(ISN) – Reigning Canada West MVP Jamelle Barett’s 36 points powered the No. 3 ranked University of Saskatchewan Huskies to a 98-83 win over the Trinity Western University Spartans in a Canada West best-of-three quarter-final series Friday night at the PAC in Saskatoon.
Barrett scored 10 points in the final quarter and none bigger than a three pointer with 6:54 remaining to give the Huskies an 11 point lead, their first double-digit lead of the night. From there the Huskies never looked back. The Spartans tried to close the gap but they were unable to shut down the high-powered Huskie offence, which shot 58.7% from the field.
The win gives the Huskies a 1-0 lead in the series. The winner of the series earns a trip to the Canada West Final Four. If the Huskies win, Saskatchewan would host the Canada West Championship for the first time in history.
Saskatchewan had three other players who finished with double-digit point totals on the night. Fifth-year guard Duncan Jones finished with 14 while fifth-year forward Michael Lieffers and second-year Ben Baker finished with 12 and 10 points respectively.
Baker was cut badly in the first half and wasn’t able to return into the game until the fourth quarter. Baker’s returned sparked the Huskies. He scored eight points in the quarter to help close out the Spartans.
Trinity Western was lead off the bench by fifth-year forward Kyle Coston who put up a team high 25 points while going 3-5 from beyond the arc. Fifth-year guard Sean Peter scored 16 points but only managed 4 points in the second half.
The Spartans were able to capitalize off of Huskie turnovers in the first half scoring 16 points off giveaways but only managed two in the second half.
Saskatchewan won the battle on the glass, out rebounding the Spartans 46-29.
Game 2 is set for 8 p.m. at the PAC Saturday. Game 3, if necessary, will be Sunday at 8 p.m.