#1 South Fullerton battled it out with #2 North Feather River College in the State Semi-Final game on Saturday afternoon, and FC proved to be the better team knocking off the Golden Eagles 84-60.
The Hornets ended the Golden Eagle's season-long thirteen-game win streak. In fact, Feather River's last loss happened last year on December 17th against Cañada College, another victim of the Hornets in the CCCAA Finals Tournament.
The game featured two of the state's most talented ball-handlers in Ian Fox (Fullerton) and Derrick Randolph. A cunning floor general with a deadly three-pointer, Fox was the Orange Empire Conference MVP, and Randolph, a speedy baller with ankle-breaking moves was the 2016 Golden Valley Conference MVP.
Like a couple of prizefighters, exchanged shots with Anthony Smith grabbing the ball off of the opening tipoff and dunking it for the game's first points. Fullerton answered back with a deep three-pointer by Dillon Reise. Both teams continued to exchange shots, until the Hornets made their move late in the half going on a 12-9 run slowly positioning the game in their favor. By half time, Fullerton racked up a 34-26 lead shooting 44.1% from the field. Feather River did not have an answer for FC's Kenny Barnes in the first half, who scored 19 points.
The second half belonged to Fullerton as they never relinquished the lead. Maintaining a ten-point cushion over the Golden Eagles, FC added to it taking their largest lead at 28 points (78-50) with three minutes left in the game. From there, Fullerton ran the clock punching their ticket to the state title game for the seventh time in the school's history (1953, 1954, 1960, 1961, 2006, 2008, and 2017).
For the game, the Hornets had too much firepower hitting 45.6% of their shots from the floor. FC's defense also held Feather River shooting to 25.6%.
For Fullerton, Kenny Barnes had a game-high 25 points with 12 boards, and Nick Anderson put up 15 points with 7 assists and 8 rebounds. Dillon Reise scored 11 points and brought down 7 rebounds. Ian Fox added 9 points and had 4 assists. Kendall Lauderdale and Johnathon Ross both dropped in 8 points.
Feather River's Anthony Smith (the 2017 Golden Valley Conference MVP) put up a team–high 24 points, while Derrick Randolph added 10 points for the Golden Eagles.
FC's Ian Fox was named to the All-State Team as the Co-MVP along with San Francisco's Zach Copeland by the California Community Colleges Men's Basketball Coaches Association. Hornet Head Coach Perry Webster was tabbed as the State Co-Head Coach of the Year. Webster shares the honor with Justin Labaugh of City College of San Francisco.
Up Next: The Hornets (26-6 overall) will play in the 2017 CCCAA State Championship game against #2 South San Diego City College (30-5) on Sunday, March 12th at Las Positas College. Tip off will be at 1:00 pm.