Rams Outshoot Lancers For a Big Q-Final Win at Home
game 3 Ryerson 82 Windsor 68 – A late rally by the visiting Lancers wasn’t nearly enough, as they had fallen back by a 65-44 count after 3/4s, as the Rams, playing on the ‘Home Court’ of the Mattamy Centre seemed to have all the extra zip. Nothing fell for Windsor in a foul-plagued and sloppy opening 10 minutes, and Ryerson had far more chances off the break. The 2nd seeded Lancers may have come in flat after their superb effort in the OUA playoffs, while Ryerson felt just that much more motivated by a boisterous home crowd.
Jahmal Jones led Rams scorers with 20 pts/ 5 assists, but he had lots of help from a sharp-shooting Adika Peter-McNeilly with a 19 point / 10 rebound double. Both Aaron Best and Bjorn Michaelsen notched 10 pts. Khalid Abdel-Gabar was the top Lancers shooter, with 20 pts/ 4 assists, and Alex Cambell scored 17, Rotimi Osuntola 14.
37% shooting sabotaged any hopes Windsor had of winning this one, with Ryerson hitting 46% along with winning the rebound battle 49-39. Ryerson plays in the 2nd semi-final on Saturday against Ottawa , while Windsor is relegated to a consolation match vs Bishop’s. Box Score
Ottawa Relies on Foul Shots to Stop a Gritty Gaiters Team
game 4 – Ottawa 86 Bishop’s 80 in OT– Who said this was going to be a walk-
over for Ottawa ? (Well we did, for one !?) No one told the obviously under-rated Bishop’s Gaiters, who were on the brink of pulling off a shocker against the 29-2 Ponies. The Gaiters had established a 35-28 lead at the half, with Ottawa scoring just 9 points in the 2nd quarter. The Gee-Gees came back quickly in the 3rd, taking the slim lead, but Bishop’s rallied again and were on top 71-64 with 4 minutes left in the game.
But for a pair of fateful turnovers in the last 30 seconds, the Purple would have beaten the very long odds. A hairy 30-25 final quarter was punctuated by big shots, steals, unfortunate turnovers, and an ill-timed technical foul to the Gee-Gees.
At the end, after a bang-bang blocking call off a desperate Ottawa steal, it was Caleb Agada on the line for the Gee-Gees, who were down 2, with 1 second left in regulation … he rattles the 1st one home, then cooly strokes in the 2nd to send the game to OT. From there it was a deadly attack from an awakened Ottawa team, led by Gabriel Gonthier-Dubue, Agada, and Mike L’Africain. Bishop’s never quits, and came within 3 on a late trey, but couldn’t close.
Agada led the Ottawa scoring with 22 pts/ 9 rebs, with Johnny Berhanemeskel hitting 19, and L’Africain 17 plus 7 assists. Off the bench for Bishop’s, Jona Bermillio hit 6/10 from 3 pt range for 23 points, with Mike Andrews recording an impressive 17 pt/ 18 rebound double.
The Gee-Gees win it from the line, scoring on 25/40 attempts vs just 9/13 for the Gaiters. Bishop’s out-rebounded Ottawa 53-34, but the Purple suffered with 28 huge turnovers, and that eventually did them in. Box Score
- Coach Roy Rana, Ryerson Rams, on his feelings about his team reaching the Nationals as the host, “ For myself, I have a vested interest in the tournament just as much as I have vested interest in our team performing. I want to see this be a real success for Toronto, it’s something I take great pride in. It’s a little taxing but I’m going to work hard on both ends. I’m not complaining. “ “This has been a very, very special season for this team. It’s a special, incredible group of young men that have matured nicely and I loved every minute of it. I’m glad that the vision I had, the possibilities, it’s finally come together.” From a story in North Pole Hoops by Ray Bala.
- Saskatchewan Coach, Barry Rawlyk, understandably disappointed after Thursday’s 1st round loss to Carleton, “It’s very disappointing because I don’t think we put our best foot forward,” said Rawlyk. “Carleton’s a very strong team … we didn’t do ourselves any favours. Now we’ve got to reload and get prepared to play (Friday in the Consolation semi) and hopefully we play a little better.”