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Mark Janzen, TWU Athletics

November 29, 2013, LANGLEY, British Columbia (ISN) – The University of Victoria men’s basketball team suffered their first loss of the season, Nov. 29 against the Trinity Western Spartans. A last-minute three-pointer by Toronto native Mark Perrin, proved to be the difference for the Vikes, who drop to 8-1.

Perrin, who had missed the Spartans last five games due to injury, made a resounding return to the lineup, including hitting what proved to be a game-winning 3-pointer from 10 feet outside the arc inside the final minute of the contest.

With 57 seconds left and the Spartans shot clock winding down, Perrin drained his long range attempt to give TWU a 59-55 lead. The Vikes Mack Roth scored a quick lay-up off the ensuing possession but, with 21 seconds left, TWU’s Denny McDonald (Mississauga, Ont.) made one of his two free throw attempts to make it a 3-point game. With the clock winding down, Victoria missed a chance to tie it from beyond the perimeter and the Spartans pulled out the 3-point win.

After holding its opponents to a conference low 25.6 per cent from 3-point range all season, Victoria allowed the Spartans to hit 46.7 per cent of their long range attempts. The Vikes, who have averaged 8.5 3-pointers per game this year, were held to just two on 19 attempts.

The Spartans are now 5-4 on the season while the Vikes fall to 8-1.

Beyond Perrin, the Spartans McDonald, who sunk the first 3-pointer of his TWU career, finished with 12 points and five rebounds, while Anthony Ottley (Toronto) and Jesse Jeffers (North Vancouver, B.C.) added eight points each. Jeffers also had a team-high eight rebounds. Point guard Robert Rodriguez (Sacramento, Cali.) played a season-high 39 minutes and had five assists.

For Victoria, Terrell Evans had a game-high 21 points to go with eight rebounds while Chris McLaughlin had 15 points and a game-high 11 rebounds.

The teams will meet in a rematch Saturday at 5:30 p.m.

“It was a really good team defensive effort tonight,” said Spartans coach Scott Allen. “We still turned the ball over and showed a lack of composure a bit at the end of the game but it turned out okay today. But we can’t live and die that way. We just need to be a little bit more structured and composed at the end of the game. But we played UVic’s style of game and today we won.

“It was a great shooting day from Mark (who went 7 for 9 from the field). Last year Mark also won us a game against UVic. It seems like this is the team he likes to play against.”

Perrin had a 27-point effort in a 71-61 win over Victoria Nov. 16, 2012.

The Spartans came flying out of the gate in the first quarter as they raced to an 8-3 lead. After a Vikes timeout, Victoria responded with five straight points to tie it 8-8. But then a McDonald 3-pointer gave TWU an 11-8 lead and from there, the Spartans went on to take a 22-13 lead after the first quarter. With Victoria struggling from the field, shooting just 35.7 per cent, the Spartans took advantage, shooting 66.7 per cent themselves, and opened a nine-point lead after 10 minutes.

In the second quarter, Victoria’s shooting improved – the Vikes went 7 for 15 from the field in the quarter – and the Spartans offence almost disappeared entirely. Trinity Western went 2 for 16 from the field in the quarter and scored just four points, two of which came 20 seconds before halftime. Victoria meanwhile put up 17 points to take a 30-26 lead into the break. The Vikes went just 1 for 10 from beyond the arc in the first half.

Trinity Western rebounded in the third quarter as it was the Spartans holding Victoria to just 10 points while scoring 19 themselves.

With Victoria up 38-32, Perrin hit back-to-back 3-pointers to tie it up 38-38 and then a Justin Bakuteka (Toronto) long-range bucket made it 41-38 for the home side. From there, TWU kept pushing and after a driving lay-up from Perrin, the Spartans went to the fourth quarter up 45-40.

That set up a battle over the final 10 minutes.

After TWU went up 50-44 on a Tyler Lintell 3-pointer, the Vikes roared right back and an Evans lay-up got Victoria to within one point, 52-51. A McDonald lay-in reestablished TWU’s five-point lead at 56-51, but Victoria responded with four straight points to make it 56-55 with just over a minute to play. From there, Perrin’s 3-pointer gave the Spartans all they would need for the win as TWU held on for the three-point win.

“The first quarter was one of the best quarters we’ve ever played as a team,” Allen said. “The second quarter we were making mistakes and turning the ball over. So in the second half, we got back to what we do well and that’s moving the ball around and trying to get assists on plays.”

Game Notes: Both teams had 37 rebounds…TWU had 17 turnovers to Victoria’s 20…TWU was 1 for 5 from the free throw line while Victoria was 7 for 11.