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Ventura tops visiting Vaqueros 88-72

Freshman forward Ben Clay recorded his fifth double-double on Saturday with 14 points, 11 rebounds and a season-high six assists. (Photo by Ken Sciallo / Sevilla Photography)
Freshman forward Ben Clay recorded his fifth double-double on Saturday with 14 points, 11 rebounds and a season-high six assists. (Photo by Ken Sciallo / Sevilla Photography)

Cordel Hankerson scored 31 points and grabbed 10 rebounds on Saturday night, leading first-place Ventura to an 88-72 men's basketball win over visiting SBCC.

Vida Faniel added 12 points and 14 rebounds for the Pirates (13-11, 4-1), who took a 42-30 halftime lead behind 17 points from Hankerson.

Robert Hutchins led the Vaqueros (4-17, 2-3) with 19 points, six rebounds and three steals. Ben Clay had a double-double with 14 points, 11 boards and a season-high six assists. Tyler Crandall hit 6-12 field goals, including 2-3 from long range and added 14 points. He's averaging 17.7 in his last three games. Drayten Howell had 14 points and six assists.

Chris Givens was injured early in the second half, leaving the Vaqueros with six players. Hutchins and Howell played all 40 minutes and Crandall logged 37 minutes.

The Pirates outshot the Vaqueros 45.6 to 40.6 percent and won the board battle 45-39.

Santa Barbara got within seven (68-61) on a 3-pointer by Clay with 6:52 to play but Ventura responded with a 10-2 run to stretch the lead to 15 at 78-63.

After a bye on Wednesday, the Vaqueros will host the other first-place team, Cuesta (11-12, 4-1) on Saturday, Feb. 4 at 5 p.m.