|CANADIAN TIRE CENTRE|
|Pts: Stephon Lamar – 25||Pts: Regis Ivaniukas – 17|
|Reb: Ben Baker – 10||Reb: Francois Bourque – 10|
|Ast: Stephon Lamar – 5||Ast: Vincent Dufort – 3|
|Field Goal %||46.6% (27-58)||27.0% (20-74)|
|Pts off Turnovers||14||13|
|2nd Chance Pts||6||17|
|Pts in the Paint||40||14|
Courtesy of host organizing committee / Photo creditPhoto credit Valerie Wutti
OTTAWA (CIS) – For the second straight game in theArcelorMittal Dofasco CIS Final 8 men’s basketballconsolation bracket, the lower seed defeated the higher one. Thistime, the eighth-seeded University of Saskatchewan Huskies beat theNo. 5 McGill Redmen by a 75-59 margin in a Saturday afternoon gameat the Canadian Tire Centre.
Saskatchewan earned the at-large berth for the tournament afterwinning the bronze medal in the Canada West, while McGill qualifiedby winning the RSEQ championship.
Huskies coach Barry Rawlyk said he was proud of how well histeam competed, especially with the game being a season finale sincethere is no consolation final in this year’s tournament.
“These are tough games to be playing in and you alwayswonder about the psyche of that whole thing, but at the end of theday it’s our last game of the season and we wanted to comeout and obviously as well as we could,” he said.
He said losing in their quarter-final game against theUniversity of Ottawa Friday night was difficult, but his team arecompetitors who were ready to play.
“We’ve had a very tough year in terms of battlingour way through our conference, and finishing out of our conferenceis no small accomplishment in the Canada West this year,” hesaid. “I was sure they were going to battle all the waythrough today.”
The Huskies were victorious largely due to a dominant firstquarter where they outscored the Redmen by a convincing 27-8margin.
“They’re a good team, everybody’s good. So tocome out with a good start like that, it most definitely helpedwith the win,” Huskies fourth-year all-Canadian guard StephonLamar said.
Lamar, named player of the game for Saskatchewan, scored agame-high 25 points on eight of 18 shots from the field.
McGill cut the Saskatchewan lead to as few as 13 points, but theHuskies relied on its veterans to hang on and pull out the 16-pointvictory.
Lamar, Andrew Henry, Ben Baker and Dadrian Collins are all intheir fourth season with the team, and third-year forward MattForbes is the lone Saskatchewan starter not in his fourth year.
That starting lineup wound up scoring a staggering 71 of theHuskies’ 75 total points in the game.
Rawlyk said the play of his veterans was a major reason for histeam’s success in its consolation game.
“We’ve leaned on four or five of those guys prettyheavily all year,” he said. “They’re used toplaying those heavy minutes.”
Unlike the veteran leadership for Saskatchewan, McGill has avery young roster. In fact, Redmen guard Simon Bibeau is the onlyplayer on its entire team in his fourth or fifth season.
Bibeau was named player of the game for his team thanks to his14 points, including three from the land beyond. However, his teamas a whole shot just 27 per cent from the floor, significantlyworse than the Huskies’ 46.6 shooting percentage.
While McGill’s youth suggests room for even moreimprovement in the future, Saskatchewan may have an even older teamnext season as well. With four starters in their fourth years ofeligibility, there is a chance all four players return for a fifthand final season.
Lamar said the potential return of age and experience on nextyear’s roster should help the Huskies build on thisyear’s success.
“I most definitely think we have a shot at another shot atanother national title and be here next year if [all the seniorsreturn],” he said.
Before the Carleton Ravens began their run of three straightCanadian titles, the Huskies were the last team to win a nationalchampionship – the first and only CIS crown in programhistory – in 2010.
Lamar said his team’s goal for next season is to bring anational championship back to Saskatchewan, but is happy with histeam’s performance at nationals this year.
“We were most definitely blessed to get the wildcardspot,” he said. “We just wanted to come and show peoplethat we’re a good team on a national stage, and I think wedid that this weekend.”
SSK: 27-16-15-17: 75
McG: 8-16-21-14: 59
Points: Stephon Lamar (25), Dadrian Collins (17), MattForbes (14), Ben Baker (13)
Rebounds: Ben Baker (10), Matt Forbes (9)
Assists: Stephon Lamar (5)
Player of the game: Stephon Lamar
Points: Regis Ivaniukas (17), Simon Bibeau (14)
Rebounds: François Bourque (10), Nathan Joyal (7), VincentDufort (7)
Assists: Vincent Dufort (3)
Player of the game: Simon Bibeau
CHAMPIONSHIPSCHEDULE (all times EASTERN TIME)
Friday, March 7
12:30 Quarter-final 1: Alberta 72, Saint Mary’s62
14:30 Quarter-final 2: Carleton 82, McMaster 64
17:30 Quarter-final 3: Victoria 63, McGill 54
20:00 Quarter-final 4: Ottawa 94, Saskatchewan 73
Saturday, March 8
12:30 Consolation 1: McMaster 98, Saint Mary’s71
14:30 Consolation 2: Saskatchewan 75, McGill 59
18:00 Semifinal 1: No. 3 Alberta vs. No. 2 Carleton (Sportsnet 360/ www.CIS-SIC.tv *)
20:00 Semifinal 2: No. 4 Victoria vs. No. 1 Ottawa (Sportsnet 360 /www.CIS-SIC.tv *)
* The webcast of all 3 televised games (semifinals & final)will be on pay-per-view basis.
About Canadian Interuniversity Sport
Canadian Interuniversity Sport is the national governing body ofuniversity sport in Canada. Every year, 11,000 student-athletes and700 coaches from 55 universities and four regional associations viefor 21 national championships in 12 different sports. CIS alsoprovides high performance international opportunities for Canadianstudent-athletes at Winter and Summer Universiades, as well asnumerous world university championships. For further information,visit www.cis-sic.ca or followus on: