By Ian Shalapata
(WINDSOR, ON) – The University of Windsor men’s basketball team returned from West Palm Beach, FL, nursing some injuries after playing in the Chuck Daley Memorial Classic, hosted at the Countess de Hoernle Student Life Centre.
The Lancers were missing three starters for the two games in Florida. Evan Matthews, Rotimi Osuntola, and Khalid Abdel-Gabar all sat out both games of the tournament.
We are back to conference action this week with two very difficult road trips as we travel to Laurier and to McMaster.
“Our players got to train in a distraction free environment, not to mention a warm, snow-free one,” said Chris Oliver, the Lancers head coach. “We also played two games that hopefully will help us get ready for the return to conference games.”
Windsor first took on the NAIA 5th ranked Bethel College Pilots of Mishawaka, IN. The Lancers started slowly shooting just 33% from inside in the first half, improving to 50% on the game. Windsor also ran into foul issues as Bethel hit on 72% of 50 free throws awarded to the Pilots.
“We showed positive attributes in dealing with much adversity in this game and for that I was proud,” Oliver said of his team. “Our depleted roster, combined with foul trouble that saw four players foul out, forced us to play many players more minutes than normal.”
Windsor dropped the game to Bethel 98-91. Enrico Diloretto led the Lancers with 21 points including going 5 for 7 from outside the arc. Point guard Josh Collins chipped in 18 points and Alex Campbell saw 30 minutes of playing time. He made good use of his opportunity by dropping 17 points.
The next night Windsor took on Judson University from Elgin, IL. The Lancers dominated the boards with six players scoring in the double digits including Campbell who put up a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds.
Diloretto and Brad Parker, who saw an increased workload, both led Windsor with 19 points. Collins (15), Lien Phillip and Keron Braithwaite (11 each) rounded out the scoring for Windsor as they defeated the Eagles 90-64.
Windsor received welcomed support from Lancer track athletes who were training in Florida. Athletic Director Mike Havey brought the track team to the hardwood court to lend some encouragement to the squad.
The men’s team will now travel to Waterloo with an 8:00 pm tip-off against the Laurier Golden Hawks tonight. They then move on to Hamilton on Saturday to take on McMaster before returning home on the 15th to face Guelph at the St Denis Centre.
The University of Windsor Track and Field crew will host the CanAm meet this Friday and Saturday at St Denis.