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Men's college hoops: Smaller COC stuffs SMC

Cougars overcome size disadvantage thanks to Dominguez’s all-around play

Posted: January 20, 2010 10:18 p.m.
Updated: January 21, 2010 4:55 a.m.

College of the Canyons guard Rasheem Harris (10) leaps for a layup as Santa Monica's DeShawn Stephens defends during the first half Wednesday at COC.

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The College of the Canyons men’s basketball team took on Santa Monica College Wednesday, a squad that had a big height advantage on the Cougars.

It mattered little, as Parker Dominguez, the Cougars’ undersized center, made all the big plays in a 78-62 win Wednesday at the Cougar Cage.

COC (11-9, 2-2) was looking to rebound from two straight losses that followed a win in its Western State Conference opener.

The game also provided a matchup of the two highest-scoring players in the Southern Division of the Western State Conference.

The Corsairs’ 6-foot-10-inch Bryant Crowder is the top scorer at 18.9 points per game. Cougars forward Brannon Bradley is second, averaging 18.8. Crowder put up impressive numbers against COC, finishing with 28 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks, while Bradley was limited to seven points with foul trouble.

But Brian Kimble and Parker and Rendon Dominguez helped the Cougars’ offense move too fast for the Corsairs to keep up.

“I think we controlled the tempo and got it going in transition,” said COC head coach Howard Fisher. “We turned them over and were able to turn that into easy buckets.”

The Cougars turned in another balanced effort as different eight players scored.

COC went on runs early and often, using an on-again, off-again fullcourt press to force the Corsairs (9-10, 1-3) into turnovers that led to easy baskets.

“We needed more from our guard play,” said SMC head coach Jerome Jenkins. “Give all the credit to COC though, they came out and punched us in the mouth.”

Parker Dominguez, who gave up eight inches on Crowder, took it inside early and often. When Crowder threatened to block his shot, Dominguez frequently found forwards Brannon Bradley and Garry Bradley for layups and jumpers. Dominguez finished with 19 points, nine rebounds and five assists.

Kimble played at both ends of the court for the Cougars, finishing with seven points, 13 assists and five steals, and the Cougars managed a 45-27 lead at the half.

Rendon Dominguez gave Kimble his 10th assist of the game on a fastbreak layup that led to Jenkins calling a timeout to get control three minutes into the second half. Rendon Dominguez finished with 18 points and three big 3-pointers that helped rally the Cougars.

Santa Monica managed to slow the pace some in the second half because the Cougars got in foul trouble. COC picked up its seventh team foul five minutes into the second half, which led to automatic free throws for Santa Monica. The Cougars picked up a team foul No. 10 with 12 minutes left in the game.

Yet the charity stripe wasn’t enough help for for SMC. While it helped the Corsairs cut the Cougars’ lead to 61-49 with 10 minutes left, SMC shot 51 percent from the free throw line in the second half, missing 13 attempts.

“That’s been our Achilles’ heel all year,” Jenkins said.

Rendon Dominguez’s second 3-pointer with seven minutes left gave the team a 67-56 lead. Crowder had a chance to answer with five minutes left, sinking one of two free throws to put Santa Monica within 10, but it was as close as SMC would get.

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