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The Fullerton College men's basketball team defeated City College of San Francisco on Sunday afternoon 83-73 completing the 2022-23 season as the CCCAA State Champions.

The victory gives FC its second state championship under Head Coach Perry Webster in three seasons. The Hornets earned the title in 2019 after beating San Francisco 85-79. There was not a state tournament held in 2020 or 2021. CCSF went on to win it in 2022. This is Webster's his fourth CCCAA State Title- two as a head coach, one as an assistant with Saddleback, and one as a player with Saddleback.

It was an excellent performance by Fullerton, who proved why they were ranked No. 1 in the state for most of the season. The Rams drained the first bucket of the game to take a 2-0 lead, but the Hornets answered back with a three by Kobe Newton. That is how the game played out in a nutshell. San Francisco would make a play, and FC would answer it with something better. Holding a 21-17 lead twelve minutes into the game, the Hornets pressed forward with a 10-2 run (32-19) by 5:30. The Hornets separated themselves from the Rams in the last couple of minutes of the first half on some sharp shooting by Shaquil Bender along with a couple of nice layups by Jeremiah Davis. By the break, Fullerton had wowed the crowd and stunned CCSF with a 46-27 advantage.

Running a tough full-court press in the second half, San Francisco did its best to play catch-up, but FC maintained a ten-point average until the three-minute mark. A couple three-pointers were drained by CJ Hardy and TeJon Sawyer that brought the Rams within six points (76-70). Then, with two minutes left in the game, Jamir Thomas knocked down another three for CCSF cutting the FC lead down to three (76-73). Kobe Newton clapped back with a three-pointer and Shaquil Bender answered that with a put-back bucket giving the Hornets some breathing room with a minute to go. Out of time, the Ram's only play was to send Fullerton to the free throw line. Shooting 90% on the season, Sean Newman Jr. put the game away hitting both of his attempts.

Named as the All-Tournament MVP, Shaquil Bender lit it up hitting key shots from downtown (5-8) and slashing to the rim for 23 points. Kobe Newton was also effective from beyond the arc going 7-9 while scoring 25 total points. Sean Newman Jr. may not have had his highest scoring game (6 points on 5 attempts), but he facilitated an excellent game dishing out 7 assists and hitting needed free throws (4-4) to ice the game. Jeremiah Davis scored 10 points (4-4 free throws), while Sammy Howlin set the tone underneath with 10 rebounds, 3 blocked shots, and 6 points. 

Now armed with its fifth state championship, the FC basketball program is locked in a five-title-tie with Cerritos, Fresno City, Long Beach City, and San Francisco, leading the state for the most titles.

The Hornet State Champions
1954 - 65-57 win over Grant Tech - Coach Alex Omalev - 31-2 overall 
1961 - 94-85 win over San Jose City - Coach Bill Mann - 32-2 overall
2006 - 81-67 win over West Valley - Coach Dieter Horton - 37-0 overall
2019 - 85-79 win over San Francisco - Coach Perry Webster - 30-3 overall
2023 - 83-73 win over San Francisco - Coach Perry Webster - 32-1 overall

 *Photo by Jim McCormack