Saturday, December 31, 2011

X wins Shoveller with 94-78 win over Concordia

A 17-4 run to finish off the second quarter led by 6'0" Will Donkoh and 6'5" Shane Coupland was the difference as the #2 X-Men claimed another Rod Shoveller Memorial tournament championship with a win over the #10 Stingers.  After a lighting problem delayed the game for several minutes, X's zone press began creating turnovers, breaking open a tight 3 point game and give St. FX a double digit halftime lead.  Stingers then scored the first 6 points of the third quarter before faltering on the foul line and turning it over, allowing X to rebuild a double digit lead which grew to as high as 19 in the second half. 

Concordia had a couple of runs including late in the third quarter when, after a poor shot by 6'7" Bol Kong, the Stingers scored the last 7 points of the quarter to trail by only 10 as Frank Fiola (Stingers POG with 10 points off the bench) hit a late 3 from the top of the bowl.  ConU got it inside 10 a couple of times in the fourth but never close enough to where the outcome was in doubt.

The Australian import Coupland, who missed X's first round game and played only sparingly in yesterday's semi-final, got going with some easy inside scores and then got loose for a series of baseline jumpers to finish with 19 points.  Donkoh (16 first-half points), arguably the sparkplug to X's entire tournament who played at a tourney MVP level, also got going by creating some turnovers and finishing in transition - Donkoh was also the catalyst in yesterday's game-deciding run vs. UPEI. 

Down the stretch, X's 6'5" Terry Thomas showed off his tremendous athleticism with some blocks and at least 2 hard dunks, one of a wonderful feed by 6'2" Tyrell Vernon that Thomas finished along the baseline with a hammer down.
Kong, while not dominant, did made his presence felt, especially late in the first quarter, creating off the bounce and finding slashing teammates for easy layups. 

In an earlier game, uOttawa won their second consecutive game after a first-round overtime loss to St. FX, defeating Saint Mary's 92-80 as yesterday's hero, Warren Ward, author of the long buzzer-beating 3 vs. Acadia, went off for 29 points while Johnny Berhanemeskel added 24 points.  Sophomore forward Gabe Gonthier-Dubue had an 18 point, 13 rebound double/double.  Torrey Fassett had 24 to lead Saint Mary's.

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