Kamloops, BC—It is a good thing that sports is actually played rather than just decided on paper. If that were the case, Friday’s Canada West men’s basketball tilt would have been a mismatch.
The 12-2 Thompson Rivers University WolfPack entertained the 3-11 University of Northern British Columbia Timberwolves on the Warner Rentals Court at the Tournament Capital Centre. The final score was 87-70 for the WolfPack.
But, it was the Timberwolves who came out of the gate strong and held a 24-13 advantage over Thompson Rivers after the first quarter. TRU was up 44-35 at the half and 63-52 at three quarter time.
“It was a tight ball game,” said WolfPack head coach Scott Clark. “UNBC shot the ball really well and played very hard. For a team that is not in the playoff picture, they could have rolled over. Full credit to them.”
The WolfPack had five players in double figures led by Josh Wolfram (5th year, forward, Kamloops, BC). He had 25 points and eight rebounds. Volodymyr Iegorov (4th year, forward, Donetsk, Ukraine) had 21 points to go with 10 rebounds. Luke Morris (3rd year, forward, Mission, BC) added 13 points while Gerard Gore (5th year, forward, St. John’s, ANT) added 10 points.
Clark says his team needs to improve on its defense but he said scoring 87 points and shooting 52 per cent from the field was a plus. “The issue is that defensively you need to know who you are guarding and what they are capable of. We didn’t do a very good job of that and will have to do better tomorrow.”
“I don’t think the score reflected the effort we put in today” explains Timberwolves head coach Todd Jordan. “ I was happy with our guys. We had a really weak second quarter that put us in a tough spot. We are pretty banged up and injured and have a lot of young guys seeing lots of minutes.”
For UNBC: Marcus MacKay (3rd year, guard, Terrace, BC) was red hot scoring a game high 27 points. Rhys Elliot (4th year, guard, Adelaide, Australia) added 11 points with Elliot Rowe notching 10 points.
The two teams will play again Saturday (Feb 6) at the Tournament Capital Centre. Tip off is 7 pm.