Fraser Valley Cascades outlast host UBC Okanagan 82-76 in season opener in Kelowna
Men’s Basketball (Canada West conference play)
|UBC Okanagan (0-1)||15||20||20||21||76|
KELOWNA, B.C. – A young but up-and-coming UBC Okanagan Heat men’s basketball squad tackled an older, rough-and-tumble Fraser Valley Cascades team Friday night in Kelowna to open the 2014-15 Canada West season in a match where the hosts would barely miss out on a chance to upset the preseason favourites in the Explorers division in an 82-76 result for the visitors.
Trading blows quarter by quarter, both teams found themselves knotted up 55-55 heading into the fourth and final frame of the game.
UBC Okanagan narrowed a UFV lead to a two possession game with 1:16 left on the game clock following a triplet of made free throws by third-year guard Mitch Goodwin (Kelowna, BC) putting the score at 79-75.
Cascades forward Kadeem Willis (Toronto, ON) iced the Heat’s when he picked an errant UBC Okanagan pass off and scored in transition to make it an 81-75 lead with 24 seconds to go.
The Cascades victory would spoil a standout game from Goodwin, the lone starter returning to the roster this year, who racked up a team-high 19 points on 5-11 shooting, with a perfect 7-7 showing at the charity stripe and seven rebounds to earn Heat Player of the Game honours.
The biggest long-term problem for UBC Okanagan was containing Fresno, CA product Nate Brown, who bulled his way down in the paint to a game-high 20 points on a 50% conversion rate to go alongside four rebounds and three assists.
Points in transition and free-throw shots hurt the home team’s chance of defending its turf the most. The Cascades were held to a mere six trips to the line in the first half, but entertained 18 in the second (making 15 tries). The Cascades would gobble up an easy 23 points off of turnovers.
UBC Okanagan’s second-year forward David Manshreck (North Vancouver, BC) and first-year guard Aldrich Berrios (Burnaby, BC) joined Goodwin in double-figure scoring with 11 and 10 on the night, respectively.
UFV’s Willis completed a double-double performance with 10 points and 11 rebounds. Fourth-year standout Kevon Parchment (Toronto, ON) was second on his team behind Brown with 15 points, but played an all-around game to the tune of six rebounds, two assists, three steals and two blocks for the night. All in all the Cascades had six of their seven players finished with double digit points.
The Cascades begin the season 1-0 while the Heat open up 0-1. Both squads will be back at it with each other tomorrow night at 7 p.m. in the UBC Okanagan gymnasium
Watch the action online and stream live stats at canadawest.tv.