Full perfection slips away in tie
Yeomen infiltrate sacred home
Yeomen infiltrate sacred home
By Ryan Hickman
Nothing comes easy to a team trying to define itself in the critical parts
of the season.
The Western Mustangs men's basketball team experienced just that this
weekend, showing flashes of brilliance on Friday night with a 83-63 win
Unfortunately, the Mustangs were a completely different team on Saturday
in a 75-69 loss to York.
The game against the Voyageurs stayed close early in the game, but the
Mustangs started to pull away mid-way through the first half. Scott
Seeley, Mark Neilson and Sagar Desai came off the bench to provide a lift,
showing the excellent depth needed for a great team.
Mustang head coach Craig Boydell said he wanted the depth of his team to
shine through. "We are looking for the long term. With the loss of Nick
Salomons and Mark Porte for the year, we want to establish ourselves as
being able to go ten deep."
Mark Porte has been on the injury list for the entire season, while
Salomons was on and off again. With his most recent injury, Boydell said
Salomons won't play again for the remainder of the season.
The Mustangs produced much of their offence against Laurentian with an
up-tempo style. The man directing the Mustangs in the open court was the
level-headed Jim Grozelle, who said his team's get-it-out and run style
can compensate for a lack of half court offensive momentum.
"As long as we keep getting easy buckets in transition, we don't have to
worry as much if our half court offense is struggling."
It was the Mustangs tight team defence that kept the Voyageurs from making
any serious run. With a 40-27 lead at halftime, the Mustangs kept a double
digit advantage throughout the second half. It was the defense that
Boydell said he was most pleased with.
"We are solid defensively and closer to where we should be at this time of
the year, as opposed to our offense," he said.
For Laurentian, it was their defense that they thought might give them a
better chance against Western – throwing different schemes at the Mustangs
throughout the game. "We wanted to try and keep them off balance,"
Laurentian head coach Virgil Hill said after the game.
The Laurentian defence certainly didn't stop the nation's leading scorer,
Andy Kwiatkowski, who chalked up 23 points, six boards, three assists and
three steals. Grozelle added 17 points and Adam Peaker helped out with 10.
With the Friday night game behind them, it was an early morning for the
Mustangs on Saturday with a noon tip-off against the tenth ranked team in
the nation, York.
The Mustangs didn't show the depth and dominance as seen the night before.
The Yeomen offence came largely from Adam Miller, who came off the
Yeoman's bench to score 19 points and pull down 11 rebounds.
York shot 63 per cent from the floor in the first half to take a 42-32
lead into halftime and it proved to be insurmountable even with a strong
charge by the Mustangs in the second half.
Western stayed close with a big effort from Chedo Ndur, who punched out
for the day with 16 points and seven rebounds. Kwiatkowski added his usual
21 and six.
Dave Van Dyck/Gazette
I'LL HUFF AND I'LL PUFF AND I'LL BLOW MY DEFENDER DOWN. Mustang forward
Mark Neilson looks for an open man in the squad's 83-63 victory over the