboard for sophomore Lucq Anderson that brought a roar out of the crowd.

“We were ready to play but it’s inevitable that guys are going to have other things on their minds. They have all their family in town, the emotion of it being the last game in this building,” CR men’s coach Ryan Bisio said. “And the playoff implications. It’s a lot to think about.”

CR then dominated the second half 64-38 as the team caught fire to close out the regular season. In the likely last home game with College of the Redwoods, the Neff brothers showed out, combining for 50 points and 10 made threes. With Trey finishing with 31 and 10 rebounds and Ty having 19 points and five assists, the pair jumped on the Knights to start the second half burying triple after triple.

“He had that look in his eye, you could just feel that even before the game, that he was going to be great,” Bisio said of the reigning all-state player, Trey Neff. “He’s going to have to lead the way in the event we make the playoffs. If we’re in some road environment, whether Trey likes it or not, we’re going to be looking to him.”

As a team, the Corsairs hit 16 threes and tallied 28 assists along with 22 steals to close out conference play scoring 90+ points in six of their last seven games.

“It felt like a fitting way to close, not only in terms of just playing well but playing with the type of flare that this group is capable of playing with,” Bisio said. “In the second half, we were able to display that. Not only just the shooting, but the passing, the movement.”

CR will learn of its playoff destiny Sunday. Bisio sees them as a team on the bubble of the playoff picture after going 7-3 in the GVC and 17-11 overall. If they do make the playoffs, they’ll likely be on the road, where the team is 3-7 this year.

“We’re a top-25 team in the state and we’re really playing like it,” Bisio said. “If we get in, I couldn’t imagine a team would be enthused about drawing us in the first round.”

Dylan McNeill can be reached at 707-441-0526.