T-Birds rout Cochise Apaches, 93-75

Jenn Baluch & Rene Gomez

Men’s basketball had a victorious game at Heap Gym  Nov. 16 against Cochise Community College.

Cochise started the game with a full-court press, obtaining quite a few three-pointers taking a quick lead against the Thunderbirds.

Mesa was not going to let them take control, quite a few men from Mesa started making three-pointers back-to-back.

Getting a turn around, the Thunderbirds got a 19 point lead bringing the score board to 54-35 at halftime.

Mesa T-Birds hit seven of their nine three-pointers by five different players in the first half.

The Thunderbirds built up a 25 point lead in the second half, the game was then brought to a 13 point difference with a score of 80-67 by Jordan Martin who had hit a three-pointer with five minutes left in the game.

Cam Boone is a basketball transfer from Grand Canyon University, he switched over to play at Mesa Community College this season. 

“I thought it was a great fit, I knew the coach was similar to my high school basketball coach,” Boone said. 

Boone has shown that he makes a great addition, and the team plays very well together.

The Mesa men ended the game scoring nine of their 20 three-point attempts.

Finishing the game with an 18 point lead, winning 93-75, the T-birds are now 3-2 in their season.

Forward Ryan Hintze said, “I think we hit all our shots and played great defense.”

Tre Ogles led all scorers with 23 points on nine of 15 shooting and four of  nine from three-point range.

Boone had a double-double scoring 20 points with an extremely efficient eight of 11 shooting and hauled in 13 rebounds; four of which were offensive.

Shyheim McClelland did a phenomenal job of leading the offense and contributed 18 points and eight assists with no turnovers.

The T-Birds collectively shot 55.2 percent from the field and 45 percent behind three-point range.

Mesa also had 36 points in the paint, and scored 16 points off of turnovers.

Coach Sam Ballard, Men’s basketball coach of six years had a great victory Nov. 16.

He not only celebrated this 100th victory win with the Mesa T-Birds, but he celebrated his 600th win in his basketball coaching career.

The team had planned an end game celebration  surprising Ballard with a 600th win cake and by awarding him the game basketball after their victory over Cochise.

“This is a great group of guys; any success that we have with this group has just been super,” Ballard said.

 Even though Coach Ballard mentioned he does not think about his accolades much right now, he is grateful for the people he has worked with in his career.

“I’ve been really fortunate and I’ve been around really good people my whole coaching career and I’ve been blessed,” Ballard said.

The men are now 2-0 in the ACCAC, and will have their next home game against the Pima Aztecs on Dec. 7 at 4 p.m. in The J. Heap Gymnasium.

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These are archived stories from Mesa Legend editions before Fall 2018. See article for corresponding author.

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