Antigonish, NS – The visiting Memorial Sea-Hawks hung on for an 82-79 victory over the StFX X-Men Saturday night at the StFX Oland Centre. The game was a key one worth four points in the AUS standings.
The first quarter was played fairly even with Memorial up 10-9 midway through the quarter as Emanuel Ring (St. John's, NF) netted seven of their first eight points in the game. The Sea-Hawks started to pull away in the final two minutes of the quarter and were up 27-19 before Brandon Velocci (Brooklyn, NY) hit a three-pointer for the X-Men to close out the opening frame 27-22 in favour of the Sea-Hawks.
The X-Men quickly drew even in the opening minute of the second quarter off a Velocci basket and a trey from freshman Atik Gilao (Brampton, ON). Back and forth play then ensued as the score remained close with neither squad holding more than a four point advantage until a Nathan Barker (Massey Drive, NF) jumper in the final 30 seconds gave Memorial a six point advantage, 44-38 at halftime.
The Sea-Hawks began to pull away in the third quarter, opening up a 10-point lead, 53-43 after two and a half minutes of play. The X-Men's offense stalled but scoring was even at 17 points apiece in the third quarter as Memorial held onto their six-point lead, 61-55 after three quarters.
Justin Andrew (Hamilton, ON) nailed a three-pointer to jump start the X-Men in the fourth quarter but it was answered by Ring who sank a trey of his own. The Sea-Hawks again built up a 10-point lead, 68-58, after two and a half minutes of play. The X-Men chipped away but Ring hit keys baskets for the Sea-Hawks when needed.
Trailing 76-72 with 2:30 to play, Daniel Passley Mississauga, ON) made a key jumper for the X-Men then Andrew sank one from beyond the arc to give them a 77-76 lead with 1:17 left to play.
Barker replied with a jumper for the Sea-Hawks then the X-Men were forced to foul to try to regain possession. The Sea-Hawks were able to play out the remainder of the clock and hang on for the win.
The Subway player of the game, Barker finished with a game-high 31 points for Memorial. Ring scored 25 and had six rebounds, while Jason Thompson (St, John's, NF) contributed 10 points and dished nine assists.
For the X-Men, Gilao scored 19 points off the X-Men bench, while Andrew scored 16 points on the night and Thomas Legallais (Cornwall, ON) had 15. Passley scored 10 and hauled in 14 rebounds for a double-double night.
The same two squads will be back on Coach K Court on Sunday for a re-match at 3:00 pm.
Courtesy Krista McKenna, StFX Sports Information