(Halifax, NS) – The second game of the Dalhousie Shoveller Memorial Invitational basketball tournament took overtime to solve as the StFX X-Men topped the Acadia Axemen 90-87.
The X-Men outpaced the Axemen 13-10 in the extra frame as the game was knotted at 77-77 at the end of regulation time.
Acadia had come out to a blistering start to the game as they quickly jumped out to an 11-4 lead in the first quarter with Rhys Larry (Brockville, ON) picking up six of those points. Meanwhile, the X-Men went 0-5 from deep to start.
The X-Men were able to settle down and started taking the ball inside. Their aggressiveness was rewarded with trips to the line, and they brought themselves back into the game, and eventually the lead when Tristen Ross (Truro, NS) got his 3-pointer to fall.
StFX picked up the interior defence with Azaro Roker (Nassau, Bahamas) acting as a shot-blocking force down low. Jaydan Smith nailed shots on back-to-back possessions late in the quarter, including a tough buzzer beater from deep to end the first and keep the X-Men on top 25-19.
Acadia started getting long shots of their own to fall in the second quarter as Nick De Palma (Bedford, NS) knocked down two from beyond the arc and the Axemen regained their lead. When the outside shots stopped falling, they moved the ball inside to Forest Mahoney (Beachburg, ON) who threw down two big dunks late in the half.
Acadia went into halftime with the slight edge at 39-37, with Rhys Larry leading the way for them with 10 points. Ross led the X-Men into the opening half with 10 points of his own, including knocking down a shot at the buzzer.
Baskets were traded early in the third quarter with the score staying close, till Erik Nissin (Quispamsis, NB) picked up quick points from trips to the line to give the Axemen an edge.
StFX ended the quarter hitting two shots from Daniel Passley (Mississauga, ON) in the final 30 seconds to keep them close at 61-57 heading into the fourth.
The score remained close with Acadia holding a slight advantage until Kevin Bercy (Kanata, ON) finished a tough shot through contact to give StFX the one-point lead.
The teams traded baskets, and the lead, with the X-Men holding onto a three-point lead with just 40 seconds left. Acadia came out of the timeout and Ben Miller knocked down the long shot to tie it up at 77-77.
Acadia had the final possession after a timeout with just 1.2 seconds left on the clock, but the shot from way beyond the three-point line was no good, and the game headed to overtime.
The overtime period seemed like it would come down to which big-man was better, as Erik Nissen and Kevin Bercy traded baskets down low. With just over a minute left, Azaro Roker finished through hard contact to put StFX up three. Acadia couldn't find the answer from long range, and StFX took the game by a final score of 90-87.
Rhys Larry earned player of the game honors for Acadia with 16 points and eight rebounds, while Kevin Bercy earned the title for StFX with his 19 point, 11 rebound double-double.
Acadia will face off against Concordia on the consolation side of the tournament bracket tomorrow at 1:00, while StFX will take on Saint Mary's at 6:00 tomorrow in the first semifinal game.
Courtesy Kirk Jessome, Dalhousie Sports Information