Thursday, 8 October 2009

Rams kick off pre-season vs. Mac and Alberta

...includes YouTube interview with Ryerson Head Coach Roy Rana

Rams open preseason against McMaster and Alberta

TORONTO (October 8, 2009) - The Ryerson Rams men's basketball team opens its preseason schedule this week with a pair of games. The Rams travel to Hamilton on Friday to face the McMaster Marauders before hosting the Alberta Golden Bears at Kerr Hall on Sunday.

The games provide Ryerson head coach Roy Rana an opportunity to evaluate his team against two prominent CIS opponents following almost a month of practice.

McMaster is one of the early favourites to challenge for the OUA West crown, while Sunday's contest features two rookie CIS coaches, both with ties to Canada's national team program - Ryerson's Rana (head coach, national men's U16 team) and Alberta's Greg Francis (head coach, national men's junior team).

Rana also served as an assistant coach with the Canadian Senior Men's National Team at the 2009 FIBA Americas Championship and recently attended Toronto Raptors training camp.

The Rams return eight players from last season's OUA East quarter-finalist squad, including first team OUA all-star Boris Bakovic. The nation's leading scoring in 2008-09 returns for his fourth season after representing Canada at the Summer Universiade last July. Other returnees include fifth-year centre Joey Imbrogno, fourth-year guard Ryan McNeilly and second-year guard and OUA all-rookie selection Josh Budd.

Highlighting the newcomers are Ontario college transfers Scott Wheler (Seneca) and Ricardo Dunkley (Sheridan). Kris Montague also returns to the Rams after two years away from the program.

Game time Friday at McMaster is 8pm, while Sunday's meeting with Alberta at Kerr Hall is a 1pm start (NOTE: this is a 1pm start, not 6pm as printed in the Ryerson pocket schedule). After this weekend, the Rams will play five more exhibition games before opening the OUA regular season on November 6th at Kerr Hall against the Waterloo Warriors.

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