McMaster 96, Guelph 92 6'6" Cam Michaud inside move and subsequent finish broke an 81-81 tie, starting a game-deciding 12-5 run to enable the Marauders to move firmly into third place in the OUA West in front of a large, boisterous crowd at the Mitchell A.C. in Guelph. Michaud, in foul trouble all afternoon after picking up 3 in the first half and then his fourth in his first minute of play in the third, became a factor down the stretch, as Mac found a favorable matchup with Gryphs 6'4" Jonathan Moscatelli, in an extremely exciting and well played affair. Michaud had 7 points - 5 after halftime - in only 14 minutes. Mac also got a tremendous performance from 6'1" Kenan Etale, who was a terror on the offensive glass and around the rim, and 6'3" Victor Raso, who made several clutch three-pointers, especially in the third quarter when Guelph took back the lead on a couple of occasions.
Guelph's Moscatelli showed that he is all the way back from his wrist injury, making several tough shots and numerous 3's to finish with 28 points including five in a row during Guelph's last run that got the game back to within 1 at 87-86. But then Michaud went to work inside again and, after 6'2" Dan McCarthy turned it over with an ill-advised penetration into the paint, 6'3" Scott Laws hit a transition basket. When 6'0" Jordan Tew followed with another strong take at the rim to make it 93-86 with just over a minute remaining, Gryphs fortunes were settled.
The Marauders led by 3 at halftime after a Raso buzzer beating lay-in and then broke out to a 9-2 run led by 3's from Raso, 6'4" Nathan Pelech and Tew to lead by 10 and were threatening to take over. But the scrappy Gryphs came right back to take the lead with a 18-6 run, culminating in an elbow j off the dribble by 5'11" Mike Petrella and a jumper by 6'8" Kevin Cameron. But Raso (22 points, 5-9 3's) was equal to it, burying back-to-back threes late in the third to restore a four point Mac lead. Etale, who led Mac with 26 points, was held scoreless in the third, but then went to work with a couple of stickbacks and a jumper, part of a 5-0 run that included another Raso 3 that gave Mac an 81-76 lead. Patrella (17 points, 14 assists) then had 5 consecutive points to tie it, setting up Michaud's dramatics and Mac's stiffening "d". McCarthy added 23 for Guleph.
Although the game was played in the 90's, both teams did credible jobs defending, with both teams scorching hot shooting the ball in the second half of this very high-level affair. The Marauders in particular stiffened defensively in the final few minutes, guarding the ball and also found the most favorable matchups on the offensive end. Mac travels to Windsor on Wednesday while the Gryphons have a "do or die" with Brock Badgers, who defeated Guelph by 10 points in an earlier game.
Western 94, Waterloo 80 The Mustangs shook off a very quick Waterloo start to dominate the second half, getting 27 points from 5'11" guard Ryan Barbeau to win at home and put the Warriors playoff hopes at more serious risk. 6'6" Andy Wedemire had 18 points and 7 rebounds, many after halftime as Western quickly erased a 6 point halftime deficit, scoring 57 second-half points against the porous Waterloo "d". The Warriors quick start was keyed by 6'3" Cam McIntyre who had three first quarter 3's as Waterloo built a double digit lead. Western awoke toward the end of the second quarter to get it to 6 by halftime and then scored the first 5 of the second half. The Warriors second-half highlight was a text book two pass transition break finished by a rim-racking throw down by athletic 6'6" Alan Goodhoofd to give them a 45-42 lead. But Western then went on a 26-12 run and broke the game open. The Warriors are now 8-12 and in last place in the West with games remaining at home to Laurier and at McMaster. Waterloo realistically needs wins in both games to have any hopes of finishing sixth. Warriors hold the tiebreaker with Brock but do not hold the tie breaker with Guelph, who they are currently tied with at 8-12. Brock is at 8-11 and finishes their two game set at first-place Lakehead this evening.