Preview- Calgary-UFV, TRU-Sask.

Can point man, Manny Dulay, guide his Cascades to another Canada West Final 4?

Can point man, Manny Dulay, guide his Cascades to another Canada West Final 4? Photo – UFV Cascades Athletics

 

Dinos at Cascades  –  2nd Seed  On Home Court

As Fraser Valley Coach Adam Friesen suggests, the Cascades “ … have been pretty good at protecting our home court.” His team is 11-2 vs CIS schools at Abbotsford this season, and the visiting Dinos will be hard-pressed to win twice this weekend.  But, the Dinos come of a 2 game sweep of Manitoba in Calgary last week, and, coincidently, the Cascades lost to Thompson Rivers in their final home League tilt.

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UFV has a veteran group, home court, a tenacious defense, and a handful of guys – Manny Dulay, Kevon Parchment, Jasper Moedt, Dominique Brooks – who can give decisive efforts.  Depth is a question, with big man Nate Brown getting only sparse action over the final 2 weeks of the schedule.  Calgary has a 9-10 deep rotation, with Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson their obvious court leader, aided by Phil Barndt, Dallas Karch, Josh Owen-Thomas, Lars Schleuter, and LJ Hegwood who all log consistent minutes each time out.

Prediction – Who hits the shots?  Who plays better defense?  Who controls the boards?  This may be a 3-game toss-up, although you have to give an edge to UFV for their 1st place finish and overall record.  ( 6 pm Pacific – Fri /Sat )

 

Dadrian Collins is a deadly outside threat for the #1 seeded Huskies.

Dadrian Collins is a deadly outside threat for the #1 seeded Huskies.

Huskies Heavy Favourites Despite Alternate Gym

The Saskatchewan Huskies are very tough to beat on their home court at the PAC (12-1 this season), and they’ve earned that advantage through the playoffs, if they beat Thompson Rivers this weekend.  But wait !  They’ve been bumped (by the CIS V-Ball Tournament … MT!) over to the cozier confines of St. Joseph’s HS gym for games 1 and 2.  Still, it’s Saskatoon (-30 C presently, just to greet the B.C. boys!), and the 15-5 Sled Dogs are anxious to make short work of the visiting Wolf Pack, and stay home for the Final 4. TRU comes in after a 2 game sweep of Winnipeg, and has built some confidence with their last 2 weeks of ‘playoff competition’.

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The Huskies get it inside, shoot more free throws, and have a big rebounding edge; they add quality depth with Mike Scott, Evan Ostertag, and Connor Burns.The ‘Pack can be 9-10 deep, but need exceptional offensive efforts from vets like Brett Parker, and Tallon Milne.  Prediction – TRU will not be over-run, with their defensive effort holding them in, but the Huskies just have more experience and depth.  A two game sweep seems likely.   ( 7 pm Central, Fri/Sat )

 

This Week’s Quarter-Finals Schedule for Canada West –

Thurs –  UNBC at UBC,  Alberta at UVic   both are 7 pm Pacific

Friday – TRU at Saskatchewan – 7pm Central,  Calgary at UFV – 6 pm Pacific

Alberta at UVic – 7 pm Pacific,  UNBC at UBC – 8 pm Pacific

Saturday –  TRU at Saskatchewan – 7pm Central, Calgary at UFV – 6 pm Pacific

If necessary … Alberta at UVic  and  UNBC at UBC – both at 7pm Pacific

Sunday –    if necessary … Calgary at UFV – 2 pm PST, TRU at Saskatchewan – 7pm  CST

 

VG's Ryan Bennett scores 30 on 9/18 from 3 pt range in win over

VG’s Ryan Bennett scores 30 on 9/18 from 3 pt range in win over York.

CIS Scores from the East –

OUA Playoffs – 

Lakehead 69  Guelph 48, W. Laurier 90  Western 82, Windsor 85 Toronto 71, Laurentian 87 York 84

Saturday Q-Finals –

#5 Windsor at #4 McMaster,

Lakehead at #1 Carleton,

Laurentian at #2 Ottawa,

W. Laurier at #3 Ryerson.

 

Overtime –

  • How does U of S’ Ben Baker get to be a 2-time winner of CW Defensive Player of the Year ?  Here’s how, as described by Huskies Coach Barry Rawlyk, “He plays all over the place,” said Rawlyk, “but the major thing with him is he’s been asked to guard every team’s most prolific scorer and he does remarkably well regardless of what position his opponent plays.”  Also, “His ability to rebound the ball, to end defensive possessions, has been key to our success all year,” stressed Rawlyk. From a Star-Phoenix article by Darren Zary.
  •  Canada West champions from the past 15 seasons:  UBC (5) – 2003, 2007, 2008, 2011, 2013;  Alberta (3) – 2005, 2012, 2014; Calgary (2) – 2004, 2009;  Victoria (2) – 2001, 2006; Saskatchewan (1) – 2010; Brandon (1) – 2002.  The Vikes lead all-time , with 14 titles, Alberta has 11, UBC 10, Calgary 4, and Lethbridge, Brandon and Saskatchewan 1 each. (Remember that schools like Brandon, Regina, Winnipeg, Manitoba have titles from the Great Plains Conference prior to joining Canada West).
  • Long, tall, and super-dedicated Western Saskatchewan veteran referee, Art
    Art, the cowboy, with sons Chris (L) and Clint ®.

    Art, the cowboy, with sons Chris (L) and Clint ®. Back in the day !

    Unsworth, on his ‘Junior Mentors’ program for encouraging young officials – “The biggest obstacle in development …  is the cities, (who) have enough …. (While)  Without support, development, and evaluation from the urban/provincial associations the rural continues (to struggle) in the bush.” This program has run  for 5 years, with mixed results, with 8 students in the Maple Creek area this season, but other towns might not get much going.  It’s a great cause, Art !  Hopefully others will work along with you.

 

‘OJ’ Leads Calgary to Q-Finals

Dinos Big 2nd Half Earns a Q-Final Berth – 

 

Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson gives a clutch performance in his last game at home  for UC.

Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson gives a clutch performance in his last game at home for UC.            Photo – David Moll, Dinos Athletics.

at Calgary Dinos  93   Manitoba Bisons  81 –  Calgary sweeps the series with Manitoba to advance to a quarter-final match-up against the Explorer Division winners, Fraser Valley. As they did in their game 1 win on Friday, the Dinos came out strong in the 2nd half, scoring 57 points, including 26/31 from the free throw line. Playing his last game for UC on the home court, Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson  connected on 12/14 charity tosses, with 9 of those in the final frame.  The 3rd highest scorer in Calgary history counted 23 points plus 6 rebounds and 6 assists, and had a battle at both ends of the floor with aggressive defense from both teams.  Josh Owen-Thomas and Phil Barndt added 13 points apiece for Calgary.

The Bisons mounted a charge early in the 3rd quarter, but couldn’t hold the lead for long, as the Dinos got 40 points off the bench , including 8 plus 6 boards from forward, Mitch Ligertwood. As he has all season, Amarjit Basi, Manitoba’s ‘6th starter’ was their top scorer, with 20, and  big man, Wyatt Anders, counted 16 plus a game-high 13 rebounds, while guard Justus Alleyn scored 15.  Anders and point man Stephan Walton both played their last game tonight for the Bisons, as ‘OJ’ and Barndt playing their last home game for the Dinos.

So, both ‘play-in series are over in 2 games, and we are down to the 8 teams for the best of 3 quarter-finals, which start next week.  Calgary will travel to Abbotsford to meet the Cascades, who finished League play at 17-3.   Box Score

 

 

 Other CIS Games on Friday –

AUS –  UNB 97  Memorial 79 ,  Dalhousie 77 Cape Breton 73 ,  St. Mary’s 113   UPEI 82

Quebec – Concordia 69  McGill 61 , Laval 78  Bishop’s 69

Ontario –   Carleton  97 Nipissing  53,  Ottawa 112  Laurentian 73 ,  Toronto  87  Queen’s 79  , McMaster 100  Algoma  51, Lakehead 89 Guelph 74  ,  Waterloo 82  Western  71 ,  Windsor 87 Laurier 77

 

 

Overtime –

  • Nice to see former UC Sports Information Director, Jack Neumann at the Friday game with Manitoba.  Jack  is now escaping the Canadian winter down in Scottsdale, AZ, where he takes in as many high school hoops games as he can.  He is sending scouting reports up North, and extolling the virtues of the CIS opportunities to AZ players and parents.
  • David Wells, our ace S. Alberta correspondent, tells us that Dave Adams, former ‘Horns Head Coach, has returned to the sidelines as an assistant for the Lethbridge College women. They are very good (20-1 in league …. The team is head coached by Brad Karren, who was an assistant coach for Dave his last three years in his second run at U of L. (Dave also was HC when Brad played at Leth. Coll.) * A trend is noted – if your name is David (Crook, Adams, Wells) , and had any part of the L.A. hoops scene, you just can’t stay away !
  •   Reading week on campuses across the country brings a strange (quiet) atmosphere to some of these playoff games.  In Calgary it means no band, no cheer squad, and few students in the stands. Still, the intensity of the action was most compelling in both the TRU-Winnipeg series, and the Dinos-Manitoba games. (Oh, wait, the Band of Outriders ‘ are back for the Saturday game !)

    Karl Tilleman,  Canada West's most prolific outside scorer.

    Calgary’s Karl Tilleman, Canada West’s most prolific outside scorer.

  •   When we see the 19 made treys between the Bisons and Dinos on Friday, we can’t help but think of how many points someone like, oh, Karl Tilleman (CW’s 3rd all-time scorer) might have scored over his career, if he’d had that ‘bonus line’, which was certainly right in his range.  That line might have made a difference in the results of may Dinos games back in the Gary Howard era, with ‘King Karl’ pulling the trigger. Who was your favourite outside shooter in the 2 point era ?

Play – In, or Out of Quarter-Finals

 

 Play-in Series Look Like Toss-ups 

Dinos host Bisons, with both teams searching for answers –

The Calgary Dinos  have just finished a brutally tough 2nd half schedule, which saw them fall from 1st place, at 9-2 back in December, to 12-8 and 5th in the Division (7th seed in the CW playoff grid).  Their opponents in this weekend’s ‘Play-in series’ in Calgary, the Manitoba Bisons, have lost their last 7 League games, and settled for a 9-11 season mark and 7th spot / 10th seed.

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Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson is the Dinos 'main man'.

Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson is the Dinos ‘main man’.              photo  – David Moll for Dinos Athletics

So which of these teams can ‘circle the wagons’ to get on to the next round?  There isn’t much to choose, statistically speaking, other than Calgary’s ability to win some of the close games that the Herd could not.

The Dinos depend on the extraordinary abilities of 5th year Winnipeg native, Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson, with his team-leading 19.3 ppg, 7.3 rebs, and 5.2 assists. Calgary’s other 5th year leader, forward Phil Barndt, scores 10.5 ppg / 4.7 rebs, and hits 51% from 3 point range. 2nd year wing man, L.J. Hegwood averages 9 ppg, but can use his quickness and slashing style to pop into double figures at any time, and 6-7 German import rookie, Lars Schleuter, can get hot from the outside. Veteran guards Josh Owen -Thomas and Jhony Verrone should also be key factors if the Dinos are to advance.

Manitoba's shooting guard, Amarjit Basi.

Manitoba’s shooting guard, Amarjit Basi.

Manitoba are led by point man Stephan Walton, a speedy 5th year import, who pushes the pace and distributes for 3.8 assts while scoring 10 ppg. The leading scorer for the Herd is  4th year guard, Amarjit Basi, at 16.3 ppg, who has 2 other back-court mates in double figures – Justus Alleyn (11.7 ppg) and Andre Arruda (10.6 ppg).  5th year post, 6-9, Wyatt Anders (10 ppg/ 9.1 rebs), and 6-6, Jonathan Alexander (8.6 ppg, 5 rebs) bolster the front line. Team leader, Walton, said the recipe for a playoff victory in Calgary this weekend is straightforward. “Whenever we control the paint,” said Walton, “we’re really hard to beat.” (From the Winnipeg Free Press.

The teams split their 2 League games in Calgary back in November, and this series may well go the 3 games;  Walton is right in suggesting rebounding is a key, but  getting and making good shots is also critical, as is the ability to maintain defensive control, something that has been a challenge for both squads lately.  Too tough to call, really.  Calgary has home court, and a real ace in ‘OJ’, so that might be the edge.

Games go Fri/Sat  at 7 pm Mountain, with a 3rd at 3 pm Sunday, if necessary. The winner goes on to play the # 2 seed, the Fraser Valley Cascades, in the best of 3 Quarter-final series on Feb. 27-March 1.

 

Cross-over series as Winnipeg goes to Thompson Rivers –

The Wolf Pack's Reese Pribilsky will be tested by the Winnipeg defense.

The Wolf Pack’s Reese Pribilsky will be tested by the Winnipeg defense.                photo – A. Snucins, TRU

The 6th place team in the Pioneer Division, the Winnipeg Wesmen (12-8), will be in Kamloops this weekend to play the Explorer Division’s 3rd place team, the TRU Wolf Pack (11-9), in the 1st cross-over series in this 2-Division format. It’s hard to tell how these teams match-up, since they did not play inter-Divisional games this season.

Coach Scott Clark of Thompson Rivers says that “ … it’s good we get to have more practices and spend more time with each other, and now it’s a new season.  They (Winnipeg) could have finished as high as third or fourth down the stretch. They have some athleticism and are well coached. We are going to have to do a good job of handling their athleticism. If we can do that, we should have a good chance.” (From TRU Athletics)

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The teams both come in sporting some ‘nicks and bruises’, with TRU having had both Josh Wolfram and Tallon Milne, their big men, at less than 100%, and Winnipeg missing 5th year forward Mark McNee last week. Wesmen Coach Mike Raimbault wasn’t sure about McNee’s availability.  “We may have to contend with (Josh) Wolfram’s  offensive abilities with a thinner line-up , if Mark can’t go”, he said. The Wesmen have one of the League’s more aggressive defenses, and, with their quickness, they can limit the ‘Pack’s offense. TRU has a capable point man in Reese Pribilsky (13 ppg, 4.5 assts) with the 6-11 Wolfram (18 ppg/ 9.9 rebs) and 6-4, 5th year Brett Rouault (13.6 ppg, 4 rebs) as his main targets.

Winnipeg is blessed with strong guard play as well, with point man, Jordan Clennon, the

Winnipeg point man  Jordan Clennon leads CW in assists.

Winnipeg point man Jordan Clennon leads CW in assists.

Canada West assists leader at 6.5 asst/game, and Chris Baxter a scoring guard (13 ppg, shooting 52% from the floor).  Up front, the Ws have scoring leader Jelane Pryce, a 6-7, 16.5 ppg shooter, who also snares 6 rebs. McNee adds 11 ppg/ 5 boards when he’s fit, and 5th year guard Travis Krahn is a dangerous 3 point shooter.

If McNee can suit up, it will make a real difference to Winnipeg, and we have a hunch they will be too much for TRU to handle with the added depth.

Games are  7 pm – Pacific on Thursday and Friday … 5 pm on Saturday, if a 3rd game is needed.  The winner from this series will play at Saskatchewan against the # 1 seed Huskies in one Quarter-final.

 

 

Overtime –

  •   Because of a Special Olympics event booked for the Tournament Capital Centre, the Winnipeg-TRU games will move to the smaller TRU gym on campus in Kamloops.  It should have little advantage either way, although just the travel will be a disadvantage for the Wesmen. TRU made the CW playoffs for the 1st time in their history last season; both the ‘Pack and the Wesmen lost in the Q-Finals last year.  Winnipeg went to the Final 4 in 2013, where they finished 3rd.
  •   Calgary missed the playoffs the last 2 seasons, and were beaten in the 3rd game at Victoria in the Q-Finals of 2012.  Manitoba made the 2013 playoffs, but lost in 2 straight in the Q-Finals, and, in fact, haven’t won a playoff series since the Great Plains 1st round in 2000.
  • The AUS playoff teams include UNB and UPEI , who get 1st round tournament byes Unknownas the top 2 teams, along with St. Mary’s, Cape Breton, Dalhousie, and Memorial in that order, at present. Memorial clinched the 6th spot with points difference the deciding factor over Acadia.
  • The Canada West Women’s playoffs this week – 2 play-in series –  #10 Calgary at # 7 Victoria and #9 Regina at #8 Fraser Valley.  The # 3 Saskatchewan vs # 6 Winnipeg quarter-final goes a week early as well (gym availability at Sask.).  All are Fri/Sat/Sun. best of 3 series.

‘Pack Beat UFV, Make Playoffs

 

 

 Saturday Night  in Canada West –

Top 'Dogs ?

at Saskatchewan Huskies  94   Calgary Dinos  73 –  Saskatchewan plays with a purpose, and their transition game provides the offensive advantage as Calgary ‘s defensive break-down gave up fast-break hoops .  The Huskies shoot 54%, with  27 points for import guard, Mike Scott.  Calgary has L.J. Hegwood with 23 points/ 7 rebs, and Jhony Verrone counting 18. This leaves Calgary in 5th spot at 12-8, having lost 4 straight to finish. Saskatchewan (15-5) get 3 solid wins in a row, and the #1 seed in the Canada West playoffs.  Box Score

 at Winnipeg Wesmen  76  Regina Cougars 67   –   The Ws (12-8) get back on track by the ‘overhead’ route, as they cash 11/23 from beyond the arc.  Winnipeg’s 5th year guard Travis Krahn celebrates his Senior Night with 5/8  bombs hitting the target for 16 points, and fellow grad, Jordan Clennon scores 14 and adds 11 assists from his point spot, while Chris Baxter plays the 6th -man role to perfection, scoring 23 pts/ 5 rebs/ 2 assts. Regina, by comparison hits just 3/14 from outside, and despite 21 points/ 11 boards from Brandon Tull, and 12 pts/ 10 rebounds by Will Tallman the Cougs drop to 8-12 to finish their season. (We note that 5th year forward, Mark McNee, misses this game for Wpg, and went just 7 minutes on Friday.)  Box Score

at Alberta Golden Bears  84  Lethbridge Pronghorns  57 –  No contest tonight in Edmonton, as the Bears are up 46-19 at the half, and hit 8 treys to 2 for the short-handed ‘Horns. Joel Friesen has a strong Senior Night with 27 points, and he gets help from the pair of Ken Otieno and Mamadou Gueye, who hit 15 apiece. Lethbridge (7-13)  gets 16 points from Brent Watkins.  Alberta winds up at 14-6 for their regular season, with 8 straight wins to finish.  Box Score

at UBC Thunderbirds 82   Manitoba Bisons 62  –  The T-Birds grab 4th seed on the playoff grid with a 49 point 2nd half, as they force the Bisons into 22 turnovers. Conor Morgan scores 22 for UBC, Jordan Jensen-Whyte has 19, and Tommy Nixon records a double of 11 pts/ 16 boards. Manitoba get 12 points and 8 rebounds from Jonathan Alexander.  Box Score

at Victoria Vikes  92  Trinity Western Spartans 63  – The Vikes honour their 5th year players with a strong team effort in finishing at 15-5, and gaining the 3rd seed for CW playoffs.  They had little trouble with Trinity on Saturday, as the home team scorches the Spartans’ D with 15/29 from 3 pt range. Marcus Tibbs again led Vikes scorers, with 20 pts, and Chris McLaughlin added 18.  For TWU (2-18) , it was Justin Bakuteka with 22 points and Denny McDonald 14 pts/ 5 rebs.  Box Score

 

 Wolf Pack Edge Cougars  for 3rd

at  Mt. Royal Cougars  87   MacEwan Griffins  81 –  MRU does their part to sweep on the final weekend, moving to 10-10, as a 26 point 4th quarter seals the deal. The Cougars use 13/32 shots from way outside vs just 6/26 for the Griffs (7-13), who hit a higher FG% (48% to 40% for the Cougs), but this shows the power of the trey. 22 turnovers by Mac to 11 for Mt. Royal also tipped the scales. 5 players in double figures for the home team, with 15 from Deng Awak and 14 by Derek Wolf leading the way. Denzel James has another impressive outing for MU with 34 points on 11/15 shooting.  The Cougars are a game shy of 3rd spot, as TRU beats Fraser Valley in Abbotsford.   Box Score

Josh Wolfram returns to help TRU into the playoffs.

Josh Wolfram returns to help TRU into the playoffs.

Thompson Rivers Wolf Pack  76  at Fraser Valley Cascades   69 –  A brave effort for the ‘Pack as they grab 3rd place with the split.  With Josh Wolfram looking more comfortable on his foot, TRU had that big option offensively,  but it  looked like 5th year post Tallon Milne was struggling with a balky knee as the game wore on. TRU’s Brett Rouault give 5th year leadership with his 19 points/ 7 rebounds, and all 5 starters go for double figures, including 15 from Wolfram.  Fraser Valley’s ‘achilles heel’ , a low shooting % , bit them again tonight as they cash only 31% from the floor. The Cascades have dropped 3 of 6 games in a 3 week stretch. Kevon Parchment scores 17 to lead UFV, while Jasper Moedt has a 14 pt/ 14 board double. –  Box Score 

 

Playoff Update –  (It should go like this !)

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  • The‘Play-in Series’ will be in Calgary and Kamloops next weekend –  Pioneer # 7 , Manitoba (9-11) will play at the #5 Dinos (12-8) , while the #6 Winnipeg Wesmen visit Thompson Rivers, the #3 Explorer squad.  These are best of 3 series – Times TBA.
  • The rest of the teams are in the Quarter-final grid –  Saskatchewan (15-5) are the top seeds, having swept UVic, and the Huskies await the TRU-Winnipeg winner.
  • On the same half of the draw, we have Explorer #2, UNBC (12-8) going to Vancouver to face the Pioneer #3 team, the 14-6 UBC T-Birds, who win a tie-breaker with Alberta (UBC swept the #1 Huskies, while U of A split).
  • #4 Alberta (14-6) will be off to the Island to face the 15-5 Victoria Vikes, the #2 seed in a match-up of 2 traditional powers, both of whom have made multiple trips to CIS Nationals in the last few seasons.
  • Also in the  bottom of the draw, the Explorer #1, the Fraser Valley Cascades, will be at home in Abbotsford against the Calgary – Manitoba winner.
  • These Quarter-finals are best of 3 series played on the Feb. 27- March 1 weekend.

 

CIS Scores from the East –

AUS …  at UPEI 74 St. FX  73,  #8 UNB 85 at Dalhousie 76,  at Cape Breton 85  St. Mary’s  64,  at Memorial 98   Acadia 89

Quebec …  McGill 56 at Bishop’s  46

Ontario –  #1 Carleton  at York , #2 Ottawa 91 at Queen’s  81,  at #4 McMaster 82  Guelph 69 , #5 Windsor 98 at Algoma 60 ,  at Laurier 93  Nipissing 71, Toronto  84  Brock 79 ,  at Waterloo 68  Laurentian 66

 

Overtime –

  • MacKinnon gym  The MacKinnon Gym at UVic will see it’s final games this playoff season, as the Vikes move to their big, splashy new facility next Fall.  It was the scene of some historic, epic games and characters …  the architects, Kathy and Ken Shields, Eli, ‘The Duke’,  the Kazanowski brothers, Billy and Carol Turney-Loos, Greg Wiltjer, Coach Guy Vetrie, and, of course, the fearsome Viking, ‘Mother Hubbard’ .  (There are, really, too many to mention here).  How about Karl Tilleman and the Dinos vs the Vikes?  Alberta under former Oak Bay HS boss, Don Horwood, in a couple of dramatic play-off series, and the arch-rival UBC Thunderbirds for all those years?

Wesmen Falter, Dinos Benefit

 

 

  Friday Night  in Canada West –

Dinos lose – but get 5th over the struggling Wesmen?

 (We’re on remote here fans – just the highlights)

 at Saskatchewan Huskies 89  Calgary Dinos 80 –  Like a punch to the gut … 33 Huskie points in the opening quarter. The Dinos crawl back to within 3 after 3, but no cigar!  Pretty tough when Saskatchewan shoots 60% from the floor, with Calgary a mere 48%. Dadrian Collins scores 21 for the ‘Dogs, with Ben Baker and Matt Forbes hitting 17. Calgary has a good game from Phil Barndt with 22, and Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson adds 17.  Saskatchewan (14-5) is one win away from clinching the #1 seed.  The Dinos fall to 12-7, but will finish 5th by our reckoning, as Winnipeg drops a key game to Regina.  Box Score 

Regina Cougars 74  at Winnipeg Wesmen  71 –   The Cougars (8-11) bring their ‘A  game’, shooting 51% FGs, led by Brandon Tull with 17 / 10 rebounds, with Jonathan Tull adding 18 pts/4 rebs/ 4 asst/ 3 steals. The Wesmen are cold at 38% from the floor, but have a chance at the finish, falling just short.  This game is very costly for Winnipeg, as at 11-8, they can only tie Calgary, and will fall to 6th, as the Dinos beat the Ws twice in League play.  Box Score 

  at Alberta Golden Bears 75  Lethbridge Pronghorns 57 –  After a 25-11 3rd quarter, it’s all over …. Bears are 13-6 and get # 7 in a row. They take advantage of 12 treys vs just 4 for the ‘Horns (7-12) .  Ken Otieno scores 15 with 7 boards and Joel Friesen 14 pts/7 rebs/ 5 assts. Rob Olsen for Lethbridge is the game high scorer with 23 points. Box Score 

at UBC Thunderbirds 98  Manitoba Bisons 82 –  The ‘Birds (13-6)  ‘declare‘( in cricket parlance) at 80-55 after 3/4s, as they hit 50% from the floor and 29/42 free throws vs 6/11 for the visiting Herd (9-10).  6 players in double figures for the Thunderbirds, including 12 points / 10 boards by Conor Morgan, and 17 pts/ 5 rebs/ 7 assts by Jordan Jensen-Whyte. Manitoba get 15 from Amarjit Basi, and they have 4 more players in doubles, but can’t defend the ‘Birds. Box Score 

  at Victoria Vikes 99 Trinity Western Spartans 79 –  The Vikes hit 52% from the field, as Marcus Tibbs runs free for 29 points, with 5/7 from outside, 10 assts/ 3 steals, while Chris McLaughlin chips in with 25 pts/ 8 boards. Victoria (14-5) takes it down to the final League game trying to catch Saskatchewan for 1st, but need a Huskie loss on Saturday. TWU win the rebounding 39-32, but little else, as their defense cannot slow down the Vikes. Justin Bakuteka scores 21 for the Spartans (2-17) and Denny McDonald 17.  Box Score 

 

Explorer Division … Cougars Can Snag 3rd, With Help

 at  Mt. Royal Cougars 78  MacEwan Griffins  71-  MRU looked like a flustered team at the half, and, trailing by 10 in the 3rd quarter, but they roared back to tie, then won the 4th decisively.  They move to 9-10, and are 1 win and a TRU loss away from a playoff spot. MacEwan’s Lee Danderfer connected on 7/13 treys for a game high 23 points, and Keith Gerdes adds 16, but they cool down in the final 15 minutes, shooting 36% as a team on the game. Mt. Royal owns the boards at 47-33, and shoots well enough to win. Manok Akwl and Awet Abraha both tally 17 points, while James Lefebvre -do what he do’ – 15 pts/ 15 rebs !  Box Score

at Fraser Valley Cascades 83  Thompson R. Wolf Pack 62 –  Fraser Valley stifles the ‘Pack attack, as the Orange (10-9) hit a paltry 29% from the floor. TRU’s leader,  Josh Wolfram, plays 19 minutes, but is not really himself, scoring just 7 and claiming 4 rebs. Joe Davis comes off the bench as the only Wolf to hit double figures with 10 in 12 minutes. The rebounds are 52-33 UFV !  The Cascades (17-2) get 22 points from Kadeem Willis and 17 by Kevon Parchment.  Box Score

UNBC Timberwolves  85 at UBC-Okanagan Heat  64-  Bang-zoom !  In an afternoon tilt, the Timberwolves dispense with the Heat in very short order.  As in the Thursday night affair, the ‘Wolves cut off the UBC-O offense, and, in the late-going, pulled away with a 41-25 2nd half. Rebounding was a big T-Wolves advantage at 46- 33, and 21/29 (72%) free throws beat the 14/22 (64%) of the Heat. 4 starters posted double figure scoring for the 12-8 Timberwolves, led by 16 pts/9 rebounds from the relentless Francko Kouagnia, and a robust 14 boards and 12 points from his ‘right-hand man‘ Devin McMurtry.  Okanagan, who finish League play at 3-17, had Dean Johnston with 12 pts, and 10 each by Noma Obaseki and Ryan Morck (9 rebs).   Box Score

 

 CIS Scores from the East –

AUS …  #8 UNB 77   at St. FX 72

Quebec …  Laval 72 at UQAM 60, at Bishop’s  76 Concordia 72

Ontario –  #1 Carleton 114  at Queen’s 45 , #2 Ottawa 90 at York 57,  #5 Windsor 103 at Algoma 66

at Waterloo 91  Nipissing 64, Laurentian 73 at Laurier 65

 

Overtime –

  • We noted the outstanding year for the MacEwan Women’s team in making the playoffs in their 1st year in Canada West.  The question has been asked , “Has any other school done this in their 1st year ?”  Well … yes !  Trinity Western Men, with a record of 8-14, tied for 6th in 2000-01, their inaugural CIS season.  They won the spot in a ‘tie breaker’, and lost in the 1st round, 2-0 to Simon Fraser.
  • The Calgary Dinos Women’s team, 9-9 and playing the 1st place, 15-3 Huskies,  look to be firmly in 7th spot for the playoffs, and would travel to the #5 Pioneer team … (Winnipeg, Regina, Victoria ?) for a play-in round best of 3 next weekend.
  • The Mt. Royal (Men’s) Cougars now depend on Fraser Valley to beat Thompson Rivers twice, and they need to take care of business themselves by sweeping the MacEwan Griffins who visit Jack Kenyon Court for the final 2 games on the schedule. If the chips fall for the Cougars, MRU and TRU would be tied at 10-10, and were 2-2 with each other in League play.  The tie breaker for 3rd spot would be Mt. Royal’s win over UFV on Feb. 1.  The 3rd Explorer team hosts a play-in series (best of 3) vs the 6th place Pioneer squad.

Bears Win to Tie Dinos at 12-6

Bears Use Defense and Foul-Shooting to Stifle Dinos

Mamadou Gueye has a stellar game for the Bears.

Mamadou Gueye has a stellar game in the Bears big win at Calgary on Thursday.

 Alberta Golden Bears 76  at   Calgary Dinos  67 –  Defense wins games.  The Alberta Golden Bears (12-6) held Calgary below 70 points, and despite shooting only 33% from the floor, held on for a crucial win in Calgary.  Forcing the action on offense, and opening up driving lanes, the Bears attacked the hoop, drew fouls, and cashed an impressive 89% of the free throws (24/27) .  Calgary shot 8/20 from 3 point range and looked at times to be making a run at control of the game, but a damaging 16-9 turnover difference, and a 47-40 Alberta edge on the boards finally wore down the Dinos (12-6).

Mamadou Gueye was the big man for U of A with 21 points, 13 rebounds, and 4 steals while Youssef Ouahrig scored 18 including 4/8 from outside, and claimed 9 rebounds.  Calgary, for the 2nd time in as many games, looked uncomfortable with the ball down the stretch, and fell out of a lead, then allowed Alberta to create a cushion.  Lars Schleuter was the top Dinos scorerwith 20, as he connected on 5/6 attempts from 3 point range. Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson scored 14 and led U of C with 9 rebs / 8 assists.

Both teams are done for this week – Calgary is at Saskatchewan to finish the regular season next weeknd  (Feb. 13/14), while Alberta are at home to Lethbridge.                  Box Score

 

Canada West Continues to Study Possible Divisional Structures

(From Canada West’s News release following its annual winter meeting this week) 

No decision from Canada West governors on basketball competitive structure.

No decision from Canada West governors on basketball competitive structure.

With the conference experiencing accelerated growth over the last five years, adding four new members and a total of 40 new teams (about a 30% growth in membership), Canada West has been met with the structural challenge of maintaining its historic rivalries while welcoming its new members, and at the same time managing the logistical challenges created by the wide geographical landscape of the association.

In the fall of 2013, the Canada West Board of Directors initiated a strategic planning dialogue to review its competitive formats in volleyball, soccer and basketball. They’ve decided the future for the other 2 sports,  but the association continues to discuss and study alternative alignments in basketball.  We can expect a progress report at their 2015 Annual General Meeting scheduled for the first week of May 2015.

 

CIS Scores – Weds/Thurs –

#3 Ryerson  82   Guelph 63 ,   Saint Mary’s 93   St. FX  73,  Brock  90  Waterloo  81,  McGill 65 Concordia 60

 

Overtime –

  •   Do fans know how many refs are on the move each weekend, traveling to
    Former Brandon Bobcats star, Earl Roberts, is now part of the game's '3rd team'.

    Former Brandon Bobcats star, Earl Roberts, is now part of the game’s ‘3rd team’.

    other Canada West sites to provide a ‘neutral official’ as part of the 3 – referee team.  Calgary refs in Edmonton and Lethbridge, Kelowna, Kamloops, and Langley.  Canada West doesn’t do this for every game, but most series have this  ’mixed crew’ concept in the mix each week.

  • An interesting side-story to this mixed crew of refs … in the UVic at Calgary series a couple of weeks back, we had the affable Earl Roberts in as the ‘neutral guy’ from Manitoba; yes, yes, they’re all neutral,  we know ….   We reminded Earl of an earlier appearance he had made in Calgary some years back (He was a high-powered point guard for the Brandon Bobcats from 1980-85);  the ‘Cats were in the field for the very popular 8-team Calgary Christmas Classic in the old Red Gym in the early ‘80s.  The York Yeoman, coached by former Golden Bears star, Bob Bain, were one of the top OUA teams, and they met Brandon in one semi-final … the game was very intense … Earl became ‘entangled’ with  York’s rugged wing man, Bo Pelech, and Earl caught a punch causing a pretty good cut requiring stitches. Referee John Weiland made a futile attempt to control the melee.  “Old -time Hoops”
  • (From Jordie H., Saskatchewan fan) Thanks for the comments!       Jordie said, “ Hopeful my Huskies will win out and host the big games come March… The two Canada West Championships they have hosted in recent years, men’s in 2012 and women’s in 2011 have been spectacular events. Over 2,000 in attendance for the Huskie games. Looking forward to the games vs Calgary ….    We are all wondering how these last couple of League weekends are going to go, Jordie.  Exciting stuff !

Dinos – Bears Battle Thursday

 

Rivalry Game Can Change Fortunes

Calgary's Jarred Ogungbemi_Jackson and Alberta's Joel Friesen lead their teams into the Thursday show-down in Calgary.

Calgary’s Jarred Ogungbemi_Jackson and Alberta’s Joel Friesen lead their teams into the Thursday show-down in Calgary.

Alberta Golden Bears (11-6)  at #10 Calgary Dinos (12-5) –  The Big Game … just one this week for these 2 arch-rivals, and they are both eager for the win.  It really does change their playoff outlook with a W vs an L !  Calgary won the game in Edmonton back in December, but tons of ice has flowed under the bridge since then.  Bears have 5 wins in a row, and the ‘dynamic duo’ of Joel Friesen (19 ppg, 5 rebs, 2.2 asst) and Mamadou Gueye (17.5 ppg, 7 rebs, 2 asst) have been burning it up during that run.  When called upon, like Batman, 5th year wing, Ken Otieno (14 ppg,  5 rebs) will offer up a 20 point outburst to save the day.  The GBs get good floor leadership from Youssef Ouahrig (9 ppg, 4 rebs, 4 asst), and they are deeper up front with the presence of 6-8 rookie Sebastian Denault (7 ppg, 5 rebs in 19 minutes).

Phil B

Dinos Phil Barndt –                         Photo David Moll for UC

Calgary comes off a thrill-a -minute road series tussle with UBC, where they get a split, and are now sitting 3rd with 3 games left … 1 with the Bears and 2 at Saskatchewan. Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson is playing like a man possessed, and tallying team highs with 20.5 ppg, 7.4 rebs, 5.1 assts, and 1.6 steals.  His fellow 5th year, import forward, Phil Barndt, averages 10 ppg, 4.6 rebs, but has been more aggressive lately, witness a 26 pt/11 reb gem last Friday vs the ‘Birds. The Dinos are always looking for a couple of more stalwarts to step up and assert themselves; 2 prime candidates are Dallas Karch, who leads Canada West in FG% at .637, and has been reaching double figures more often lately, and the ebullient (look it up) Matt Letkeman, who, if he can avoid drawing too much attention from the officials, can do some damage inside.

Too close to call, really.  “Neutral corners … protect yourselves at all times.”

 

Friday / Saturday  in Canada West –

Brandon Tull, Regina

Brandon Tull, Regina –      Sportshooter photo

UBC Thunderbirds (10-6) at Regina Cougars (7-9) –  The ‘Tommy Nixon Show’ goes on the road !  A ‘fresh’ weekend in Regina, and a Cougars team with something to prove, perhaps?  Nixon, with a white-hot streak, now leads CW in scoring at 21.8 ppg, with his finesse/grappling style in the post, and 61% FG average with 52% from outside. Someone cover that dude!  With Jordan Jensen-Whyte looking sharp at the point, and Kedar Wright able to answer the call, UBC is better with the ball.  Their bigs seem to take turns with strong offensive efforts, and the Cougs may be over-run if they can’t defend all that size and shooting.  Regina has the Jonathan (20 ppg, 5.6 rebs) and Brandon (15 ppg, 5 rebs) Tull  brother combo, and forwards Travis Sylvestre and Will Tallman playing significant roles as well.  The T-Birds are riding the wave, and will be tough to beat here.

# 7 Victoria Vikes (12-4) at Brandon Bobcats (1-17) – The Vikes would dearly love to win out, and have someone deliver a blow to the Huskies, with whom they’re locked up in a 1st place Division tie. Brandon has flashes of brilliance, but they’ve been overly seasoned with disinterested rebounding, and porous defense.  Can they surprise the vaunted Vikes out there on the frozen prairie?  Yes, but you’d better get some inviting odds.  Chris MacLaughlin, Marcus Tibbs, Reiner Theil and company will not be allowed to stray too far from the game plan by Coach Beaucamp.

Huskies post man, Matt Forbes

Huskies post man, Matt Forbes

#5 Saskatchewan Huskies (12-4) at Lethbridge Pronghorns (6-10) –  Now, while the legendary home-court voodoo has been oddly absent for much of this season, the ‘Horns can still get ‘herded -up’ and  ride the talents of Brandon Brine, Jared Baker, Brent Watkins, and Rob Olsen.  They gave UVic a couple of good games out on the island, and should not be taken lightly.  The Head Huskie, Barry Rawlyk, will advise his pack accordingly, and the Green and Black will work to extend their 8 game win streak.  Matt Forbes, Connor Burns, Dadrian Collins, and Ben Baker make for tough crew on the boards (2nd best in CW at + 6.4), and their 47% FG shooting produces 83 ppg.  Lethbridge doesn’t match that, and their high turnover rate might make for voracious feeding by the ‘Dogs.

Winnipeg Wesmen (10-6) at Trinity Western (1-15) –  4 consecutive wins have revived the Wesmen, and they are establishing a ‘bend-but-don’t-break’ kind of formula based on a swarming defense. Jelane Pryce has been a consistent scoring leader, and Mark McNee is not far behind;  Jordan Clennon, Chris Baxter, and Travis Krahn are working well together in the back-court.  Trinity has Justin Bakuteka scoring, and both Denny McDonald and Taylor Heinrichs chipping in with points and rebounds, but 1 win in 16 outings ?  No puzzle, really … Winnipeg allows 70 ppg … TWU – 93 ppg !

Jasper Moedt, UFV's top rebounder

Jasper Moedt, UFV’s top rebounder

#9 Fraser Valley Cascades at UNBC Timberwolves (9-7) –   Will this be a ‘vengeful’squad of Cascades, trying to make up for a lone loss after 15 straight wins?  Or rather, do the boys follow anticipated (and paraphrased) wisdom of Coach Adam Friesen, who  might say, “We now have to concentrate on building for the play-offs.  Play good team defense, rebound as a team, and share the ball efficiently, just as we’ve done all season.”  (At least this is what we imagine the song sheet reads this week in Abbotsford). UNBC are happy on the home ice, with 6 wins vs 2 losses, and they have a modest 4 game win streak of their own as they join the hunt for 2nd place.  The  T’Wolves Francko Kouagnia –  Devin McMurtry  vs  the ‘Cades Jasper Moedt – Nate Brown tag team match-up will be well-worth the price of admission!  We also have the shooting artistry of Fraser Valley’s Manny Dulay  (9 treys in a game ?!) and  UNBC’s Rhys Elliot .  Big weekend in Prince George !

Mt. Royal Cougars (7-9) at Thompson Rivers Wolf Pack (9-7) –  You can’t blame the ‘Pack for looking over their shoulders after losing 3 of 6 and giving ground to UNBC.  They will host a Mt. Royal team who knocked off the mighty Cascades, and who still have designs on catching both of TRU and Northern B.C. (Hope springs eternal!)  The Cougars will need to win with defense, and try and keep the score in the 60s or 70s; they score 72 ppg vs 80 ppg for the ‘Pack, and how do they match-up with the TRU big men, 6-11, Josh Wolfram (19 ppg/10.6 rebs), and 6-8, Tallon Milne.  James Lefebvre accepts the challenge game after game, and the athletic MRU perimeter troops will have to do their part.

UBC-Okanagan Heat (3-13)  at  MacEwan Griffins (5-11) –  Has UBC-O found their groove, and can they build on an impressive win their last time out?  Team leaders, Mitch Goodwin and David Manshrek, are getting stellar efforts from super-rookie Aldrich Berrios, and the Heat will need all of that against Denzel James (18 ppg, 6 rebs), Ryan May (12.6 ppg, 8.4 rebs) and the Griffins.

 

The ‘Biggest’ (“Every game’s a big game ….”)  CIS Games this week –

Ottawa's Capital Classic on Friday

Ottawa’s Capital Classic on Friday

OUA –  In the ‘Capital Hoops Classic‘ on Friday –  #2 Carleton  vs #1 Ottawa ,  at #3 Ryerson  Guelph , #6 Windsor at Laurentian , Lakehead at Toronto , at #4 McMaster  Queen’s , Western at Laurentian, at #3 Ryerson   Lakehead , Guelph at Toronto.

AUS –  at UPEI  – Acadia , at Cape Breton – Dalhousie ,  at #8 UNB – UPEI 

Quebec – Concordia – McGill , UQAM  – Bishops  ( home and home series) Laval rests.

 

Overtime –

  •   Former Bears player, Dinos Coach, and Saskatchewan Athletic Director (Boy, did
    John Dewar - Yesteryear

    John Dewar – Yester-year

    this guy get around !) John Dewar, was in touch yesterday.  “I’ll always be a Dino in my heart”, he says. “Please say hello to Coach Vanhooren and all the alumni guys at Senior Night.”  He has another assignment this week, as he ‘rides  shotgun’ in a team van with his son Dan and the Marian Graham Falcons high school team as they play in the Harry Ainlay Tournament in Edmonton.  Dan coaches his 2 nephews (John’s grandsons) Addison (gr. 11) and (gr. 9) Alexander Dewar on the varsity Falcons, who are currently the #1 team in the Saskatoon City League.  Of course, Grandpa John is their biggest fan.    More details in this December story in the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix by Don Rice. 

  •   “A lot can happen,” stressed U of S men’s coach Barry Rawlyk, whose team currently is tied with the Victoria Vikes for first in the Prairie Division and second overall in the Canada West conference at 12-4 behind only the Fraser Valley Cascades at 15-1. “We’re in a spot right now where we could finish anywhere from first to sixth (in the Prairie Division), really, but we can’t worry about anything else going on in the league. We just have to take care of the business in front of us.”    From another Star-Phoenix story, this one by Darren Zary. 

Dinos Nip ‘Birds at the Buzzer

 Wesmen Take Game One of City Series – Calgary Grabs Win in a Tense Battle

5th year guard, Travis Krahn lights it up from outside for Winnipeg.

5th year guard, Travis Krahn lights it up from outside for Winnipeg.

at Winnipeg 85   Manitoba 67 –  It’s 26 – 15 Wesmen  after1 quarter.  Would Coach Raimbault  have ‘dummied’ us with his professed goal to slow the pace vs the Herd ?   Maybe he noticed how good his team looked on the break in practice this week, and it helped that Winnipeg’s Travis Krahn opened up 5/6 from 3 pt. range.  The Bisons tried to stay in contact, and  closed it to 42-35 at the half, but went cold to start the 4th quarter, and the Ws take a stranglehold, cruising from there.   Jelane Pryce gets inside for 18 points/ 8 rebs, while Krahn and Mark McNee contribute 15 each, as the Wesmen (9-6) shoot 52% from the floor.  Manitoba  (9-8) are led by 14 from Amarjit Basi, and double figures from 4 starters, but shoot 40% and are  7 of just 8 free throws vs 22  of 27 for the Ws.   Box Score

Phil Barndt has a hot hand in Calgary's win at UBC.

Phil Barndt has a hot hand in Calgary’s win at UBC.

 Calgary 93   at  UBC  92 –   Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson, who scored 14 of his 18 points in the 4th quarter,  hits a trey at the buzzer (here’s the video – courtesy Wilson Wong, UBC Athletics) to end a game that was remarkable in so many ways.  The Dinos go out to a 15 point lead in the middle of the 2nd quarter before a flurry of foul calls (chaos ensued for a few fateful minutes) reduced that to 48-41 at the half.  UBC came out firing in the 3rd, and took a slight lead before UC tied it at 68. The final minutes saw Calgary with a 5 point lead,  but the T-Birds fought hard to edge back on top on free throws with 10 seconds left.  Calgary turned it over and had to foul, trailing by 1.  UBC’s  Tonner Jackson hit 1 free throw, but his 2nd missed and  fell to OJ, who dribbled launched a deep one that banked home … game.

Calgary (12-4)  shoots 59% from the floor to 51% for UBC, but the ‘Birds benefit from 26 free throws, making 17, while Calgary is 5/9.  This is an exciting game, and a big win for the Dinos who  snap the Thunderbirds win streak at 8.  Phil Barndt scores 26 points on 12/16, and leads both teams with 11 boards.  Josh Owen-Thomas saves his best for last, counting 15, and Lars Schleuter had 14 for UC.  UBC (9-6)  got 19 from Tommy Nixon, and 18 by Kedar Wright, while  Jackson scored 16 and had 10 rebounds.   Box Score

at Alberta 89  Brandon  58 –  The Bears (10-6) take care of business at home, as they pour it on in the last 30 minutes,  dominate most statistical measures, and choke off the ‘Cats (1-16) offense. Joel Friesen has a big 28 point night for Alberta, going 10/16 from the floor, while Mamadou Gueye gets a solid double of 18 pts/110 rebs.  Brandon’s best was  11 pts from D.J. Jordan and 10 by Kenonte Ramsay.  Box Score

 at   Saskatchewan  95  Trinity Western  49 –  The Spartans are, somewhat predictably, mauled by a pack of ‘Dogs.  The suspense is gone at 22-7 after 10 minutes, and a 35-14 pasting in the 3rd quarter ‘took the air out’.  Saskatchewan (11-4) shot 49% to 27% for TWU, and the home team were sharp from the line – 28/31 (90%).  Evan Ostertag came off the bench for 20 pts and Matt Forbes tallied 19 for U of S.   Trinity (1-14)  had no one in double figures, as rookie Nick Tancon had 7 pts/7 rebounds.  Box Score

at   Victoria  91  Lethbridge  80 –   The ‘Horns are tied with UVic at 38 at the half, but give up 53 points in the final 20, as the Vikes catch fire. 13 offensive rebounds give Victoria more possessions, and they capitalize. Chris McLaughlin scored 28 for the Vikes (11-4) and Jordan Charles added 16.  Lethbridge (6-9) had Rob Olsen with 22 and Brent Watkins scored 17 and grabbed 9 boards. Box Score

 

Explorer  Division –  T’Wolves Above .500

UNBC copy

 at UNBC  81    MacEwan 65  –  Up by just 1 at 54-53 after 3/4s, the Timberwolves run off a 27-12 finish to grab the win. Out-rebounding the visiting Griffs 51-38, and out-shooting them from the field 45% to 36% the ‘Wolves move up to 8-7 in 3rd spot.  UNBC gets 23 points and 12 boards from Francko Kouagnia and 14 points plus 20 big rebounds by Devin McMurtry.  Keith Gerdes led Mac  with 18 pts, and Denzel James added 16 as they fall to 5-10.  Box Score

Thompson R.  80  at UBC-O  60 –  TRU grinds down the less experienced Heat – the ‘Pack shoot 47% from the floor to 30% for Okanagan, with 5 TRU players in double figures led by 17 from Josh Wolfram, who also claimed 8 rebounds. Reese Pribilsky counted 14 pts/3 assists / 3 steals for the ‘Pack as they advance to 9-6 on the season.  UBC-O (2-13) gets 13 points apiece from Buzz Truss and Cameron Friesen. Box Score

We wait for Sat/Sun for Fraser Valley  at  Mt. Royal

 

CIS Games from the East –

Thurs – Laval 79 at Concordia  77 ,    at McGill  71  Quebec-Montreal

Friday –  # 1 Ottawa 91 at Algoma 63 , at  Western 87 York  75,    at Lakehead 77  Waterloo 70,  at #5 Windsor 93  Queens  86,  Cape Breton 98 UPEI 85 ,  # 9  UNB 79 at Acadia  74

 

Overtime –

  •   Erratum –  Of course, Algoma, who will have a home game this week vs both Carleton and Ottawa, is in their 2nd OUA season … Nipissing is 1st year …. Thanks to Martin Timmerman for keeping us on track (or at least closer to the tracks !)
  • There may be some concerns about how the interlocking schedules might play out if Canada West were to adopt a new 3 Division alignment, but we’re past the time when we have to worry about UBC pulling up stakes for membership in the NCAA competition.  The T-Birds are a Canadian University power, and a lynch-pin in Canada West and the whole CIS program.  The ‘Birds are hosting the 2016 Mens Basketball Nationals … and they did hire one of Canada’s most successful football coaches just recently.
  •   These Thursday scores from Quebec are an indication of just how unpredictable their playoffs may be in a month’s time.  McGill looks very solid at times, but are certainly not a heavy favourite against Laval, Bishops, or maybe even Concordia.  We’ll have to get the expert analysis from Coach Eddie Pomycala in the next couple of weeks !.
  •   Nice story in the Calgary Herald on Friday  (by Brendan Stasiewich)  about the Euro League play of former Mt. Royal Cougar , Nick Loewen.  The 6-7 Loewen was the leading rebounder and scorer for the Cougars as they first started to compete in Canada West.  He played his high school ball in Winnipeg, and his Dad John, still an active alum of the U. of Manitoba, played on the Bisons’ national championship team of 1976.  Nick is the leading scorer (12.9 ppg, 5 rebs) for La Sidreria Ferrol, who are 4-8 and 10th of 14 teams in the Spanish A-B Division (2nd tier ?)

Hot and Cold Teams in January

 

Screen Shot 2015-01-25 at 4.06.19 PM


 

‘Birds, Huskies, and, yes, the Cascades Remain Hot in the 2nd Half

In the Pioneer Division, the ‘strength of schedule’  effect is showing itself as we head for home … the hottest 2 teams are UBC, with 8 wins straight, dating back to November 28, while Saskatchewan are also coming on strong with a 6 game skein.  Manitoba have dropped 3 in a row, and have fallen from 2nd to 7th in the past 2 weekends.  It is very tight, but the potential play-off teams are becoming more obvious; it would seem likely that the top 7 we see here will all be in the post -season.

Screen Shot 2015-01-26 at 6.47.24 AM

That would leave a promising Regina team out, with a rough 4 games not likely to boost their fortunes, and Lethbridge too has a killer finish, with UVic, Saskatchewan, and Alberta on tap. Of the top 6 teams, it looks like the Vikes have a reasonable shot at running the table, with the Huskies having a slightly tougher slate, as do the Dinos.  UBC, who had one of the worst starts in recent team history, could even scramble right back to the top of the heap.  Winnipeg looks like being in the 4-5-6 range depending on their inner-city games with the Herd.

In other words, still lots of games left.   Now how about the Explorer Division ?  It almost Fr Valley copyappears that the Fraser Valley Cascades might be coasting a bit … they win 2 home games vs the Okanagan Heat while shooting a combined  48 /151 from the field. That’s a decidedly frosty .317 !  However, they are in the CIS Top 7 or 8, and may well finish 20-0 in the Explorer.  Thompson Rivers has been less than convincing in 2nd spot, having split with both UNBC and MacEwan the last 2 weekends. The Timberwolves made a big move on 3rd spot (the 10th and final seed in the integrated Canada West playoffs) by beating Mt. Royal twice in Calgary. We have a competitive MacEwan team now missing the playoffs along with Okanagan, and the MRU Cougars are living on borrowed time in their chase for 3rd.

 Top Players last week –

Monster weekend (72 points !)  for Tommy Nixon, the hottest shooter in CW.

Monster weekend (72 points !) for Tommy Nixon, the hottest shooter in CW.

Tommy Nixon, UBC –  The 5th year wing scores 45 pts, a season high in Canada West, on Friday vs Trinity, then 27 the following night to continue his extremely hot play.  And he’s not just scoring points, as he adds 20 rebounds, 10 assists, and 7 steals … yes, he’s on a bit of a roll, as are his T-Birds, with 8 straight wins.

Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson, Calgary – In a ‘must-win’ position for the Dinos, the 5th year guard scores 29 points (44 for the weekend, plus 7 rebs, 5 assists) to lead a big 2nd half and rescue a split vs the Vikes.

Ben Baker, Saskatchewan –  The 5th year guard scores 31 points in the 2 big road wins over Manitoba, but it’s really his rebounding and all-round efforts that propel the ‘Dogs to greater heights … 20 rebounds, 7 assists, and 4 steals !

Mamadou Gueye, Alberta –  41 points, 9 rebounds, and  5 steals for the talented wing man, as he and teammate, Joel Friesen, lead  the Bears  to a road sweep over Regina, and ensure they’re in the race for a top playoff spot in the Pioneer.

Jelane Pryce, Winnipeg –  His 40 points and 17 rebounds pace the Wesmen to a sweep of their home and home with Brandon this past Thursday/Saturday.  The Ws most consistent scorer has his defensive-minded team right in the mix in a tight race.

Jasper Moedt, Fraser Valley – The 5th year post man registers a double-double in both Friday and Saturday wins over Okanagan, as his 33 points and 32 rebounds  help carry the Cascades to 14-0, perched grandly above the rest of the Explorer Division.

Rhys Elliot, Northern B.C. –  The Aussie import guard strokes in 48 points in a crucial road sweep at Mt. Royal, leading the ‘Wolves into the 3rd playoff spot past the Cougars.  Rhys adds 12 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 steals.

Others with strong performances –  Devin McMurtry, UNBC,  Denzel James and Lee Danderfer, MacEwan, Reese Pribilsky, TRU, Chris McLaughlin, UVic, Matt Forbes, Saskatchewan,  Kevon Parchment, UFV, Andrew McGuinness and Jordan Jensen-Whyte, UBC. 

 

 Overtime –

  •   UVic Coach Craig Beaucamp , with his thoughts after the Saturday loss at Calgary,  “We played well enough to lose a close game on the road,” said … Beaucamp …. “They [Dinos] played well. We were a little flat tonight . . . not good enough to beat a team like this twice in its own gym,” added Beaucamp, who guided UVic into the CIS Final Four last year. “We have four of our next six games at home. We have to look after business.”   From a   Victoria Colonist story by Cleeve Dheenshaw 
  •   Here’s an interesting  bit of potential tie-breaker info –  UVic beat UBC twice, UBC beat Saskatchewan twice, and Saskatchewan beat UVic twice.  What if these 3 teams tied?  Well, our take on the play-off position tie-break rules for Canada West has the decisive factor being the 3 team’s won-lost record vs the highest ranked team outside that trio … maybe Calgary, or Alberta, or Winnipeg.  To be decided ….
  • The Dinos’ Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson, after the Saturday win over the Vikes,  who had beaten Calgary 6 of the past 7 times the teams had met , “It was huge and not just because of the previous years  but just because of the race we are in,” Ogungbemi-Jackson said.  The 5th year guard urged on his fellow senior, import forward, Phil Barndt, before that game –  “I was telling him man, it’s time for a breakout game for Mr. Barndt,” Ogungbemi-Jackson said. “We told him to step up and to knock down shots with confidence and he stepped up.”
  • Canada West stats leaders –  Tommy Nixon’s 72 point weekend now has him at 21.2 ppg, the leading scorer (Dinos Ogungbemi-Jackson, Regina’s Jonathan Tull 2nd at 20.2) … TRU’s Josh Wolfram is top rebounder at 10.8 rpg, followed closely by UFV’s Jasper Moedt with 10.6 rebs … the top FG% shooter is Calgary’s Dallas Karch at 65.9%, with the ‘Horns Brent Watkins 61.7%, and UBC’s Nixon an amazing 60.6 … the Dinos Phil Barndt takes over as the best 3 point shooter with 54.8% followed by  the ‘Birds’ Nixon and Andriy Halushko of Alberta at 53.6% … Jordan Clennon of Winnipeg averages 6.4 assists, with the Thunderbirds’ Jensen-Whyte at 5.5 apg … MacEwan’s Keith Gerdes shoots 94% from the foul line ! … Trinity’s Justin Bakuteka and the Cascades’ Kevon Parchment swipe 2.7 steals a game.

Calgary Comes Back With Key Win

 

Saturday in Canada West –  

Pioneer Division –

Calgary's Matt Letkeman  attacks UVic's  cccc

Calgary’s Matt Letkeman attacks UVic’s Hayden Lejeune                                                                         Photo – David Moll for UC Athletics

 

The Calgary Dinos make a strong 2nd half stand at home to grab a split against the Victoria Vikes and cling tenaciously to 1st place, as Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson delivers a stellar effort.  The log-jam around the top 4 spots tightens, as Saskatchewan ties UVic for 2nd by finishing off a big road sweep at Manitoba, and UBC earns their 8th straight to move up to 9-5.

 at Calgary 79  Victoria 73 – The situation cried out for something special as the Dinos Screen Shot 2015-01-24 at 11.28.06 PMtrailed the visiting UVic Vikes 35-34 at the half, and needing a strong 2nd half to wrestle a win and a split with the Vikes. Enter the maestro, Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson, who pours in 18 of his game high 29 points in a huge come from behind victory.  OJ with 3 treys gets huge help from fellow 5th year, Phil Barndt, who goes 4/4 from way outside to tally 18 points plus 5 rebounds. Calgary (11-4) need a late offensive board by Barndt and another from Matt Letkeman to ice the game. The Vikes (10-4) hit just 5/21 (24%) shots from 3 pt. range vs the Dinos’ 9/19 (47%).  Chris McLaughlin fought through some tougher defense for 18 points and 9 boards to lead Victoria, who also had 3 others in double figures.  Box Score

 Saskatchewan Huskies  87  at Manitoba Bisons  81 –  Staring a 65-55 deficit in the face after 3/4s, the visiting Huskies went on a 32 point rampage to grab the sweep and move to 10-4 and a 2nd place tie with Victoria. Matt Forbes led the scoring with 22 pts / 8 rebounds, and Ben Baker put up an huge 19 point / 11 rebound double for the Sled Dogs.  Saskatchewan thrived on 34 shots from the foul line, connecting on 24 (71%) against 10/15 for the Bisons. Manitoba (9-7) had a big night from 2nd year guard, Justus Alleyn, who rang up 28 pts on 10/18 including 6/8 from outside, but was one of three of the Herd to foul out.  Box Score

Alberta Golden Bears 71  at Regina Cougars 64  –  The duo of Joel Friesen and Mamadou Gueye were clutch for the Bears again, as they score 20 and 18 respectively, helping Alberta move up to 9-6. U of A took full advantage of 22/29 free throws (76%) against only 11/17 (65%) for Regina. 22 turnovers also severely limited the home team’s offensive output;  Will Tallman was high man with 16, Jonathan Tull had 15 / 9 rebs, and Brandon Tull 14 for the Cougars (7-9).  Box Score

at Winnipeg  Wesmen  80  Brandon  Bobcats 63 –   The Wesmen (8-6) complete the home and home sweep tonight in Winnipeg, taking a 41-27 lead at the half and finishing cooly with a good defensive effort throughout. Jelane Pryce rolls again, with 21 points / 10 boards, while Denzel Lynch-Blair scores a career high 20 pts, and Jordan Clennon grabs 12 boards and delivers 9 assists. The ‘Cats shoot a chilly 34% from the floor, and were never really a threat; Earl Thompson Jr. came to play for Brandon (1-15), hitting 14 points and snaring 16 rebounds, while Kenonte Ramsay scored 15 / 7 rebs.   Box Score

UBC Thunderbirds 102  at Trinity Western Spartans 80  –  The T-Birds  (9-5) show no let-up, as they pound the Spartans (1-13) with a century for the 2nd night running. 63% from the floor as a team is red-hot !  Tommy Nixon eases back on the throttle with just 27 points, while shooting 8/9 field goals and 10/12 from the line, and grabbing 11 boards. Jordan Jensen-Whyte adds 20 points while dropping 5 assists. TWU (who combine with their guests for 67 free throw attempts) are good on 28/32 (88%) from the stripe. Tyus Allen scores 22 and Denny McDonald 20 for the losers.   Box Score

Explorer  Division –

Jasper Moedt sparks the 14-0 UFV Cascades.

Jasper Moedt sparks the 14-0 UFV Cascades.                      photo – UFV Athletics

 

UNBC Timberwolves  76  at Mt. Royal Cougars  64  –  Mission accomplished for  the T’Wolves (7-7) , as they get the road sweep with a strong 1st and last quarter, and forcing 18 Cougars’ turnovers while committing just 9 of their own. 25 points from import guard, Rhys Elliot topped the ‘Wolves scoresheet, with Devin McMurtry putting up a 15 point / 16 rebound double in support.  MRU (6-8) just could not generate any offensive momentum … James Lefebvre’s 11 pts / 9 boards, and 11 points from Derek Wolf were their top totals.   Box Score

at Thompson Rivers Wolf Pack 95  MacEwan Griffins  87    –  All they needed in the 2nd half of this one was a bugler sounding the charge … MacEwan (5-9) wins the final 20 by a 55-54 count, but could not make-up the 9 point deficit from the 1st half. TRU outshoots Mac 48% to 39% from the floor, but the Griffs take a determined run with their 16/36 from 3 pt. range. All 5 starters for the Wolf Pack (8-6) hit double figures, led by 22 pts / 8 assists by Reese Pribilsky, and  21 pts on 6/9 shooting (5 of 7 from 3) from Brett Parker. Lee Danderfer put up a game-high 27 for the Griffins, hitting 8/17 from outside, and Keith Gerdes counted 22 plus 9 rebounds.  Box Score

 at   Fraser Valley Cascades  79  Okanagan Heat 65  – A paucity of style points for the home-standing Cascades, but they stay well clear of the field in the Explorer at 14-0. Once more Jasper Moedt stands out with a double of 17 pts / 15 boards, and he gets help from 19 points from Kevon Parchment.  The Cascades put up 47 first half points, even though neither team shoots well – UBC-O at 34% and Fraser Valley just 33% from the floor. UFV makes hay from the charity stripe at 19/25 vs 9/10 by the visitors. 18 points from rookie Buzz Truss paced the Heat (2-12).  Box Score

 

Saturday’s  CIS Scores  From the East –

Atlantic –   UNB 96  at  PEI 75,  St. FX 77  Acadia 71,  Dalhousie 94 Memorial 66

Quebec –   Laval 57 Bishops 55  ,  Concordia 74   UQ – Montreal  70

Ontario –  Carleton 98 Western 61,   Ottawa 81  Windsor  70 ,   Ryerson 90  Queens 65, York 87 Toronto 77 ,   Brock 84   Laurier 80,   McMaster 81 Waterloo 64,