Zachary Worden, Cougar Athletics
CALGARY – The Thompson Rivers University Wolfpack made their way to Kenyon Court on Friday night for their matchup with the Mount Royal University Cougars.
The Cougars were able to defend their home court and come away with their fifth win of the year, taking a 91-74 victory over the Wolfpack.
The Cougars were led offensively by Josh Ross who finished with 24 points, nine assists, eight rebounds and a near triple-double. The Cougars also used big games from Glen Yang and LJ Hegwood who added 18 points in the game, while Yang contributed to the win with 14 points and seven rebounds. The Cougars shot 52% from the field, moving the ball, finishing with 23 assists and finding good looks for their teammates.
Mike Rouault and Joe Davis both scored 16 points leading the Wolfpack offense. Luke Morris also had a big game for the Wolfpack, finishing with a near double-double, scoring 10 points and grabbing nine rebounds.
The two teams went back and forth to start the first quarter, as neither team could take control early. The Cougars found open looks from the three-point line but were unable to convert early in the quarter. Both teams played tight aggressive defense forcing contested shots and forcing a combined 36% shooting in the quarter. The Cougars were able to take a 15-11 lead after the first 10 minutes of play.
Nolan Willett came into the second and scored five quick points for the Wolfpack. After the teams tied the score at 20 the Cougars were able to retake the lead, led by two made three-pointers by Charn Gill. The Wolfpack were able to find open looks in their attempt to get back into the game, but couldn't get their shots to fall. The Cougars were able to take advantage and grow their lead to eight with two minutes remaining in the first half. Once the buzzer sounded to end the first half the Cougars led 35-29.
Ross took charge for the Cougars in the first half, finishing with 10 points, five rebounds and four assists and the Wolfpack were led by Rouault's 11 points and five rebounds.
The two teams came out of the halftime break trading baskets and looking to grab the momentum. The Cougars were able to break through and managed to grow their lead to 14 with five minutes to go in the third. Hegwood found success getting to the rim, while leading the Cougar attack with 8 Points in the quarter. The Cougars were able to handle to Wolfpack push to get back in the game and they took a 13-point lead into the final quarter of play.
The Cougars were able to come out in the fourth and take control of the game, keeping their lead in double-digits. Ross hit two threes to expand the Cougar lead and not give the Wolfpack a chance to complete their comeback. The Cougars were able to convert on 46% of their threes in the quarter, as their lead continued to grow. Once the final quarter came to an end the Cougars were able to take the first game of the series with a 17-point victory.
The series will continue, Saturday night with game two tipping off at 6 p.m. MDT at Kenyon Court. The game can be live streamed on www.canadawest.com.