- UBC Thunderbirds (14-1 CW Pacific, 1st RPI) — Young Bucholtz took in the 'Birds bounce-back 77-68 win over Simon Fraser on Saturday, which could be the last game of any kind for a while between the teams (due to cross-over playoffs and things of that nature).
The 82-79 loss to the Clan on Thursday is broken out elsewhere.
- Carleton (15-1 OUA-E, 2nd RPI) — Surprising tight outcome (78-70 win) over Ryerson on Saturday, but it was their third game in four nights plus Kevin McCleery (14 in 19 minutes) was limited before fouling out. Boris Bakovic had 31 for Ryerson — which wasn't even the best night by a guy playing in a game in Ottawa on Saturday.
Fun fact: the Carleton men and women each had five double-digit scorers on Saturday and Ottawa had a player score 30 or more in each of its games. Crazy coincidence.
McCleery went for at least 20 in Carleton's first two games: 22 in a 75-53 win over Toronto on Friday and 24 two nights earlier when Carleton beat Ottawa 74-66 in the Capital Hoops Classic.
Talk about taking away the other team's best scoring guard: Toronto's Nick Magalas was held to six (27 less than he had in the first U of T-Carleton game) on Friday and Ottawa's Josh Gibson-Bascombe had just 13 (seven below his average).
On Wednesday, up 15 coming out of recess, Carleton sagged a bit at the start of the second half when Ottawa made a 14-2 run to get within three. Cole Hobin got a big old-fashioned three-point play, tipping home an in-and-out Thompson shot as part of a 15-3 run to cancel out the Ottawa surge.
There was a bit of a fatigue factor, since Hobin had to guard Gibson-Bascombe, who played all 40 minutes. The Ravens turned it over a bit — 16 turnovers, half of which were attributed to McCleery — so they weren't as efficient as they would have liked.
- St. Francis Xavier (13-0 AUS, 3rd RPI) — Beat UPEI on Sunday by a closer margin (91-85) than you would like to see, with Christian "T-Bear" Upshaw gutting out a 25-point, eight-assist, five-steal day (six turnovers and just 6-of-21 shooting). UPEI, which played St. FX even for the first three quarters, shot an effective 56.7% to put a scare into the X-Men. Ottawa native Manock Lual had 27 for the Panthers.
Jeremy Dunn and Chad Warren each had 18 points in a romp over UNB (95-78) on Saturday.
Smushed Saint Mary's by 36 points on Wednesday (95-59), with Charlie Spurr leading a three-point bridage by making 6-of-9 for all of his team-high 18 points. Other popout stat is 7-foot-2 Riiny Ngot having four blocked shots in 12 minutes.
- Cape Breton (11-1 AUS, 4th RPI) — Anyone in Sydney who likes seeing a lot of points got their money's worth. The Capers hit a hundred in both games vs. Memorial (118-72 on Saturday, 106-70 on Sunday). The generosity extended to the scorer's table; Cape Breton was credited with 31 assists on 37 baskets on Sunday and 22 steals.
The Capers seem to have smooth sailing from here until Feb. 17, when they play two in a row vs. St. FX.
- Ottawa (14-3 OUA-E, 9th RPI) — Two out of three was pretty good; they beat Toronto (89-69) and Ryerson (82-73) after losing early on in the week to Carleton (74-66).
Warren Ward had a career night vs. U of T, scoring 38 points on 15-of-20. He made 11-of-12 in the first half, including all three of his triples, to finish with 25 at the break. His eye-popping statline probably shows how far Josh Gibson-Bascombe (19 points, nine assists on Saturday) has come with getting teammates involved.
All told, WWJD (or Gibson's Finest Worldwide") scored 69% of Ottawa's points this week by our count. The Gee-Gees' glass half full is they only lost to Carleton by eight (74-66) despite Gibson-Bascombe (13 points, nine assists) not scoring his first basket until the game was 33 minutes old. The big three (JGB, Ward and Donnie Gibson) was 2-of-16 shooting in the opening half. They showed some character, not to mention their talent, in making a third-quarter run.
- Calgary (12-4 CW Prairie, 6th RPI) — In progress vs. Regina. Jarred Ogunbemi-Jackson (28 points, six assists) led the way in Friday's 91-74 Dinos win over the Cougars. (Speaking of that nickname, did anyone else notice Washington State has "Cougs" on the front of its basketball uniforms? Too slangy.)
- Simon Fraser (12-3 CW Pacific, 4th RPI) — See No. 1. They're in a pretty good position to challenge for one of Canada West's two playoff berths, or a Final 8 wild card.
(One small note/face-saving move: Canada West is actually different from other conferences with tiebreakers; it uses records within the divisions instead of head-to-head. UBC and Simon Fraser are each 6-1 within the Pac-D (the Clan had two losses to Prairie teams), so if the T-Birds stumbled ... just sayin'.)
- Lakehead (12-4 OUA-W, 8th RPI) — The good news: They're still first in OUA West after losing by more than 20 (87-65) at Windsor on Saturday, thanks to the heroics of Jamie Searle (29 points, seven three-pointers) in an 89-87 OT win over the Lancers on Friday.
Searle went from sick shooting to sic transit gloria — he was 0-for-8 from the field in the second game. Lakehead made 30 three-pointers in the two games. You can imagine how few two-point shots they hit on Saturday.
A good debate starter: Is every team in the OUA West good, or is every team just about average? On the whole, you prefer a league with no sure things.
Lakehead is at home for two of the final three weekends. Their road trip is to Brock.
- Windsor (11-5 OUA-W, 7th RPI) — Isaac Kuon (26 points Friday, 24 on Saturday) was paramount in both games as the Lancers didn't get the full result they were seeking, but a gained a tiebreaker advantage over Lakehead. They seem to be slightly more consistent of the OUA West leaders, but the division has been so volatile there are four teams you could imagine making it to the Final 8 (and the OUA play-in game, should one be required, is West-hosted).
- Dalhousie (9-5 AUS, 18th RPI) — Held both their opponents under 60 this weekend, beating UNB (69-55) on Sunday and UPEI (76-58) the day before. Joseph Schow had 20 points in the Sunday game; Andrew Sullivan totalled 27 for the weekend, making 7-of-12 threes. When he's on, Dal can be daunting.
Saturday, Simon Farine scored 26 and the Tigers' D limited the Panthers to an effective 37% from the field.