Men's basketball Top 10: TWU vanquishes Victoria

Canada West division semi-finals:
  • Pacific: Trinity Western 87, UVic 85 (Spartans win 2-1) — Spartans forward Jacob Doerksen (24 points, 19 rebounds) was nails for the Spartans, who fought through fatigue and hung on after almost coughing up a 27-point lead.

    Fifth-year forward Jamie Vaughan (11 rebounds) had the biggest glue-guy play of the season, grabbing a front-rimmed free throw with four seconds left, while veteran guard Brian Banman had 17 points, including 10 in the opening quarter.

    Spartans coach Scott Allen actually put in a new flex offence on the day of the game, which helped TWU open a 66-39 lead early in the third quarter. Victoria, led by fifth-year man Tyler Hass (22 points, nine rebounds in his final game) and Mitch Gudgeon (15 and seven), just wouldn't go away. Even when they were down 12 with 3:58 left, it seemed like Victoria wasn't liked. It's going to be tough for the next round to top the past three games.

    Hurd, who hit the winning shot in Game 1, had 18 points in the decider. Allen's Spartans had a few unsung types, such as Ryan Froese (seven points in four first-half minutes) and Lance Verhoeff, who made a big block with a minute to go to help keep UVic at bay.

    It's not often both UVic teams are done after the first weekend of the playoffs; it's the first time the men, who had gone to nationals twice in Gudgeon and Hass' careers, have gone out this early since 1995-96. Both Vikes teams had superb seasons. The Pacific Division is just tough,

  • Pacific: UBC 101, Simon Fraser 84 (T-Birds win 2-0) — The Thunderbirds got great guard play out of Alex Murphy (nine assists, two turnovers over the two games) as they beat the Clan, 97-72 and 101-84, to advance easily. Chris Dyck had 53 points in the two games, including 31 on Saturday, and UBC rolled.
  • Central: Alberta 63, Saskatchewan 54 (Golden Bears win 2-0) — Retiring U of A coach Don Horwood was at least two more games to coach after the Golden Bears ground down Saskatchewan, 77-68 and 63-54. Scott Leigh scored 25 points in Game 2.
  • Great Plains: Regina 85, Winnipeg 74 (Cougars win 2-1) — The Cougars, who should be at least good enough to make Brandon go the full three games in the last-ever Great Plains final, advanced with an 85-74 win over the Wesmen.

    Kris Heshka had 28 points for Regina and guard Jordan McFarlen, a 4.5-ppg scorer in the regular season, had 16 points and 12 rebounds for the Cougars, who built a 20-point lead after three quarters and cruised home.

    Winnipeg guard Nick Lother had a 43-point game in his team's win in Game 2.
The Top 10:
  1. Carleton — The Ravens honoured Aaron Doornekamp, Rob Saunders and Stu Turnbull on Senior Night on Saturday. The Kingston Trio helped the Ravens beat their hometown teams, Queen's and RMC, by a combined 204-88.

    Ravens freshman Anthony Ashe had a season-best 25 points vs. RMC on Saturday. (Inevitable headline: "Ashe gets some burn.") The coaches Smart each gave fans a glimpse of their teams' futures, since frosh forward Bernard Burgessen had 11 points in 14 minutes for Queen's in its 85-43 loss Friday.
  2. UBC — Tell you what, the T-Birds will be the vastly more rested team for the division final.
  3. Ottawa — Beat Queen's (100-64) and RMC (84-54) in their final tuneups before Round 2 of the Canal War next Saturday vs. Carleton. Lead guard Josh Gibson-Bascombe was held out vs. RMC, but came back with a 23-point night vs. Queen's.

    Josh Wright (15 points in 22 minutes), Dax Dessureault (14 in 16) and Warren Ward (14 in 20) were top scorers as coach Dave DeAveiro apportioned the minutes fairly evenly against the Paladins.

    The Gee-Gees would need to beat Carleton by 16 points to get home-court advantage throughout the OUA playoffs; that's would take a lot.
  4. St. FX — Swept UNB 107-68 and 99-74. Reserves Jeremy Dunn (19 points) and Sean Nickel (11 in 14 minutes) had nice nights Friday vs. coach Brent Baker's improving Varsity Reds.

  5. Western — Clinched the OUA West regular-season title by beating Waterloo 81-63 Saturday, going to 17-3 in the conference. Bradley Smith had 26 points.
  6. Calgary — The Dinos have home floor for the CW Central final vs. Alberta. One wonder how pumped Calgary coach Dan Vanhooren was for this series since he applied for the Alberta job, which went to Greg Francis.
  7. UVic The graduating Gudgeon was paramount in the Vikes' series-tying 88-75 win over Trinity Western on Friday, especially considering he was coming off a poor shooting night. He had 20 points and 11 boards, including a huge dunk late in the third quarter which cut off a Spartans rally.

    There usually dozens of factors in a series which goes the limit, with the winning team pulling off one- and two-point victories.

  8. Concordia — Veteran Dwayne Buckley, who's had a good season while coming off knee surgery, took over the scoring with 18 points in a 75-66 win at Bishop's in the return game in Lennoxville, Que., on Saturday. Damian Buckley hooped 23 in a 91-77 home win on Friday.
  9. Windsor — Swept Lakehead 95-83 and 80-60 in Thunder Bay.

    It would be remiss not to lead here with a note about the Thunderwolves fifth-year forward, Kiraan Posey. His parents were up from Baltimore to see him play for the first time ever at Lakehead. He scored 40 on Friday, and followed up with 24 more Saturday, bringing him up to 1,840 points in OUA play (second-most ever) and 2,913 in his career. He still has two games remaining.

    Isaac Kuon provided Windsor with most of its backcourt scoring Saturday. Corey Boswell, who'd given the Lancers some stable guard play, had a tough night on the scoresheet, playing 20 scoreless minutes (a possible reflection of the defensive tenacity of Lakehead's point guard, Greg Carter, who also dropped eight assists). Boswell was money Friday, going 5-of-5 from the field and 4-of-5 at the charity stripe during a 17-point, six-assist night.

  10. Trinity Western — Doerksen had just 20 points in the first two games before stepping up in the series decider on Saturday. The Spartans played three draining games, all close, where they had to deal with a lot of full-court pressure.

    The Little Man on Campus write-up from Game 1 notes that Jacob Vroom's double-double (12 points, 11 rebounds) was the X factor for the Spartans in that 64-63 win. As a personal note, it was great basketball and thanks to TWU play-by-play man Kelcey Brade for making it pretty entertaining to listen to over the past couple nights.
(The "Shot Hurd 'Round The Pacific" headline comes from UVic sports info maven Mike Tucker, I cannot tell a lie.)
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  1. the scoreboard at twu actually showed 87-85 and its lance verhoeff. jamie v is clutch.

  2. Yeah, you're right, thanks. I obviously can't be posting so late at night; was a little tricky following the radio broadcast once it was at the press-and-foul stage.