Category Archives: Sports
The Richland College men’s soccer team, the 2018 national champions, traveled to Herkimer, NY, this past weekend to participate in the 2019 NJCAA Division III Men’s Soccer Championship. Despite cold and sometimes snowy weather conditions throughout the weekend, the Thunderducks prevailed and competed in the championship game Nov. 17 against home team Herkimer College, emerging victorious with a 2-1 victory and an eighth national championship.
This title is the first for Richland College head coach Raul Herrera, a former assistant coach who stepped into the role midseason when former head coach Sean Worley retired. Herrera is also a Richland College alumnus and was the starting goalkeeper on the 2006 national championship team.
The championship game started with an opening score by Toi Yamaoka, assisted by forward Takayoshi Wyatt. The score stayed 1-0 until the 76th minute of the game, when Herkimer player Mupenzi Irakiza had a game-tying score. Despite the Herkimer Generals dominating play for the final 15 minutes of the game, the Thunderducks scored on a successful penalty kick by Alvara Tudanca with just two seconds left, clinching the title and ending the season undefeated, with an overall record of 18-0-1.
The championship tournament began Thursday, Nov. 14, with Richland winning 4-0 against Sussex County Community College in the quarterfinals. During the semifinal round Nov. 15, Richland cruised to a 5-0 victory against Genesee Community College, which secured their spot in the title game. This was the third time that Richland and Herkimer have competed against each other for the national championship.
Richland defender Mariano Fazio was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player, and Wyatt was named Most Valuable Offensive Player. Herrera received Coach of the Tournament honors. In addition, Richland players Sergio Baena and Henry Sach were named to the All-Tournament Team.
Richland College has won the men’s soccer national championship in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2018 and now 2019. A ring ceremony to honor the 2019 team will be scheduled this coming spring.
For a recap of the 2019 championship, visit https://www.njcaa.org/sports/msoc/2019-20/div3/national_championship/championship_recap. Additional information about the Richland College men’s soccer team is available at https://www.richlandcollege.edu/sliferlc/athletics/mensoccer/pages/default.aspx.
Congratulations to Richland basketball player Caleb Williams, who was recently named First Team National Junior College Athletic Association All-American! Caleb has played guard on the men’s basketball team under Coach Jon Havens for two years. For the 2018-19 season, he averaged 19.9 points, 8.5 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.4 steals per game.
“Perseverance,” said Jon, when asked to describe one thing that sticks out to him about Caleb. “Caleb lost his memory after taking a hit in football his senior year of high school, and he had to re-learn most everything. He had to red-shirt and not play basketball his first year out of high school. He then transferred to Richland and has maintained a 3.0 GPA while here. He went from a player that averaged 8 points per game as a freshman to a player that averaged 19.9 points and 8.5 rebounds during his sophomore season, leading his team to a Region Championship and third place finish in the nation.”
After graduating with his associate degree from Richland this May, Caleb will attend East Central University in Ada, OK, on a full athletic scholarship in the fall. He will be majoring in kinesiology with the hopes of becoming a physical therapist after graduation.
Richland College qualified eight men and four women to advance to the National Collegiate Wrestling Association National Wrestling Championships!
The following Thunderducks posted these scores at the 2019 NCWA Southwest Conference Championship on Mar. 2 to earn a spot in the national championship:
125 pounds: Rudy Madrid – 4th place, Chris Gusman – 5th place
133 pounds: Kennedy Cross – 4th place
157 pounds: Carlos Zumwalk – 2nd place, Matt Thompson – 4th place
165 pounds – Izaiah Salazar – 4th place
174 pounds – Ryan Thompson – 4th place
197 pounds – Jonathan Carranza – 2nd place
136 pounds: Angela Buenrostro – 1st place
143 pounds: Christina Ellis – 1st place
155 pounds – Jessica Carbajal – 1st place
235 pounds – Keauna Pass – 2nd place
The championships will be Mar. 14-16 at the Allen Event Center, 200 E. Stacy Rd. in Allen, TX. For a schedule of events, click here.
Congratulations, Thunderducks, and good luck!
The Richland College men’s and women’s soccer teams won their respective National Junior College Athletic Association Division III National Championships last weekend, marking only the third time in NJCAA Division III history that a school has won the men’s and women’s national titles in the same year–records also held by Richland College in 2004 and 2006.
The men’s team traveled to Herkimer, NY, where they defeated Sussex 4-0 on Nov. 8, Genesee 7-3 on Nov. 9 and Nassau 6-1 on Nov. 11. This final win gave the men’s team their seventh national title. Their final 6-1 score against Nassau was also the largest margin of victory in a Division III championship match in NJCAA history.
The women’s team traveled to Rockford, Ill., where they defeated Holyoke 9-0 on Nov. 8, Brookdale 5-1 on Nov. 9 and Delta 1-0 on Nov. 11. This is the women’s team’s fourth national title.
Mohamed Sesay, men’s forward, was named the Tournament MVP after scoring five goals and recording an assist during the span of three games. Sesay and Mariano Fazio, defender, and Lucio Martinez, midfielder, earned spots on the All-Tournament Team. In addition, Coach Sean Worley was named Coach of the Tournament.
Miranda Ibarra, women’s defender, was named Tournament MVP, Eva Mulligan was named Offensive MVP and Dynastee Cain was named Defensive MVP. Additionally, forward Asia Revelry was named to the All-Tournament Team and Coach Scott Toups was named Coach of the Tournament.
Both Richland College men’s and women’s soccer teams have winning reputations and have traveled across the country to play in exhibition and postseason games in places like California, Kansas, New York, Chicago, New Jersey and Missouri. The men’s team has seven national championships from 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2016 and 2018. For more information, visit www.richlandcollege.edu/sliferlc/athletics/mensoccer/pages/default.aspx. The women’s team has four national championships from 2004, 2006, 2009 and 2018. For more information, visit www.richlandcollege.edu/sliferlc/athletics/womensoccer/pages/default.aspx.
Shooting hoops and chasing dreams are what Tony Bishop, Jr. does best. This former Richland College Thunderduck is making a name for himself in the basketball world, as he has recently played with the Panama National Team and Denmark’s Bakken Bears in several countries internationally.
Bishop competed as part of the Panama National Team in the FIBA AmeriCup in Montevideo, Uruguay on Aug. 28-30. The FIBA AmeriCup is a men’s basketball tournament that brings together the best 12 national teams across North and South America. The Panama team competed in Group C with the Dominican Republic, United States and Uruguay teams. Other teams present in the tournament were Brazil, Colombia, Mexico and Puerto Rico in Group A and Argentina, Canada, U.S. Virgin Islands and Venezuela in Group B.
Although Panama finished last in the tournament, Bishop came in sixth out of 125 players for most points per game. The 28-year-old, 6’ 7” power forward finished the tournament with 16.3 points per game, 49 total points, had 20 rebounds, made 3 steals and blocked 2 shots. He was also featured on the Top 10 Plays on ESPN on August 29.
After the FIBA AmeriCup, Bishop played with Denmark’s team, the Bakken Bears, in qualifying rounds for the FIBA 2018 Basketball Champions League. The Bears won 80-78 in the first round against Donar Groningen in Groningen, Netherlands, but lost 83-91 in the second round in Risskov, Denmark.
Before he began competing in international competitions, Bishop played basketball as a Richland College Thunderduck from 2007 to 2009.
“Slim, as he is known to those close to him, was a very motivated player while at Richland College,” said Jon Felmet, former Richland College head basketball coach. “When I recruited him in 2007, he told me where he wanted to end up, and I told him what he would need to do to get there. Since his time at Richland, he has continued to be a hard worker and a role model for his son and the kids in the Garland community. He puts in countless hours of weight workouts and skill development to continue to perfect his craft. He is one of the most successful student athletes to come out of Richland College.”
In 2009, Bishop helped lead the Thunderducks to win the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division III men’s basketball title.
“I enjoyed my time at Richland College because of the brotherhood that was started with the guys,” said Bishop. “When we said ‘One Family, One Goal’ we really meant that! Still to this day, the coaching staff and players will always be brothers that came together to accomplish the ultimate goal – a national championship!”
While at Richland College, he was voted Metro Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year in 2007-08, NJCAA Honorable Mention All-American in 2007-08, Metro Athletic Conference Player of the Year in 2008-09, NCJAA Division III Player of the Year 2008-09 and NJCAA Division III National Champion. He also received a full athletic scholarship to Texas State University, where he ended up being a Southland Conference All-Conference Player.
“Slim was one of many players of the 2009 National Championship team that have gone on to do great things with their lives,” added Felmet. “He recently held a free youth camp in the city of Garland for more than 50 young basketball players, and he continues to give back. He is humble and hasn’t forgotten his roots. Also, he recently launched a clothing line ‘Eat or Get Ate,’ a phrase that he coined and lived by while at Richland College.”
Ready to catch Bishop in action? The Bakken Bears will be playing in the regular season of the FIBA Europe Cup, running now through May 2, 2018. For more information, visit fiba.basketball/europecup/17-18.
Richland College Thunderduck men’s basketball team is currently coached by Jon Havens. The team has won the NJCAA Division III National Championship title three times—in 2015, 2009 and 1999. For more information, visit richlandcollege.edu/basketball.
The Richland College wrestling team recently defeated the University of North Texas 41 to 12 at a dual match hosted at the Richland College gym Jan. 20. After UNT forfeited three matches to Richland, Richland won five of the eight contests remaining. Richland will be competing in a national tournament in St. George, Utah, on Jan. 28. Afterward, the team will return for the state duals and qualifier for the National Collegiate Wrestling Association tournament to be held in Allen, Tex., in March.
The Richland College men’s basketball team clinched the 2015 National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division III men’s basketball title this spring, and yesterday these non-scholarship student athletes were awarded championship rings commemorating this athletic achievement.
The event, hosted on the Richland College campus, included brief congratulatory speeches from Richland College’s vice president for student development Tony Summers, Ed.D, Dallas County Community College District (DCCCD) chancellor Joe May, Ed.D., DCCCD Foundation board secretary Ruben E. Esquivel, Richland’s head basketball coach Jon Havens, Richland’s athletic director Guy Summers and Richland College president Kathryn K. Eggleston, Ph.D.
“A lot of people in our district and our teams have the heart of a champion, but very few of them get to wear the ring of a champion,” said May. “And what we’re going to award today to you and recognize you for is something that I hope you will carry with you the rest of your lives as a reminder of not only what you’ve accomplished, but what you can do in the future, and I wish every one of you the best, regardless of what happens next in your lives.”
Each member of the basketball team was called up to receive his ring as family, friends and other attendees applauded.
This was Havens’ first year as head coach at Richland College, having previously been an assistant coach at Northeastern State University in Oklahoma.
“We are incredibly proud of every one of you players who now wear this ring so proudly,” Eggleston said to the players after they received their rings. “It is absolutely awesome, and you will be quite the talk of the town as you leave here today and go out among your family, your friends and your classmates. It is well earned. You have earned it, wear it with pride, cherish the memories and remember at Richland we always say we play to a standard, not to a score. And you have lived up to that standard that we have set.”
Richland College’s previous national basketball titles were in 1999 and 2009. The Thunderducks finished the 2014-15 season with a final record of 27-3.
The Richland College 2014-15 basketball team roster is as follows: Brandon Woods (sophomore), Ryan Daniels (sophomore), Trey Hall (sophomore), Ishmael Donzo (sophomore), Trevon Jeffery (sophomore), Josh Francis (freshman), Terrance Cooper (freshman), Torrance Cooper (freshman), Kierre Moore (sophomore), Brad Umoru (freshman), Marques Smith (freshman), Robel Yoseph (freshman), Adarian Harris (freshman) and Jacques Stephenson (freshman). Head coach Jon Havens leads the team, along with assistant coaches Michael Gross, Brian Graham and Phil Key.
The Richland College men’s basketball team clinched the 2015 National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division III men’s basketball title after defeating the defending national champion team Rock Valley College (Illinois) in Loch Sheldrake, N.Y.
Despite facing a double-digit deficit in the second half, Richland College pulled ahead for a 67-64 win against Rock Valley, earning the Thunderducks their third national title in the program’s history.
“Winning the national championship in your sport is always the desire of everyone that plays or coaches,” said Jon Havens, Richland College head basketball coach. “It gives you a great sense of validation when you are trying to prove yourself. This group of guys can say for the rest of their lives that they were national champions! It’s just a special feeling to have watched this team come together and win what we all worked so hard to win.”
Sophomore Kierre Moore scored a game-high 20 points for Richland, and three other Thunderduck starters posted double-figures in scoring: Brandon Woods with 15 points, Trey Hall with 11 points and Ishmael Donzo with 12 points.
Moore was named tournament MVP by averaging 12.3 points and 7.6 rebounds in three championship games. Hall was also recognized with all-tournament honors, averaging 14.3 points and five rebounds during the tournament.
This was Haven’s first year as head coach at Richland College, having previously been an assistant coach at Northeastern State University in Oklahoma.
“This year was an incredible journey for everyone involved,” said Havens. “I was a new coach to the players, and they were new to me. They embraced me, along with my philosophy of basketball, from day one. After losing our first two games, I told the guys that we had 23 more games left to try and achieve what we wanted to achieve. To then go on two long winning streaks and still have the guys come into practice wanting to learn and get better might be the most special thing for me. They embraced the process of what it takes to be champions.”
Richland College’s previous national basketball titles were in 1999 and 2009. The Thunderducks finished the 2014-15 season with a final record of 27-3.
The Richland College basketball team roster is as follows: Brandon Woods (sophomore), Ryan Daniels (sophomore), Trey Hall (sophomore), Ishmael Donzo (sophomore), Trevon Jeffery (sophomore), Josh Francis (freshman), Terrance Cooper (freshman), Kierre Moore (sophomore), Brad Umoru (freshman), Marques Smith (freshman), Robel Yoseph (freshman), Adarian Harris (freshman) and Jacques Stephenson (freshman). Head coach Jon Havens leads the team, along with assistant coaches Michael Gross, Brian Graham and Phil Key.
Two players from Richland College’s women’s soccer team and one from the men’s soccer team were recently selected as Division III First Team All American by the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA).
Cassandra Andrade and Lauren Vasquez, both playing the forward position, were selected from the women’s team and Fernando Arellano, a central defense player, was selected from the men’s team.
To be selected as a First Team All American means that player is one of the top 11 NJCAA Division III soccer players in the country.
In addition to being named All Americans, both Andrade and Vasquez were named First Team All-Conference. Andrade was also named Metro Athletic Conference (MAC) Offensive MVP and Vasquez was named overall MAC Conference MVP.
“Both young women were very good for us this year,” said Richland College women’s soccer coach Scott Toups. “Lauren served as the team captain and also led the team in scoring. Her leadership is invaluable on and off the field. Lauren plays very hard and works harder than just about any other player I have ever coached.
“Cassandra was already a very accomplished forward when she returned to the team for her sophomore year. She scored 12 goals and had seven assists for 31 points this season. She drew a lot of attention from opposing team defenses, which created scoring opportunities for other team members. Both of these girls were successful because they had each other, along with a very good Richland team around them.”
On the men’s team, Arellano was not only the team’s best defender, but he also was a sophomore leader who organized, communicated and supported the defense and the team.
“Fernando was a key ingredient in our success,” said Richland College’s men’s soccer coach Sean Worley. “He is an excellent player and leader. He is well-liked and respected by his teammates and he was a pleasure to coach this year.”
Richland College’s women’s team ended with a 16-6-2 record, and the men’s team ended with a 24-2-1 record. Both teams played in their respective national championship games this season.
Employee Success — Congratulations to Richland Baseball Coach Joe Wharton on collecting his 500th career victory on April 20. In more than 12 seasons at Richland, Wharton has a combined 501-261 record and has led the Thunderducks to four NJCAA World Series championships (2002, 2003, 2004, 2009), along with two World Series national runner-up finishes (1999, 2000). Richland also has qualified for the play-offs every year Wharton has been at the helm at Richland, and the Thunderduck baseball team will make its 13th straight appearance during this season’s playoffs. Wharton, who has also helped place more than 100 players at four-year universities, is a Dallas County product, graduating from R.L. Turner high school in 1989 where he earned All-District shortstop honors. He played at Baylor University and was selected first team all Southwest Conference and team MVP in 1993 before being selected by the New York Yankees in the 18th round of the 1993 Major League Baseball draft.