(WINDSOR, ON) – Facing two teams from the OUA East, the men’s basketball team put the weekend behind them with the feeling that it could have been a better result. Walking away with a split against Queen’s and York was described by head coach Chris Oliver as both, “frustrating and confusing.”
Friday evening the Gales rolled into town and pressured Windsor’s defense from start to finish. The men made up for the defensive shortfall with a strong offensive display, outlasting Queen’s 93-86.
Centre Evan Matthews had his best offensive game of the season, throwing down a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds, including 7 in the O-zone.
Rotimi Osuntola also struck for a double-double, hitting for 17 points and pulling down 12 boards.
Meanwhile, Mitch Farrell had a team high 24 points for Windsor and Alex Campbell contributed 12 points in 27 minutes off the bench.
The Lancers went to the line just 13 times against Queen’s, but scored at a 61.5% pace. “We simply are not getting to the free throw line anymore,” Oliver said. “We were averaging 28 free throws a game and over our last three games we are averaging around 15 a game.“
The Saturday match was punctuated by a cacophony unheard at St Denis since the CIS Women’s Final 8 in 2014. The ample crowd in attendance attempted to rally the Lancers from a 22-point halftime deficit, but the team fell to York 89-84.
Again Farrell led Windsor, this time dropping 18 points. Osuntola registered his 6th double-double in a row, and 12th of the season, by putting up 14 points and 11 rebounds. Brad Parker matched Osuntola’s rebounding with 5 offensive and 6 defensive boards.
Campbell had another big game off the bench, scoring 17 points on 6-for-14 shooting.
Windsor’s 2nd half rejuvenation came on the heels of forcing York into 28 turnovers. Both Farrell and Khalid Abdel-Gabar had 4 steals each, half of the Lancers’ total. Windsor then outscored York 38-10 on turnovers.
The Lancers will now play the next four games on the road beginning in Sudbury on February 6. They’ll return to St Denis on February 18 to commemorate Senior Night against the Waterloo Warriors.
“Evan Matthews, who has played five very impactful years, and Khalid Abdel-Gabar who, in two short years, has inspired us all with his play, will play their last regular season home game,” Coach Oliver advised.