(Walnut, CA) After a season-opening loss to Citrus College last week, the Mt. SAC Men's Basketball team has rebounded nicely and won the 12th Annual Gene Victor Memorial Classic, with a resounding, 94-78, win over Golden West College Saturday (November 13).
The Classic was renamed this season after former coach Gene Victor, who guided the program for 28 years. Coach Victor passed away at the age of 95 this past Spring.
"The Mounties are proud to honor the incredible legacy of Coach Gene Victor, by naming the Mt. SAC Men's Basketball Tournament, the Gene Victor Memorial Classic," said Mt. SAC first-year coach Michael Fenison, who played for Victor at Mt. SAC. "I'm glad we were able to recognize Coach Victor for this tournament, because of my relationship with him. Guys like Coach Victor are not always going to be around."
Victor won an amazing 503 games during his career and led the Mounties to six state finals from 1962 to 1974. They also won three conference championships and he was named conference coach of the year six times.
"For my father to be remembered this way is an honor," said Bruce Victor, the son of coach Victor, who presented the awards to the teams. "He was a very humble man and loved Mt. SAC so much. I'm very thankful to Mt. SAC."
Coach Victor was named to the California Community College Basketball Hall of Fame (1979) and the Mt. SAC Hall of Fame (1993).
In the championship game, the Mounties (2-1) were led by freshman guard Shaquil Bender (7-11 FGM-A, 2-5 3Pt-A, 6-8 FTM-A, 4 Stls.) with a game-high 22 points.
Also in double figures was freshman guard Justyn Hunter (5-7 FGM-A, 2-4 3Pt-A, 2-2 FTM-A, 2 Stls.) with 14 points, freshman forward Christian Jones (6-8 FGM-A, 5 RB), 13 points and sophomore forward Jamal Edmonson (4-7 FGM-A, 2-2 3Pt-A), 10 points.
Mt. SAC jumped out to a 16-4 lead in the first six minutes, highlighted by a 3-point basket by Edmonson and a slam dunk by Brown.
The Mounties built up an 11-point halftime lead, 46-35, and finished with a 48-point second half to win by 16 points.
In the third-place game, Glendale defeated Grossmont, 81-65.
Former Mt. SAC players – Pete Williams, Kyle Daniels, and Damien Roderick – came back to show support at the championship game.
Mt. SAC will next play in the Pasadena City College Skip Robinson Classic beginning Thursday with a game against Antelope Valley. Game time is 1:00 pm.
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.