#2 San Diego City Too Much To Handle For #15 Men's Basketball

Myles Watkins scored 901 points as a Lancer (photo by Richard Quinton).
Myles Watkins scored 901 points as a Lancer (photo by Richard Quinton).

The #15 seed Pasadena City College men's basketball team used athleticism, hustle and the 3-point shot to beat teams during the 2023-2024 season. They met their match in #2 San Diego City College, a team with size, strong defense and its own brand of high energy as the Knights ended the Lancers postseason run, 87-69, on Saturday night.

In the SoCal Playoff Round 2 Regional, PCC played well in the first half, taking a 14-7 lead on a Myles Watkins jumper. A diving effort for a loose ball by point guard Jalen Vazquez resulted in an injury on a collison with a SDCC player that changed the momentum at that point. Vazquez had scored six of PCC's points in those first seven minutes as he was unable to return.

The teams were tied at 26-26 with five minutes to go in the half, and a Watkins trey cut a SDCC lead to 38-34 at the end the first half.

Three minutes into the second half, a layup by Deen Abdur-Rahmann cut it to 44-41 three, but that was the last hurrah for the Lancers. The Knights (25-4 overall) went on a 10-0 run capped by back-to-back, 3-pointers by KJay Bradley. With five minutes left, Keavie Love drained a bomb that made it 74-53 to put the game away.

SDCC scored 50 points in the paint, five on dunks, as PCC had no defensive answers. The Knights shot a sizzling 57 percent from the field (33 of 58 attempts) and 16-for-19 at the free throw line (84.2 percent). 

"We ran into a really tough team that has a lot of weapons in San Diego," said PCC head coach Ryan Frazer. "Defensively and offensively, losing a quarterback catalyst like Jalen was a tough turning point. We never really were able to get going from the outside (only five 3-pointers), and they beat us by going straight to the basket. I thought we hung with them well in that first half, but it was a different story in the second."

For PCC (19-11), Watkins scored a game-high 21 points, Abdur-Rahmann 16 points, and Dylan Swillis added eight points and 14 rebounds. Kaiden Fine scored 10 off the bench while Shant Chenorhavorian tallied six points and four assists. 

San Diego got 19 points from Love, 18 by Alex Crawford, who blocked four shots, and a 14-point, 8-rebound, 6-assist effort by Bradley.

The team saw a streak of 10 straight games scoring double digits from the free throw line end (8-for-11 in the contest).

PCC's struggles to score from 3-point range were evident in the last four games of the season as they totaled only 23 long-range baskets, including just 10 in the two playoff games. The team was averaging better than 10 treys per game from Jan. 3 to Feb. 16 when it upset South Coast Conference North champion and #3 seed Mt. San Antonio. The Lancers posted a 10-4 record in that 14-game stretch. 

Watkins, Abdur-Rahmann, Chenorhavorian, and reserve Jalyn White all played their final collegiate game. 


For Watkins, he finished a fabulous PCC 2-year run as the school's current as the #18 leading scorer and joining that elite club in reaching 900 points (901). Also in two seasons at PCC, Abdur-Rahmann scored 622 points, good enough for 53rd place while Chenorhavorian reached 522 points to become the 76th player to be part of the program's 500-points club. 

Backup players John Parmeter-Zapata, Brad'n Archer and Micah Jernigan also finished their community college careers. 

Coach Frazer is 41-20 (.672 win percentage) in two seasons at PCC and has led the Lancers to the regional finals in 2023 and Round 2 this season. His career playoff record, including directing MiraCosta to the state tournament in 2022, is 7-2.