College Login:


  Follow NJCAA on Facebook  Follow NJCAA on Twitter

National |
News Archive

National News

Amazing comeback win casts RLC Warriors into national semifinals
 March 20, 2013

DANVILLE, Ill. (March 20, 2013) - Momentum.

While watching the Rend Lake College Warriors get behind South Suburban College in the national basketball championship quarterfinals Wednesday night, there was a feeling they could still swing it. Too good a team to go quietly against the Bulldogs program-turned rival over the span of a year, there was still a fixed hope things would change. But it was double-digits by the half. Then 20 points. Things seemed to be getting away from the Warriors in a hurry.

But then it happened. A couple of stops here. A turnover there. Still enough time. The momentum had turned and Rend Lake had dug itself out. It found itself with the ball and a chance to hit a last-second long shot to win. Sophomore guard Dawson Verhines (Woodlawn) caught the inbound pass, launched a half-court laser over two defenders, and it rimmed out. It was perhaps the greatest comeback in RLC sports history already, and the Warriors hadn't won anything. 


RLC went on the attack, taking advantage of South Suburban players who had picked up four fouls in regulation. It worked. Two Bulldogs fouled out by way of Warriors slashing into the lane off the dribble. South Suburban's coach went to a player on the bench who had four fouls. Within two or three possessions he had fouled out. RLC's plan was working, but it was still down. Players kept fighting on defense, going hard for loose balls and working for good shots. A couple of costly turnovers and a foul by the Bulldogs put the hammer in Rend Lake's hand with Jeril Taylor holding the last nail. The spindly, 6-4 freshman from Louisville, Ky., had hit key shots throughout the game - three from long range and a team-high 19 points. It was fitting he was the one called to close. 

Taylor stepped to the line with five seconds left. The rest of his team had pulled out to the other end of the floor to put up one last defensive stand. Without hesitation, he made the first. It looked more like he was shooting in the first five seconds of the game than the last five seconds of overtime. His second shot found nothing but net in the same fashion. South Suburban pushed the ball down the floor, passed to a man in the corner and got off one last shot. However, RLC big man Bronson Verhines (Woodlawn) blocked the ball farther out of bounds than it had travelled from the shooter's hand.

The block ended the game and sends a roused Rend Lake team into the national semifinals. The #4 seeded Warriors (28-3) play at 6 p.m., Friday, against #8 Owens Community College of Ohio (26-8). Listen live at Q106.3FM and watch a live stream at www.ihigh.com/njcaatv.

The Warriors' 85-83 overtime win tonight is the first men's basketball national tournament win in RLC school history and should provide plenty of momentum heading into the next round of play.

For all things athletic at The Lake, visit RLC online at www.rlc.edu/warriors. 

© 2015 National Junior College Athletic Association - All Rights Reserved - About - Contact - Privacy Policy