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Photo by Ray Robles
The Vikings' Javone Rabon dunks for two of the 37 points he scored in Saturday's win over College of the Desert.

Vikings vanquish Roadrunners

BARSTOW • The Barstow Community College men's basketball team played the nightcap on Saturday and also won its game, jumping out to a big early lead and going on to thump College of the Desert, 112-91.

While the women's game wasn't put away by the home team until the final minutes, this one was never in doubt, as the Vikings were dominant from the start. It was quickly a 10-0 match, behind early 3-pointers from Daniel Gampe and Cedric Young, and the Barstow offense never let up.

“That’s how we want to play, that’s the future of Barstow basketball,” said BCC head coach Gerry Wright. “That’s what the team looks like when everybody is doing their job.”

The Vikings’ Javone Rabon was under the weather during the team’s last home game, had his floor time limited and scored just nine points. On Saturday, he was at 100 percent and showed the form that has him second in the league in scoring, with an average of 23.4 points per game. Against Desert, he scored 23 in the first half alone.

“That was more like him,” said coach Wright. “That’s the way we expect him to play.”

Young also had a strong first half, with 12 points, while Raul Saenz started and tipped in nine points. Gampe, who leads the Vikings in 3-pointers, had that one early trey, but was shut out for the rest of the first half. He wouldn’t be denied in the second.

“Daniel was 1-for-8 in the first half, so at halftime, I reminded him of the basics,” said Wright. “He got the mechanics right in the second.”

And in a big way. Gampe let it fly from the outside in the last 20 minutes, and finished with nine three’s and 29 points. It was the freshman’s highest output to date, as he had eight treys in an earlier game. The school record of 10 3-pointers in a game is held by Eric Burns.

It was the second win of the year for the Vikings, who currently have a roster of eight players. That can be limiting, especially against a team like Desert.

“We wanted to press them, but with only eight of us we don’t have the bodies to do it for 40 minutes,” said coach Wright. “We’re in good condition, but to ask any team to press like that for that long is asking a lot.”

Rabon was the game’s top scorer with 37 points, to which he added 20 rebounds and six steals. Young had 16 points and seven assists, Nate Lopez 14 points, and Saenz 12 points and five rebounds. Jamal Roland led the Roadrunners with 20 points.

The win is the Vikings’ first league victory of the year.

“What our record doesn’t reflect is the improvements this team has made,” said Wright. “It’s not like we’re losing and never in games; there have been five or six we lost by a total of 15 points. We had a chance to beat Victor Valley and we should have beat Rio (in the ‘flu game’, as the coach calls it, due to two players being hobbled with the flu). We win those two and we’re 3-1 today and battling it out for first place.”

Coming up next for Barstow is Chaffey, currently leading the Foothill. The Vikings will host the Panthers on Wednesday at 7 p.m.

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