Monthly Archives: January 2011
For the first time in more than a decade, the Richland College baseball team will begin a season with a new baseball coach at the helm after long-time coach Joe Wharton retired with four national championships and more than 500 wins. Coach Simmons said he is excited about having the opportunity to join an athletic program that expects excellence.
“I want to come in and continue the tradition and build upon it,” said Simmons. My goal is to bring in outstanding student athletes who want to be a part of the best (NJCAA) DIII baseball program in the country.”
Before joining Richland College, Simmons coached at Frank Phillips College in Borger, Texas, where in 2003 he led a baseball program that didn’t have a winning record in years, to the best record in the schools history at 31-20. During his tenure at Frank Phillips, Simmons had two 30-plus win seasons but despite his previous success, Simmons understands that there is a different mindset at Richland College.
“Here, everyone wants you to succeed and because of the tradition, the student athlete will expect to succeed also,” Simmons explains. “There is a pride that comes with being a ThunderDuck. You see it and feel it every day. I am extremely proud to now be able to say I am a part of that.”
As for what his players and Richland College can expect to get from Simmons as the new coach, he says they can expect him to work hard, put the best possible team on the field and develop his players to be the best students possible.
“My goal for each of them is to earn an associate’s degree as well as continue their baseball careers,” Simmons concluded. “When a player leaves Richland College, I want him to be prepared for the university, be a well-rounded athlete ready to compete at the highest level and be a person who understands that giving back is important.”
The T-Ducks open the regular season with a double header at home, Sat. Feb. 5 at 2 p.m against Eastern Oklahoma.
Nothing has come easy for the Richland College basketball team this season.
After having played a tough non-conference schedule, the T-Ducks welcomed Metro Athletic Conference play when Richland opened league action on Jan. 15 on the road against Eastfield.
Against Eastfield on Saturday, Jan. 15, the T-Ducks jumped out to a quick 15-5 lead, however, the No. 12-ranked Harvesters were too much for Richland as they eventually grabbed a 43-36 halftime lead, never relinquished it.
The T-Ducks showed much fight as they cut the lead to within four with less than three minutes left in the game but would not get any closer.
Thomas Davis led the T-Ducks in scoring with 23 points, followed by Ricky Roberts’ 16 and Sentro Burns’ 16.
Davis also led the charge against Brookhaven on Wednesday, Jan. 18 with 23 points in a close, hard-fought 72-70 loss that came down to the wire.
In an evenly-played contest, Richland led Brookhaven 33-32 at halftime, only to increase its lead to 58-46 with less than 10 minutes remaining in the game. However, Brookhaven responded with a 24-10 run to take a two-point lead with under 15 seconds left in the game.
Richland’s Burns eventually hit a tough shot to tie the game with just over one second to go. But, after a few timeouts and less than a second left in regulation, Brookhaven won the game after a full-court pass was caught under the rim and tipped in for the winning score.
For the T-Ducks, who dropped to 0-3 in conference play after a 106-86 loss to Mountain View on Jan. 22, Javier Soria chipped in 18 points and Roberts scored 13.
The T-Ducks will look to grab its first conference win of the season at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 26 at home against North Lake College.
With just two games left, including Saturday’s matchup against Temple College, before Metro Athletic Conference play begins on Jan. 15 for Richland College, the T-Ducks are looking to build some momentum.
Richland (2-15) enters tonight’s contest 0-2 in 2011, having lost to Collin County Community College and Angelina College – two NJCAA Division I teams.
At one point during the game against Angelina College, Richland trailed by two points (52-50) with less than 10 minutes left in the contest.
Thomas Davis, who leads the T-Ducks in scoring with 12.5 points per game, finished the contest against Angelina College with 18 points, seven rebounds and three blocks.
Meanwhile, teammates James Montue and Nathan Smith scored 15 and 11 points, respectively.
Tonight, the T-Ducks will be seeking revenge from a tough 87-74 loss to Temple on Dec. 1.
Richland College will finish its non-conference schedule at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 12 at home against Weatherford College.