By Brodee Gillam
The faces of the men's basketball Stars mirrored the fans after the 82-81 overtime loss to Glen Oaks CC on March 5.
Looks of disbelief and shock flooded the gym. The team and fans both seemed dumbfounded.
After Glen Oaks' Michael Barnfield fouled out in overtime, the Stars were playing with a five-on-four advantage because the Vikings ran out of eligible players.
The score was tied 77-77 with 2:30 left in OT.
Both teams traded buckets back and forth, with LCC taking a two-point lead with about 10 seconds left.
With no timeouts left, Glen Oaks inbounded the ball and Davon Bradley dribbled down the court. With just seconds left on the clock, Bradley threw up a prayer over two LCC defenders and banked in the game-winning three from about 30 feet away.
Fans might wonder why LCC Head Coach Mike Ingram elected not to foul, either at the end of regulation when Barnfield hit a three to tie the game, or at the end of the overtime. For Ingram the answer is simple.
"I never have," Ingram said. "I think I've been in three situations like that. I think we lost all three of them. He hit a tough shot."
Ingram continued, placing the blame on himself.
"The thing that bugged me most was not calling timeout and setting up something," Ingram said. "That's the thing that disappointed me the most. I just didn't think they'd hit the shots. I thought we had one of our best defensive players on him in (sophomore) Emmanuel (Gildo)."
Gildo scored a team-high 19 points and grabbed 16 rebounds, five being offensive. Freshman Tevin Taylor and sophomore Donquall Jackson both chipped in 17 points.
Despite the disappointing end, the Stars second half of the season was still impressive, posting a 13-6 record to close the year.
Ingram said the team rallied together after the rough start, and that is what jump started the team.
"At one time I didn't think we were going to win 10 games," Ingram said. "We weren't practicing well. … We weren't playing well as a team. The coaches and the players weren't on the same page. We moved a couple guys out of the (starting) lineup. I tried to make sure my sophomores got an opportunity and brought them off the bench.
"I think we started taking off (after) that."
Next season is looking bright, according to Ingram.
Ingram said the 2019-20 team has the talent to do well.
"I expect us to be really good," Ingram said. "But we're going to need from cohesiveness from them and some leadership from them during the spring and summer."