(Walnut, CA) The Mt. SAC Men's Basketball Teams 2019-20 season will begin against California Community College Men's Basketball Coaches Association Preseason No. 1 City College of San Francisco (CCSF), on Friday (Nov.1), in the CCSF Tournament.
"Every single coach will tell you that an out of town tournament is a good barometer to see how good your team is," said 12th-year Mt. SAC Basketball Head Coach Clark Maloney. "We go up there to build some confidence and it's a good measuring stick of our upcoming season."
This is the tenth year that the Mounties have played in the CCSF tournament.
This years' very young team, comprised of 13 freshmen and two returners, has been bonding and practicing for four months. Maloney believes they are up for the challenge.
"It's a good group," said Maloney, who coached Mt. SAC to a state championship in 2013. "They love to work hard. They are young and this is brand new to them."
"We've had four months of seeing the same faces (practice)," replied freshman guard, Maliq Neurell. "When coach told us we had a scrimmage, everybody was excited and ready to play the game. That scrimmage showed us what we're capable of and what we could do this season.
"We have a lot of outside talent and the coaches have instilled us with everything to be successful and as a team we just have to go out there and get it done."
Four local San Gabriel Valley players include Josh Jastrab, G (Bonita), Ralphie Macias, G (La Puente), Govan Wike, G (San Dimas) and Matt Frazier, G (Nogales). Jastrab is the son of Mt. SAC Football coach Bob Jastrab.
Jawad Daghlawi is one of two players with community college or college experience and was a member of the 2018-19 Mt. SAC team. The other is Myron Dewar, who played at Florida State College (Jacksonville, FL) for one year.
The youngest member of the team, Kalique Mitchell, better known as "Snoop" is ready to get started.
"We're a young team and ready to fight together as a team," said Mitchell, who recently just turned 18. "I got to meet new faces and it's exciting to play with new guys."
Snoop, who has played a lot of street ball in the city of New York, knows they are going up against a former state champion (CCSF), but said, "We want to show people how Mt. SAC is going to be this year."
Another new addition to the team is assistant coach Chris Oliver. Oliver, who joins assistants William English and Marcus Bryant.
Oliver, from Petaluma, California, played at Hope International and Sonoma State Universities. At Sonoma he earned CCAA first-team all-conference honors and then went on to play professionally in Europe. He was the first American to play in Baku, Azerbaijan, where he averaged 38.9 points per game.
"I'm excited, as I've coached before at the high school level, but not at the community college level," Oliver said. "I see a lot of potential in these guys and with some coaching and mentoring, they can be (NCAA) Division I prospects.
"I'm excited to see where we are going to stand this weekend and excited to watch the kids grow."
Highlighting the season is the annual Mountie Classic on November 6th through 8th.
After playing a second early-season tournament at Pasadena City College, the Mounties will play their first home game on Nov. 20th against Santiago Canyon.
2019 Mt. SAC Men's Basketball Roster
Follow Mt. SAC Men's Basketball on twitter @MtSAC_MBKB
For additional information, please contact the Mt. SAC Sports Information Office at 909.274.4630.