Thursday, March 1st saw the Humber Hawks and George Brown Huskies lock horns in the opening round of the 2018 OCAA men’s basketball championship hosted by Niagara College in Welland, Ontario. The Hawks edged out a hard fought 78-73 victory to advance to the championship semi-final where they will face the Redeemer Royals on Friday night.
After a slow start that saw the two teams combine for just 22 points in the first quarter, the two GTA powerhouses found their rhythm and settled into an exciting back-and-forth affair.
The Hawks carried a big 51-40 lead at the end of the third quarter, but the Huskies battled back, closing the gap to three with less than 10 seconds to play. Humber however converted on all of their late game free throws, to capture the quarterfinal victory.
“Our goal was to stay focussed and disciplined” said Humber standout CJ Bennett after the game. Bennett, who finished with a team high 21 points and earned the Hawks player of the game award continued “even when we weren’t executing, our message was to stay focussed and disciplined and it paid off tonight.”
The win advances the Hawks to the OCAA Championship semi-final where they will look to improve on the Bronze medal they won a year ago. The Huskies will compete on the consolation side of the bracket on Friday at 3:00pm.
Kenny Ejim and DeQuoan Cascart both finished in double figures for Humber, notching 15 and 10 points each. While the Huskies were carried by De-Shaun Williams who finished with a game high 26 points and was named George Brown’s player of the game.
Humber and Redeemer will face off in semi-final #1 on Friday, March 2nd with tip-off set for 6:00pm.