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Glendale Community College men's basketball turns in strong second half for win

Basketball: Vaqueros convert short-range shots in 69-59 conference win over Bakersfield.

January 22, 2014|By Andrew J. Campa, andrew.campa@latimes.com

GLENDALE — A frustrating first half of missed short-range field goals turned into a successful and opportunistic second half for the Glendale Community College men’s basketball team.

The Vaqueros continued their strong play this season due to an improved offensive effort over Wednesday evening’s final 20 minutes of Western State Conference South Division play, which translated into a 69-59 victory over visiting Bakersfield College.

“We were 10 for 32 in the first half and about 12 to 15 of those shots came inside. We just had a rough go of it and we couldn’t finish,” said Vaqueros Coach Brian Beauchemin, who picked up victory No. 585. “There was nothing elaborate, we just finished around the rim in the second half and that was the difference.”

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Glendale (15-3, 3-1 in conference), which entered the game ranked No. 18 in state, led by as many as 16 points at two different junctures but saw its lead trimmed to 11 at 53-42 with 6:29 remaining before the Renegades (10-9-1, 1-4) closed the gap to 55-45 with 4:02 left on a layup from sophomore guard Corey Mitchell that was created on a steal and assist from Lawrence Moore.

The bucket counted for two of Mitchell’s game-high 25 points.

While Bakersfield may have had a slight edge, momentum went straight back to Glendale when freshman guard Jalen Etienne crashed to the hole on the Vaqueros’ subsequent possession and was fouled while making a layup.

While Etienne (12 points and three assists) missed his free throw, his bucket still put the Vaqueros up by 12.

Glendale’s lead then ballooned back to 15 when a Renegades miss turned into a three-pointer the other way from Etienne, who was assisted by Jason Moore (team-high 15 points), which put Glendale up, 60-45, with 2:17 remaining.

While Bakersfield came back with a layup, the Vaqueros slammed the door when freshman Vahe Aristakessian, a Glendale High alumnus, chucked a three-quarter-long pass to wide-open sophomore Emmett Duvall for a thunderous dunk with 1:50 left that put Glendale back up by 15 and virtually iced the game.

“That’s a press-break play. Actually my teammate Gor [Plavchyan] saw it and we ran it. Props to him,” said Duvall, who finished with 13 points and nine rebounds. “The big thing for us was intensity. We kept our intensity up.”

Duvall had a similar momentum-breaking slam a bit earlier in the contest as the Renegades against closed to within 10 points.

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