Lancers break Marauder’s win streak

In a battle for OUA West supremacy, the Lancer men’s basketball team (14-5) fended off first place McMaster (16-4) landing heavy retaliatory blows in humbling the Marauders with a 81 – 76 defeat last Saturday afternoon.

Enrico Diloreto drives to the basket during the Lancers victory over McMaster. Photo by Ian Shalapata.
Enrico Diloreto drives to the basket during the Lancers victory over McMaster. Photo by Ian Shalapata.

Enrico Diloreto drives to the basket during the Lancers victory over McMaster. Photo by Ian Shalapata.

Kim Elliott

Reporter

In a battle for OUA West supremacy, the Lancer men’s basketball team (14-5) fended off first place McMaster (16-4) landing  heavy  retaliatory blows  in humbling  the Marauders with a 81 – 76 defeat last Saturday afternoon.

Windsor  snapped  the Marauders 13 game win streak and no doubt sent a shiver up the spine of their upper tier opponents in the OUA East.

“It was a great CIS basketball game featuring two top seven teams in the country and we were proud of our effort, especially on the defensive end where we executed with effort and concentration,” said Lancers coach Chris Oliver.

After leading by as much as 11 points going into the second quarter, McMaster clawed their way back to a 36-36 tie at the half, fuelled by a pair of momentum changing stuffs by guards Leon Alexander and Rohan Boney.

Indeed the Marauders made a major mistake in failing to answer the bell readily when play resumed in the third quarter. Instead the seasoned Lancers seized the moment and raced out to a six point lead early in the frame which included a two hand flush and one hand tomahawk jam over several Mac defenders by “Spider Man” Rotimi Osuntola Jr.

After being down by as much as 13 points they eventually recovered to within a one possession three point deficit with only  13 seconds remaining in the contest. However,  a  late McMaster turnover resulted in two  free throws being converted by Enrico Diloreto to seal the win for the Lancers.

“I really congratulate Chris Oliver for having his team well prepared for this all important game. It was no doubt a bonafide victory. I have respect for Chris as a coach going back to our high school coaching rivalry and I believe my team showed respect for his team today as well,” said McMaster’s head coach Amos Connelly.

Coach Oliver has nothing but respect for Coach Connelly.

“Amos should be the coach of the year in our conference,” said Oliver. “He has done a super job building his team to a national level and they will be a difficult out for anyone in the playoffs.”

Lancer Lien Phillip, playing more aptly like a dominating centre than a power forward in this occasion led the way for the self respecting Lancers, scoring  20 points and tearing down 17 rebounds.  His exploits were supplemented by  his record breaking fifth-year peers Enrico Diloreto (26 points, 5 rebounds) and Josh Collins (11 points,  2 steals).

They in turn had their intensity and poise matched qualitatively by fourth-year senior Evan Matthews who had at least one stat in every category, and Osuntola who practically did the same. The Lancer reserves also fulfilled their specialty roles  in solidarity with the front five, especially Brad Parker and Khalid Abdel-Gabar.

Rookie shooting sensation Mike Rocca had a quiet outing for the Lancers, perhaps a bit in awe of his brother Joe Rocca who got the Marauders going early and finished with a team high 18 points that was matched by fellow guard Aaron Redpath. Alexander had 15 points and seven rebounds in addition to his Jam, but Lancers held Mac’s leading scoring Taylor Black to only seven points,  with nine rebounds and a nice dunk of his own.

Like the Marauders, Windsor suffered four humbling losses of their own early in the season to #1 Carleton, No. 2 Ottawa, No. 6 Ryerson and one to unranked Lakehead before the loss at McMaster in early January.

The Lancers have inched back to respectability second in the OUA West while riding high on their seven game winning streak.

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