DVC Men’s Basketball Team Finishes With Split Record After Challenging Road Season

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JT Espiritu, Staff

The Diablo Valley College men’s basketball team saw its season end earlier this month with a tough 91-83 loss to College of the Redwoods. However, the club considered its 14-15 record something of a success due to the challenging circumstances it faced.

According to head coach Ervin Anderson, the team couldn’t play on the Pleasant Hill campus because of unfinished gym construction, which forced all DVC home games to be played on the road – adding travel and duress to a second season shaped by the pandemic.

“It pretty much took up our whole day, we were traveling for two hours in van rides,” said Casey Cappo, a DVC starting forward who was selected for the First Team Big 8 Conference. “It was pretty crazy, but we were able to adapt to it.”

The Vikings played a lot of close games, finishing 4-6 in matches decided under six points. Coach Anderson told The Inquirer that the team played better offense than defense – something that didn’t necessarily help them win away games.

“Going on the road, playing in a gym and shooting on a court that is foreign to you – it made it tougher for us and it was easy for them because they practiced there,” he said. “Guys kind of had a career shooting night against us because they got to play at home and shoot on their home court.”

Some players throughout the season faced COVID-related setbacks as well as other injuries. Nonetheless, the team was able to put together 14 wins, ending with a 9-7 conference record that enabled the Vikings to take the fifth seed in the Big 8 Conference, which includes Sacramento, Modesto, Santa Rosa, San Joaquin and Folsom.

Coach Anderson said that despite the trying conditions, he was proud of his club’s togetherness and how well the athletes excelled at their academics while keeping competition at the forefront.

“After all the stuff that we had to deal with this year; we stuck together and played as a team, which was instrumental,” said Anderson, who noted that the squad would be up for the Scholar Team Award.

“If you look at the fact that they did a great job in the classroom, while having to deal with COVID, while being on the road all the time, that is an amazing thing for them.”

The forward Cappo concurred. “Our team stayed together. We were really a close-knit group, we were all best friends,” he told The Inquirer in a recent interview.

“That is what I would be most proud of: The fact that we were able to fight through all that adversity and still make the playoffs, and almost came away with a win.”