By Ali Lee, Vikes Communications
January 14, 2014, VICTORIA (ISN) – After splitting the weekend with two CIS top-10 teams, the No. 5 University of Victoria Vikes men’s basketball team are just 10 games away from the post-season.
This weekend, January 17-18, the Vikes will visit the UNBC Timberwolves in Prince George, B.C. for a pocket of games and an opportunity to improve their current 10-2 record. UNBC are currently 4-8 and will host the Pacific Division leaders at Northern Sport Centre.
The Vikes stormed McKinnon gym this past weekend as they edged the No. 8 Saskatchewan Huskies 55-46, on Jan. 10, in front of a jam-packed Vikes Nation crowd. Despite the roaring stands, both teams struggled to get on the board with Terrell Evans held to 12 points and Kyle Peterson earning 10.
The following night, the Vikes were tied at 29 after 20 minutes of play with the No. 3 Alberta Golden Bears. The visitors ran away with the game in the third quarter but the Vikes made a huge come back to cut Alberta’s final lead to only three. The Bears took the game 61-58 but the Vikes had three players in double digits, including senior Evans who was four-for-five on threes made and totaled 20 points. This was Victoria’s second loss of the season.
Also making a splash for the Vikes was the return of third-year transfer Marcus Tibbs who missed the first half of the season due to injury. Still transitioning back, Tibbs showed his potential to be a difference maker, offering huge support to the already present and talented veterans of Evans, Reiner Theil and Chris McLaughlin.
The Vikes currently boast the conference’s top scoring defence, allowing an average of 56.1 points per game. Evans is sixth in the conference for scoring, averaging 17.8 points per game, while McLaughlin is fourth in rebounding averaging 8.4 per game.
The Timberwolves are coming off a successful weekend despite splitting their series 1-1 with a win over Calgary and a triple-overtime loss to Lethbridge. Six-foot-seven forward forward Franck Olivier Kouagnia led the Timberwolves in their 80-66 win over Calgary, finishing the night with 17 points. In the 126-120 loss to the Pronghorns, seven players hit double digits, including team leader Jibreel Stevens. Fifth-year forward Charles Barton will also be a player to watch as the six-foot-three Vernon, B.C. native has lead UNBC in scoring for six of their opening games.
The Vikes and Timberwolves will go head-to-head for two games on January 17 and 18 at the Northern Sport Centre at 8 p.m. pacific time. Both games will be broadcast with live video and stats at canadawest.tv.