Warwick, R.I. – March 6, 2015: The CCRI men's basketball team's season ended this past weekend with an 88-66 loss to Dean in the Region XXI Championship game. However, the Knights did receive some very good news this week with two Knights earning All-Region XXI honors. The two players selected were sophomore Tri-Captain guard Anthony Jernigan (East Hartford, CT) and freshman center Grant Gillis (Jamestown, RI). Head Coach Rick Harris commented about the selections: "Both Anthony and Grant are outstanding choices to the All Region XXI team. The coaches and team congratulate them on their selection."
As a freshman Jernigan was one of the Knights Co-Captain transferring to CCRI from Monroe Community College. Jernigan led the Knights in scoring with 15.6 points per game. Anthony also led the Knights in assist with 5.5 per game which ranked him No. 18 in the nation (NJCAA DII). He also led the Knights in steals per game with 2.5 which ranked him No. 13 in the nation. Jernigan was an explosive scorer with elusive ball skills which made his tremendously hard to guard. Anthony scored his career-high of 26 versus Mercer County Community College in early January. As a sophomore Jernigan was selected as a Tri-Captain and elevated his game to another level by not only leading the team in scoring with 13.4 points per game but also became an excellent facilitator by leading the team with an impressive 5.7 per contest which ranked him No 16 in the nation in DII men's basketball. In addition he was also ranked No. 26 in the nation with 2.4 steals per game. Jernigan authored his best game as a sophomore with a season-high 31 versus Bunker Hill Community College the Knights' first game versus Dean College in November with 29 points. For his career Jernigan has scored 862 points to rank him No 22 on the Knights' all-time scoring list. In addition, Jernigan added 316 assists 140 steals and made 247 free throws during his two-year career to rank him third all-time behind Bill Robinson (310) and Desmond Williams (291).
Coach Harris commented about his talented Captain "Anthony Jernigan was as dedicated a Knight as I coached over the past two years. AJ came to play every day and was a tireless player in practice each and every day. A fan favorite, AJ led us to some great wins this season including Dean, Niagara, Globe and Massasoit. Anthony was capable of taking over a game in crunch time and was as exciting a player to watch as there was here in New England. I thank him for his dedication, leadership and desire to help make us the best we could be!"
Also earning All-Region XXI honors for the Knights was freshman center Grant Gillis who burst upon the scene as a freshman to lead the Knights in Rebounds with 7.6 per game and blocks with 1.4 per contest while also being the Knights' third ranked scorer with 11.4 points per game. Gillis' inside power game was the perfect complement to the long-range marksmen like Jernigan, Malieke Young (Providence, RI) and Marshall Nelson (Perth, Australia). Gillis charted four double-doubles during his freshman campaign including scoring a career high of 22 versus Navy Prep in the Knights' final home contest of the year and charted a career high in rebounds versus Sacred Heart in January. In his first year Gillis scored 292 points with 196 rebounds and 37 blocked shots. Gillis will be one the stalwarts for the Knights as he returns for his sophomore campaign in 2015-16.
Harris added this about his talented freshman: "Grant Gillis was one of the top freshman big men in the entire Northeast this past season. A quick learner Grant ended up being our go to guy at the offensive end of the court this past season. With his soft shooting touch and ability to rebound and block shots we expect Grant to help lead us back to the top next season in his sophomore year. Grant was both one of the top freshman and top players in New England this past season and I look forward to building around him for the 2015-16 season."
The Community College of Rhode Island, New England's largest comprehensive community college, enrolls nearly 18,000 students in credit courses and thousands more in non-credit and job training classes. Its athletic program boasts 12 varsity programs and an academic support program for all student-athletes.