Men's Basketball (Canada West Conference Play)
UBC Okanagan Heat (0-2) vs. University of Saskatchewan Huskies (2-0)
|Score by Periods||1st||2nd||3rd||4th||Total|
|U of Saskatchewan||27||9||17||23||76|
KELOWNA, B.C. - For the first 35 minutes the No. 7 Saskatchewan Huskies were unable to put away a UBC Okanagan Heat men’s basketball team looking to upset the high ranked visiting 'Dogs.
A 3-ball at 3:16 of the fourth by Andrew Henry would be a dagger to deflate the comeback charge by the Heat, pushing the score to 72-61. Ultimately Saskatchewan would prevail as they ousted the home team 76-68 in Kelowna on Saturday night.
Both teams were on defensive lockdown mode for much of the game, with baskets hard to come by for most the first half of the game. Though the Heat would allow 27 points in the first quarter, they would outscore the Huskies 13-9 in the second quarter and 24-17 in the third quarter.
The Huskies’ fourth-year phenom Stephon Lamar stuffed the stat sheet for 20 points, 5 assists and 4 rebounds. Post Matt Forbes did work in the paint for the Huskies, the only Saskatchewan player to get any real good looks there, scoring 21 points to lead all scorers while grabbing 10 rebounds.
“I thought Forbes was going to be a tough matchup for us because he’s a big body and he knows how to get contact close to the basket and he finishes well,” said Heat head coach Pete Guarasci postgame. He was happy with how his perimeter guys handled Lamar, however, saying that “I think Yassine did a very good job. And we also paid special attention to him whenever there was a ball screen—we would have our big show for a little bit longer on him and try to make him a little more of a facilitator instead of an attack point.”
The Heat’s Greet Gill led his team in scoring with 15 while grabbing 5 boards. Third-year James Lum (Vancouver, BC) would net 12 off the bench, and fifth-years Yassine Ghomari (Vancouver, BC) and Landry Ndayitwayeko (Windsor, ON) would also break double-digit scoring for the Heat with 11 and 10, respectively.
Player of the game, Lum, who’s impact was felt off the bench on offense and defense in 26 minutes of floor time is continually making a difference as part of the backcourt for the Heat. His efforts were felt on the offense and defense in 26 minutes of floor time. Lum’s excellent footwork and body control got him through bodies in the lane towards the basket for several great looks, and though undersized he was able to poke away several balls and create steals. He would received Player of the Game honours for the Heat.
“I thought James came off the bench and gave us great energy,” Guarasci said of his third-year recruit. “He gave us some penetration that we needed and I thought he played with a lot of passion today.”
Lum would lead a charge that saw the Heat bench outscore Saskatchewan’s 18-3. The Huskies would consistently outscore the Heat in the paint across four quarters, ending up 34-22 in that margin.
The Heat will open their 2013-14 Canada West season 0-2 after their first weekend of play. The Huskies will begin their season 2-0 after dispatching the TRU WolfPack the night before 98-95. The Heat are on the road next weekend to play the Mount Royal Cougars in Calgary. Tip-off for Heat games will be Thursday and Friday will be 7 p.m. PST