Pirates take 2-of-3 at season-opening tourney

Pirates take 2-of-3 at season-opening tourney

VENTURA -- It was a solid start to the 2017-18 season for the Orange Coast College men's basketball team as the Pirates took 2-of-3 at last weekend's Ventura College Tournament.

In the opener on Thursday, Coast took on the host VC Pirates and used a strong second half to spoil the tourney hopes for the hosts with a 92-76 win. Coast trailed 43-36 at the half before outscoring the host Pirates, 56-33 in the second half for the win.

The majority of that second-half success came from sophomore Lloyd Wright, who scored 23 of his game-high 31 points in the second half. Joshua Davis added 16 for Coast, while Kupaa Harrison added 12 and Malik Skillern tossed in 11 off the bench.

The win pushed OCC into the championship semifinals and there, the Pirates pulled out a hard-fought 87-85 overtime win over Palomar College.

The Pirates trailed the Comets 85-81 with just over a minute remaining in the game before back-to-back layups by Wright and Harrison evened the game at 85. Finally, in the final seconds, Wright was fouled on a 3-point attempt before the buzzer sounded and he calmly nailed 2-of-3 to put OCC into the tournament title game. Wright finished with 27 points, while Davis added 18 points and seven rebounds.

In the tourney finals, Coast faced fellow Orange Empire Conference foe, Riverside City College and the Tigers used a strong first half to pull away from the Pirates, winning 88-69.

Davis led the scoring in the finals with 23 points and nine rebounds, while Harrison added 18 points and four assists for OCC.

Coast will head down to San Diego to face Miramar College on Thursday night, beginning at 5 p.m.