Cascades explode for CIS season-high 123 points in win over MacEwan

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MBB vs MRU Jan10-15-slider2Coming into Friday’s road game vs. the MacEwan Griffins, it seemed pretty clear that three-point shooting was the University of the Fraser Valley men’s basketball team’s Achilles heel on offence.


By game’s end, that line of thinking appeared absurd.

The Cascades were dead last in Canada West in three-point shooting percentage, hitting just 26.9 per cent of their heaves from downtown prior to Friday. But they were downright sizzling against the Griffins, swishing 20 of 33 attempts.

Manny Dulay led the way, going 7-for-9 from beyond the arc en route to a game-high 23 points, and seven UFV players hit at least one triple in a 123-67 blowout victory.

The Cascades, ranked No. 7 in the nation, boosted their Explorers Division-leading record to 11-0 and recorded their 25th straight victory in Canada West regular season play. MacEwan fell to 4-7.

“I’ve never been worried about shooting with us,” UFV head coach Adam Friesen said afterward. “Sometimes you go through stretches where you don’t hit as many as you like.

“But we also did it to ourselves, taking tough shots and off-rhythm shots (earlier in the season). Tonight, we were shooting them in rhythm and with space, and that hadn’t always been happening. When those two things happen, we’re for sure going to shoot better than 25 per cent.”

UFV’s 123-point outburst was the most prolific single-game offensive output in Canada West this season by a huge margin – the next-best performance was by the Regina Cougars, who put up 107 points vs. the Trinity Western Spartans last Friday. Beyond that, the century mark has only been eclipsed three other times this season.

The 56-point margin of victory was also the largest in the conference this season.

The Cascades’ 123 points are also a season-high across the entire CIS – the next-highest output is 113 points, accomplished twice by the No. 1-ranked Ottawa Gee-Gees.

Vijay Dhillon also had a great night from downtown, going 5-for-6 on three-pointers en route to 21 points, while other double-figure scorers for UFV included Kevon Parchment (19 points), Nate Brown (17), Jasper Moedt (15) and Kadeem Willis (15).

Brandon Sackey paced the Griffins with 18 points off the bench.

Friesen said his team’s offensive breakthrough was largely due to their effort on defence.

“The last two weeks, all we’ve worked on in practice is defence, and turning defence into offence,” he said. “Tonight we were in transition and getting a lot of momentum, because we were getting a lot of stops in a row.

“No question, it was our best performance. But it was also our most disciplined performance and our best defensive performance. That has to be the takeaway. The shots we hit were fun and exciting, but we have to understand why we played well.”

The Cascades and Griffins play again on Saturday in Edmonton, tipping off at 6 p.m. Pacific time.

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