Wednesday, February 28, 2007

OUA West Semi-Final Wednesday

OUA WEST PLAYOFF RESULTS

McMaster 87 at Brock 71 FINAL Martin Ajayi (pictured) put on a spectacular second half offensive display, scoring 30 of his game-high 37 points after the intermission, igniting a sleepy Mac outside shooting effort with four consecutives 3's early in the second half and 7 3's overall in the second half to spark the Marauders to the OUA West division championship game on Saturday. The Marauders, who missed all seven of their 3's in the first half and then their first five 3's of the second half, went on a 21-14 run in the first 7 minutes of the second half as Ajayi hit 3 consecutive 3's partially offset by Badgers Brad Rootes, who tried to match Ajayi with consecutive 3's of his own to keep Brock close. With Mac up 51-50, Ajayi's 3rd 3 started a game-deciding 25-11 run culminated by a steal and breakaway dunk by Toms Lokmanis (10 points, 9 rebounds)causing Brock to call a timeout with Mac leading at 76-61. The Badgers had an opportunity to interrupt the run at 64-58 after a Rootes 3 but Chris Keith missed a pair of free throws and then fouled after the second miss and Adam Steiner made both free throws at the other end and the Badgers rarely threatened from there. With about 5 minutes remaining, Rootes left the game with an injury and did not return (see update below). Ajayi then put the final nail in Brock's coffin by hitting another pair of back-to-back 3's, the second with the shot clock winding down to lift Mac's lead to 82-65. Brock Head Coach Ken Murray was gracious in defeat calling Ajayi's performance the greatest CIS performance in a big game that he's ever seen. Steiner (18 points, 8 rebounds) had a solid game for Mac, going 8 for 8 from the field but Ajayi was the difference. 6'7" Owen White had 19 for Brock and Rootes added 21 before leaving the game. Keith and Mike Kemp added 9 each for Brock, which turned the ball over 18 times, many in the second half and allowed Mac to shoot 60.6% from the floor in the second half.

Halftime stats: Brock - Rootes 10 pts./6 rbs.; Owen White 8 pts.; Keith 6 pts; Brock shot 41% including 3-8 3's Mac - Ajayi 7; Lokmanis, Steiner, Obrovac 6 points each; 3-6 ft. 0-7 3's. Brock outrebounded Mac 22-16 including 8 offensive rebounds.

ROOTES INJURY UPDATE: OUA West MVP Brad Rootes was injured with about 10 minutes remaining in the OUA West semi-final last night when he fell and was inadvertently fallen on top of by one of his teammates. Rootes played valiantly for another 5 minutes before leaving for the hospital and was seen spitting up blood - it is suspected one of his ribs has been broken.

Guelph 61 at Windsor 69 The Lancers moved to within one game of their first OUA West championship since 1981-82 (25 seasons) by rallying from an early 10 point deficit to defeat the fiesty Gryphons. Windsor held Guelph to just 13 points in the last 13 minutes of the half to lead by 6 at the intermission and then grabbed leads as large as 11 in the second half to earn the right to host the West championship Saturday against McMaster. Still, the game was a struggle as with 9 minutes remaining Windsor led by only 1 at 43-42 and the game was being played at Guelph's pace. Unfortunately for the Gryphs, 6'8" Duncan Milne, arguably the most improved player in the OUA West this season, was whistled for a dead ball foul after slamming Windsor's Greg Allin to the floor after a Guelph bucket. The Lancers then exploded on a 12-2 run from which the Gryphs could not recover. OUA West First Team All-Star Kevin Kloostra (pictured) had 21 points and 6'2" second-team all-star Ryan Steer, finally getting his due, also had 21 while adding 9 assists and playing all 40 minutes. Steer helped the Lancers recover from early 9-2 and 23-13 deficits with 15 first-half points, many off circus shots in the lane. 6'6" Rich Allin also had a solid 15 point/7 rebound effort, going 6-8 from the field. 6'10" J.R. Bailey did his best to keep the Gryphs close with 21 points on 10-15 shooting, the only Gryph in double figures, as Guelph shot only 4-24 from 3 point land and could only get to the line 9 times all evening. Windsor is now one win away from their first trip to the Nationals in 25 years.

OUA West Semi-Final Previews + OUA East Award Winners

** CIS BASKETBALL IN THE NATIONAL MEDIA ** Sources in Ottawa advise that CBC Radio will be doing an interview with OUA East Player-of-the-Year Osvaldo Jeanty of the Carleton Ravens and OUA East second-team all-star and Ken Shields nominee Alex McLeod of the Ottawa Gee-Gees TOMORROW at NOON Eastern time on all national CBC radio affiliates. The discussion should add to the media hype building around Saturday night's OUA East championship game at the Raven's Nest.

Here are a couple of more ranking systems that we have been sharing in the past Rankings By Ratings which has a Top 5 of #1 Carleton, #2 Brandon, #3 UBC, #4 Ottawa, #5 Concordia and Cheers RPI Index which I believe is based on the same computer algorithm that the NCAA Division 1 tournament selection committee uses in helping determine their "at-large" bids; this week's Cheers RPI's Top 5 is #1 Carleton, #2 Concordia, #3 UBC, #4 Ottawa and #5 Brandon. Much will be decided this weekend as Canada West crowns their champion and both OUA East and OUA West champions will be determined.

A pair of tremendous matchups in the OUA West playoffs this evening as Windsor Lancers host Guelph and McMaster visits Brock in St.Catharines. Both higher seeds won their home games this past Saturday to advance to the division semi-finals, which involve 3 teams that are perennial contenders in McMaster, Guelph and Brock and the upstart Lancers under OUA West Coach-of-the-Year Chris Oliver who in only his second season at the helm has turned the Lancers into national contenders and helped bring energy back to the St. Denis Center in Windsor. The winners of Wednesday's games will meet on the home court of the highest remaining seed on Saturday with the winner of that game earning an automatic spot in Halifax at the CIS Nationals.

7:30 pm McMaster (#3 seed) at Brock (#2 seed) OUA West semi-final Renewing their natural "QEW Niagara" rivalry, the Badgers and Marauders face off for the third time (league and playoffs) and fourth time overall this season with a trip to the division finals as the reward for the winner. In the two prior league meetings, the Badgers held solid leads down the stretch only to have the Marauders mount comebacks, with the second come-from-behind win among the greatest comebacks in McMaster basketball history as with Player-of-the-Year Brad Rootes fouled out, Mac came from 12 down with under 2 minutes left to steal a win. Among the numerous story lines is the tremendous point guard matchup between the top two players in the division, diminutive point guards Brad Rootes of Brock (OUA West Player-of-the-Year) and Martin Ajayi (3 time OUA West Defensive Player-of-the-Year and second in the voting for Player-of-the-Year). Look for Ajayi and the Marauders to push the tempo against a Brock squad which typically deploys a shorter bench than Mac and is more likely to grind out possessions, allowing Rootes to create off the dribble and find his perimeter shooters (Brock set a program record for most 3's in a season this season). Up front, Mac's 6'8" Adam Steiner will look to operate in and around the paint and will be a tough check for 6'7" Owen White and possibly 6'5" Jesse Tipping or 6'6" Matt Bassett-Speiers. Another interesting matchup will be 6'2" Mike Kemp likely to draw 6'4" John Obrovac - both have an array of offensive skills with Obrovac having the advantage inside but Kemp having the ability to create off the bounce. OUA East First Team All-Star Chris Keith has been a load for Mac in the two prior meetings although he did foul out early in the second game - expect a healthy Obrovac to see his fair share of time watching Keith. Brock's 6'2" shooting guard Scott Murray has re-emerged as a long-range shooting threat down the stretch after battling a mini-slump in late January/early February. Expect Brock to focus on transition "d" and gang rebounding in an effort to keep the game at their pace while Mac will attack the "o" glass with 6'4" Toms Lokmanis. A wild card for Mac could be a healthy Nathan Histed, somewhat forgotten through his series of injuries this season but apparently healthy again. The last playoff meeting between these 2 powers was in the OUA West final in 2003-04 (3 seasons ago) when the Marauders claimed a 78-71 victory in Hamilton. Here are the 2 league game reviews: FIRST GAME AT BROCK on January 6th, 2007 McMaster (4-5) 85 at Brock (5-4) 77 Forward Toms Lokmanis had a follow-up tip-in to break a late game tie and then Adam Steiner followed up with another putback, which broke open a tie game in the last 2 minutes as McMaster secured a huge road victory at Bob Davis Gym in front of a capacity crowd of 1,200 fans. The game was critical for Mac and the Marauders played with desperation in the second half, especially after going into halftime down 44-39. In a foul filled game (52 total fouls), two all-conference point guards went at each other all day as Mac's 5'8" Martin Ajayi knocked in 22 points and added 7 assists while Brock's Brad Rootes had 26 points/9 assists - both fouled out late. Badgers Chris Keith had his strongest overall game of the season with 24 points, 12 rebounds while going 5-7 for 3 and playing all 40 minutes. The Marauders shot 55% in the second half to move back into the hunt for a first round playoff bye. SECOND GAME: MAC'S MIRACLE WIN AT HOME Brock (7-6) 100 at McMaster (7-6) 101 John Obrovac's baseline jumper with 4.3 seconds left lifted the Marauders, down 19 with about 10 minutes remaining in the game, to a frantic, shocking comeback win in Hamilton before 2,200 screaming fans at the Burridge Gymnasium. McMaster scored 65 second half points, including 23 in the last 3 1/2 minutes, led by 5'9" Martin Ajayi who, after going scoreless in the first half, went off for 27 second-half points including a layup with 11.3 seconds left to bring Mac to within one after Brock's Mike Kemp, with a chance to give the Badgers a 4 point lead, went 1-2 from the line. Immediately after Ajayi's layup, the Badgers turned the ball over and Obrovac got free to bring Mac all the way back. Kemp's desperation jumper at the buzzer fell short, sealing Badgers surprising fate. Brock's All-Canadian candidate Brad Rootes fouled out midway through the second half and from that point onward the Badgers began regularly turning the ball over and Ajayi went to work. 6'5" Chris Keith also fouled out early for the Badgers but the story was Brock's inability to take care of the ball without their star point guard and Ajayi's incredible second half performance. Mac's 6'8" fifth-year senior Adam Steiner led all scorers with 29 points including 2 key free throws with 31.5 seconds left to bring Mac to within 2 at 99-97 as the Marauders finished the game on a 23-10 run in the last 3 1/2 minutes. Keith had 25 for Brock while battling foul trouble all afternoon while Kemp finished with 22 and Rootes 19 points/8 rebounds/7 assists before leaving with fouls. Brock got a lift off the bench as 6'6" Jesse Tipping contributed 13 points on 5-6 shooting. With the win, Mac sweeps the season series from the Badgers and moves into a tie with Brock for second place in the conference.

Wednesday night's game can be heard on CFMU-FM 93.3 in Hamilton and on the Internet by clicking here and then clicking on WEBCAST in the left column of the site. As well, local fans in the Niagara Penninsula with Cogeco Cable will be able to view the game live. No indication yet as to whether or not Brock campus radio will do the game or there will be LIVE STATS! available (the Badgers experimented with this feature earlier in the year but have not had it since).

Other preview articles include Larry Moko's piece in the Hamilton Spectator Mac vs. Brock: A Point Guard Showdown Niagara This Week's article on Brad Rootes all-star selection and a game preview Rootes Named MVP & All-Star Also, Jim Wallace from St. Catharines Standard has an article previewing the game highlighting Brad Rootes Rootes His Own Harshest Critic

8:00 pm Guelph (#4 seed) at Windsor (#1 Seed) OUA West Semi-Final The St. Denis Center will be rocking as the Lancers host their first home playoff game since 1987-88 when the Lancers, led by Matt St. Louis, defeated Mac 88-86. Windsor came back to win their final four games of the regular season to finish in first place in the West for the first time in 27 seasons and now have the home-court advantage throughout the entire OUA playoffs including Wilson Cup. The Gryphons had a tremendous come-from-behind victory at home this past Saturday, rallying from 14 points down in the last 9 minutes to topple Western and their trademark tough half-court defence was on full display down the stretch. Guelph will have to control the tempo and get strong play from their inside team of emerging 6'7" Duncan Milne and inconsistent 6'10" J.R. Bailey to offset Lancers strength and versatility in the paint. A solid matchup at the point guard spot has 6'2" Ryan Steer, second in the OUA West in assists, facing 6'4" Nick Pankerichan, one of Guelph's most consistent players down the stretch. Arguably each team's top player is at the wing spot with 6'5" Kevin Kloostra, an OUA West First Team all-star likely to tangle with 6'3" Aron Bariagbre, who was instrumental in Guelph's late season turnaround to a home playoff game. The two teams have no recent playoff history against each other to speak of however under second-year coach Chris Oliver the Lancers are 1-1 in the playoffs, defeating Waterloo and losing to Mac last season - both on the road. The Gryphons have made the playoffs in each of Coach Chris O'Rourke's 10 seasons at the helm including a loss in the CIS National championship game in 2003. The teams split the season series, playing twice within an 8 day span in late January FIRST GAME: LANCERS TAKE LARGE LEAD AND COAST TO WIN Guelph (6-8) 51 at Windsor (11-3) 86 Jumping out to a large early lead, the Lancers dominated the glass and forced the Gryphs into 25.5% shooting and came away with the easy win. 6'2" Ryan Steer led the way with 20 points and 10 assists while 6'8" Greg Surmacz had a 10 point, 16 rebound double double. Kevin Kloostra added 19 for Windsor, which led by 18 at halftime and then completely put the game away with a 17-0 run off the start of the second half to hand the reeling Gryphons their 4th consecutive loss. Aran Bariagabre led the way for Guelph with 15 points and 8 rebounds. SECOND GAME: GRPHYS RALLY FROM EARLY DEFICIT AND END LOSING STREAK #4 Windsor (12-4) 69 at Guelph (7-9) 81 Coming back from a ten point first half deficit, the Gryphs had what could be a turnaround game, ending a five-game losing streak in defeating the Lancers, which for the second time this month lost decisively against a strong opponent on the road before about 1,000 fans in Guelph. 6'4" Nick Pankerichan had maybe his best game as a Gryph, scoring 21 points including 3-6 from 3 while playing all 40 minutes and unheralded 6'7" forward Duncan Milne was a force at both ends, scoring 15 points and adding 11 rebounds but also holding down Windsor's 6'8" forward Greg Surmacz (13 points/9 rebounds), even blocking a couple of his shots. Milne put an exclamation mark on the game with a dunk down the stretch during Guelph's final run which turned a tight game with about 10 minutes remaining into a comfortable win. Guelph also got a tremendous effort from second-year guard Charles Agyemang (Toronto Henry Carr), who played a career-high 32 minutes and did a great job defending while filling in minutes for injured Jay Mott. The Lancers, led by star guard Ryan Steer (25 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists), who had 15 first-half points, looked like they might blow the Gryphs out of their own gym, taking leads as large as 10 in the first half however Guelph's Borko Popic (16 points) knocked down a big 3 at the buzzer, culminating a mini 6-0 run to bring the Gryphs back to within 4 by halftime. The Gryphs then turned up their "d" which held the Lancers to 38.1% shooting for the game and rode the hot shooting of Pankerichan and Popic and the strong inside play of Milne to their most important win of the season.

Unfortunately, as far as we know here, there will be no national or regional coverage of this game either via Internet radio or webcast. However, Cogeco Television in Windsor will broadcast tonight's game locally and every Lancer playoff home game through the end of the OUA playoffs.

Mary Caton from the Windsor Star has a preview in this morning's edition (subscription needed) Lancers Host Hot Team in Semis

Stay tuned to the site for up-to-the-minute results from both games.

OUA EAST AWARD WINNERS

HAMILTON, Ont. – The 2005-2006 Canadian Interuniversity Sports (CIS) Men’s Basketball Player of the Year, has once again been a dominate force on the court in 2007. As the Carleton Raven’s men’s basketball team fight to retain their national champion status, fifth year guard, Osvaldo Jeanty (pictured - Gloucester, Ontario) has, for the second consecutive year, been honoured as the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) East Most Valuable Player and first-team all-star. Jeanty has unquestionably been the leader of the Ravens, helping them to a 19-3 record, and the east division regular season leaders. The Commerce major finished sixth in league scoring with an average of 17.14 points per game and thirteenth in assists with an 3.10 points per game average, while he boasts an 82.1 free throw percentage.

Toronto Varsity Blue’s forward Mike Williams (pictured - Brampton, Ontario) has also for the second consecutive season been named the East Defensive Player of the Year following an exceptional campaign. The Varsity Blues continue to be one of the best defensive teams in the OUA allowing just 63.45 points per game (fifth in the CIS) and Williams is a large contributor at the defensive end of the court for his team. A 6’6 Phys Ed major, Williams finished the season with team highs 146 rebounds, 27 steals, and 47 blocks, as he led Toronto to a 15-7 record, good enough for third place in the east division.

The Ken Shields Nominee for the east division, presented annually to the CIS student-athlete who best exhibits outstanding achievement in basketball, academics and community involvement has been awarded to Ottawa Gee-Gees Alex McLeod (pictured - Lindsay, Ontario). In his fifth year McLeod is Ottawa’s all team leading scorer, and is the all time three point field goal leader. He has captained the Gee-Gee’s for five years and has been instrumental in helping rebuild the Gee-Gees into a top ten program in the CIS. McLeod is currently working towards finishing law school and continues to showcase his impressive leadership skills. He is the coordinator of the Gee-Gees visits to elementary schools in the Ottawa Region and has participated in over 20 visits in the last three years. McLeod has taken his younger teammates under his wing and leads them in study hall providing valuable support. On the court McLeod finished the season with a 10.9 points per game average and also tallied 46 assists, 15 steals and 52 rebounds to lead the Gee-Gees to an 18-4 record and second place in the OUA east division.

Boris Bakovic (Toronto, Ontario) was a welcomed addition to a struggling Ryerson Rams men’s basketball team. In just his first year of OUA competition Bakovic finished fifth in OUA scoring averaging 17.43 points per game, and was second in the OUA in rebounds pulling down 210 on the year. He was a constant defensive threat on the court, as 143 of his rebounds were on the defensive glass, and he also tallied 31 steals and 14 blocks. Wasting no time making his mark on the OUA, Bakovic will be a player to watch in the coming years.

Joining Jeanty on the first team all-stars is York powerhouse Dan Eves (Barrie, Ontario). In his third all-star appearance Eves did not disappoint in 2007. Eves finished the season third in OUA scoring averaging 19.85 points per game, and his accuracy is what sets him apart, shooting an impressive 53.5 percent from the field. 2005-2006 OUA East Rookie of the Year, Josh Gibson Bascombe (Ottawa, Ontario) also joins Eves on the first-team all-stars. Finishing the season with a 14.5 points per game average, Gibson Bascombe also lead the league in steals with an average of 2.7 a game. Aaron Doornekamp (Odessa, Ontario) makes his second consecutive appearance on the first-team all-stars as he had a phenomenal year playing along side Jeanty, finishing with a 12.8 points per game average. Rounding out the first-team is Ben Katz (Toronto, Ontario) who makes his first appearance on the all-star list. Katz lead the Varsity Blues in points per game (13.1) and also hauled down 104 rebounds on the year.

Ottawa Gee-Gees Head Coach Dave DeAveiro has been named the East Coach of the Year, as recognized by his peers. DeAveiro led the Gee-Gees an 18-4 record for the second consecutive year, and a birth into the east division final to date in the playoffs. Most notably, DeAveiro lead the Gee-Gees to a regular season series sweep of the dominant Carleton Ravens. The series sweep was a first for Ottawa in over a decade.

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
Osvaldo Jeanty- Carleton

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Mike Williams- Toronto

KEN SHIELDS AWARD
Alex McLeod- Ottawa

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
Boris Bakovic- Ryerson

COACH OF THE YEAR
Dave Deaveiro- Ottawa

FIRST TEAM ALL-STARS
Osvaldo Jeanty- Carleton
Daniel Eves- York
Josh Gibson Bascombe- Ottawa
Aaron Doornekamp- Carleton
Ben Katz- Toronto

SECOND TEAM ALL-STARS
Mike Williams- Toronto
Jordan Foebel- York
Alex McLeod- Ottawa
Rohan Steen- York
Curtis Shakespeare- Ottawa

ALL-ROOKIE TEAM
Boris Bakovic- Ryerson
Mitch Leger- Queen’s
Mike Kenny- Carleton
Andrew MacIntosh- RMC
Jason Hoult- York

Articles of note from around the country: The Ubyssey, UBC's student newspaper, has separate articles on both UBC victories over UVic this past weekend; Game One Article T-Birds Roll Over Vikes in Game One Route plus Game Two article T-Birds send UVic packing with series win

Morris Dalla Costa from the London Free Press reports on Western women's official hiring of Steph Barrie as Head Coach Barrie Raises the Bar for Mustang Women

The Eyeopener, Ryerson's campus newspaper, has a comprehensive look at the Ryerson sports programs including several comments about the recent shuffle in the Rams sports administration Rams to the Slaughter

An article from the Gateway, U of A's student newspaper, describes the Bears loss to Saskatchewan in their recent playoff series Missed Three by Morrison Ends Bears Hoops Season

Brandon's SID provides an early week preview of this weekend's Canada West Final Four Top Ranked Bobcats Set to Host Canada West Final Four

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

CIS HOOPS.CA OUA West All Stars

Congratulations to Steph Barrie (pictured) who had the "interim" tag removed from his title and now assumes the Head Coaching job of Western's women's team full-time. Former Head Coach Mike Milne was in full support of the decision as the following press release courtesy of Andy Watson from Western Sports Information Mustangs Renew Contract for Stephan Barrie also article in Western News, Western's campus newspaper Barrie to guide women's basketball

Mac at Brock tickets on sale now Brock Playoff Tickets

A nice article on Chris Oliver and his OUA West Coach-of-the-Year award Oliver Named Coach-of-the-Year

Mac's Martin Ajayi was named OUA West Defensive Player-of-the-Year for the third consecutive season From the Mac web site

HOT OFF THE PRESSES (thanks to Dale Stevens)

Courtesy of NABCC ...

NABCC Top Ten
February 27, 2007

LW Votes
-- -----
1. Brandon (35) #1 442 votes
2. Concordia (2) #2 406 votes
3. Carleton #4 354 votes
4. UBC #5 329 votes
5. Ottawa #6 285 votes
6. Victoria #3 278 votes
7. St. Francis Xavier #8 187 votes
8. Cape Breton #7 179 votes
9. Acadia #9 152 votes
10. Windsor #10 135 votes
11. Brock #12 58 votes
12. Saskatchewan #15 44 votes
13. Toronto #11 15 votes
14. McMaster NR 3 votes
15. York #14 1 vote
Saint Mary's NR 1 vote

Last week, we provided our take on the OUA East All-Stars and top freshmen. This week, we take a look at our choices for OUA West honours.

CISHOOPS.CA OUA WEST FIRST TEAM ALL-STARS

BRAD ROOTES, 5'9" Point Guard, Brock Badgers PLAYER OF THE YEAR The incomparable fourth-year guard took his game to new levels this season, logging almost 37 minutes per game while averaging 19.9 ppg (second in OUA West). Rootes also averaged a record 8.1 assists per game against only 3 turnovers/game. At no time was his value apparent than when, with Brock up by double digits, Rootes fouled out of his only game of the season at McMaster and the Marauders promptly mounted a miracle comeback. Rootes also continued to play on a severely injured ankle during Brock's nine game winning streak that clinched a first-round playoff bye for the Badgers and still averaged over 35 mpg. Rootes shot 46% from the floor for the season and 81% at the foul line while making 50 3's. Down the stretch, Rootes had 32 points in the season-ending loss to Windsor and had 31 while battling the bad ankle in a win against Western.

MARTIN AJAYI, 5'8" Point Guard, McMaster Marauders The OUA nominee for CIS defensive player of the year, Ajayi also led the OUA West in scoring at 22.1 points per game, igniting Mac's offense with his fearless, coast-to-coast attacks at the rim and momentum-swinging steals setting up easy transition. Ajayi also averaged 5.4 assists per game, including at least one typical highlight-reel look-off pass on the break per game. Ajayi flirted with a triple/double on several occasions and had 30 in a recent game at Guelph.

KEVIN KLOOSTRA, 6'6" Forward, Windsor Lancers Kloostra established himself as the OUA West's top wing with his ability to create for himself and get to the rim combined with range beyond the three point line as the slick forward averaged 16.6 points per game for the OUA West regular season champions. Kloostra, who averaged a team-high 35 minutes per game, also averaged a solid 40.3% from three point land and was one of the top free throw shooters in the entire CIS at 87.1%. The "go-to" guy in Windsor's offense, Kloostra has also improved on the defensive end and is the main reason for the recent resurgence of the Lancers program.

ADAM STEINER, 6'7" Forward, McMaster Marauders Until he injured his wrist in practice with 2 games remaining in the regular season, Steiner was probably the division's most consistent player after the holidays, averaging nearly 4 points and 2 rebounds per game more in January and February than prior to Christmas. Steiner finished 6th in OUA West scoring at 16.6 ppg and averaged 8.0 rebounds per game while playing a team-high 35 minutes per game. Steiner also shot 47% from the floor and 80.5% from the foul line and, with teammate Martin Ajayi, ordinarily was counted on to lead the team offensively as Mac recovered from a poor start to finish third in the OUA West.

GREG SURMACZ, 6'7", Forward, Windsor Lancers A newcomer to OUA West play after transfering back home from the U.S., Surmacz immediately had an impact, averaging a double/double of 15.2 ppg and 10.2 rpg while shooting 53.5% from the floor. Surmacz made life easier for Windsor's shooters by forcing double downs in the post and, teaming with the Allin brothers (Greg and Rich), protected the paint defensively for the Lancers. Down the stretch, Surmacz had a double/double in the win over Brock to clinch first place and also had 18 points/14 rebounds against Western to help end Lancers mini-slump earlier in February.

CISHOOPS.CA OUA WEST SECOND TEAM ALL-STARS

CHRIS KEITH, 6'5", Forward, Brock Badgers The versatile, athletic forward showed again that he is equally adept at either pulling out slower defenders to the perimeter or posting up smaller, less stronger checks inside, averaging 16.4 points per game and 7.7 rebounds per game for the second place Badgers. Keith also averaged over 32 minutes per game and shot 46.2% from the floor. Keith finished the season strong during Brock's 9 game winning streak with a 5-6 effort from 3 and 20 points vs. Guelph, 21 points/14 rebounds vs. Western, 27 points/12 rebounds vs. Waterloo and 24 points/6 rebounds vs. Laurier.

MATT WALKER, 6'5", Forward, Laurier Golden Hawks A former OUA West Rookie-of-the-Year, Walker emerged as a legitimate league-wide threat in his third season, averaging 16.9 points and 6.8 rebounds per game, helping the young Hawks to the playoffs. Walker had probably his most impactful effort against McMaster on Senior's Day in front of a large crowd, scoring 22 points as the Hawks defeated their foes to clinch a playoff spot. Walker represents the veteran presence in the young Laurier program on the rise.

RYAN STEER, 6'2" Guard, Windsor Lancers Emerging as a legitimate all-conference selection in his 4th season, the ultra-competitive, hard-working Steer improved all aspects of his game this season, becoming a much more consistent perimeter shooter and running the point as a mature, mentally-tough floor leader. Steer was 9th in the OUA West in scoring at 13.7 ppg and was second in assists at 7.1 apg including several double/doubles, highlighted by a 21 point/12 assist effort against Brad Rootes and the Badgers in the first-place deciding win against Brock and 23 points/10 assists vs. Western.

ARON BARIAGBRE, 6'3", Guard, Guelph Gryphons With the Gryphons floundering in late January, Bariagbre was the main reason for Guelph winning 6 of their last 7 games as he took big shots, guarded opponent's top defenders and rebounded, allowing the Gryphs to host a home playoff game. In his second season with Guelph after transfering from Humber College, Bariagbre upped his season average down the stretch to 12.9 ppg and 5.2 rpg while shooting 41% from 3 point land and 87.1% from the free throw line. Aron went 9-13 for 23 points down the stretch against Brock and had 18 points/8 rebounds in a key win against Laurier.

MIKE KEMP, 6'2", Forward/Guard, Brock Badgers Not only did Kemp average 13.1 ppg (10th in the OUA West), the undersized swingman was usually asked to guard the opponent's top player, generally giving up inches and pounds, while holding guys below their season averages. Kemp also did the dirty work on the glass, helping the undersized Badgers to outrebound opponents during every game of their 9 game winning streak which gave Brock a first-round bye and a semi-final home game.

CISHOOPS.CA TOP FRESHMAN IN OUA WEST
Andrew Wedemire, Western (Freshman-of-the-Year)
Andrew Pennycook, Laurier
Justin Golob, Laurier
Evan Eliason, Laurier
Danny Jeon, Western

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ROOTES HONOURED WITH OUA WEST MENS BASKETBALL MVP... Courtesy of the OUA

February 26, 2007 - HAMILTON, Ont. Brock Badgers senior guard Brad Rootes (Niagara Falls, Ontario) had large shoes to fill in the 2006-2007 after the departure of Ontario University Athletics (OUA) standout teammate Kevin Stienstra, and he did not disappoint. Heading into the OUA West semi finals, Rootes has been named the OUA West Most Valuable Player and first-team all-star. The five-foot-10 guard finished his last game of the regular season with a season high 32 points, which allowed him to surpass former All-Canadian, from the University of Western Ontario Jimmy Grozelle (1289) for 15th all-time in OUA career scoring with 1291 points after just four seasons. Rootes sits second in the OUA in scoring with an 19.9 points per game average, and is ranked number one in assists with 179 on the season. Rootes is an overriding threat whether it be on offense or defense, as he also sits third in the OUA in steals (48) and has 103 rebounds, 87 coming off of the defensive glass this season.

For the third consecutive year, McMaster Marauders Martin Ajayi (Hamilton, Ontario) has been named the OUA West Defensive Player of the Year and first-team all-star. Regardless of the situation on the court, Ajayi is a dominant force. The fifth year geography major, finished the season with 46 steals and 90 rebounds. Not only does he excel on the defensive end of the court, but this year he has picked up his offensive game and finished the season first in the OUA in scoring, averaging 22.14 points per game.

Ajayi's McMaster teammate Adam Steiner (Dundas, Ontario) is the OUA West nominee for the prestigious Ken Shields Award, presented annually to the student-athlete who best exhibits outstanding success in basketball, academics and community involvement. A second year MBA student, Steiner has a long list of awards and achievements. In 2006 he was the recipient of the Jack Kennedy Award for Top Marauder Scholar at McMaster University and has been an academic all Canadian the past four years. Steiner has been awarded the MBA Refining Directions Scholarship in 2006, as well as the Ray Lewis Award (Sport Volunteer Community Service). He has been a Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) committee member from 2006 to the present, representing over 10,000 student-athletes across the country, and is a member of the McMaster Judicial Review Committee. Steiner is the lead student representative on the Judicial Board regarding athletes code of conduct. He is a member of the entrusted panel of university officials which hear the infractions involving McMaster student-athletes. As Co-President of McMaster Athletic Council, Steiner acted as one of two lead coordinators of the Athletes Helping Athletes (AHA) program. On the court the six-foot-seven forward had an outstanding year finishing second in team scoring and ninth in the OUA in scoring averaging 16.7 points per game.

Andrew Wedemire (Sarnia, Ontario) of the Western Mustangs has been named the OUA West Rookie of the Year after exploding onto the OUA scene. Wedemire sat second on his team in scoring, averaging 12.2 points per game. Not only has Wedemire been an offensive threat for the Mustangs, but he also has hauled down 95 rebounds on the year. As a rookie Wedemire has also shown an impressive coolness and poise shooting an inspiring team high and seventh in the OUA, 53.1 percent from the field.

Joining fellow all-stars Rootes, Ajayi, and Steiner on the first-team all-stars is Windsor Lancer Kevin Kloostra (Chatham, Ontario). The six-foot-three forward finished the season eighth in the OUA in scoring averaging 16.77 points per game. He has been a leader on the Lancer team, helping them to the OUA West playoff semi finals. He collected 104 rebounds and 19 steals on the year, and is a player who you do not want to see on the foul line shooting an exceptional 89.3 percent from the charity stripe. Rounding out the first-team is Brock Badger Chris Keith (Burlington, Ontario). Keith has distinguished himself as one of the leagues top players, and is an all around player for the Badgers. He is a threat whether it be on the offensive of defensive end of the court. Keith finishes the season tenth in the OUA in scoring averaging 16.36 points per game, but has also brought down 170 rebounds for sixth spot on the leader board.

Chris Oliver has been named the West Coach of the Year in his second season as the Head Coach of the Windsor Lancers Men's Basketball program. Oliver has led his Windsor squad into becoming the OUA West Division Regular Season Champions (16-6) for the first time in 27 years. The Lancers have been nationally ranked for the entire season, and boast the best season record Windsor has seen in 25 years. Widely considered to be one of the top young coaches in Canada, Oliver has turned the Windsor Lancers into one of the top defensive teams in the nation, on average holding their opponents to under 70 points per game. His team led the OUA and sit second in the CIS in rebounds averaging 38.38 per game.

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
Brad Rootes- Brock

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Martin Ajayi- McMaster

KEN SHIELDS AWARD
Adam Steiner- McMaster

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
Andrew Wedemire- Western

COACH OF THE YEAR
Chris Oliver- Windsor

FIRST TEAM ALL-STARS
Brad Rootes- Brock
Martin Ajayi- McMaster
Kevin Kloostra- Windsor
Adam Steiner- McMaster
Chris Keith- Brock

SECOND TEAM ALL-STARS
Greg Surmacz- Windsor
Matt Walker- Laurier
Aron Bariagabre- Guelph
Ryan Steer- Windsor
Warren Thomas- Lakehead

ALL-ROOKIE TEAM
Andrew Wedemire- Western
Andrew Pennycook- Laurier
Justin Golob- Laurier
Jermaine Decosta- McMaster
Saad Beg- Lakehead

Wayne Kondro previews the OUA East All-Stars and award winners in this morning's Ottawa Citizen (subscription required) Jeanty in line to repeat as top player in OUA East According to the article, Jeanty will be named OUA East Player-of-the-Year for the third consecutive season and the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees' David DeAveiro will also repeat as OUA East coach of the year after leading his troops to an 18-4 record, including a pair of victories against the Ravens. Jeanty will also earn his third consecutive selection to the OUA East first all-star team, and teammate Aaron Doornekamp will be named to the squad for the second year in a row. They are joined by U of O's Joshua Gibson-Bascombe, Toronto's Ben Katz and York's Daniel Eves. The Gee-Gees also have two representatives on the second all-star unit, fifth-year seniors Curtis Shakespeare and Alex McLeod, who is on that team for the second consecutive year. Others on the second team include Toronto's Mike Williams and York's Jordan Foebel and Rohan Steen. Williams will also again be named the league's defensive player of the year, and Ryerson's Boris Bakovic will earn top rookie laurels.

Monday, February 26, 2007

CIS HOOPS.CA Top 10: Week of 25 Feb 07

We received a nice note today from Kirk Alfaro who runs a very good Hamilton-based web site called the hoop-la.com that has been going for a number of years. Our good friend Jim Thomas is a contributing writer to that site and we have posted links to Jim's articles in the past. We are happy to exchange links with Kirk and encourage you to visit and bookmark Kirk's site by clicking here

Here is the latest edition of The Thomas Report, authored by Jim Thomas, published on the hoop-la.com earlier today Thomas Report 26 February 07

ARTICLES FROM LATER TODAY

The Victoria Times-Colonist explains the Canada West Final Four set-up including Victoria being named as the wild card for this weekend's tournament in Brandon Vikes get second shot at CIS title

The Guelph Mercury reports on the Gryphs huge, late comeback to live another day and face Windsor on Wednesday Gryphs wake up just in time

Guelph Mercury reports on the local high school championship where Jonathan House starred House Leads Spartans to CWOSSA title

There was one game in the CIS today as MUN and X made up their game from Saturday which was postponed due to inclement weather in Newfoundland Memorial (5-15, 10 pts) 67 at St. FX (13-6, 40 pts) 82 The X-Men started slowly and actually fell behind by 4 at halftime before exploding for 50 points in the second half to clinch second place in the AUS and receive a first round bye at the AUS tournament. 6'3" Garry Gallimore had 26 points while 6'10" Neil MacDonald added 23 points and 12 rebounds and 6'2" Tyler Richards added 14. St. FX again played without starting point guard Christian "T-Bear" Upshaw and emerging subsitute David Joyce, both out with ankle injuries. Sean Thistle had 23 for MUN, which saw their season come to an end with a 5-15 record. Here is this afternoon's BOX SCORE The entire AUS tournament schedule has been posted below with thanks to Jim Charters from Cape Breton.

AUS Men’s Basketball Tournament Schedule - All Games at Halifax Metro Center

Thursday, March 8th

Quarterfinal #1: UPEI vs. Saint Mary's, 6:00pm Atlantic

Quarterfinal #2: Acadia vs. Dalhousie, 8:00pm Atlantic


Friday, March 9th

Semifinal #1: Cape Breton vs. Lowest Remaining Seed, 6:00pm Atlantic

Semifinal #2: StFX vs. Highest Remaining Seed, 8:00pm Atlantic


Saturday, March 10th

Championship Game: Semifinal Winners, 7:00pm Atlantic


NEWSPAPER REPORTS FROM THE WEEKEND

Worth a repeat post... Excellent article by James Mirtle of the Globe & Mail on the Mike Katz/Dave DeAveiro relationship and the turnarond by Coach Katz at U of T Protégé and mentor meet again in OUA quarter-final

Larry Moko from Hamilton Spectator reports on Mac's win over Laurier in which they neutralized Hawks' All-Star Matt Walker Mac Leans On Vets

Mark Lynch had a big game from behind the arc as Saskatchewan defeated Alberta to advance to the Canada West Final Four as Kevin Mitchell from Saskatoon Star-Phoenix reports Dogs Heading to Conference Finals Also, Jonathan Huntington from Edmonton Sun provides the Alberta perspective in this article Dreams Die Hard . Edmonton Journal also has a report on Sunday afternoon's series finale Bad News for Bears

Chad Lucas from the Halifax Chronicle-Herald reports on Mark McLaughlin's big afternoon allowing his St. Mary's Huskies to knock off first-place Cape Breton
McLaughlin Leads Huskies Past Capers

Charles Reid from the PEI Guardian reports on the Panthers loss to Acadia on Seniors Day Panthers Wanted this one Real Bad

Also, thanks to Nathan Schellenberg for the following details about Game 3 of Saskatchewan vs. Alberta... Alberta led by as many as 10 in the first half but ran into foul trouble in the final eight minutes forcing Coach Don Horwood to sit Golden Bears starters Alex Steele (Edmonton, 4th) and Tyson Jones (Manitoba, 5th). The Huskies ended the half with a 23-6 run and a 50-43 lead at the break. In the second half, the Huskies led by eight when Huskies Rejean Chabot hustled back to intercept an Alberta pass on the break, before taking the ball upcourt and finding Mark Lynch for a layup, putting the Dogs up 61-51 with 15:19 to go. A minute and a half later Saskatchewan's Kyle Grant picked up his fourth foul of the game and was forced to sit for a few minutes. Jordan Harbidge, who played six minutes in the first half in his first game action since suffering an ankle injury in practice ten days ago, came in a promptly threw an alley-oop pass to Spagrud to restore the ten point lead. Back-to-back deep three's over the Huskies zone by Alex Steele cut the lead to 72-67 with 8:32 remaining. But the Dogs came back, and Lynch drilling another three to make the score 82-73 with 5:38 left to play. With the Huskies leading 85-81, two critical plays hurt the Bears' chances of completing a comeback. With 2:25 to play Steele fouled out after charging into Grant. After the Huskies failed to score, Neb Aleksic turned the ball over on an over-and-back violation with 1:42 on the clock. Lynch scored on a short jumper with 1:16 remaining to put the Huskies up six, but Jones respnded for the Bears quickly driving to the hoop for a layup. C.G. Morrison was able to hit a layup with 6.9 seconds left, making the score 87-85. The Bears then fouled Grant, who missed his first free throw before hitting the second with 5.9 seconds showing on the clock, setting up Morrison's desperation heave at the buzzer that missed, allowing Saskatchewan to capture the 3 point win.


Before we get into this week's CIS HOOPS.CA Top 10, here are some tables of data to consider:

TOP OVERALL RECORDS IN CIS listed in order of fewest losses
Concordia 20-2 with losses to Laurentian (9-19) at home & at UQAM (6-15)
Brandon 29-3 with losses at Winnipeg (15-17) twice & at Trinity Western (12-16)
Carleton 28-3 with losses to Ottawa (28-4) twice (neutral & away) & York (23-11) at home
UBC 30-4 with losses to Concordia (20-2) (neutral), at Brandon (29-3), at Sask (20-14) & at UVic (26-8)
Ottawa 28-4 with losses at Windsor (19-7), at Toronto (21-10), at York (23-11) and Queen's (19-14) at home
Victoria 26-8 with 4 losses vs UBC (30-4) (3 times away & once at home), Concordia (20-2) at home, at Carleton (28-3), Windsor (19-7) (neutral) and at Brandon (29-3)
Brock 24-9
York 23-11
Cape Breton 21-9
Toronto 21-10
Saskatchewan 20-14
Queen's 19-14
Windsor 19-7
McMaster 19-11
Alberta 19-12
Acadia 19-12
St. FX 19-6
Laval 16-13

# TEAMS OVER .500 PER DIVISION:
AUS: 3 out of 8 teams (Cape Breton, St. FX, Acadia)
QSSF: 2 out of 5 teams (Concordia, Laval)
OUA EAST: 5 out of 8 teams (Carleton, Ottawa, Toronto, York, Queen's)
OUA WEST: 3 out of 8 teams (Brock, Windsor, McMaster)
CANADA WEST: 5 out of 16 teams (Brandon, UBC, Victoria, Alberta, Saskatchewan)

HOTTEST TEAMS IN THE CIS - Longest current winning streaks:
Brandon 15
Concordia 8
UBC 6
Ottawa 5

BEST RECORDS SINCE THE HOLIDAYS in order of most victories
Brandon 14-0 with "quality" wins at home over UBC, Vic; all other wins vs. under .500 teams
UBC 13-3 losses: at Brandon, at Saskatchewan, at Vic; "quality" wins at home at Vic, Vic at home (twice), at Alberta
Ottawa 12-3 losses: at York, at Toronto, Queen's at home; "quality" wins twice vs. Carleton (home & neutral), Toronto (twice), York, at Queen's
Carleton 12-3 losses: Ottawa (twice), York at home; "quality" wins: York (twice; home & road), Toronto (twice), Queen's (twice)
Victoria 12-4 losses: at Brandon, UBC (at home), at UBC (twice); "quality" wins: UBC at home, at Alberta, at Saskatchewan
Toronto 12-4
Cape Breton 11-3
Brock 10-4
McMaster 11-4
Acadia 10-3

CISHOOPS.CA CANADIAN UNIVERSITY CIS TOP 10 for week of 26 February 2007

#1 Brandon (20-2 in Canada West, 29-3 vs. CIS overall) (cishoops.ca #1 ranked last week): THIS PAST WEEK: Swept Regina (11-19) at home to win Great Plains Division title and host bid for Canada West Final Four UPDATE: Brandon will meet Canada West wild-card UVic at home on Friday, one of two Canada West Final Four semi-final games. It is worth mentioning again that the Bobcats have played only 6 of their 32 games overall against teams with records better than .500 but are 6-0 in those games, none of which were road games (four home wins over UBC, UVic, Alberta and Saskatchewan plus neutral court wins vs. Saskatchewan and Toronto).

#2 Concordia (14-1 in QSSF, 19-2 vs. CIS overall) (cishoops.ca #2 ranked last week): THIS PAST WEEK: Defeated UQAM 102-63 ; won at Laval 78-65. UPDATE: The Stingers finished first in the "Q" and will host UQAM, a team they just beat by 39 in the first round of the playoffs this Thursday (one game sudden death). Concordia has won 8 in a row and 20 of 21 since their opening night loss at their own Concordia tournament to Laurentian in early October. The Stingers are 7-0 against teams with records better than .500 including a pair of wins out west over UBC (road game) and Victoria (at UBC tournament).

#3 Carleton (19-3 in OUA, 28-3 vs. CIS overall) (cishoops.ca #3 ranked last week): THIS PAST WEEK: Defeated York 68-57 in OUA East semi-final at home UPDATE: The Ravens rebounded to defeat York in a workman-like effort to once again reach the OUA East championship game, which they will host on Saturday at the Raven's Nest against Ottawa. Two of Carleton's three losses have been to Ottawa, which only has 4 losses all season, on the road and at a neutral site. The Ravens are still the four-time defending champions, have played a very demanding schedule and still have only 3 losses all season, all within the OUA East, which numbers-wise and anecdotally adds up to the toughest division in the CIS.

#4 Ottawa (18-4 in OUA, 27-4 vs. CIS overall) (cishoops.ca #4 ranked last week): THIS PAST WEEK: Defeated Toronto 69-68 at home in OUA East semi-final UPDATE: The Gee-Gees have won 9 of their last 10 games with the lone loss during that stretch at the buzzer at U of T, a team they just defeated on Saturday. Ottawa is the only team in the past 4 seasons or longer to defeat Carleton twice and with only 4 losses to CIS teams all season, only 3 teams have fewer setbacks against Canadian schools. The Gee-Gees are a solid 10-4 against teams above .500 with losses at Toronto, Queen's, at York and at Windsor. Ottawa will look to earn an automatic bid to their second CIS Nationals in 3 seasons on Saturday night at Carleton in the OUA East championship game.

#5 UBC (20-3 in Canada West, 2-0 in playoffs, 28-4 vs. CIS overall) (cishoops.ca #6 ranked last week): THIS PAST WEEK: Defeated UVic twice 80-63 and 88-82 to win the Pacific Division championship in 2 straight. UPDATE: The T-Birds made it four of five against Vic this season, including the only road win in the five games played, with a pair of victories including Friday's decisive win by 17. UBC has played the majority of their big games on the road, with only Victoria (win) and Concordia (loss) at home plus road games at Brandon (loss), at Saskatchewan (loss), at Alberta (win) and vs. Cape Breton (win at Memorial tournament). UBC plays for an automatic spot in Halifax this coming Friday night against Saskatchewan, which defeated the T-Birds in early February 79-75 in Saskatoon.

#6 Victoria (20-3 Canada West, 2-2 in playoffs, 26-8 vs. CIS overall) (cishoops.ca #5 ranked last week): THIS PAST WEEK: Lost twice at UBC 80-63 & 88-82 but earned Canada West's wild card bid to the Final Four next weekend in Brandon UPDATE: The Vikes have four quality wins against at Alberta, at Saskatchewan, Queen's (neutral) and at home against UBC in January after which they promptly lost at home to the T-Birds the next night. With 8 losses (including 4 to UBC, at Brandon, vs. Concordia at UBC tournament, at Carleton, vs. Windsor at Carleton tournament), the Vikes likely need a victory over Brandon in the Canada West Final Four semi-final on Friday night to make it to the Nationals. The Bobcats earlier defeated Victoria 82-81 on a Tyus Edney-like coast-to-coast score by Brandon's Yul Michel at the buzzer in Brandon in January.

#7 Cape Breton (15-4 in AUS, 21-9 vs. CIS overall) (cishoops.ca #7 ranked last week): THIS PAST WEEK: Won at Dal 84-63 and lost to SMU 68-61. UPDATE: The Capers clinched top spot in the AUS on the weekend, ending X's 9 year run atop the conference but tripped up the next day at St. Mary's. Cape Breton has only 3 losses after the holidays but with 9 losses overall including 5 out of the conference plus a convincing loss against York by 15, the Capers fall short of a Top 5 spot. Cape Breton finishes their season at second place X next Sunday and then awaits the winner of the likely UPEI/St.Mary's game in the AUS tournament semi-finals for a spot in the Nationals.

#8 Windsor (16-6 in OUA, 19-7 vs. CIS overall) (cishoops.ca not ranked last week): THIS PAST WEEK: Defeated Brock 82-72 at home to clinch their first OUA West regular season title in 27 years UPDATE: The Lancers came away with a quality win at home when it counted, ending Brock's 9 game winning streak in convincing fashion. Windsor will have home court advantage throughout the remainder of the Ontario playoffs including the Wilson Cup if they make it that far. The Lancers host Guelph this Wednesday in the OUA West semi-final and the teams split the season series, each winning on their respective home floors; the game at Windsor finished 86-51 in late January. Expect a loud, sell-out crowd at the St. Denis Center.

#9 St. Francis Xavier (12-6 in AUS, 19-6 vs. CIS overall): THIS PAST WEEK: Won at St. Mary's 78-76 in overtime and defeated MUN 86-61 at home UPDATE: X has now won 3 in a row and still has but 6 losses to CIS teams this season. A win over MUN tomorrow clinches second place and a bye in the AUS tournament but the young X-Men had their 9 year streak of first place AUS finishes officially ended this weekend by Cape Breton with which they tangle in their final league game next Saturday. X has tried to work in 5 freshmen into the rotation but still has veterans Neil McDonald, Garry Gallimore and Tyler Richards who have been through the wars at the Metro Center and rightfully are a favorite for one of the two AUS spots at the Nationals.

#10 Brock (15-7 in OUA, 24-9 vs. CIS overall) (cishoops.ca NR last week) THIS PAST WEEK: Lost 82-72 at Windsor to finish second and claim an OUA West first round playoff bye UPDATE: Brock had their 9 game winning streak snapped in Windsor and will host McMaster Marauders on Wednesday in an OUA West semi-final game. The Badgers gave up a pair of large late leads in bowing twice to McMaster this season. With only 2 losses outside of the league all season (overtime against Cape Breton and Concordia by 6), the Badgers have earned consideration for a Top 10 ranking.

DROPPED OUT OF CISHOOPS.CA TOP TEN
Toronto, York (CISHOOPS.CA policy is to immediately remove teams eliminated from further play from Top 10 consideration even though they may be warranted)

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Sunday's Results

Excellent article by James Mirtle of the Globe & Mail on the Mike Katz/Dave DeAveiro relationship and the turnarond by Coach Katz at U of T Protégé and mentor meet again in OUA quarter-final

U of A web site report on Saskatchewan's dramatic win over Alberta Sunday afternoon (see also below for a game recap) Lynch Leads Huskies

Cape Breton Capers weekend wrap up as the Men's team clinched first place in the AUS on Saturday by defeating Dal but lost Sunday at St.Mary's (includes Box Scores) Capers Weekend Review

CIS RESULTS TODAY

CANADA WEST CENTRAL DIVISION FINAL
Saskatchewan 88 at Alberta 85 (Game 3 Best-of-3 Final, Huskies win series 2-1) It is unbelievable to think that a team could shoot 66.7% from the floor including 12-18 from 3 point land and 9 of 9 from the foul line, have an early 10 point lead and still lose, however that is what happened Sunday afternoon to the Alberta Golden Bears as the Huskies prevailed by 3 behind 23 points from Rejean Chabot, who was also Friday's hero with 29 points. 6'8" Andrew Spagrud had 22 points and 6 rebounds while 6'6" fourth-year forward Mark Lynch came up big at a crucial time for Saskatchewan, going 4-5 from downtown as part of a 21 point effort. The visiting Huskies almost matched the Bears, going 30 of 49 (61.2%) from the floor and 8 of 19 from 3 to squeeze out a three point win. In another telling stat, Saskatchewan shot 27 free throws (making 20) and committed only 13 fouls as opposed to 25 whistled against the Bears. Fifth-year veterans Scott Gordon (16 points) and Tyson Jones (8 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists) played their final games in a Bears uniform. Second year guard C.G. Morrison had his best game of the series with 24 points on 4-7 shooting from beyond the arc but it was not enough as the Huskies advance to next weekend's Canada West Final Four in Brandon. On Friday night, the host Bobcats take on UVic, which was awarded the Canada West wild card moments ago and Saskatchewan takes on UBC. The winners of the semi-final games will automatically qualify for the CIS Nationals and play for the Canada West championship on Saturday. There will also be a third place game on Saturday between the 2 losers of the semi-finals which could have wild card implications.

AUS
Acadia (13-6, 36 pts) 77 at UPEI (8-12, 30 pts) 68 Paolo Santana (pictured) flirted with a triple double, scoring 18 points and adding 8 rebounds and 8 assists as the Axemen ruined Senior's Day in Charlottetown and clinched (at worst) third place in the AUS after finishing dead last only one season ago. Shawn Berry and Luckern Dieu added 14 apiece for Acadia, which finishes their regular season next Saturday at home against Dal. The Panthers two graduating seniors both had solid days especially 6'9" Doug McKinney, who went 5-9 from 3 and finished with a game-high 24 points while Sherone Edwards added 19 points and 7 rebounds. Acadia helped themselves by going 9 of 14 from beyond the arc and shooting 51.1% overall.

Cape Breton (15-4, 44 pts) 61 at Saint Mary's (10-9, 28 pts) 68 4 POINTS 6'2" Mark McLaughlin continued his torrid scoring down the stretch of the season with 19 points and the Huskies won their second straight, knocking off the AUS regular season champions at the Tower. Clint Bateman added 14 points and 10 rebounds while post Ike Uchegbu also had a 12-point/10-rebound double/double. Eric Breland was high man for Cape Breton, which had clinched first place yesterday, with 19 points and 9 rebounds. The Capers shot just 29.7% from the floor overall as a team.

Memorial (5-14, 10 pts) 61 at StFX (12-6, 36 pts) 86 4 POINTS The X-Men moved into a tie for second place with Acadia by handling the Seahawks. Assuming X owns the tie-breaker (St. FX has taken 3 of the 4 games this season from Acadia), a win tomorrow would give X a 4 point lead for second and clinch second place. Acadia has only one game left next weekend at home against Dal and even though it is a 4 pointer, if X wins tomorrow they can only tie for second. X was up only 6 late in the first half but then won going away with great defense. The teams meet again Monday afternoon at 1 PM Atlantic/Noon Eastern as the two-game series was delayed by a day due to a winter storm in Newfoundland that prevented the Seahawks from leaving for a day. Tomorrow's game is available via webcast again X-Men Web Cast Network

QSSF
Concordia (15-1) 78 at Laval (9-7) 65 The Stingers continued their tear through the "Q", defeating second place Rouge et Or as 6'1" Damian Buckley came through with 19 points and 7 rebounds. Concordia shot a torrid 56.1% from the floor and also got 18 from Patrick Perrotte, 15 from Dwayne Buckley (pictured) and 11 from Ben Sormonte. J.P. Morin finished with 19 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists to lead Laval while Jean-Michel LeBlanc had all 15 of his points from beyond the arc, going 5-13, part of a 8-25 effort by Laval from downtown. The Rouge et Or shot only 5 free throws on the entire afternoon. These teams have captured the top 2 seeds in the conference and will host playoff games next weekend as the Stingers will entertain UQAM and Laval will host McGill.

Stories from Saturday Night + Sunday's Games

For a complete look at last night's action, click here

Neate Sager's blog Out of Left Field has a tremendous Ottawa vs. Toronto game report Gee-Gees Narrow Escape Sets up Round 3 vs. Ravens . As well, follow the entire game start to finish with Neate's Live Blog Varsity Blues vs. Gee-Gees

Wayne Kondro's article from the Ottawa Citizen on Carleton's win that eliminated the York Lions (subscription needed) Ravens Roll into Basketball Final

Dave Larkins article on Brandon's sweep of Regina from the Brandon Sun (subscription required) Bobcats Leave No Doubt

Alberta over Saskatchewan (Series Tied at 1) The Bears rebound as Jonathan Huntington from Sun Media reports in this morning's Edmonton Sun Bears Bounce Back from Brutal Friday to Defeat Huskies Also, Edmonton Journal reports on Alberta's Game Two victory over Saskatchewan, forcing a Game Three in their series this afternoon in Edmonton Bears Put Huskies Back in the Dog House Finally, game reports from the U of A web site Bears Get Turnaround Win

Morris Dalla Costa from the London Free Press reports on Western's tough loss at Guelph yesterday eliminating the young Mustangs Young Mustangs Take Lesson From Basketball Loss

Dan Stinson of the Vancouver Sun published an article on the recruiting prowess of UBC's Head Coach Kevin Hansen Scout's honour

AUS NOTE: Yesterday's MUN at St. FX game was postponed until Monday and today's game will be played this evening instead of this afternoon after the Seahawks were stranded in St. John's due to a winter storm in Newfoundland. The Seahawks will arrive in Antigonish today and will face an X-Men squad fighting injuries to starting point guard Christian "T-Bear" Upshaw and emerging supersub Dave Joyce, both of whom injured their ankles during last Saturday afternoon's victory at home against Acadia.

CIS GAMES TODAY

CANADA WEST CENTRAL DIVISION FINAL
5 PM Eastern/3 PM Local Saskatchewan at Alberta (Game 3 Best-of-3 Final tied at 1-1) CJSR Alberta Campus Radio Audio Play-by-Play

AUS
2 PM Eastern/3PM Atlantic Acadia (12-6, 34 pts) at UPEI (8-11, 30 pts) The Panthers are likely to finish 4th and cannot catch Acadia, which has temporary hold of second place. The Axemen must win to maintain their quest for second place.
3 PM Eastern/4PM Atlantic Cape Breton (15-3, 44 pts) at Saint Mary's (9-9, 24 pts) 4 POINTS Fresh off their AUS regular season title-clinching effort yesterday at Dal, the Capers will face a Huskies squad that is locked into fifth place in the conference. St. Mary's will likely meet UPEI in the first round of the AUS tournament at the Halifax Metro Center in two weeks.
7 PM Eastern/8PM Atlantic Memorial (5-13, 10 pts) at StFX (11-6, 32 pts) 4 POINTS The X-Men need a pair of wins in two four point games against MUN to put themselves into position to finish second. X-Men Web Cast Network

QSSF
3:00 pm Concordia (14-1) at Laval (9-6) The top two teams in the "Q" face off in the season finale at Laval. These teams have captured the top 2 seeds in the conference and will host playoff games next weekend as the Stingers will entertain UQAM and Laval will host McGill.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Saturday's CIS Results

For previews of today's and tonight's games click here

OUA EAST SUDDEN DEATH SEMI-FINALS
York 57 at Carleton 68 Third-year guard Stu Turnbull (pictured) led the way with 19 points, 6 rebounds and numerous feeds to wide open teammates (credited for 5 assists - seemed like more), running the offense effectively, but more importantly, basically shutting down 6'8" Dan Eves as the Ravens advanced to the OUA East final that they will host next weekend against Ottawa. Turnbull continually got himself in the lane and either finished or found others, primarily 6'3" Jean-Emmanuel Jean-Marie (18 points, 13 rebounds) as the Ravens grabbed an 8 point lead by halftime. Jean-Marie hit several soft corner jumpers and led a solid Raven effort on the glass as the smaller Carleton side outrebounded York 44-26. The Lions got a tremendous effort from 6'2" Amde Evans (14 points on 6-9 shooting with 5 boards), who made several tough shots off the dribble, got to the rim a few times and led a brief York comeback in the second half that got the game back to 3 with about 15 minutes remaining but then disappeared from York's offence. The Ravens answered the run as Turnbull and 6'2" Osvaldo Jeanty (10 points), scoreless in the first 25 minutes of the game, got going as Jeanty had 5 consecutive points and Carleton quickly restored their double digit lead and built it to as much as 19 with under 10 minutes to play. Carleton continually pushed the tempo whenever possible and appeared to wear down the bigger, slower Lions who basically ran out of gas once they got the game back early in the second half. Eves, playing in the final game of his career, finished with 17 points but the majority were late in the game once the issue had been decided while fellow fifth-year graduating senior 6'10" Jordan Foebel was generally winded and ineffective in this up-tempo game and left several easy shots inside short while missing his only 2 free throws. Tut Ruach finished with 14 points but the Ravens were able to limit his open looks. The Ravens won in characteristic fashion, defending, rebounding and exploiting mismatches and opponent's weaknesses. Game 3 of the Canal War between the Ravens and Ottawa goes next Saturday, March 3rd at 8 PM with the winner gaining the OUA East's automatic bid to Halifax and the CIS Nationals.

Toronto 68 at Ottawa 69 Alex McLeod hit a pair of free throws with 54.9 seconds remaining and sophomore Willy Manigat picked up a foul-laden and hobbled Josh Gibson-Bascombe with 18 points including 3-5 3's to lift the Gee-Gees a dramatic win over the Blues in a game that had 15 or more lead changes. Curtis Shakespeare (pictured) added 13 points and 8 rebounds on 5-7 shooting for Ottawa, which returns to the OUA East championship game for the second time in 3 years. The Blues had a chance to retake the lead with 25 seconds remaining but Mike Williams (co-game-high 18 points) missed a 15 foot turnaround and Jermaine Campbell grabbed the board. With a chance to push the lead to 3, Campbell missed the front end of the bonus but Ottawa held defensively, forcing a difficult 3 from Mike DeGiorgio (10 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists 2-4 3's) at the buzzer which was well off the mark, enabling Ottawa to move into the OUA East final next week at Carleton. The Gee-Gees extended a one point halftime lead to 9 at 61-52 with 6:17 remaining highlighted by a Donnie Gibson 3 and a strong take to the rim by Dax Dessureault. But the Blues would not quit as Mo Safarzadeh (11 points including 3 3's) knocked his third 3 of the half after a conventional 3 point play by Ben Katz (14 points) and instantly the Blues were back to within 3 at 61-58. There were 3 more lead changes as DeGiorgio hit a runner to put Toronto up 63-62, McLeod answered with a scoop but Katz got to the rim again and U of T led 65-64. 6'4" Gibson-Bascombe (10 points 2-5 3's), saddled on the bench with 2 early fouls and playing on a severely sprained ankle, then knocked down a 3 and Ottawa regained a two point lead that got the crowd in the game. But Dwayne Grant (10 points, 2-2 3's) answered with a 3 of his own quickly to give Toronto the lead back at 68-67 and after Campbell missed an open 3 with 1:50 remaining, things looked good for the Blues. But they would not score again. Ottawa held and then McLeod (9 points - all in the second half) got to the rim and was fouled, nailing both free throws for what was the final margin of victory. Toronto had leads as large as 5 in the first half and with Gibson-Bascombe limited to 8 minutes, the Blues appeared to have the momentum. But Manigat stepped up with 11 first-half points to give the Gee-Gees a narrow one-point lead at the break. Ottawa survived a 13-23 (56%) effort from the foul line and 8 of 15 shooting from 3 by the Blues - six of which came in the second half - for the dramatic win. The winner of next week's OUA East championship at Carleton will receive an automatic bid to the CIS Nationals in Halifax while the loser awaits word on the 8th and final spot to be decided by a wild card vote.

CANADA WEST PLAYOFFS
Saskatchewan 54 at Alberta 76 - Game 2 Best-of-3 Central division final; Series Tied at 1 game apiece Bouncing back from a poor shooting effort in Game One, the Bears rebounded to their #1 CIS fg% form shooting 50% including 6-13 from 3 and held off an early second half Saskatchewan comeback attempt to force a third and deciding game in the Central division series. Alberta again did a stellar defensive job led by 6'4" Tyson Jones who held Friday night's hero Rejean Chabot to only 3-15 shooting and 10 points. When 6'2" Alex Steele knocked down an NBA 3 at the first half buzzer, the Bears led 35-21 at the intermission. The Huskies stormed out of the gate in the second half, bringing the game back to within 5 with 13 minutes remaining led by 6'8" Andrew Spagrud (23 points, 10 rebounds). But C.G. Morrison, the leading 3 point shooter in the CIS during the regular season, drilled a 3 and then Steele followed with another 3 to build Alberta's lead back up to double digits and Saskatchewan rarely threatened thereafter. Alberta held the Huskies to 33% shooting for the game. The third and deciding game goes Sunday at 3 PM local time.

Regina 79 at Brandon 93 - Bobcats sweep Best-of-3 Great Plains division final 2-0 Before a packed house, 6'7" Adam Hartman delivered 19 points and 4 rebounds, while 6'7" Stevens Marcelin picked up his second double-double of the weekend, notching 13 points and 13 boards to allow the Brandon to host the Canada West Final Four next weekend. Another post, Yuri Whyms and point guard Yul Michel each scored 12 points while Friday's hero Chad Jacobson added 11. Regina’s Drew Kuzminski led all scorers in his final CIS game, dropping 33 points while picking up 11 rebounds. Jamal Williams and Jeffrey Lukomski added 16 and 12 points respectively. The Bobcats shot 56% (32-57) from the field, 33% (2-6) from three point range, and 68% (27-40) from the free throw line. The Cougars made 42% (25-60) of their field goals, 31% (5-16) of their three’s, and 60% (24-40) of their free throw’s. Brandon out-rebounded Regina 36-30.

QSSF
Bishop's (4-12) 74 at UQAM (5-11) 81 The Citadins claim the fourth and final playoff spot in the "Q" and the right to visit Concordia next week. My thanks to Alex T. from the UQAM broadcast team for the following game recap: The Citadins took an early lead and pretty much never looked back en route to a 81-74 victory in front of a record crowd of 725. The Citadins had a little trouble at the beginning of the game at the free throw line, missing their first 6. Still, it was a pretty tight first half. The Citadins came out strong in the second, building a 13 point lead, only to let it go with 8 minutes to go. UQAM then had some foul problems(Renaldo Maignan, Marc-Olivier Beauchamp had to leave the game with 5 fouls with something like 5-6 minutes to go), but 3 Gaiters also left the game with 5 fouls (Jason Thorne, Doug Mccooeye, Hermon Tesfaghebriel). The Citadins ran away with the game with 2 minutes to go, holding on to a 7-8 point lead. UQAM will now meet Concordia in the semis, a team they did beat this season and a team they beat last year in the semis.... Thanks Again AlexT !!!

OUA WEST Quarter-Finals
#6W Laurier 61 at #3W McMaster 85 HALFTIME 6'8" Adam Steiner (pictured) shook off a tough first half with 7 points during a game-deciding 18-1 run over a 5 1/2 minute span down the stretch as the Marauders moved on to a OUA West semi-final on Wednesday at Brock. After Laurier's fine 6'2" guard Jesse Macdonald (17 points) knocked down a 3 to bring the Hawks back to within 5 with 10:45 remaining, Steiner (12 points - 10 in the second half, 10 rebounds) scored the next 5 points and Martin Ajayi (26 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists) contributed some strong defense, transition looks and 3 points of his own as Mac completely took the game over. The Hawks hurt themselves with 7-17 shooting from the foul line and under 35% shooting from the floor, missing several easy layups in the first half when they took the play to Mac and had a chance to grab a large lead. Laurier's All-Star forward Matt Walker, averaging about 16 ppg during the regular season, had a terrible afternoon going only 1-9 from the floor for 2 points. In the first half, the Hawks got their transition game going early and led 12-7 after the first seven minutes after freshman Justin Golob's 3. Laurier kept their lead on the strong inside work of 6'7" Trevor Csima (10 first-half points on 5-5 shooting), who continually got free inside 5 feet off high/lows and with early offense. Mac stayed in the game on strong work on the "o" glass by Toms Lokmanis, finally taking a 22-20 lead with 7 minutes left in the half on a knifing move to the rim by Martin Ajayi (16 first-half points). The Hawks had their troubles knocking shots down so McMaster went to a 2/3 zone and promptly went on a run culminating in Lokmanis turnaround in the post to give Mac their largest lead at 31-27. With just over 1 minute to play, Laurier's fifth-year point guard Omar Miles, playing with a severly bruised heel, picked up his third foul promptly Golden Hawks coach Peter Campbell to go to a matchup zone but 6'4" John Obrovac (8 points) hit his second 3 of the half to give Mac a 36-31 lead going into the intermission. Mac's Adam Steiner picked up a couple of quick fouls and finished the half with only 2 while Laurier's 6'5" conference all-star Matt Walker went only 1-7 from the floor. The Hawks missed a number of layups during the half and Mac was generally fortunate to lead by 5 at the break. The Marauders look to complete a three game sweep on Wednesday in St. Catharines, facing their natural rivals Brock Badgers for the right to play for the OUA West championship. LIVE STATS! Box Score

#5W Western 61 at #4W Guelph 69 Outscoring the visiting Mustangs by 22 points in the last 9 minutes, Guelph got a solid team defensive effort and great finishes from 6'4" Nick Pankerichan (all 10 of his points in the second half), 6'7" Duncan Milne (16 points, 5 rebounds including 3 dunks) and league All-Star Aron Bariagbre (13 of his team-high 18 points in the second half) to advance to the OUA West semi-final this coming Wednesday at Windsor. Down 14 with 9 minutes remaining, Guelph went to 4 guard lineup plus Milne and forced the Mustangs into perimeter shots as Western did not get the ball inside with any consistency down the stretch. It didn't help the 'Stangs cause that 6'6" Brad Smith was in foul trouble all day before finally leaving with his 5th with about 6 minutes remaining. As well, 6'3" OUA West Rookie-of-the-Year candidate Andrew Wedemire battled fouls and left the game after banging heads with Bariagbre. Mustangs guard combination of 6'2" Matt Curtis and 6'1" Jason Milliquet each had 14 for Western, who had 26 fouls whistled against them as opposed to 19 against Guelph. Western also hurt themselves by going only 7 of 15 from the free throw line and shot only 38.3% despite grabbing 15 offensive rebounds. The Gryphs will look to make up for one of their poorer efforts of the season last time they visited Windsor this coming Wednesday.

AUS A nice story on UPEI's three graduating seniors Doug McKinney, Sherone Edwards and Peter Stay in advance of Sunday's game when the group will be honoured on Senior's Day as the Guardian reports Three Panthers get to end their careers together

UNB (5-13, 10 pts.) at Saint Mary's (9-9, 24 pts) St. Mary's clinches 5th spot with a 13 point win against UNB. Mark McLaughlin had 25 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists for the Huskies while Oliver Glencross led all scorers for UNB with 26.
Memorial (5-13, 10 pts) at St.FX (11-6, 32 pts) 4 POINTS PPD. UNTIL MONDAY AT 1 PM ATLANTIC
Cape Breton (15-3, 40 pts) 84 at Dalhousie (8-11, 18 pts) 63 4 POINTS The Capers put together a 33-11 run to bridge the first and second half and clinched the AUS regular season crown by winning at Dalplex. Cape Breton finished the first half on a 16-7 run to lead by 9 and then jumped out to a 17-4 run in the first 4 1/2 minutes of the second half as Eric Breland had 22 points. The Capers officially end St. FX's 9 year run as AUS regular season champions. Corey Hargrove added 13 and Dan White had 11 for Cape Breton. Monte Francois led Dal with 17.

Saturday's CIS Slate: Plenty of Playoff Action

For more on last night's results from Canada West playoffs and QSSF, click here

NOTE: Previous edition of this report had Saskatchewan and Alberta playing tonight - the game is actually this afternoon at 5 PM Eastern time (3 PM local in Edmonton)

UBC clinched their 4th Pacific Division title in the past 5 years by sweeping UVic at home after last night's 88-82 victory. The T-Birds have taken 4 of 5 games from the Vikes this season but the teams may meet again; Victoria is the favorite to capture the wild card berth to the Canada West Final Four next weekend T-Birds Vanquish Vikes... For Now From Victoria Vikes web site T-Birds Use Three Ball to sweep Vikes From Victoria Times-Colonist report T-Birds Clip Vikes to sweep series also from Canada West web site Box Score

Also, Saskatchewan used a solid perimeter defense to defeat Alberta in Edmonton Bears Offense Goes Missing also an article by John Short from the Edmonton Sun Bears Dominated PLUS from Saskatoon Star-Phoenix highlighting the great work of Huskies Rejean Chabot Chabot Money Player for Dogs from Canada West site Box Score

Brandon used their turnover-creating defense to grab a nice lead and then held off a Regina rally led by Jamal Williams to claim the Game One Great Plains division win Box Score

PREVIEW OF TODAY'S ACTION IN THE CIS (OUA & CANADA WEST PLAYOFFS, AUS & QSSF REGULAR SEASON'S WIND DOWN

AUS
4 PM Eastern/5pm Atlantic UNB (5-12, 10 pts.) at Saint Mary's (8-9, 22 pts) St. Mary's needs a victory to maintain their edge over Dal for fifth place as they currently are 4 points ahead of the Tigers. With their loss against UPEI this past Wednesday, the Varsity Reds were eliminated from the AUS playoffs from the first time since 1996-97 (10 seasons). Huskies coach Ross Quackenbush used only 6 players the entire night in St. Mary's overtime loss to St. FX on Tuesday.

7 PM Eastern/8 PM Atlantic Memorial (5-13, 10 pts) at St.FX (11-6, 32 pts) 4 POINTS The X-Men look to overtake Acadia for second place and a first round bye with the first of two 4 point games in Antigonish this weekend against the Seahawks, officially eliminated from the AUS tournament. X Live Video webcast

7 PM Eastern/8 PM Atlantic Cape Breton (14-3, 40 pts) at Dalhousie (8-10, 18 pts) 4 POINTS The Capers officially clinch first place with a victory in this four point game while a Dal win at home at Dalplex, where they are 7-1 in league play this season, combined with a St. Mary's loss will put the two teams tied in 5th place. Dal needs to get off to a better start than in many recent games as early double digit deficits have been the norm.

QSSF
8 PM Bishop's (4-11) at UQAM (4-11) This game decides the final playoff spot in the "Q". The Gaiters have taken 2 of the 3 league meetings this season and hold a +11 lead in the point spread. Preview from Bishop's web site Gaiters Season on the Line Audio for the game is available en francais on CHOQ FM.

OUA EAST Semi-Finals
8 PM York (15-7) at Carleton (19-3) Many will remember the 61-29 advantage the Lions took to the intermission, en route to a double digit win, the last time these teams met at the Raven's Nest. Coming off a big comeback win against U of T the night before, the Ravens were listless off the opening tip but ralled to close a 40 point deficit to single digits late with a strong second half. Two weeks prior to that in North York, the Ravens played possibly their best half of basketball of the season and rode to an easy win over York. The Ravens have had a full week to mend some minor injuries and prepare for the rubber match of the season series while York just played on Wednesday. The Lions are even more dangerous with 6'3" Tut Ruach back in top form after sitting out the first half of the season and fifth-year seniors Dan Eves and Jordan Foebel face potentially the final games of their career each time out. York is collectively a streak shooting team that can score in bunches in a hurry and the Lions do have a size advantage inside with Foebel although 6'8" Kevin McCleery continues to emerge as a solid offensive threat inside. For Carleton, big games are required from their two OUA East First Team All-Stars: 6'2" Osvaldo Jeanty (also facing potentially his final game) and 6'7" Aaron Doornekamp - both players have played through injury during the stretch run. The game is available on Rogers Cable TV on semi-tape delay in Ottawa, Toronto, Brampton, York Region and Mississauga beginning at 9:30 PM.

8 PM Toronto (15-7) at Ottawa (18-4) Both games between these two emerging rivals came down to the last second with Blues 6'9" Mike Williams instrumental in both outcomes, knocking down a short shot from the right baseline with under 2 seconds left in Toronto for a 2 point win offsetting a pair of missed free throws with no time remaining in Ottawa resulting in a one point Toronto loss. The Blues could have easily swept Ottawa save for a complete meltdown defensively and at the foul line, allowing Josh Gibson-Bascombe to lead a comeback. Toronto is one of the toughest defensive teams in Canada and can aggressively pressure the ball and the passing lanes with the huge presence of Williams defending the paint when needed. The Gee-Gees enjoy pressuring the ball as well with their array of athletic guards and wings creating momentum-changing turnovers for easy scores. Ben Katz is the offensive key for the Blues, making open looks and creating for his teammates as a Paul Pressey/Warren Newberry-like point forward. Second-year guard Nick Magalas has rounded into a solid offensive threat, knocking down 3's and creating in the lane. Gee-Gees 6'5" Curtis Shakespeare has taken the next step offensively in his fifth season scoring in a variety of ways including facing up from 20 consistently, getting to the rim off the bounce and posting up when the matchup dictates. Gibson-Bascombe remains the key for Ottawa however showing again last week that he deserves merit for First Team All-Star consideration, playing the last 30 minutes of the game with an ankle injury in leading Ottawa to their second victory of the season over Carleton. This game will be a war as both coaches have already described it and expect it to come down to the final minutes again. You can follow along with Neate Sager's live game blog LIVE! game blog from Neate Sager OR the game is also available via live web cast Gee-Gees Streaming Sports Network Web Cast

OUA WEST Quarter-Finals
3 PM Laurier (9-13) at McMaster (13-9) #6W @ #3W The Hawks hope to replicate their effort the last time these teams met at Laurier, when 6'5" OUA West All Star Matt Walker put on an offensive display and 6'8" freshman Andrew Pennycook rejected 8 shots in an emotional victory. The Marauders will look to attack inside with 6'8" fifth-year forward Adam Steiner, a solid finisher and creative passer out of the low block but versatile enough to put it to the deck and get to the rim when facing up from the perimeter. 5'9" Martin Ajayi has been a much more consistent shooter, making his fearless drives to the rim that much more effective. 6'4" John Obrovac has come all the way back from his foot injury that sidelined him in the first half and his ability to knock shots down should keep the paint open for Steiner to operate. Laurier's point guard Omar Miles will be tasked with controlling Ajayi and adding some offense himself which he did during the last meeting. Laurier's sophomore off guard Jesse Macdonald has matured rapidly into a solid mid-range scorer while 6'6" Justin Golob emerged as one of the better freshman in the OUA West. Expect another spirited affair as a pair of veterans coaches with championship experience and results face off yet again. Tune in to the audio of the game with Bill Malley and friends at CFMU radio and/or follow the game on the Mac web site using McMaster LIVE STATS!

3 PM Western (11-11) at Guelph (12-10) #5W @ #4W The Gryphs had a large come-from-behind win at Mac on Wednesday to claim the important home court advantage which in year's past has been a big advantage for Guelph, although less so this season thus far. Consistency on the defensive end has been the Gryphs biggest issue although recent efforts have been more in line with historical norms. The matchup inside between 6'10" J.R. Bailey and Western's front line including 6'8" Alan Paron, 6'6" Brad Smith and 6'7" Adam Ruickbie will be interesting. 6'7" Duncan Milne has emerged as a solid forward up front for Guelph in the rotation. A pair of Hamilton products who went at each other through high school face off again in maybe the most important games of their careers thus far as Guelph's 6'4" Nick Pankerichan and 'Stangs 6'2" Matt Curtis lead their respective teams from the point. The game could be decided beyond the arc as Western's 6'1" Jason Milliquet anchors the Mustangs perimeter game while 6'4" Jay Mott and 6'3" Aron Bariagbre provide Guelph with the bulk of their outside scoring. Western can be explosive offensively but Guelph at home in a big spot always seems to be able to lock people down when it counts so Western's ability to defend could be the difference tomorrow.

CANADA WEST PLAYOFFS

5 PM Eastern/ 3 PM local Saskatchewan at Alberta - Game 2 Best-of-3 Central division final; U of A campus radio CJSR The Huskies came up with a solid defensive effort aided by an 0-11 effort from 3 by the Bears to pick up the tight road win.

8 PM Eastern/ 7 PM Local Regina at Brandon - Game 2 Best-of-3 Great Plains division final; Brandon leads 1-0. Brandon held off a late Cougar rally to win by 8 on Friday night.