Vikes give up lead late, fall to Cascades in Abbotsford

ABBOTSFORD, B.C. – The UVic Vikes men’s basketball team led from the final minute of the first quarter all the way until the last minute of play, but couldn’t hold on at the end as they lost 87-83 to the University of Fraser Valley Cascades on February 3.

“We didn’t execute very well down the stretch on offence, they continued to score and we got a little panicky in big possessions down the stretch,” said Vikes head coach Craig Beaucamp. “There were some really key moments where we needed a good possession and we didn’t get it.”

Manny Dulay, the outstanding fifth-year point guard with UFV, put on a phenomenal shooting show against the Vikes, counting eight three-pointers among his game-high 36 points to power the Cascades to a thrilling 87-83 come-from-behind win.

Dulay got hot after the first quarter, going 10-for-10 from the field, including 8-for-8 from beyond the arc, for 30 points by the end of the third with the crowd getting louder with every triple that splashed through.

The Vikes, though, were red-hot themselves – the Cascades simply couldn’t stop them in the third quarter. The visitors racked up 33 points in the frame while shooting 80 per cent as a team from the field, and took a 73-65 lead to the fourth.

But after being carried by Dulay to that point, the rest of the Cascades joined him in the fourth. UFV finally found some defensive traction, limiting the Vikes to 10 points in the quarter, and rallied for the win.

“They stepped it up defensively in the fourth to get stops and we didn’t,” said Beaucamp. “We made a lot of mental mistakes, as well as Fraser Valley played we also hurt ourselves.”

Dulay didn’t make a field goal in the fourth – his three-pointer from the left wing with about 40 seconds left in regulation had everyone in the gym rising to their feet before it rimmed out – and it was Andrew Morris who put on the hero’s cape in the dying seconds. His three-pointer from the top of the key with 1:25 remaining gave the Cascades their first lead of the second half (84-83) and he hit a free throw with 21 seconds left to make it a two-point game.

Along with his 36 points, Dulay added seven assists and four rebounds. Morris scored 14 points, and Bains had 10.

It was a mixture of experience and youth that got it done on the offensive side of the ball for UVic.

Fifth-year Vike Grant Sitton racked up 26 points, including four triples, nine rebounds and five assists. First year Vikes JJ Hamel-Carey and Scott Kellum also made big contributions, scoring 15 and 11 points respectively.

“We played really well in some phases and in others we didn’t play smart,” said Beaucamp. “We didn’t get it done and will try to be better tomorrow.”

The Cascades (8-9, tied for eighth in Canada West) and Vikes (7-10, tied for 12th) clash again on Saturday at 7 p.m. at the Envision Athletic Centre.

UVIC: 21-19-33-10: 83
UFV: 13-24-28-22: 87

UVIC: G. Sitton (26), JJ. Hamel-Carey (15), S. Kellum (11)
UFV: M. Dulay (36), A. Morris (14), N. Bains (10)

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