IVC Men's Basketball History
Irvine Valley College's men's basketball team made a name for itself long before its first game by announcing that Southern California coaching legend Bill Mulligan would head the inaugural 1992-93 team. Mulligan, who is the winningest coach in UC Irvine history, came to IVC just five victories short of 500 career collegiate wins. Mulligan's squads improved each of his three years at IVC.
He led IVC's first team to a record of 14-17 and a berth in the Southern California Community College playoffs. The 1993-94 team finished with an 18-15 record. Mulligan's final year at Irvine Valley was the breakthrough season for the young program. All-state center Keon Clark, who later played at UNLV, led the Lasers to a 22-12 record.
Mulligan's departure following that season led to an extensive search for a capable successor. Jerry Hernandez, who had been an assistant on Cerritos' 32-2 team, was named the new head coach. In his first year, Hernandez led IVC to a record of 16-17 and the first road playoff win in the program's history.
Hernandez made some more history the following year, capturing the program's first Orange Empire Conference title. The Lasers finished the year ranked ninth in the state and fifth in Southern California and had a record of 26-8 overall and 12-2 in conference.
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Laser Basketball Highlights
- Bill Mulligan, a Southern California coaching legend, is named the first head coach. Mulligan picked up his 500th career collegiate victory on December 8, 1992 in his first season with the Lasers.
- Arturo Clemente and Chris Kostoff lead the Lasers into the Southern California Community College playoffs in their first season.
- Rashad Wilson, Steve Ransom and Tom Airey help the Lasers to their first winning season in 1993-94. IVC finished 18-15 and again advanced to the playoffs.
- Steve Ransom makes the University of Kansas basketball team as a walk-on in 1994.
- Hart Gymnasium, a state-of-the-art, 1,800-capacity gym, opens in the winter of 1994.
- Keon Clark, a 6-11 center, leads IVC to a 22-12 record in 1994-95, and is named to the all-state team.
- Bill Mulligan announces his retirement in March of 1995 and Cerritos assistant, Jerry Hernandez, is named as his successor.
- IVC wins its first road playoff game by defeating L.A. Southwest in the 1995-96 season.
- Hernandez and top players Josh Porter and Matt Moore lead the Lasers to big wins over defending state champion Ventura and Rancho Santiago during the 1995-96 season.
- IVC wins its first tournament ever at Orange Coast in 1996, defeating Long Beach City in the finals.
- IVC wins its first Orange Empire Conference title in 1996-97. Led by all-state player Daryl Todd, the Lasers finish the season 26-8 overall.
- For the first time ever, IVC is ranked ninth in the state, according to the last state poll of 1996-97.
- Another first, the Lasers win their own Bill Mulligan Classic, beating Cerritos in the final in November 1997.
- Keon Clark becomes the first former IVC player to be drafted when he is taken by Orlando with the 10th pick.
- IVC has its best non-conference record ever when it goes 13-4 to start the 1998-99 season.
- Former IVC two year starter, J.C. Timmons, leads UC Davis to the National Division II title in 1998.
- Hernandez achieves his 100th win, beating rival Saddleback in the 1999-2000 season.