Starting guard Todd Barnes struggles to hold onto the ball as Orange Coast College tries to get it back on Saturday, Nov. 5 at Ventura College. (Irma Carrillo/Courier)

The Lancers’ men’s basketball team opened the 2016-17 season with the annual Ventura “We Play Hard Tournament” and made it to the consolation game but came up one point short and lost to Orange Coast College (OCC) 79-78 in the final minutes.

After trailing by as much as seven late in the fourth quarter against OCC, the Lancers cut the deficit to two, 74-72, with a 3-point jump shot by freshman guard Skyler Williams and a layup by William Johnson.

In the final minute of the game Mckay Anderson added two more points and put the Lancers ahead. Unfortunately, OCC netted three points in the dying seconds of the game to take the victory.

“We played hard, all the kids played a good ball game we just gave up some threes that we didn’t need to give up, like the one at the end of the game,” Mike Swanegan said. “We had a chance to win and that’s all we can ask for.”

The Lancers washed-up LA Valley College the day prior with final score 83-59. Anderson dominated with 26 points and 14 rebounds while veteran guard Todd Barnes added 17. Despite the Lancers double-digit turnovers, they gained 21 points from LA Valley’s trades.

“We had some moments where we played really well and I felt really good about the team effort,” Barnes said. “We saw what we can actually do with each other and how well we can play.”

Although they lost their first game to Palomar College, the Lancers’ energy and effort stood out. PCC put up 15 second-chance points, 29 points off of turnovers and 29 bench points.

“It was a positive outcome for the team. Even though we went 1-2, it felt like we went 2-1,” Anderson said. “In those losses I feel like we grew together as a team.”

The Lancers will spend the next week practicing before traveling to Glendale Community College on Tuesday, Nov. 22 for a non-conference match.

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