The Marshalltown Community College men's basketball team has been preparing for the upcoming season, holding workouts and practices throughout the fall.
Last season, the Tigers finished 19-11 overall and 3-5 in the Iowa Community College Athletic Conference (ICCAC) with one All-American and two All-Region selections. Last year's team averaged 78.1 points per game and shot 47% from the field collectively. The Tigers big men also played well defensively, averaging 25.2 defensive rebounds per game.
All-American Mohamed Thiam led the Tiger scoring efforts last year, averaging 19.7 points per game while also averaging 9.6 rebound per game. Freshman Oscar Kao averaged 13.4 points per game while shooting 44.3 percent from the field.
Thiam and Oscar played the majority of each game, both averaging more than 28 minutes a game, and will be major pieces to replace this season. The Tigers do return Juan Coffi, a third year sophomore who received a medical redshirt last season after being sidelined with a foot injury. In Coffi's limited playing time last year, he averaged 5.8 points a game in just 11 minutes per game.
The Tigers also return guard Kelton Edwards and forward Bassirou Ndiaye, both of which saw significant playing time and averaged more than 6 points per game. The two sophomores will be looked at to provide scoring, as well as sophomores Goran Vidovic and Eduardo Lane. Vidovic was able to set the offense last year, averaging 5.5 points per game while averaging 21 minutes per game.
"We return nine guys that have some game experience, some with over 30 games under their belt," stated Head Coach Brynjar Brynjarsson. "We have Juan Coffi back for a third year and he will provide a valuable leadership role with a few of our other sophomores."
"We have a skilled group of freshmen that have the ability to play a role this year," stated Brynjarsson. "With this group of sophomores, I think we can develop the freshman class quicker then we have in the past and hopefully see a productive group on the court."
With returners that have seen significant playing time and a group of athletic freshman, the 2018-19 men's basketball season could be a fun one to watch. Playing in the ICCAC is always difficult with national power, Indian Hills Community College, regularly at the top. The Tigers were able to split with the Reivers of Iowa Western Last year but dropped both games with Southeastern to finish third in the conference. This year the focus will be to improve on last year's finish and work every day to see that improvement.
"Like every year, our goal is to get better every practice, every day, every week," stated Assistant Coach Ryan Flack. "If we put in work every day, we will be in a good spot by the end of the year."
The Tigers will start the regular season at the Indian Hills Classic, playing three games from November 2-3. The Tigers will not be playing at home until the Emerson Classic on November 16-17. The team will not see their first ICCAC game until after the holiday break, taking on the Warriors of Indian Hills Community College on Wednesday, January 16 in the Student Activity Center at 7:00 PM. For more information on the MCC men's basketball team, follow @MCCTigers_MBB on twitter.