FINAL — Carleton 91, Thompson Rivers 75
Impact for/on the Ravens — Through to final four for the 14th consecutive season, where they will be in the 6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. semifinal against the Calgary-McGill victor. Ryan Ejim (26 and 14 on 78.6% EFG) won the Battle of Bigs against 'Lord' Volodymyr Iegorov (14/10 over 39-plus minutes, 43.4% EFG). Then there was stretch-three Tajinder Lall, who did not score in three Wilson Cup matches, scoring 15 in 23 on 87.5%.
That off-set a rough shooting day from lead guard Kaza Keane (1-of-15, but 9:5 assists/turnovers) and an intermittent day by fourth-year volume shooter Connor Wood (18 points on 51.9 EG).
Impact for/on the WolfPack — Huge. Scott Clark's WolfPack didn't have the juice for a full 40, but for 30 they played well and repped the Interior and Explorer Division. It was a one-point game until the final seconds of the third, when a Carleton basket and a Reese Pribilisky turnover that Marcus Anderson parlayed into a buzzer layup and 65-60 three-quarters lead.
Gerald Gore topped TRU with 22 in their Final 8 debut.
Entertainment value — B+
"Mom, make Dad tell the story right! "That's what really happened ..."
- With all the blue seats in The Mitch, as it shall henceforth be known, and a lot of TRU fans in orange, it kind of evoked 1980s Edmonton Oilers jerseys. I mentioned this frequently, hoping it could be a trigger in this old seaside Smythe Division city.
- This would be a great game to share with the people who fill out brackets for the Shamateur Sports Hunger Games Hoops Invitational, and base picks because, 'oh, that team was in the Final Four a few years ago.'
Carleton started winning titles before TRU got university status.
- First quarter: TRU showed they could physically match the Ravens, and Carleton surged last for the 29-23 after-10 lead. The worrying thing was that TRU had a 75% eFG (6-9 2PT 3-5 3PT)
- Tajinder Lall, the gunner outta Galt, checked in and he and fellow frosh Marcus Anderson combined to triple thrice in succession. That off-set Connor Wood having a 35.7% eFG in the first 20.
- Second quarter was a lot tighter, with some tough misses after everyone had seen everyone's tricks. Ryan Ejim got his combo-forward repertoire working, finishing the half with 11 and seven across 12 minutes. Ravens by five at recess.
- Third quarter, where one is conditioned, or maybe resigned, to seeing the Carletons of yore run away with it. The WolfPack are a-comin', though. Reese Pribilisky with an in-front-of-the-bench wing triple; Volodymyr Iegerov bulls through the toughest interior D in Canada for a layin. There's couple lead changes, as some Ejim takes keep Carleton out front.
- At the media timeout, Ravens 49-WolfPack 48.
- A Wood-from-Wood triple restores Carleton, 53-50, at 4:15. That ended a dry spell where Carleton had missed 11-of-12 triples. Another Connor Wood triple for a four-point lead followed almost immediately thereafter.
- Details: Reese Pribilsky, the fifth-year guard, over a three-possession span. Good drive/dish for a layup that got TRU within one, but had a turnover that led to Anderson's buzzer layup and it's five points again after 30 minutes.
- Kaza Keane missed his first 14 shots, and yet his team is winning. Lall's face-up jumper is so fundamental that he should be called Canadarm.
- Gavin Resch rips off an expiring-clock triple for the largest lead, 70-60, 8:46 left.
- Keane's first make all day was a deep two from the left corner with 6:30 left.
- At about 4:25, Pribilisky changed pace on the drive and got to the cup, but Lall's length and a well-timed backboard slap created a miss.
- The dagger: Connor Wood's triple for an 82-69 lead with 3:36 left. A turnover led to a Tajinder Lall dunk 12 seconds later.
- Each team walked off their starters with 27.8 seconds left.
- Carleton by quarters; 29, 10, 27, 26.