Saturday, 5 January 2008

Wellsie's Corner; McIntyre Injury Update

In what I hope will become a more consistent piece on CIS basketball, Dave Wells, long-time follower of Canadian basketball now based in Southern Alberta chimes in with his always-insightful look at our game. Wellsie has a long association with the National team program and has been a fixture in Canadian basketball circles for a long time (maybe he needs a better bio)... thanks to Wellsie for putting this together and join me in encouraging him for more of these.

Especially if Alberta wins over Calgary again tonight and Saskatchewan gets another W in Lethbridge, to me... Saskatchewan could still really be in the Canada West Central division chase. You see, both Alberta and Calgary have yet to visit Saskatoon. Sask went 1-1 against Alberta and 0-2 versus Calgary on their home courts. If 'Huskies won all four against U of A and C in 'Toon Town, or even three-of-four, it could get very interesting. I'd say a huge U of S scheduling challenge will be UBC and UVic on the road though, who Calgary beat at home. (Scheduling is so big in Canada West eh. That's the reason why I hate it so much when the schedule is unbalanced.) I would be surprised if there are any more experienced teams that Sask out there. At times last night they had five fifth-year guys (Lovelace, Harbridge, Grant, Lynch and Spagrud) on the floor together! One interesting change is that Spagrud started at 3. He probably played about 50 percent of the game on the wing, the rest at his typical 4/5. He's always been a beast inside, but his shooting looked fine too. I'd say the only hole in his offensive game is dribbling, but if you put someone on him small enough to go after that I'm sure they'd quickly flash him into the post primarily even if he was playing 3. Jocko (Saskatchewan Head Coach Greg Jockims) has always done a nice job with altering/designing offensive sets for his available talent. Of course, his mentor Guy Vetrie (RIP) did too. When Spagrud plays like last night he's a very legit Moser candidate - and Sasktachewan is a very dangerous team.

Some may have noticed that Waterloo's 6'3" freshman Cam McIntyre, one of the top newcomers in the CIS this season, did not play in last night's Warriors victory at Lakehead. McIntyre injured his thumb at practice last week and the Warriors still don't a definite view of how bad the injury is and thus do not have a time table for his return. As for last night's game against Lakehead, it was never more then a 6 point lead either way for either team. Jordan Hannah was the man in the first half for the Warriors and Dan White hit all the big shots in the second half. Waterloo built the lead to 8 with about a minute or so to go, but Lakehead's freshman guard Kyle McConnell (London Beal) hit a pair of tough 3's to bring the game back. Warriors Luke Kieswetter went 3-4 from the line down the stretch and then T-Wolves Matthew Powell travelled on their last possession to effectively end the game. The teams meet again this evening in Thunder Bay.

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