Josh McAvoy, UNBC Athletics
PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. - A big second half from the University of Winnipeg Wesmen was enough to prevail 96-81 over the Timberwolves Saturday, November 3rd at the Charles Jago Northern Sport Centre.
A slow start for the Timberwolves led to a 23-14 first quarter deficit, in which the Wesmen's Spas Nikolov went 3-3 from the field for eight points, as well as Joseph Medrano shooting 2-2 from beyond the arc. The Timberwolves came out firing to start the second quarter, exploding for 28 points, and holding their opponents to only 11. James Agyeman, and Jovan Leamy who combined for five steals in the quarter set the defensive tone. Jovan Leamy once again led the Timberwolves offensively, as his 13 points willed his team to a 42-34 half-time lead.
The Wesmen began the third quarter with fury, starting with a 15-4 run. The run was capped off by a Sean Tarver three-pointer, which sparked a timeout from the Timberwolves head coach, Todd Jordan. The successful quarter for the Wesmen was capped off by back-to-back three-pointers by Don Dayrit. A late corner three-pointer from Saje Gosal left the Timberwolves in a three-point deficit as the quarter ended 68-65 for the Wesmen.
"It felt really great to have strong second half. I didn't have the best of nights yesterday, so to come out and hit my shots tonight felt great. My teammates were finding me, and it was going in," said Dayrit.
Wasting no time, the Wesmen left off where they last started. A high-energy, highly efficient quarter, highlighted by big three-point shots from Sean Tarver and Don Dayrit helped the Wesmen runaway with a 96-81 victory.
"If you score 81, and your defence can't hold your opponent to less 81, that's a problem. Especially if they had 34 at half," said Todd Jordan postgame. "They ran it down our throats and got us in foul trouble. Our confidence started to go, theirs started to build, and we didn't answer the bell."
Vaggelis Loukas shined for the Timberwolves during a tough night, as he put up 18 points, 13 rebounds, and five assists.
The Wesmen were led by Narcisse Ambanza, who went for 27 points, and seven rebounds. Providing a spark off the bench was Don Dayrit, who had 22 points, including four second half three-pointers.
The win moves the Wesmen to 2-2 on the season, and they will look to add to that as they take on the University of Saskatchewan Huskies next week.
"Both teams made adjustments, and did some things differently," said TWolves coach Todd Jordan. "I thought it was an effort thing in the second half. We didn't get up into them the way we needed to. You can't give up 62 in a half to anyone, and hope to win."
The Timberwolves fall to 3-1 on the season with the loss, but will look to set things right in two week's time when they take on the Trinity Western Spartans.
"It has been a positive start to the season. Coming into this 3-0, I would have loved to get out of here 4-0," said Jordan. "3-1 is an okay place to be, but in this league you have to continue to find ways to get W's."