Ali Sow scored a career-high 31 points for Laurier in Wednesday's loss to No. 2 Brock (Credit: Eva Ou)
Laurier: 69 BROCK: 73
WATERLOO, Ont. (February 1, 2018) – The Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks men’s basketball team likely deserved a better fate Wednesday night at the University of Waterloo Physical Activities Complex, falling agonizingly short against the U SPORTS No. 2-ranked Brock Badgers 73-69.
Coming out of the gate, the Hawks (9-10) couldn’t have asked for a better start against a powerful team like Brock. Executing their game plan to a tee, the purple and gold had the Badgers (17-2) scrambling, unable to sustain anything on offence, coughing up 11 first half turnovers and shooting a lowly 29 percent from the field.
The visitors were likely surprised by the Hawks willingness to play with a physical edge in the first half, finding themselves taking on a team that had matured and grown since their previous meeting in the season’s opener.
The emergence of Kemel Archer
(Brampton, Ont.) continued to be a story for the Hawks as he was able to provide toughness and physicality down in the paint for the purple and gold, proving to be a mismatch for the Badgers as he scored 14 points to go along with eight rebounds on the night.
With a nine-point lead at halftime and controlling all facets of the game, the Hawks looked poised to score what would be a massive upset victory.
What happened after half was probably the last thing anyone in attendance expected. The Badgers capitalized on the only lull in Laurier’s game, taking advantage in a big way by tearing off a 13-0 run to start the second half, and suddenly, the Hawks efforts from the first half were wiped away as Brock took the lead.
Badgers' all-star Dani Elgadi (Waterloo, Ont.) was as-advertised Wednesday night, leading the comeback and finishing the night with 24 points, seven rebounds, and five assists.
Given Brock’s experience, it seemed a tough proposition for Laurier to wrestle the lead back after the Badgers had taken control. However, Hawks rookie guard Ali Sow
(Ottawa) kept his team right there until the final moments, scoring 21 of his career-high 31 points in the second half.
Ultimately the Badgers showed their class and were able to steal away the narrow victory. It was a true testament to the visitor's mental fortitude as the Hawks had outplayed the visitors for most of the contest, yet it was Brock who was walking out with the win in hand.
Next up for the purple and gold is a road date with the Windsor Lancers (9-9) Friday night in a game with major playoff implications for both teams as both squads sit tied for third in the OUA West division with nine wins.
Tip is scheduled for 8:00 p.m. at the St. Denis Centre in Windsor and the game will be broadcast live on OUA.tv.