By Anthony Garcia
After the tragic death of NBA superstar Kobe Bryant, NJAC basketball teams ramped up competition this week on the hardwood. The men’s team lost at Rowan University on Wednesday, Jan. 29, 73-84, but then bounced back with a 98-88 win against Montclair State on Saturday, Feb. 1. This was a career-high effort from senior Randall Walko, as he helped secure the Lions a victory.
A four-game winning streak came to an end after the men lost in a close second half against Rowan University. Going to half with a nine-point deficit of 40-31, efforts by Walko and juniors
Travis Jocelyn and P.J. Ringel brought the game within three with 12:38 left on the clock.
Walko finished the game with 29 points, grabbing his 11th game this season with 20 points or more. But when the final buzzer sounded, his standout performance was not enough for the team to take the win.
On Saturday, Feb. 1, however, the men answered back with a win against Montclair State lead by a career-high 38 points from Walko. He etched his name in the College’s record books, becoming the ninth all-time leading scorer.
Walko’s second game in succession with 20-plus points was accompanied by 15 from Jocelyn and a combined 27 points from seniors Mike Walley and Ryan Jensen. The team shot 35-40 from the stripe, while Jocelyn and Jensen tailed up 13 rebounds.
The Lions put the pieces together after a lose to Rowan, allowing them to edge Montclair State by 10 in a high-scoring contest of 98-88.
The Lions will take a trip down to Camden to take on Rutgers-Camden on Wednesday, Feb. 5, with a tip scheduled for 8 pm.