Badgers split opening two games
Published: Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, November 14, 2012 14:11
The Brock University Men’s Basketball team came up one point shy of a two game sweep as they opened their OUA regular season at home Nov. 9-10.
Opening night featured the Laurentian Voyageurs and last year’s Ontario University Athletics (OUA) leading scorer Manny Pasquale (Victoria, BC). The Voyageurs took a 25-19 lead into the second quarter and stretched it to a 13 point differential (38-25) with 4:44 remaining in the half.
The Badgers would heat up to go on a 19-7 run cutting the Voyageurs’ lead down to a single point heading into half time. Michael Williams (Brampton, Ont.) would lead the charge with eight points in 50 seconds of play including back-to-back three-pointers. Freshman Isaack Egueh (Ottawa, Ont.) would have four points, but added a steal and three assists to facilitate the run as the Badgers hit four of their last five field goals of the half.
Laurentian would go on to rebuild their margin and led by as much as 15 points with 9:04 remaining in the fourth quarter. The Badgers would hit seven field goals in a row as they clawed the deficit back to five points, capped off by an And-one conversion by Mike Luby (Kenora, Ont.) with 3:52 remaining.
Brock was able to apply enough defensive pressure to force three steals and score on four straight field goal attempts to take an 89-85 lead. The Badgers also made their free throws, going 9-11 in the final quarter to pull out the 93-88 win.
Mark Gibson (Toronto, Ont.) led all scorers with 26 points including three buckets from beyond the arc, while adding game highs with eight boards and three blocks. Egueh was one assist shy of a 20 point -10 assist double-double. Luby, Tshing Kasamba (St. Catharines, Ont.) and Jameson Tipping (Orangeville, Ont.) also hit double digits in scoring with 12, 13 and 12 points respectively. Tipping and Brian Nahimana (London, Ont.) cleaned the glass with seven boards each. Overall Brock shot 50.8 per cent on 32-63 shooting.
Against York, the Badgers shooting trailed off, and it would be free throws that would eventually cost them the 70-69 loss. The Badgers would lead 65-63 with 2:10 remaining following a Gibson split from the charity stripe. An And-one from the Lions Daniel Tulloch (Mississauga, Ont.) and a David Tyndale (Mississauga, Ont.) three-pointer put York up by three with 1:07 remaining.
A Kasamba three-pointer would tie things back up but York’s last point would prove to be the margin of victory as Tyndale split a pair of free throws with 12 seconds remaining.
Badger highlights included three dunks from Nahimana, Kek Biel (Windsor, Ont.) and Kasamba respectively. Nahimana flushed a two hander on an easy transition bucket following a York turnover in the first quarter. Biel threw down a thundering one-hander off an Egueh steal and assist just minutes into the second quarter. Kasamba slammed home a one-hander over a defender with powerful athleticism in the final frame, bringing fans to their feet.
Unfortunately, the free throw line would prove to be their Achilles’ heel. Brock was a dismal 9-25 from the free throw line, worse than both their field goal (38.8 per cent) and three point percentages (40 per cent). Statistically speaking, Brock would have performed better taking their shots from the three point line, all other things being equal.
In consolation, Gibson had 25 points, six boards and four steals. Kasamba’s four three-pointers contributed towards a 20 point performance, while Tipping scored 10 and chipped in eight rebounds and four assists.
The Badgers next home game will be Nov. 23 at 8:00 p.m. against Queen’s.