Waterville native Jordan DeRosby plays for Southern Maine Community College, perhaps the best men’s basketball team in USCAA Division II. When SMCC coach Matt Richards calls his point guard, “Mr. Steady,” it also refers to DeRosby’s personality.

“He’s one of those guys who never really shows the highs of the highs or the lows of the lows,” Richards said. “If we have a big run, you might get a fist pump, but that’s about it. If we’re struggling, you can’t really tell by his reaction. He’s just calm, cool, and collected.”

Richards, a sophomore, became SMCC”s starting point guard this season. The Seawolves will take a 23-3 record and the No. 1 seed into their USCAA quarterfinal against either Warren Wilson or Penn State Mont Alto at 5:30 p.m., Thursday in Uniontown, Pa.

As a freshman, DeRosby played backup point guard behind Jose Nouchanthavong of Westbrook. While Nouchanthavong averaged about 15 points and six assists per game, DeRosby waited for his chance.

“I learned a lot,” DeRosby said. “In practice every day, we were going back and forth with each other. He is a really good player. He taught me just a bunch of little things on the court to help me improve my game.”

With Nouchanthavong gone this season, DeRosby had the chance to seize the starting role. Richards talked to him, and made it clear DeRosby wouldn’t be able to take any plays off.

“He had a great summer, and he really came in this fall just a different player,” Richards said. “He really did a nice job of understanding that he needed to come in with a lot of weight training under his belt. He worked on his ball-handling. One night a week, he was coming down from Waterville to play in open gyms, and you could just see the development. It was really great to watch.”

“When I was working out in the gym, I was just envisioning the next year, and (how I’d) use just what I’m doing to impact the team next year,” DeRosby said. “I wanted to fulfill the starting point guard position. That was my goal.”

DeRosby is second on SMCC in minutes per game. His other numbers — seven points, three assist per game — won’t blow you away, but there’s something to be said for a guy who runs the offense of a team that’s 23-3. In the Yankee Small College Conference tournament, playing three games in three days, DeRosby had a total of three turnovers in 77 minutes.

“He’s the guy that makes the pass that leads to the scoring pass,” Richards said. “There is no stat for that, but if you don’t have that glue and cohesiveness that you need, you’re not going to be successful.

“He always guards the other team’s better perimeter player,” Richards added. “He’s always putting pressure on the point guard — again, no stats for that.”

The USCAA broadcast the Division II selection show on its website. After each team was named, their starters were listed on the screen and a couple players were highlighted. DeRosby was one of those mentioned by the announcer.

“I was just excited, and more excited on the fact that we’re still the No. 1 seed,” DeRosby said. “But I liked the shout-out. Wasn’t expecting it, but hey, I’ll take it.”

Richards also noticed DeRosby, back during the recruiting process. He heard Waterville had a good point guard who wanted to play in college, and sought DeRosby out after seeing him play.

“It’s nearby, and it was perfect for the budget I wanted,” DeRosby said. “It was good for a two-year school that I wanted to start at. As soon as I met the coach, I felt like I wanted to come here.”

Since DeRosby said he was looking for a two-year school, that naturally poses the question of whether he’ll continue at SMCC after this school year.

“There is a chance I’ll come back,” DeRosby said. “Right now, there’s a 75 percent chance I”m coming back, but I am applying to other schools in Massachusetts.”

Of SMCC’s three losses this season, one was in overtime to the No. 3 seed in the tournament, another was in overtime to the No. 6 seed, and the third was to a junior college team that finished 22-2.

“It’s just the teamwork,” DeRosby said. “It’s how all the players mesh together. There are a lot of times we get on the court and the other five are more athletic and stronger than our five. But we just find ways to get wins.”

Matt DiFilippo — 861-9243

[email protected]

Twitter: @Matt_DiFilippo


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