Thunderbirds Notch First Win of 2014

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Algoma Thunderbirds Defeat Queen’s Gaels

MEDIA RELEASE

The Algoma Thunderbirds men’s basketball team notched their fourth win of their debut OUA and CIS season against the Queen’s Gaels on Saturday night in front of an energetic crowd at the GLC.

In men’s action, the Thunderbirds got out to an early lead. Algoma earned 3 turnovers and shot an impressive 43.8 percent from the field, and led the Gaels 20-12 in the first quarter. Algoma continued their momentum in the second, driving the ball into the post and sinking shots from beyond the arc. The Thunderbirds led the Gaels by 8 going into the second half, 35-27. Thunderbirds’ Samy Mohamed went 4-8 from the three-point line in the first half. Algoma continued to battle in the second half, pulling away from Queen’s, widening the gap to 14. Queen’s came back late in the third, chipping into the deficit, but Algoma still led 53-45 going into the final 10 minutes. Queen’s increased their aggressiveness in the final five minutes, getting within 3 points of the Thunderbirds. The teams went shot for shot down the stretch, but 2 turnovers in favour of the Gaels put Queen’s within 2 points of the Thunderbirds with 67 seconds left to play. The Thunderbirds went 6-6 at the free-throw line with seconds left in the game, including 2 points off of a technical foul by Queen’s coach Stephen Barrie, giving the Thunderbirds their fourth win of the season, 83-76. Veterans Reynaldo Carnakie and Mohamed led the Thunderbirds with 19 and 18 points each, and Sukhpreet Singh led Queen’s with 17 in their losing effort. The Thunderbirds improved to 4-10, and the Gaels fell to 7-7.

“We need that same consistent play every day on the court, off the court, and in the classroom,” said Head Coach Thomas Cory after the men’s game. “We need that effort and that urgency. It’s important to what we’re doing.”

The Queen’s Gaels’ women jumped out to an early start against the Thunderbirds. With key steals by the Gaels, the Thunderbirds found limited opportunities for good shots, and went 3-13 in the first quarter. The Gaels led 19-7 going into the second. With tight defense from the Gaels, the Thunderbirds were unable to get on the scoreboard until late in the second. Courtney White broke Algoma’s shooting woes with a free-throw. Despite coming back late in the second, the Thunderbirds still lagged behind the Gaels, 33-15. With great shooting from the three-point line, Queen’s averaged 42.9 percent going into the second half. Going into the third, the Thunderbirds increased their momentum and moved the ball around the floor, but were still in the tough against the second-place team in the OUA East. Unable to establish themselves in the offensive set in the second half, Algoma lost their 14th consecutive game of the season, 54-34. Jenny Wright and Liz Boag led Queen’s with 16 and 15 points, respectively. Veteran Karissa Kajorinne and rookie Sydney Resch each put up 9 for the Thunderbirds. The Gaels improved to 9-5, while Algoma stands at 0-14.

For both Thunderbirds teams, it was their fifth game in eight days. “We played very well this weekend and I am very happy with their performance,” said Head Coach Ryan Vetrie after the women’s game. “We had many good plays. We had a few breakdowns for a couple of minute stretches which is where we fell apart. But I am very proud of their effort this weekend.”

The Algoma Thunderbirds return to action next weekend away, when they take on the Toronto Varsity Blues and the Ryerson Rams.

You can follow all the Algoma Thunderbirds action here.

About Algoma University

Algoma University offers a wide variety of liberal arts and sciences degree options including programs in Psychology, Social Work, Computer Science, Business Administration, Fine Arts, Community Economic & Social Development, and Biology in Sault Ste. Marie, Brampton, Timmins and St. Thomas. As a partner with Shingwauk Kinoomaage Gamig, Algoma U is committed to respecting Anishinaabe knowledge and culture. Algoma University has launched its Essential Elements Campaign to expand its campus and offer more scholarships and awards to students. To learn more, visit www.algomau.ca.