It's not for nothing Aaron Doornekamp wears No. 11 for Team Canada.
The Carleton Ravens alumnus, to quote Spinal Tap, provided the extra push over the cliff by draining two three-pointers in the final quarter in Canada's near-heart-stopping 80-76 win over the Dominican Republic at the FIBA Americas qualifier on Friday. The first stretched the lead from three to six, and the second, with 1:26 left, opened a four-point edge, the final winning margin for Canada's cardiac kids. He also had something to do with Dominican forward Charlie Villanueva, the one-time Toronto Raptor, having a 7-for-20 shooting night.
The old theatre line about how there are no small roles comes to mind. This was all about monster efforts from Jermaine Anderson, Carl English, Andy Rautins, Jesse Young and Levon Kendall, first and foremost. Still, there is a little symbolism involved with a player from a Canadian university playing a big part in what hopefully was a watershed moment for Canada Basketball. There really is not a whole lot more to add. The tweets Charlie V. posted after the game also convey what a stomach-punch loss it was for the Dominicans, who have not been to the worlds since 1978.
Greater hoser hoops minds can better tell the broader story, presumably once they have been peeled off the ceiling. Doug Smith of the Toronto Star wrote, "The magnitude of the win cannot be overstated. With solid development programs at the under-19 and under-17 levels, Canada desperately needed to see some success at the senior level to give the teenagers something to aspire to."
Canada qualifies! (Mark Wacyk, cishoops.ca)
Odessa basketball star helps Canada qualify for world championship (Kingston Whig-Standard)