COD Men’s Basketball: Skipper hits running jumper with 5.4 left to shoot down the Jets, 74-72

COD (14-13; 5-4) guaranteed their first .500 season for the first time since the 2007-08 season, as freshman guard Sam Skipper nailed a running jumper in front of the free throw line with 5.4 seconds remaining to knockout the San Diego Miramar Jets (15-12; 4-5), 74-72.

That victory could not have been possible without a tremendous stop on the defensive end as both sophomore starting forward Nicholas Pete (Hemet Tahquitz) and sophomore guard Marquete Eddie (Washington, D.C. Friendship Collegiate Academy) collapsed down onto the Jets shooter as he let a bouncing layup attempt go up and over the cylinder.

With the occasion of Sophomore Night and the stands packed with friends and family who had arrived to watch their players for the final time in a Roadrunners uniform, to walk away with a narrow win was a fun way to close out the home regular season finale.

Miramar would hold a one point advantage at the first half break, 47-48, as both teams shot over 50% from the field in the first half. In the second half, both teams shot less than 36% from the field as the game ground to a halt until the closing seconds.

With 4:15 left in the game, Desert held a 7-point lead, 70-63, but the Jets started to whittle that lead down, and eventually used a 9-2 run to tie the game at 72-72 with 1:23 left in the game. Then with 37 second left, Miramar missed a jumper and then committed a costly turnover just before Desert called their final full time out.

Out of the time out, sophomore starting guard Riley Welch (Littleton (CO) Chatfield) found freshman starting guard Sam Skipper (Perris H.S.) who drove the lane and hit a 14 foot jumper in front of the free throw line to ice the game.

Skipper was incredible, leading all scorers with 27, his highest scoring output since January 4th and his sixth 25+ point game of the season, on 12 of 22 shooting and going 3 for 9 from beyond three-point range and leading the team in total rebounds with eight. Welch led the team in assists with eight on the night.

Sophomore starting guard Gunnar Mogolis (Palm Desert H.S.) added 12 points on 5 of 10 shooting and sophomore starting guard Deondre Hawkins (Palm Springs H.S.) contributed 10 points on 5 of 6 shooting.

Sophomore guard Shaquille Russell (Reseda Cleveland) made his way off of the bench to be the team's second leading scorer with 13 points on 5 of 8 shooting, while going 3 of 8 from beyond the arc in the win.

The next game for College of the Desert Men's Basketball will be the final regular season contest of the 2018-19 season as the Roadrunners travel to the scenic confines of San Jacinto on February 21st at 7p, where they will continue Pacific Coast Athletic Conference (PCAC) by traveling to the Mt. San Jacinto Eagles.

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For additional information, please contact the COD Sports Information Office at 760.423.6641.

Information & Story provided by COD Sports Information. Photo by Ebony Macias.