Coming off a tournament win, Moorpark College men’s basketball continued winning streak in Bakersfield matchup


Moorpark point guard and freshman Jeremiah Windham gets in the Raider zone against the Bakersfield Renegades on Nov. 17, 2022. Photo credit: Briana Cruz

By Briana Cruz

The Moorpark Raiders men’s basketball team returned home after their massive win at the Alvin Hunter Classic in San Bernardino to take on Bakersfield College on Nov. 16.

On Nov. 13, the Raiders men’s basketball team was crowned the Consolation Champions at the Alvin Hunter Classic, a tournament held at San Bernardino Valley College. Because of this win, the Raiders are now ranked within the Junior College Basketball System.

After their victory in San Bernardino, the Raiders traveled back home on Nov. 16 to take on the Bakersfield Renegades.

The Raiders stayed ahead of the Renegades throughout the first half of the game as they funneled the team energy boost from their championship game into this regular season matchup.

In this matchup, the starters for the Raiders were all first-year students, showcasing the faith that head coach Keith Higgins has in his younger players.

Freshman starter and point guard/shooting guard Jerimiah Windham put up sixteen points in the first half of the game, playing sixteen minutes. Windham spoke about his expectations for himself this season.

“My expectations for myself are to be able to lead through my actions and through communicating.” Windham said. “To also be able to help out my teammates and make sure we’re always in a position to win, with a positive mindset.”

As the Raiders outscored the Renegades by halftime, all they had to do was maintain their lead throughout the game’s second half. However, the Renegades showed that there team was not to be underestimated and they put up a tough opposition to the Raiders’ lead.

Nevertheless, Windham continued the team’s momentum, putting up seven more points in the game’s second half. Also in this second half, freshmen starter and forward Caleb Chin scored 14 points and freshman starter and point guard Jack Benyshek scored 10 points with six rebounds.

The game remained close to call until the final seconds. However, the Raiders did hold on to their lead and took the game 77-73.

Benyshek, who advanced team efforts in this game, scored 24 points during the championship game on Nov. 13. Benyshek commented on the team’s goals for the remainder of the season.

“We know that there is still a lot of work to be done and we can’t let these wins take over our bigger goals ahead of us,” Benyshek said.

Higgins echoed Benyshek’s sentiments and expressed that there is more to be done by the team in order maintain early leads and not let games end as close as they did on Nov. 16.

“We have to stay within our system, and we got out of our system near the end of the game,” Higgins said. “We have to work on our consistency and we are responsible for finishing the games.”

Due to a consolation championship win, the Moorpark Raiders men’s basketball team is now ranked fifteenth in the STLB Southern California rankings.

Continuing the winning streak, the Raiders won 55-53 on their home front against Cerro Coso Community College on Nov. 18. In yet another home game, the Raiders challenged Porterville College on Nov. 22, but weren’t able to keep their streak, losing the game 67-64.

Currently, the Raiders have a 5-3 record, with a 3-1 record at home.

The team will look to regain their momentum as they face Antelope Valley College on Dec. 2. To view the Raiders men’s basketball schedule, click here.