author: nathan mccarville | sports writer
after finishing fifth, the Cougars are primed for a post–season run / nathan mccarville
men’s basketball secures fifth seed, will face MRU in playoffs
The men’s basketball team finished their final regular season game with a bang after their last game against the University of Saskatchewan Huskies. Delivering yet another game filled with excitement and passion, the Cougars finished the game with a score of 96-88 after a nail-biting final quarter of the game that contained no less than three timeouts called by either team in the final moments on the court. With the end of the regular season, the Cougars are currently standing at fifth place among the Canada West teams with playoffs just around the corner.
The first game of the weekend was a high scoring one with the score reaching in excess of 100 points for the Huskies. The first game of the weekend did not end with favourable results for the Cougars that their closing weekend would hope for, the Cougars managed to make the game as close as possible as the score climbed to 102-97 in favour of the visiting Huskies.
Though the halftime score would have had another prediction in mind for the end of the game, the Cougars were ahead by the time the intermission rolled around, with a score of 46-43.
By the end of the third, the Cougars were still ahead with a score of 73 compared to the Huskies 58 points by the end of the third. But, in the fourth, the Huskies popped off, scoring an unbelievable 44 points in the quarter, pushing their score up to 102, coming out on top of the Cougars, with a final score of 102-97 in favour of the Huskies.
The second game provided the excitement and climax usually associated with a men’s basketball game. The Cougars showed how much they wanted the win when they blew up in the first quarter of the game, scoring 32 points after the first tip-off. The points that the Cougars put on the scoreboard in the first sustained them for the remainder of the game, giving the Cougars the buffer they needed against the Huskies.
Matching the Huskies score in the second, each team putting another 20 points on the scoreboard, the Cougars began to fall behind on a quarter by quarter score basis, scoring 17 points in the third compared to the Huskies 22, and 27 points in the fourth compared to the Huskies 29 points. The game ended with a score of 96-88, which provided the Cougars with the score they needed to cinch their last game of the season.
The final seven minutes of the game provided the main event of the night. With coaches shouting to the referees and players alike, the tense final minutes of the game saw the Cougars controlling the ball for the majority of the remaining minutes, putting 12 more points on the scoreboard with break-away lay-ups, and keeping the buffer between the Huskies score and the Cougars’ comfortable.
Players to thank for the score include Benjamin Hillis, Greishe Clerjuste, and Carter Millar, matching each other’s scores with 16 points each, followed closely by Samuel Hillis with 14 points to his name for the game.
The Cougars are set to play one more game before the quarterfinals are set to begin. Feb. 8 the Cougars are scheduled to play against the Mount Royal Cougars on Regina’s home court as a Canada West Play-In game, deciding whether the Cougars will make it to the Canada West Playoffs, whose location is yet to be determined as the date grows closer.