News

March 5, 2017

Pioneers Fall in Heart-Wrenching Fashion

SUGAR GROVE, Ill. --- Prairie State College freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) experienced what was most likely both the greatest and most devastating moments of his basketball life in the span of about two seconds Sunday afternoon.

Trapp, had just weaved through a pair of defenders to rise up, release and snap nothing but twine on what was thought to be an overtime-forcing, buzzer-beating three-pointer, as time expired, in the Pioneers’ NJCAA Region IV semifinal clash against Triton.

Trapp’s dramatics set off a short-lived, but wild on-court celebration at Waubonsee Community College as well.

However, the Pioneers’ jubilation became crushed moments later when game officials concluded that Trapp had sunk his contest-altering bucket from inside the three-point arc, thus making it a two-point shot.

The decision handed PSC a heart-breaking 85-84 season-ending setback.

A victory would have catapulted Prairie State into the region title tilt for the first time in school history.

Instead, PSC closes out the 2016-17 campaign with a 19-13 overall record.

Trapp, a first-team all-region selection, paced the Pioneers with a 26-point, 10-rebound outing, good for his 13th double-double of the slate.

Trapp wasn’t the only Pioneer to tally in double digits either as freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.) also reached double digits, pouring in 17 points to go along with his six rebounds.

Sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) ended his PSC career with another strong showing as well, depositing 15 points while pulling in five rebounds and handing out a trio of assists.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.), (11 points, 7 assists), freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.), (10 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, steal) and freshman point guard Tariq Muhammad (Simeon Academy), (6 assists, 3 rebounds) also made solid contributions.

PSC trailed 41-39 at the intermission before eventually trailing 68-57 with 10:35 to play Following a Humphrey putback with 56 seconds left, McNutt was fouled on a three-point attempt.

The 6-foot-2 McNutt drained two of his three free throws, making it an 83-82 game.

A pair of free throws from Triton’s Deontra Terrell made it an 85-82 game before Trapp’s jumper cut the final deficit to one.

 

March 2, 2017

Pioneers Earn First Region IV Semifinal Berth Since 2012

MALTA, Ill. --- If there ever was a game that could be referred to as a “Tale of Two Halves”, this was it.

The Prairie State College men’s basketball team, which at one juncture in Thursday night’s NJCAA Region IV Quarterfinal tilt against Kishwaukee, enjoyed a 25-point first-half lead, needed every ounce of grit, stamina and determination it could muster to hold on in a nerve-wracking 89-84 triumph over the Kougars.

With the victory, PSC marches into the postseason semifinals for the first time since the 2011-2012 campaign.

The Pioneers’ last playoff victory came on March 1, 2012, following a 75-71 win over Lake County.

Thursday’s triumph pushed Prairie State’s overall mark to 19-12.

PSC will now take on Triton in semifinal action Sunday at Waubonsee (4 p.m.).

Prairie State held a decisive 50-29 edge at halftime before the Kougars turned the tables on the Pioneers by outscoring PSC 55-39 over the game’s final 20 excruciating minutes.

 When the dust had settled, it was freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.) and sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) who played key roles in keeping the ship afloat.

McNutt delivered another clutch, workmanlike effort, dropping in 28 points, courtesy of a spectacular 10-of-12 shooting night from the field.  He turned in a perfect, 6-of-6 first-half showing from the floor as well.

The 6-foot-2 McNutt also pulled down eight rebounds and came away with five steals.

Smith tallied 23 points while efficiently running the Pioneers’ offense on the way to a seven-assist evening.

Freshman standout forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) narrowly missed his 12th double-double of the slate, courtesy of an 18-point, nine-rebound outing.

Sharp-shooting sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) knocked down a trio of three-pointers en route to an 11-point, five-rebound evening.

Freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.) added nine points while hauling down eight rebounds.  The 6-foot-4 Humphrey also dished out four assists and made off with three steals.

PSC raced out to a 9-0 lead and controlled the opening half from buzzer to buzzer.

That all changed after the intermission however.

The Kougars came out of the break on fire, almost completely devouring PSC’s big lead in the second stanza’s first 15 minutes. 

A layup by Kishwaukee’s JoVonte Peals cut the Pioneers’ advantage to 77-74 with 4:41 to go.

A pair of free throws by both McNutt and Humphrey provided some breathing room  before the Kougars went on another surge, this time pulling to within a point at 81-80.

Following a Trapp jump shot and two more free throws from McNutt, pushed PSC’s lead to 85-80, Kishwaukee came at the Pioneers once more, again pulling to within a tally at 85-84.

Another pair of free throws from McNutt and Trapp inside of 15 seconds finally sealed the deal for PSC.

 

February 21, 2017

Team Effort Helps Pioneers Earn Season Sweep Over MVCC

CHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- With his squad trailing by four at halftime on “Sophomore Night”, Prairie State College freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) wasn’t about to let his second-year teammates down on their evening of recognition.

Especially against the Pioneers’ biggest rival.

So, simply put, he didn’t.

Thanks in part to Trapp’s big 22-point second half, and a plethora of strong showings up and down the roster, Prairie State walked off its home floor the owners of an impressive 109-99 victory over Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference foe Moraine Valley Tuesday night at the PSC Fieldhouse.

With the win, PSC bumped its overall season record to 17-12 with an 8-4 mark in league play.

In all, Trapp posted a 35-point outing with 14 rebounds for his 10th double-double of the slate.

The 6-foot-3 Trapp’s 638 total points on the season are currently good for third on the national leader board while his 23.6 points per game scoring clip ranks seventh.

While Trapp’s efforts were impressive, he certainly didn’t do it all by himself.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) delivered a double-double of his own, dropping in 23 points while handing out 11 assists. 

Smith is within striking distance of taking down the PSC career assists record held by his brother Rodney (PSC 2013-2015).  The elder Smith totaled 361 assists in his two seasons in Chicago Heights.  The younger Smith currently sits at 306.

Todd Smith’s fifth helper of the evening elevated him to the 300-assist plateau for his career, making him just the third Pioneer in history to reach that milestone, joining his brother and former PSC standout Brandon Merke (320) in the exclusive club.

Smith’s 194 assists on the season currently place him third on the NJCAA ledger.

Sophomore shooting guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) narrowly missed the first triple-double of his career, registering 21 points, nine assists and eight rebounds.  Watkins, PSC’s all-time career leader in made three-pointers (194) knocked down another trio of triples Tuesday.

Freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sale H.S.) turned in another strong, balanced effort, courtesy of a 19-point, four-rebound, four-assist, three-steal showing.

Sophomore guard Nate Skrobot (Homeschooled), (6 points) and freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.), (10 rebounds) also made strong contributions.

In a game which endured 17 lead changes, things didn’t look good for the Pioneers in the early going as PSC trailed 39-31 late in the opening half and went into the intermission down 48-44.

A 9-4 PSC run with 17:19 to go cut Moraine Valley’s lead to 54-53.  The scoring spurt was accomplished thanks in part to single baskets from Trapp, Smith and Watkins.

The Pioneers hung within a point for the next seven minutes, exchanging baskets with the Cyclones throughout.

A McNutt field goal, thanks to an assist by Smith, finally gave PSC a 68-67 advantage.

After both teams traded small leads, Smith gave the Pioneers the lead for good, following a pair of sunk free throws with 6:55 to go.

A powerful Trapp dunk and Skrobot baseline three-ball put the tilt out of reach as PSC established a 96-8 edge with 3:31 to go.

The Pioneers will close out the regular season Thursday, when they travel to Cicero for a road date with ISCC opponent Morton (7:15 p.m.).

 

February 14, 2017

McNutt’s 21, Watkins’ Clutch Putback, Push PSC to Road Triumph Over McHenry

CRYSTAL LAKE, Ill. --- Quietly and steadily throughout the course of the 2016-17 season, Prairie State College freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.) has been constructing a solid first season of collegiate basketball.

That trend continued Tuesday night as the 6-foot-2 McNutt delivered a 21-point outing, helping to lift the Pioneers to a hard-fought and physical 77-74 triumph over Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference counterpart McHenry.

With the win, Prairie State improves to 16-10 overall and 7-4 in ISCC action.

In addition to his 21 tallies, McNutt also pulled down six rebounds and made off with three steals.

McNutt wasn’t the only Pioneer to post strong numbers either as five of head coach Mike Manderino’s charges reached the double-digit scoring plateau.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) added a 17-point, eight-rebound effort while freshman forward Desmond Trapp, contributed a double-double, courtesy of a 14-point, 14-rebound effort.

Sophomore shooting guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) also chipped in 14 points while hauling down nine rebounds (6 offensive) despite battling a game time illness.

Freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.) was also feeling under the weather, but delivered a strong showing nonetheless, recording a double-double, courtesy of an 11-point, 12-rebound evening.

Ten of Humphrey’s rebounds came on the offensive side.  The 6-foot-4 post player now sits fourth on the national chart in offensive boards with 107.

Tuesday’s tilt appeared to be one that the Pioneers would win going away in the early going as PSC raced out to a 22-7 advantage and eventually held a 40-29 edge at the break.

It took everything in the Pioneers’ collective gas tank to hold on for the victory however, as the Scots roared back into the contest and would eventually go onto to outscore PSC 45-37 in the second stanza.

McHenry took a 72-69 lead with 3:53 remaining.

A Humphrey layup with 1:17 left gave PSC a 75-74 edge before Watkins cleaned up a Trapp putback attempt with a successful one of his own with 15 seconds remaining, effectively sealing the win.

The Pioneers will hit the floor next on Thursday when they square off at the PSC Fieldhouse against league foe Elgin (7:15 p.m.).

 

February 9, 2017

Trapp, McNutt Team Up to Down Oakton

Trapp JumperCHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- All season long, whenever the Prairie State College men’s basketball team has needed freshman guard Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) to step up and deliver a big effort, he’s seemingly risen to the occasion each and every time.

Thursday night was no exception.

With the sting of a Tuesday-night, hard-fought 113-108 setback to Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference foe Waubonsee still searing strong, Trapp and the Pioneers were ready to get back to the business of winning.

And win they did.

Thanks in part to Trapp’s 32-point, 12-rebound showing, the Pioneers got back on the right track, courtesy of a 90-79 triumph over ISCC counterpart Oakton at the PSC Fieldhouse.

With the win, PSC improved to 15-12 overall and 6-4 in league play.

Trapp’s big night was his fourth of 30 or more points this season.  The 6-foot-3 Trapp is currently scoring at a 23.2 points per game clip, which leads the squad.

Trapp’s 557 total points on the slate are currently good for fourth on the national charts while his scoring average ranks seventh.

McNutt DriveNot far off of Trapp’s pace was fellow freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.).  The 6-foot-2 McNutt dropped in a career-high 23 points on 10-of-14 shooting from the field (three 3 –pointers).  McNutt also dished out seven assists and pulled down six rebounds.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) also played well, scoring 17 points while securing eight rebounds and handing out seven helpers.

Smith’s 166 total assists are good for fourth on the national leader board.

Sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) knocked down a pair of triples en route to a 13-point outing.

Freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.), (6 rebounds, 5 assists) also made a strong contribution.

After battling back and forth with the Owls throughout the tilt’s first 10 minutes, PSC established a solid 48-36 advantage at by halftime.

The Pioneers’ largest advantage came at 66-41 following a McNutt layup, courtesy of a Watkins’ assist with 16:04 to play in the contest.

The Pioneers will hit the floor next on Tuesday when they travel to Crystal Lake for a road date with ISCC opponent McHenry (7:15 p.m.).

 

February 2, 2017

Trapp, Muhammad Set the Tone In PSC’s Third Straight

GRAYSLAKE, Ill. --- The Prairie State College men’s basketball team completed the season sweep of Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference counterpart Lake County Thursday night behind a plethora of strong individual performances following a 96-88 triumph over the Lancers.

With the win, the Pioneers pushed their overall season mark to 14-11 and 5-3 in Skyway action.

Prairie State also downed the Lancers 101-54, Jan. 10 in Chicago Heights.

Setting the pace for PSC was freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.), who posted his third outing of 30 or more points on the season, courtesy of a 34-tally showing.  The 6-foot-3 Trapp knocked down a career-best seven three-pointers, shooting an impressive 7-of-9 from behind the arc.

Trapp also secured 12 rebounds for his eighth double-double of the slate.  He has scored in double-digits in all 25 of PSC’s contests in 2016-2017.

Freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.) also turned in his 10th double-double.  The 6-foot-4 Humphrey recorded 13 points and 11 rebounds (7 of which came on the offensive side of the floor).

Humphrey now has 94 offensive rebounds on the year, good for fourth on the national leader board.

Sophomore forward Virshon Flemming (Hillcrest H.S.) turned in another workmanlike effort as well, recording 12 points and 12 rebounds, complementing his two steals and block.

Freshman point guard Tariq Muhammad (Simeon Academy) also posted his first double-double of the year, tying a career-high in scoring with 11 points while dishing out a career-best 10 assists.

Freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.) also delivered an outstanding effort, tallying 11 points while picking the Lancers’ pockets to the tune of a six-steal performance.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (7 points, 8 assits) also contributed.

The Pioneers raced out to a 12-4 advantage and led 49-30 at the break.

PSC’s largest advantage came at 49-21 following a Flemming successful putback with 3:44 to go in the opening stanza.

The Pioneers will hit the road again Tuesday when they travel to Sugar Grove to battle ISCC foe Waubonsee (7:15 p.m.) before returning to the PSC Fieldhouse Thursday for a home tilt with Oakton.

BOX SCORE: http://www.njcaa.org/sports/mbkb/2016-17/div2/boxscores/20170202_fnij.xml?tmpl=bbxml-monospace-template

 

January 26, 2017

Pioneers Take Down Arch Rival

Todd Smith LayupPALOS HILLS, Ill. --- As far as tough, hard-nosed rivalries throughout the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference are concerned, the long-lived and geographical one between Prairie State and Moraine Valley has always been widely considered amongst the league’s fiercest.

The hardwood traditional feud between the two schools definitely lived up to its reputation Thursday as the Pioneers took home a well-fought 109-98 triumph over the Cyclones at their state-of-the-art Cyclones Center in Palos Hills.

With the win, PSC moves to 12-10 overall and 3-3 in Skyway action.

Leading the charge for the Pioneers was the inside-outside combo of sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) and freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.).

Smith paced the Pioneers with a 24-point, nine-assist outing, courtesy of a 7-of-13 shooting effort from the floor.  The 6-foot-1 Smith also chipped in an 8-of-11 evening from the free-throw line.  

With 144 total assists on the campaign, Smith is ranked third in that category nationally.

The 6-foot-5 Humphrey delivered a 20-point, 15-rebound, eight-assist showing for his ninth double-double of the slate.  He currently sits fourth on the national charts in total offensive rebounds (86) and 17th in total rebounds (185).

Freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) also delivered another stellar all-around outing, dropping in 19 points while hauling in 10 rebounds for his seventh double-double of the season.  The 6-foot-3 Trapp has now scored in double-figures in all 22 of PSC’s contests.

Sophomore shooting guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) also tallied 19 points on 7-of-13 shooting from the floor. He also knocked down five three-pointers.

 He dished out nine assists of his own as well, while securing six rebounds.  Watkins is currently eighth in total three-pointers on the national ledger (67).

Freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.) also turned in a strong outing, depositing 18 points on 6-of-8 shooting.

Sophomore forward Virshon Flemming (Hillcrest H.S.), (9 points) also aided the Pioneers’ cause.

PSC fell behind 5-0 in the early going but hung tough throughout the opening half, eventually trailing 52-45.

PSC began to chip away at the Cyclones’ advantage throughout the second period.

Trailing 69-65 with 13:23 to play, a Humphrey converted putback, coupled with a long trey from Trapp, lifted the Pioneers to a 70-69 edge.

A pair of McNutt free throws at the 10-minute mark pushed the Pioneers into a 78-71 advantage before a six-point spurt by Humphrey in a one-minute span, gave Prairie State a 94-86 edge.

Another McNutt free throw lifted PSC to the century mark on the scoreboard for the fourth time this season with 2:25 to go.

The Pioneers will now host Skyway foe Morton on Tuesday (7:15 p.m.)

 

January 24, 2017

Three Pioneers Tally 18-Point Efforts, But PSC Falls at Elgin

McNutt brings it up the floorELGIN, Ill. --- Typically, if a team posts three players with identical 18-point showings, it’s typically safe to assume that that team won its contest on that particular night.

Unfortunately, that just wasn’t the case Tuesday night for the Prairie State College men’s basketball team.

Despite three players scoring 18 points in the tilt, the Pioneers fell 80-74 to Elgin.

With the setback, PSC dropped to 11-10 overall and 2-3 in Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference play.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.), freshman guard Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) and freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.) proved to be the three Pioneers who reached the 18-point plateau.

McNutt and Trapp also pulled down eight rebounds apiece.

Smith recorded a double-double, following a season-high, 12-assist effort.

Smith’s 135 total assists on the slate a currently good for fourth nationally.

Freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.) also delivered a double-double, totaling 13 points while leading the charge on both the offensive and defensive glass with a 12-rebound showing.

The 6-foot-4 Humphrey is currently fourth on the national charts in offensive rebounds with 80.  He’s 22nd in total boards with 170.

Tuesday’s loss was especially frustrating, considering that the Pioneers lost control of a 10-point halftime advantage (45-35).  PSC was outscored 45-29 in the second half.

Despite losing the large lead, the Pioneers did hang tough throughout the contest.

A Smith three-pointer, courtesy of a McNutt assist, cut the Spartans’ lead to 61-60 with 8:22 remaining.

A McNutt layup, thanks to a strong pass from sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.), (7 points), lifted the Pioneers to a short-lived 72-71 edge with 3:47 to go.  Unfortunately, that was as close as PSC would come as Elgin eventually salted the contest away.

The Pioneers will see action next on Thursday when they travel to Palos Hills for a road date against Skyway arch rival Moraine Valley (7:15 p.m.).

BOX SCORE: http://www.njcaa.org/sports/mbkb/2016-17/div2/boxscores/20170124_up0c.xml?tmpl=bbxml-monospace-template

 

January 17, 2017

Trapp Drops in 26, But Pioneers Fall at Oakton

DES PLAINES, Ill. --- Prairie State College freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) powered in 26 points, but it just wasn’t enough as the Pioneers fell to Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference foe Oakton 80-76 Tuesday night.

With the setback, PSC watched its overall season mark drop to 10-9 overall with a 1-2 record in Skyway action.

Also posting strong efforts for PSC were sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.), (16 points, 7 assists) and sophomore shooting guard Joshua Watkins (Thonrnwood H.S.), (15 points, 7 rebounds).

Freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.), (11 points, 10 rebounds) also made a strong contribution.

The Pioneers will see action next on Thursday whem they host McHenry at the PSC Fieldhouse (7:15 p.m.).

 

January 12, 2017

Trapp & Co. Light It Up, But Pioneers Fall at Home

Jerry Humphrey LayupCHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. ---    The Prairie State College men’s basketball team was unable to capitalize on another outstanding performance from freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.).

The 6-foot-3 Trapp delivered a career-high scoring effort against Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference traditional power Waubonsee, but it went for naught in a 94-90 setback Thursday night at the PSC Fieldhouse.

With the loss, PSC’s record moved to 10-8 overall and 1-1 in conference play.

Trapp tallied a career-best 38 points while pulling down 10 rebounds for his sixth double-double of the slate.

Trapp was not the only Pioneer to play well either as sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) scored 15 points while handing out eight assists.  Smith now has 101 assists on the campaign, good for fourth on the national charts.

Also delivering a strong double-digit outing in multiple categories was freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.).  The 6-foot-4 Humphrey deposited 10 points while tearing down a career-high 19 rebounds.

The former standout high school football defensive end currently sits fourth on the national charts in offensive rebounds with 66.  Thursday he secured another 10 on his own side of the floor.

Sophomore shooting guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) also chipped in a strong showing, tallying 12 points.

Thursday’s tilt endured nine lead changes as both clubs fought back and forth throughout.

The Chiefs held a 47-44 lead at the intermission.

A Trapp three-pointer lifted PSC to a 49-47 early second-half lead.

Prairie State eventually builts a 56-51 edge following a Smith triple and Humphrey free throw. 

A baseline jumper out of the hand of sophomore forward Virshon Flemming (Hillcrest H.S.), ( 6 asssits, 5 steals), thanks in part to a crisp pass by Smith, knotted the contest at 65 with 11:39 to go.

A Watkins trey gave PSC its last lead at 70-69 with 8:23 left before a 6-0 Waubonsee run put the Chiefs in charge of the game for good.

The Pioneers will hit the hard wood again on Tuesday when they travel to Des Plaines for a road date with Skyway foe Oakton (7:15 p.m.).

 

January 10, 2017

Smith Sets Tone as Pioneers Hit Triple Digits for Third Time

Todd Smith LayupCHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- Getting off to a strong start in conference play is the goal of every team that has its sights set on claiming a league crown.

The Prairie State College men’s basketball team certainly feels this way and it showed following the team’s Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference opener Tuesday night at the PSC Fieldhouse.

The Pioneers, paced by five double-digit scorers, reached triple digits on the scoreboard for the third time on the campaign, following a 101-54 triumph over the Lancers.

With the win, Prairie State moved to 10-7 on the season and 1-0 in conference play.

Leading the charge for PSC was sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.).

Smith led all scorers with a 26-point showing, courtesy of a 10-of-18 shooting effort from the floor.

The 6-foot-1 Smith narrowly missed his first career triple-double by a single assist, after pulling down 10 rebounds while dishing out nine helpers in the victory.

Smith is now ranked fifth nationally in total assists with 93.

Not far behind Smith was sophomore forward Virshon Flemming (Hillcrest H.S.).  The 6-foot-4 Flemming deposited a season-high 18 points while narrowly missing a double-double, courtesy of a nine-board effort.

Freshman Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) has now tallied in all 17 of the Pioneers tilts following a 15-tally showing.  He also snared six rebounds while handing out six assists.

Sophomore shooting guard Joshua Watkins chipped in a 12-point, six-rebound evening while adding another four three-pointers to his season ledger.  The 6-foot-2 Watkins has tickled the twine on 52 triples on the slate, good for fifth on the national charts.

Jerry Humphrey PutbackFreshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.) also reached twin digits, powering his way inside to a 10-point, eight-carom performance.

Freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.) (9 points, 8 rebounds), sophomore guard Nate Skrobot (Homeschooled), (6 points, 4 rebounds) and freshman guard Jordan Koyne (Mount Carmel H.S.), (5 points) also aided the Pioneers’ cause.

PSC set the tone for the evening from the opening tip and never looked back, establishing a 21-8 advantage after six minutes of play before heading into the intermission on the top side of a 58-23 score.

Lake County held two small leads early the contest at 3-2 and 8-7.

The Pioneers’ defensive effort led to 15 Lancers turnovers.  PSC took full advantage of those miscues, tallying 25 points off turnovers.

The Pioneers will hit the floor next on Thursday when they host Skyway foe Waubonsee at the Fieldhouse (7:15 p.m.).

 

December 13, 2016

Trapp, Watkins Team Up to Dismantle Harper

Desmond Trapp to the hoopCHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- Prairie State College freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) continued his torrid inaugural campaign of college hoops and sophomore shooting guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) knocked down a quartet of three-pointers as the Pioneers downed NJCAA Region IV foe Harper Tuesday night.

For the second time on the campaign, PSC eclipsed the 100-point plateau, courtesy of a 101-83 final score at the PSC Fieldhouse.

Trapp, who learned Monday afternoon that he had claimed his second consecutive NJCAA Region IV Player of the Week honor, a first at PSC, deposited a 28-point, five-rebound showing.

The 6-foot-3 Trapp shot 9-of-14 from the field and 9-of-11 from the free-throw line.

Trapp’s 284 total points on the season are good for eighth on the national charts.

Watkins dropped in a 20-point effort on 6-of-14 shooting from the floor and a 4-of-5 effort from behind the charity stripe.  The 6-foot-2 Watkins also blocked a pair of shots.

Freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.) scored in double figures as well, contributed 16 points, while tearing down 14 rebounds for his fourth double-double of the campaign.  Ten of the 6-foot-4 Humphrey’s caroms were secured on the offensive glass.

Freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.) also played strong, tallying a career-high 15 points while ripping down 10 rebounds for his second double-double of the slate.  The 6-foot-2 McNutt also picked the Hawks’ collective pocket to the tune of a seven-steal evening (also a career-best).

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) dished out 10 assists, efficiently running the Pioneers’ offense.

Freshman point guard Tariq Muhammad (Simeon H.S.) also handed out eight helpers of his own.

PSC ran out to a 16-3 game-opening lead and never trailed in the contest.  The Pioneers held a 49-32 edge at the break.

Prairie State established its largest advantage at 98-75 following a layup from freshman guard DeVaughn Jones (Richards H.S.) with 1:44 to go.

The Pioneers will hit the floor next on Friday when they travel Chicago’s Mount Greenwood neighborhood for a road date against the Saint Xavier University JV (3 p.m.).

 

December 12, 2016

Trapp Featured in Sunday Daily Southtown

Read Steve Millar's story on PSC's Desmond Trapp!

http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/daily-southtown/sports/ct-sta-college-basketball-notes-st-1212-20161211-story.html

 

December 10, 2016

Trapp, Watkins, Smith Power PSC Back to .500 Mark

CHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- Thanks in part to a trio of double-digit scorers, the Prairie State College men’s basketball team was triumphant Saturday afternoon, evening its season mark at .500 thanks to a 95-55 triumph over the North Park University JV at the PSC Fieldhouse.

With the triumph, the Pioneers pushed their season mark to 6-6 overall.

Prairie State picked up another sterling effort from freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) as the defending NJCAA Region IV Player of the Week chipped in his fifth double-double of the slate and second consecutive, following a 20-point, 11-rebound, five-steal showing.

Sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) also made a solid contribution, adding a 20-point outing, courtesy of five three-pointers for his second 20-plus-point effort of the slate.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thonrwood H.S.) also performed well, depositing 17 points, to go along with his game-high seven assists.

PSC led 45-29 at the intermission and was never truly threatened.

Former Pioneer Jason Hines, now playing for the four-year institution North park, dropped in nine points for the visitors.

PS will see action next on Tuesday when they square off against Harper at the fieldhouse.

 

December 8, 2016

Trapp Doubles Down as Pioneers Fall to Ancilla

CHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- One week after scorching the Governors State JV to the tune of 25 points en route to the claiming NJCAA Region IV Player of the Week honors, Prairie State College freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.), set his sights on another big effort Thursday night against Ancilla (Ind.).

And while he did get it, it just wasn’t enough to lift the Pioneers to victory.

Trapp registered his fourth double-double of the season, registering 21 points and 16 rebounds with three assists and two steals in PSC’s 59-54 setback to the Chargers.

Until running into foul trouble early in the second half, Trapp, who secured eight caroms in the game’s opening five minutes, was on pace to set the Prairie State single-game rebounding record of 22, established by Maurice Pinckney in 2006.

The 6-foot-3 Trapp pulled down 13 first-half rebounds.

Only one other Pioneer reached double digits in the scorer’s column as sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) contributed an 11-point, seven-assist showing.

Freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.), (6 points, 6 rebounds), freshman forward Jataryn Dejareaux (Bloom H.S.), (6 pints, 4 rebounds) and sophomore forward Virshon Flemming (Hillcrest H.S.), (4 points, 3 rebounds, 2 blocks) all made strong contributions.

Ancilla led 28-26 at the break, but both teams fought back and forth throughout the second half.

A driving layup from sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) (3 points) tied the game at 33 with 15:01 to play.

Trapp would tie the contest with a layup at 13:48 as well, but the Pioneers would be unable to pull any closer as Ancilla salted the game away.

The Pioneers will hit the floor next on Saturday when they face the North Park University JV at the PSC Fieldhouse (1 p.m.).

 

December 1, 2016

Six Reach Double Figures as PSC Rolls Past GSU JV

CHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- Fresh off of a 100-point offensive output in Tuesday’s convincing win over Truman, the Prairie State College men’s basketball team was primed and ready for another big scoring night.

And that’s exactly what it delivered.

Spurred on by six scorers in double figures, the Pioneers stormed past the Governors State JV by a final count of 88-77 Thursday at the PSC Fieldhouse.

With the win, Prairie State (5-5) has now reached the .500 plateau for the first time since the fourth tilt of the campaign.

Leading the charge for the Pioneers was freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) who continued his strong first campaign of collegiate basketball courtesy of a 25-point, seven-rebound, four-steal performance.  Sixteen of his tallies came in the second half.

The 6-foot-3 Trapp is averaging 21.5 points per game.  He currently sits fourth on the national charts in total points (215), fourth in total field goals made (83) and second in total minutes played (336).

Thursday night’s effort was Trapp’s sixth of 20 or more points this season and third straight.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) dropped in 14 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field. The 6-foot-1 Smith also handed out five assists.  Smith is currently fourth on the national leger for total minutes (321) and eighth in total assists (55).

Sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) wasn’t far behind Smith, delivering a 12-point outing on 5-of-7 shooting from the floor.  The sharp-shooting Watkins leads the nation in total minutes played at 348 and is fourth in minutes per contest (34.8).  His 35 three-pointers sunk on the campaign are also good for fifth in the national rankings.

Three Pioneers also contributed 10-point evenings as freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.), freshman forward Jataryn Dejareaux (Bloom H.S.) and freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.) all achieved the feat.

Humphrey narrowly missed his fourth double-double of the slate after hauling down eight rebounds while McNutt secured another seven.

Sophomore guard Nate Skrobot (Homeschooled), (6 rebounds), sophomore forward Virshon Flemming (Hillcrest H.S.), (6 rebounds, 6 blocks) and freshman guard Tariq Muhammad (Simeon H.S.), (5 assists) also made strong contributions.

The Jaguars hung with PSC throughout the contest’s opening 10 minutes, holding a 20-19 advantage with 10:40 remaining before a 9-0 Pioneer run gave PSC a 29-20 edge and put Prairie State in the driver’s seat for the remainder of the game.

The big run was highlighted by four-point spurts from both Dejareuax and Trapp.

PSC took a 49-36 advantage into the locker room.

The Pioneers put together their largest lead of the game at 56-38 when Smith knocked down a free-throw with 16:19 left.

PSC will now enjoy some well-deserve time off before taking on Ancilla on Dec. 8 (7:30 p.m.) at the fieldhouse.

 

November 29, 2016

Pioneers Hit Triple Digits in Route of Truman

Todd Smith handling the basketballCHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- While the Prairie State College men’s basketball program doesn’t offer free McDonald’s Big Mac sandwiches to its raucous fans following a 100-point outing, the way a certain local NBA franchise does, followers of the Pioneers did leave the PSC Fieldhouse happy nonetheless Tuesday evening.

Thanks in large part to a quintet of double-digit scorers, Prairie State reached triple digits on the scoreboard for the first time in seven years, following a 100-78 triumph over Truman in Chicago Heights.

With the victory, PSC pulled to within a game of the .500 mark at 4-5 overall.

Setting the pace for PSC in the scorebook was freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.), who delivered his ninth double-digit scoring effort of the campaign, following a 21-point, eight-rebound showing.

The outing represented Trapp’s fifth of 20 or more points this season.

Not far behind Trapp was sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.), who notched his sixth twin-digit scoring output of the slate and third of 20 or more tallies, courtesy of a 20-point outburst.

The 6-foot-1 Smith also dished out seven assists.

Freshman forward Jataryn Dejareaux (Bloom H.S.) tallied 13 points points and made off with four steals while freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.) registered a dozen points while tearing down 10 rebounds for his third double-double of the schedule.

Freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.) added 12 points and handed out six helpers.

Sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.), (9 points, 7 rebounds), sophomore forward Virshon Flemming (Hillcrest H.S.), (8 points, 2 blocks, 2 steals) and freshman point guard Tariq Muhammad (Brooks Academy), (5 assists) also made strong contributions.

PSC ran out to a 17-11 advantage after five and a half minutes of play and never looked back, taking a 57-35 edge in the locker room.

The Pioneers established their largest lead at 64-38 following a Trapp jump shot, courtesy of an assist by McNutt with 17:31 remaining in the tilt.

PSC will now gear up for a Thursday home date with four-year institution Governors State (7 p.m.).

 

November 19, 2016

Watkins Gets PSC Back on Track Following Convincing Win

Josh Watkins Three-PointerCHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- Following an 0-2 start to the home portion of the 2016-17 schedule, the Prairie State College men’s basketball team was eager to give the home fans something to cheer about.

That happened Saturday afternoon.

Thanks in part to a 17-point showing from sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.), the Pioneers walked off the court at the PSC Fieldhouse with a convincing 83-63 victory over NJCAA Region IV counterpart DuPage firmly in hand.

Watkins knocked down four three-pointers, courtesy of a 6-of-11 showing from the field.  The 6-foot-2 Watkins also pulled down eight rebounds.

Watkins wasn’t the only Pioneer to post a winning effort as three additional PSC players reached double figures in the scoring column.

Freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.) chipped in a 12-point effort, while pulling down five rebounds and dishing out a trio of assists.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) and freshman Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.) both contributed 11-point outings with Smith dishing out eight assists and Humphrey tearing down 11 rebounds.

Sophomore forward Virshon Flemming (Hillcrest H.S.), freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis DeSales H.S.) and freshman forward Jataryn Dejareaux (Bloom H.S.) all turned in eight-point showings.

PSC ran out to a 19-10 lead to start the contest and never looked back, leading 42-25 at the intermission.

The Pioneers will see action next on Tuesday when they travel to Oglesby for a road date against Illinois Valley (7:30 p.m.).

 

November 15, 2016

Local Foe Downs Pioneers at Home

CHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- The Prairie State College men’s basketball team was hoping that the good vibes of a 96-90 victory over Kishwaukee this past Saturday would carry over into the squad’s Tuesday night battle against NJCAA Region IV foe South Suburban.

Unfortunately, that just wasn’t in the cards.

The Bulldogs upended the Pioneers,76-63, on “Veterans Appreciation Night” at the PSC Fieldhouse.

With the setback, PSC fell to 2-3 on the young campaign.

Despite the loss, the Pioneers did pick up several strong individual efforts. 

Saturday’s star, freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.), backed up his 35-point showing against the Kougars with a 14-point, eight-rebound outing on Tuesday.

Freshman guard Dwayne McNutt (St. Francis De Sales H.S.), in his first collegiate start, delivered a 12-point contest while freshman forward Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.) dropped in an 11-point contest.

PSC got off to a fast start, establishing a 12-5 lead, thanks to a Trapp layup.

By the time the intermission came, the Pioneers trailed 42-27.

A McNutt running jumper, along with single free throws by sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.), (8 points, 3 assists) and Trapp, pulled PSC to within a point at 52-51.

Unfortunately, however, that would be as close as the Pioneers would get as the Bulldogs would then embark on an 8-0 run which effectively sealed the contest.

PSC will see action next on Thursday when it travels to Danville for a 7 p.m. road contest.

 

 November 12, 2016

Trapp Drops in 35 as PSC Upends Kishwaukee

MALTA, Ill. --- After dropping a tough contest to NJCAA Region IV counterpart Joliet last Thursday, the Prairie State College men’s basketball team was in need of a win to get itself back on track.

Enter freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.).

Trapp’s offensive clinic Saturday afternoon played a major hand in propelling the Pioneers to a hard-fought 96-90 victory over Kishwaukee.

The 6-foot-3 Trapp poured in a season-high 35 points on 14-of-24 shooting from the field and 7-of-10 effort from behind the free-throw line.  The 35-point effort is the most by a Pioneer in two seasons.

Trapp also secured his third double-double of the campaign after pulling down 11 rebounds.

Three other Pioneers also reached double digits in the scorer’s column as sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.), freshman center Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.)  and sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) both achieved the feat.

Watkins delivered a 15-point showing following a 4-of-7 performance from behind the three-point arc to go along with three assists and three blocks.

Smith recorded 13 points on 4-of-6 shooting while handing out five assists.

Humphrey tallied eight points, while pulling down four rebounds.  The Pioneers led 55-38 at the intermission and shot 55.6% from the field for the game (35-of-63) to Kishwaukee’s 40.6% (28-of-69).

PSC will hit the floor next on Tuesday when they square off against local rival South Suburban on “Veteran’s Appreciation Night” at the PSC Fieldhouse (7 p.m.).

 

November 10, 2016

Joliet Bests PSC in Home-Opener

CHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. --- A trio of double-digit scorers just weren’t enough to push the Prairie State College men’s basketball team past NJCAA Region IV counterpart Joliet Thursday night in the Pioneers’ home-opener.

PSC (1-2) dropped the contest 86-76 in front of a capacity crowd at the PSC Fieldhouse.

Prairie State was paced in the scorer’s column by freshman forward Desmond Trapp (Hillcrest H.S.), who deposited a team-high 25 points on 8-of-12 shooting from the floor. The 6-foot-3 Trapp also pulled down four rebounds.

Trapp scored 18 second-half points.

Sophomore shooting guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.) chipped in a 19-point showing, which included a trio of three-pointers.  He also made off with four steals.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) posted a 13-point outing while dishing out a team-best six assists.  Eleven of Smith’s tallies came in the second half.

Freshman forward Jerry Humphrey (Hales Franciscan H.S.), (8 rebounds) and freshman point guard Tariq Muhammad (Brooks Academy), (4 assists) also contributed.

Joliet led the contest from wire-to-wire as PSC trailed 43-32 at the intermission.

PSC shot 28-of-65 (43.1%) as a team from the field to Joliet’s 28-of-54 (51.9%).

The Pioneers will see action next on Tuesday when they square off against rival South Suburban on “Veteran’s Appreciation Night” at the Fieldhouse (7 p.m.).

 

November 5-6, 2016

Pioneers Open Season With Split at Sauk Valley Tournament

DIXON, Ill. --- The Prairie State College men’s basketball team opened the 2016-17 season with mixed results this past weekend, splitting a pair of games at the Sauk Valley Classic in Dixon.

The Pioneers (1-1) opened up the new slate with a Friday night victory over host Sauk Valley, besting the Skyhawks by a 73-62 final count.

Unfortunately, PSC dropped its Saturday afternoon contest to Black Hawk by an 88-80 score.

In the win over Sauk Valley, PSC raced out to an 8-2 advantage and never looked back, leading by a commanding 39-20 advantage at halftime.

PSC grabbed its largest lead at 53-29 with 11:28 to play following a put back from sophomore guard Joshua Watkins (Thornwood H.S.).

Watkins led all PSC scorers with a 19-point attack, courtesy of a 7-of-15 shooting effort from the floor.

PSC also picked up a sterling effort from freshman forward Desmond Trapp.  Trapp recorded a double-double in his first game as a Pioneer, tallying 18 points while pulling down 13 rebounds.

Freshman guard Tariq Muhammad turned in a strong performance as well, scoring 11 points while handing out four assists.

  In the loss to Black Hawk, PSC let an eight-point halftime lead slip away as the Braves controlled the tilt for bulk of the second half.

Despite the setback, several Pioneers turned in strong outings.

Sophomore point guard Todd Smith (Thornwood H.S.) paced the Pioneers with a 21-point effort while dishing out nine assists.

Trapp, for the second straight night, delivered a solid outing, dropping in 16 points while pulling down five rebounds.

 Watkins (15 points, five 3-pointers) and Humphrey (13 points, 11 rebounds) also made strong contributions.

The Pioneers will see action next on Thursday when they host Joliet (7 p.m.).