Balanced Cougars attack leads to big win over MacEwan

Balanced Cougars attack leads to big win over MacEwan

Tanner Michalenko, Mount Royal Cougars Sports Information

CALGARY- The Mount Royal Cougars meant business on Thursday night on Kenyon Court dominating the MacEwan Griffins from start to finish and defeating them by a final score of 90-66.

Mount Royal kicked off the all-Alberta matchup by getting everyone in on the scoring early. The starting lineup of Wolf, Layton, Ross, Yang and Cunningham all got on the board within the first five minutes of first. Mount Royal played exceptional defence to start the game, as they stretched their early lead to 12 with a Derek Wolf 3-pointer following a turnover by MacEwan's Denzel James. Griffins' head coach Eric Magdanz called his team's first timeout to try and weather the storm with 3:38 left in the first quarter.

MacEwan shot 30% on 10 shots in the first quarter while Mount Royal fired off 22 shots, making 50% of them. Mount Royal's defence ignited their offence in the first with 14 points off of turnovers. 25-10 for the Cougars after the first. Derek Wolf outscored MacEwan's entire roster by himself in the first quarter, dropping 12 points.

MacEwan fought back in the second, as guards Thadius Galvez and Adonis Monfort-Palomino utilized their explosiveness to get their team back in the game. The two guards sparked a 10-0 run, to get back into the game. Mount Royal responded with some tough buckets from Josh Ross and Brett Layton on the other end to stop the bleeding.

MacEwan outscores the Cougars in the second quarter, 23-17. But, the Cougars still held the lead with a score of 42-33 at halftime. Mount Royal shot 51.4% in the first half, while MacEwan shot 44.4%. The Cougars grabbed 8 offensive rebounds in the first half, resulting in 10 second chance points.

The Cougars picked up where they left off to start the second half, keeping the pressure on MacEwan's defence. Mount Royal's half court offense allowed them to earn easy looks at the basket, and they capitalized on most of their opportunities.

Brett Layton started to flex his muscle in third quarter. The hard working Mount Royal big man was all over the court, earning 12 points, most of which in the paint. Layton also grabbed a couple offensive rebounds to give his team some second chance scoring opportunities. Mount Royal scored 32 points in the quarter while holding MacEwan to only 16 points. After three, the Cougars extended their lead to 74-49.

The 25-point Cougar lead proved too much for MacEwan to recover from. Mount Royal closed the game out with relative ease in the fourth quarter, preventing any hopes of a miraculous MacEwan comeback. When the final buzzer sounded, Mount Royal took it by a final score of 90-66.

Ryan Cunningham led all scorers with 22 points on 9-14 shooting, adding 4 rebounds and an assist. Josh Ross had a great all-around game for the Cougars, finishing with 12 points, 10 rebounds, and 6 assists. Thadius Galvez led MacEwan with 21 points, adding in 3 rebounds and 2 assists.

Mount Royal gets their fourth win of a season to go to 4-1 on the year, while MacEwan suffers their fifth loss of the season, falling to 2-5.

Mount Royal and MacEwan will play the second half of their back-to-back tomorrow night on Kenyon Court. Tip off is at 8:00PM MST.