Orange Coast College’s men’s basketball team (1-2) lost its first home matchup of the season against the San Diego Miramar Jets (4-0).
The Pirates fell behind fast, trailing by 21 points at halftime and couldn’t overcome the hot start from the Jets and lost 103-63.
“We didn’t provide the effort we’re capable of providing,” assistant coach Jamaal Lee said. “We’ll just go back to the drawing board.”
Coast struggled to get momentum going on both sides of the ball, turning the ball over 21 times while only creating eight Jets turnovers.
Freshman guard Johnathan Ileleji captured five rebounds, four on the defensive end of the court. He also picked up 13 points in his 18 minutes of play which led all scoring for OCC. Brian Self, a freshman guard for Coast had 10 points off the bench, shooting 4-5 from the field, and sinking his only three-point attempt.
A strong night of shooting helped Miramar cruise to victory, making 10 three-point shots and shooting 60 percent from the field.
All but one of the Jets players made baskets in their time on the court. Six-foot-five sophomore Miramar guard Blake Seits, one of the top scorers in the state, continued to be unstoppable as he scored 24 points, going 9-11 from the floor and picking up 10 rebounds and six assists in the game.
OCC succeeded in just 35.9 percent of its field goal attempts and 26.3 percent of 3-point shots.
Free throw attempts came few and far between, however OCC took advantage and sank 12-15 easy shots.
Coast looks to repeat as Orange Empire Conference champions, and to do so the Pirates will have to trust its new players. According to Lee there are only three returning sophomores from last year’s squad.
“We try to stay away from last year. Every year is going to be different in a two-year program,” said Lee.
The quest to return to the California Community College Athletic Association Men’s Basketball State Championship will next send the Pirates to Palomar College to compete in the Palomar tournament. OCC tip off against Palomar on Nov. 23 at 7 p.m.
Coast has a two-month stretch of away games and the team won’t return to the Basil H. Peterson Gym until Jan. 23, where the Pirates will kick off conference play with a matchup against Saddleback.