Laurier: 80 ALGOMA: 53
WATERLOO, Ont. (January 20, 2018) – Faced with the hurdle of having to play on a temporary home court Friday night against the Algoma Thunderbirds, a rolling Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks men’s basketball team didn’t miss a beat, in control for much of the contest played at the University of Waterloo's Physical Activities Complex, collecting a fourth straight win by a comfortable margin of 80-53.
Coming out of the gate, the Hawks (7-8) could not get their shots to fall, a stark contrast to the previous few games in which they were knocking down their threes by rates north of 40 percent, shooting their opponents out of the building. However, a Thunderbirds (4-11) team that had lost five in a row coming in were not able to make Laurier pay and the purple and gold found themselves stuck by just six after one.
The second quarter was where the Hawks’ defence began to take a stranglehold on the game. Algoma did not score more than 12 points in any of the final three quarters, as the purple and gold held them to 32 percent shooting on the night. The 53 points allowed for the game was the lowest number given up by the Hawks all season and the fewest points Laurier has allowed in a game since holding the same Thunderbirds to 53 back in 2013.
With the jumpers not falling, the purple and gold made a more concerted effort to attack the Algoma defence. Tevaun Kokko
(Markham, Ont.) and Ali Sow
(Ottawa, Ont.) made sure to take advantage of the undersized Thunderbird defenders on the interior, driving to the rack at will over the final 30 minutes as they finished with 24 and 23 points respectively Friday night.Kemel Archer
(Brampton, Ont.) added 14 points and eight boards in an efficient 18 minutes, including a couple ferocious slam dunks out on the break that had the crowd roaring.
On the crowd support at the PAC Friday, Hawks Head Coach Justin Serresse
said “it looked good out there, we were very happy, it felt like a home game.”
With a quick turnaround to the second half of their doubleheader with Algoma Saturday afternoon, Serresse expects the Thunderbirds to clean things up and wants his team to approach the game with a fresh mentality, like they are playing a new team.
The coach knows that Saturday’s game will be decided by both teams compete levels and will to win.
“Compete harder than them. If we do that we put ourselves in a great situation to win back-to-back games.”
The Hawks go for the weekend sweep and a fifth straight win Saturday at 2:00 p.m. at the PAC.