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Bobcats move up in OEC standings

Bobcats move up in OEC standings

The Saddleback men's basketball team won its 15th game of the season with a 66-60 victory over Orange Coast College on Tuesday night inside the gymnasium.  The Bobcats are now alone in third place in the Orange Empire Conference.

Saddleback is trying to make a late push to secure a playoff spot in the upcoming 3C2A Southern California Regional Playoffs and took a step closer with the win on Tuesday.  The Bobcats took the lead at 18:16 of the opening half and never trailed from that point forward, moving past rival Irvine Valley College in the conference standings.

Saddleback had a big first half from beyond the arc, making 8-of-17 shots from three-point range in taking a 39-30 lead into the locker room at the half.  O'Neil Drury made 3-of-4 from long range in scoring nine points in the opening frame as the Bobcats built a 16-point at the 2:11 mark with Drury's final dart of the half.

Orange Coast kept things close throughout the second half but could never get even as the lead remained between three and eight points for most of the second half.  OCC got within one point midway through the half before Saddleback started to clamp down on defense.  The Bobcats then held the Pirates scoreless for 5:35 while building the lead back to 10 with under five minutes remaining.  Saddleback then made most of its free throws down the stretch to secure the win.  The Bobcats were 8-of-9 from the charity stripe over the final five minutes of play.

James Burries had a big second half to lead Saddleback with 18 points on the night.  Burries scored 11 points in the second frame, making 7-of-8 free throws.  Drury finished with 12 points for the game.

Saddleback is now 15-11 overall and 8-6 in Orange Empire Conference play.  The Bobcats are now alone in third place in OEC play, passing Irvine Valley in the standings. 

Saddleback will host first place Fullerton College (22-4, 13-1) on Thursday inside the gymnasium at 5:00 PM.