By Darryl L. McGee
Back on Saturday, February 20, 2016, I covered my Final College Basketball of the 2015-2016 Season. Within the friendly confines of Cedarville University’s (CU) Callan Athletic Center, the Yellow Jackets’ Men’s Basketball Team defeated The Wilberforce University (WU) Bulldogs. By the Final Score of 94-73, CU defeated its Friendly Greene County, Ohio Rival. If you were in the building, you know one thing. The entire game was controlled by the Yellow Jackets. To be honest, that issue completely shocked me! Why? During the 2015-2016 Season, Wilberforce was a difficult team for any opposing team to deal with. During most of the season, the Bulldogs could not be defeated at Home. On the road, Away Games were a totally different story. The Bulldogs struggled on the road. As the season was nearing its closure, WU lost games at Home. Regardless, I fully expected the team to present a tough challenge for Cedarville. Although Cedarville was hosting the game, I fully expected a close game between these two institutions which are separated by only 7 or 8 Minutes. I was very wrong! Fast forward to tonight (Saturday, December 3, 2016). Once again, I am sitting inside of The Callan Athletic Center. Once again, CU will be hosting WU in a Men’s Basketball Game. Will the results of 02/20/2016 repeat themselves tonight? We are about to find out!
Cedarville won the Official Tip-Off. The Yellow Jackets’ Defense ended up with a Block and a Steal. CU’s Offense went on a 6-0 Scoring Run. Justice Montgomery and Patrick Bain each nailed a 3-Point Basket. Wilberforce shot right back with a 6-0 Scoring Run too. Malik Breckenridge and Demond Parker each nailed a 3-Point Basket. From 17:49 to 16:50, Cedarville outscored the Bulldogs 5-0. Before a Media Timeout at 15:59, WU outscored CU 4-0. WU committed 1-Turnover too. After opening the game with each team converting two 3-Point Baskets, Cedarville has managed to obtain a slim lead (11-10). The pace of the game is fast. However, both teams are keeping up with one another. After the Media Timeout, Wilberforce proceeded to go on a 6-0 Scoring Run. During the run, Patrick Mitchell scored 4-Points. With 14:12 on the clock, the Yellow Jackets called a Timeout. By the score of 16-11, Wilberforce now leads Cedarville.
Before a Media Timeout (11:39), Cedarville went on a 4-0 run. Wilberforce countered with a 4-0 run. The Bulldogs’ Austin Daniels nailed a 3-Point Basket. WU leads the Yellow Jackets 20-15. As you can tell by the score, Wilberforce has taken over control of the game. Wilberforce has a 5-Point Lead (20-15). Both teams are still going at full speed. Neither team is wearing down. With 11:14 on the scoreboard, Wilberforce’s Michael Forrest completed a 3-Point Play. From 10:52 to 7:29, CU committed 3-Turnovers. Wilberforce committed 1-Turnover. Cedarville went on an 11-2 Scoring Run. J.C. Faubion scored 4-Points. With 7:24 remaining in the First Half, a Media Timeout was called. Cedarville leads Wilberforce 26-25.
As you can see, the pendulum has swung again. Cedarville has regained the lead. It forced its way back in front. Assistance from Wilberforce’s Turnovers was a big help. After the Media Timeout, the Bulldogs’ Defense stepped-up. WU’s Defense made 2-Blocks. It obtained 2-Steals too. Wilberforce outscored CU 5-0. Mitchell nailed a 3-Point Basket. Parker made a 2-Point Basket. Now, it was the Yellow Jackets’ turn to step-up. From 5:47 to 4:05, Cedarville outscored Wilberforce 8-2. Easton Bazzoli scored 4-Points. Patrick Bain scored 2-Points, and he made 1-Steal. At the 3:45 mark, a Media Timeout was called. Cedarville leads Wilberforce 34-32.
After the Media Timeout, Wilberforce committed 2-Turnovers. Cedarville made 1-Block. From 3:37 to 29.0 Seconds, CU’s Defense had 1-Hard Block. It picked up 2-Steals. The Yellow Jackets committed 1-Turnover too. The Yellow Jackets outscored the Bulldogs 5-3. WU’s Mitchell made a 3-Point Basket. At the end of the First Half, Cedarville leads Wilberforce 39-35. During the First Half, momentum swung back-and-forth. At the Halftime Break, Cedarville possesses a 4-Point Lead (39-35). However, this game is pretty much even. Each team had various occasions when it would possess a small lead. Well, the small lead would not lead to more. A sense of urgency would be felt by the trailing team. Over time, the trailing team would cut the leading team’s lead down.
In certain instances, the trailing team would go on to regain the lead. I have acquired the following feeling. Whether I am right or wrong, I feel that this game will go down to the very last second. I just do not feel either team will obtain full control of the game. As the Second Half got underway, Wilberforce had possession of the ball. At 19:42, Mitchell nailed a 3-Point Basket. From 19:24 to 15:56, the Bulldogs committed 4-Turnovers. Cedarville committed 1-Turnover. The Yellow Jackets outscored WU 8-6. Bain scored 4-Points. For Wilberforce, Mitchell scored 4-Points. With 15:56 on the clock, a Media Timeout was called. Wilberforce had obtained the lead. However, Cedarville managed to snatch it right back. Neither team can create some comfortable room between it and the opposing team.
After the Media Timeout, each team made a 2-Point Basket. Then, Wilberforce committed 2-Turnovers. Cedarville committed 1-Turnover. From 12:39 to 12:26, CU’s J.C. Faubion made a 2-Point Basket. WU’s Michael Forrest hit a 3-Point Basket. At the 12:20 mark, a Media Timeout was called. The Yellow Jackets lead the Bulldogs 51-49. Sixteen seconds after the Media Timeout (12:04), Cedarville’s Gabriel Portillo picked up 2-Points. From 11:51 to 10:09, Wilberforce went on an 11-0 Scoring Run. Mitchell nailed two 3-Point Baskets. Forrest hit one 3-Point Basket. With 10:04 remaining in the game, a Media Timeout was called. Wilberforce possesses a 5-Point Lead (60-55). Twenty seconds after the Media Timeout (9:44), Bain made a 2-Point Basket. Parker countered with a 3-Point Basket.
Before a Media Timeout at 7:57, Cedarville committed 1-Turnover. Wilberforce is hanging onto a 6-Point Lead (63-57). Of course, CU still has fight in it. The team is not giving up. From 7:39 to 5:16, the Yellow Jackets came storming right back. The Yellow Jackets went on a 10-0 Scoring Run. Bain scored 4-Points. Faubion and teammate Justice Montgomery each nailed a 3-Point Basket. At the 5:08 mark, a Full Timeout was called. Cedarville leads WU 67-63. Cedarville has regained the lead. The team just kept on chipping away at Wilberforce’s lead. Eventually, Cedarville overcame Wilberforce’s lead. That is when Cedarville took the lead back. The game is now heading into its final 5:00. It will be interesting to see how the game goes.
With 3:50 remaining in the game, Wilberforce turned the ball over. Then, a Media Timeout was called. At the 3:16 mark, Cedarville turned the ball over. After that Turnover, WU called a Timeout. When play resumed, Forrest ended up making 1-Foul Shot. CU’s Easton Bazzoli countered with a 3-Point Basket. Each team’s player with a #1 Jersey Patrick Mitchell (Wilberforce) and Justice Montgomery (Cedarville) successfully made one 2-Point Basket. With 26.5 Seconds remaining in the game, Bain nailed a 3-Point Basket. At the 17.4 mark, WU’s Parker nailed a 3-Point Basket. After his conversion, a Timeout was called. Cedarville leads Wilberforce 75-69. With 12.2 Seconds on the clock, the final points were score. Cedarville’s J.C. Faubion made 2-Foul Shots. By the Final Score of 77-69, Cedarville University was able to win this close game. Tonight is not the only time which these two teams will meet. On January 17, 2017, the Yellow Jackets and the Bulldogs will meet again. On that date, Cedarville will make the short trip to Wilberforce’s Alumni Multiplex. After the way tonight’s game played out, expect the next meeting to be something very special.
Usually, I do not make the following remarks. After the way which this young man played tonight, I just cannot end this story without acknowledging him and his excellent performance. Without any shadow of a doubt (in my mindset), there was one player who proved one fact. In this game, there was a very clear choice for MVP (Most Valuable Player)! That player is not a member of the Winning Team (Cedarville University). No, he is a member of The Wilberforce University (WU) Bulldogs. The young man which I am speaking of is none other than WU’S PATRICK MITCHELL! On the night, Mr. Mitchell scored 32-Total Points. That total led everyone who played in tonight’s game. His Field Goal Numbers were: 12-18. From 3-Point Range, he was 5-9. With Free Throws, Mitchell was 3-5. Finally, he led all players with 13-Total Rebounds. As you can see, Patrick Mitchell had an ALL-STAR Night. Throughout the entire game, it seemed like he could do no wrong. Due to the fact that he successfully made so many Shot Attempts, it just felt like he made all of them. Although Mitchell’s team did not win this game, none of the Bulldogs have anything which to be ashamed of. In this game, Wilberforce played quite well. At times, the team was in position to arise victorious. Although it did not happen tonight, Wilberforce has to regroup and move on. The season is still young. There are plenty more games left to play.