Game #1: Cape Fear Community College (0-0) vs Johnston Community College (1-0)
Game Date: Saturday, November 5, 2016
Start Time: 3:00pm (EST)
Location: Smithfield Recreation and Aquatics Center (600 E Booker Dairy Rd, Smithfield, NC 27577)
WILMINGTON, NC--- The Sea Devil Men's Basketball program will suit up and hit the hardwood for their first game of the 2016-2017 season on the road versus Johnston Community College on Saturday afternoon.
The Sea Devil Men's Basketball program enters the game versus the Jaguars of Johnston Community College as the #7 ranked team in this week's Sporting News poll, and the #18 ranked team in the preseason NJCAA Division I Top 20 Poll.
As for their opponent, the Jaguars of Johnston Community College, this is the first season back for the men's basketball program led by Head Coach James Johnson, and are coming off a home (90-78) victory over Lenoir Community College on Wednesday, November 2.
Cape Fear will look to have another strong season after finishing last year at (24-8) overall, and (9-2) in Region 10 Conference play. That record earned the number one seed in the 2016 NJCAA Region 10 Conference Tournament, where they would eventually fall in the Championship (72-75) versus Spartanburg Methodist College.
"We are very excited to get underway. We are going to enjoy each day of this journey and work at getting better every day," said Sea Devil Men's Basketball head coach Ryan Mantlo in his Friday pre-game presser leading up to Saturday's game.
The Sea Devil Men's Basketball program will be led by a trio of sophomore returners of Alonzo Tyson, DeVarte Watson, and Tai-He Jeter, as well as a trio of sophomore transfer players of Zaqwaun Matthews, Trae Bryant, and Jacque Brown who each will make their first career appearances for Cape Fear on Saturday.
Tyson, is the team's lone returnee who finished in the top 5 of scoring last season for Cape Fear at 12.9 points per game; also finished with 7.6 rebounds per game and 1.2 blocks per game, while shooting 62.0% from the floor.
Watson, is coming off a freshman season where he averaged 6.5ppg, 7.8rpg, and 1.7bpg, while shooting 46.2% from the floor.
Cape Fear also has freshmen newcomers Alston Davis, Jerick Haynes, Parrish Tinsely, Tre Armstead, Trevor Willis, and high school teammates Michael Taylor, and Shaft Parker will each look to see the floor in the Sea Devils' first game and make an immediate impact.
"Our freshmen need to grow up in a hurry," said Mantlo. "Our goal is to shorten that learning curve as quickly as possible so they can loosen up and make plays.
This is the third time in Sea Devil Men's Basketball program history that they have faced Johnston Community College; the two prior meetings came during the 2010-2011 season. Cape Fear first won on November 11, 2010 at Johnston CC by the score of (89-69), and would later win on November 14, 2010 at home by the score of (85-71).
Tip-off for Saturday afternoon's game between Cape Fear Community College and Johnston Community College is scheduled for 3pm (EST) from the SRAC Complex in Smithfield, North Carolina.
SCOUTING THE JAGUARS: HEAD COACH MANTLO's REPORT ON JOHNSTON CC
"Lots of athletes that play very hard. They are smaller than us so we need to pound them inside."
THE BIG 3: HEAD COACH RYAN MANTLO's THREE BIGGEST KEYS TO THE GAME
1. Control the tempo
2. Guarding the dribble
3. Limiting second chance points
SEA DEVIL PLAYER SPOTLIGHT
Alonzo Tyson, was this week's player to watch according to Sea Devil Men's Basketball head coach Ryan Mantlo following the team's week of practices.
When asked about why Tyson, Mantlo added, "The sophomore has had a great offseason and taken over a leadership role on this year's team. Look for him to have a big impact Saturday."
COME OUT TO THE HOME OPENER WEEKEND
Be sure to come out to the Sea Devil Men's Basketball home opener next Friday, on November 11 during the Cape Fear Classic next weekend (Nov. 11-12).
The Sea Devils will play against Lenoir Community College on Friday night at 7pm (EST), and close out the tournament on Saturday at 3pm (EST) versus #2 Georgia Highlands College.
If you are unable to come out to the home opener weekend, be sure to follow the games with our LIVE STATS Gametracker this season; watch the game as all the action unfolds inside the Schwartz Center.
STUDENTS, COME JOIN THE BLUE CREW AT EACH HOME GAME
Students, be sure to join the Blue Crew, the Sea Devil Athletics proud student section at every home basketball game. The Blue Crew is a fun, interactive, and connective group of student fans who like to cheer for our basketball programs inside of the Schwartz Center. Come meet fellow Sea Devil basketball fans as well by cheering for your Sea Devils!
The Blue Crew will first meet on November 11, 2016 at the men's basketball game in the mid-court section of the bleachers across from the team benches; simply look for the signs on the seats that say "BLUE CREW SEATS".
Courtesy of Trent Brinkley