Lawrence carries Dal into the semi-finals with his clutch hoop
#5 Dalhousie 67 #4 Alberta 65 – This feature game has so many stories, not the least of which is the foul problem for Bears ace, Mamadou Gueye. The hero of the Canada West Final 4 sits with 7 minutes left in the 2nd quarter, having amassed 3 fouls. But the real hero on the night will be the local legend, Kashrell Lawrence, who saves his best for last.
Alberta wins the 1st quarter, with Lyndon Annetts starting quickly, but the Tigers take the ball inside in the 2nd frame, led by the solid form of Lawrence, who has 14 points at the break, tying U of A’s Annetts.
The 2nd half is a frantic slug-fest, as Alberta clings to a tenuous lead, and Gueye comes back in to turn things around with 10 points in the 3rd quarter. The Bears are up 3, but Dal are known as the ‘Come-back Cats’, and they did not disappoint. The amazing Lawrence, has a ‘monster game’ with 28 points, 10 rebounds, and 4 big steals. After Richie Kaza-Mata ties it for the Tigers on a 14 ft jumper, the Bears get nothing, and, sure enough, Lawrence cuts to the hoop with 2 seconds left to bank in the winner at the low angle.
The fans go wild, as, for the 2nd week in a row, Dalhousie turn a last minute deficit into a winning celebration. Kanza-Mata tallies 16 pts/ 5 assists, and big Sven Stammberger is one of many Dal defenders who turn up the heat , and force 22 Alberta turnovers, which proves decisive.
Gueye leads the Bears with 18 points/ 6 rebs, while Annetts finishes with the 14 he had at half-time. Brody Clarke manages just 8 points’ 8 rebs, as he gets extra attention for Tigers defenders. Box Score
Dalhousie will play the #1 seed, Ryerson in the 2nd semi-final on Saturday; Alberta were the last of the 3 Canada West teams relegated to the consolation side today. The Bears take on Saint Marys Friday at 5 pm Mountain time (8 pm – Atlantic)
#1 Ryerson 79 #8 Saint Marys 70 – The opening quarter was a quiet one for the Huskies, but the home side came back with 25 points in the 2nd stanza to trail by just 4 at the break. Ammanuel Diressa scored 16 points in that opening 20 minutes for the Rams, and they looked the more confident club.
But Saint Marys would not roll-over, and they continued to respond to every Ryerson surge with one of their own. The Maroon closed it 1 in both the 3rd and 4th quarters, but never took the lead. After Theon Reefer made it 68-69 with 2 free throws for SMU at the 2:46 mark, 6 straight points by Adika Peter-McNeilly staked the Rams to a 7 point advantage, and that was the ball game.
Diressa, the 6-5, 4th year wing man from Toronto, collected 24 points to lead both teams, as well as adding 7 rebounds and 4 assists. Peter-McNeilly scored 17 pts/ 7 rebs as Ryerson hit 7 treys to just 4 for the Huskies.
SMU gave it a real run in the 4th quarter, but could not make the big play when the chips were on the line. 5 Huskies were in double figures, led by 14 points/ 15 rebounds from Achuil Lual, and 17 points / 11 boards by Reefer. Box Score
Ryerson will play home-town favourites, Dalhousie, in the 2nd semi-final on Saturday, and Saint Marys go to the consolation side for a game with Alberta at 8 pm on Friday.
- 3 Canada West referees in the Ryerson-Saint Marys contest tonight – Riley Kerrison and Michael Weiland from Calgary, and Neil Donnelly from Regina.
- Great Halifax crowd for the Dal-Alberta game, as the numbers grow through the local teams playing back-to-back on the nights draw. The atmosphere has to be a big plus for those Atlantic teams. (Attendance announced as 6,500)
- In First Round Games from the Women’s Nationals in Victoria –
Queens 60 Cape Breton 51 , Laval 69 Saskatchewan 59 – the defending champions go down. Later games … McGill 72 Regina 62, Carleton 77 Victoria 66
Go to U-Sports – Women’s Basketball for results and schedule.
2017 Women’s Individual Awards –
Nan Copp Award (Player of the Year): Danielle Boiago, McMaster
Defensive Player of the Year: Antoinette Miller, Winnipeg
Kathy Shields Award (Rookie of the Year): Kyanna Giles, Regina
Peter Ennis Award (Coach of the Year): Dave Wilson, Queen’s
Sylvia Sweeney Award ( Academics & Community service): Katie Ross, Acadia
Tracy MacLeod Award (Courage overcoming adversity): Vanessa Pickard, McMaster