Antigonish, NS – The Cape Breton Capers emerged victorious in a thrilling double overtime game, besting the StFX X-Men 118-110 Wednesday night at the StFX Oland Centre.
After a fourth quarter comeback by the X-Men to tie the game at 89-89 in regulation, it looked like the home team would take the game in the first overtime period as they held a three-point lead at 99-96 with 32 seconds left to play, but Rueben Edwards (Baltimore, MD) had a key steal and lay-up for the Capers. He was fouled on the lay-up and dropped in the single free throw to knot the game at 99-99, which is where it remained as the overtime buzzer sounded.
The Capers then stepped up their defensive play in double overtime, forcing StFX to take outside shots which weren't falling. A Jason Callaghan (Sydney, NS) three-pointer gave CBU a six-point lead which they did not relinquish for the remainder of the OT period. A Eugene Kankue (Ottawa, ON) three-pointer to go up 113-101 with just over a minute to play sealed the win for the Cape Breton.
Edwards finished with a game-high 32 points for the Capers, earning Subway player of the game honours.
The game started with a 19-12 first quarter Cape Breton lead as turnovers proved costly for the X-Men. The Capers went on a 9-0 run to open up the second quarter, though the X-Men closed the gap heading into halftime, thanks in part to a trio of three-point buckets made by guard Jaydan Smith (Halifax, NS).
The Capers held a seven-point advantage at 39-32 at halftime. They were up by as much as 15 points midway through the third quarter, but the X-Men kept in the game and found themselves again down by seven points (67-60) heading into the fourth quarter of play.
Smith and veteran forward Daniel Passley (Mississauga, ON) were key down the stretch for the X-Men as they tied the game at 77-77 with five minutes left to play.
As the slim lead bounced back and forth, neither team could hold onto the advantage and ended regulation time deadlocked at 89-89, setting up the overtime dramatics.
The Capers saw seven players finish in double scoring figures including Edwards off the bench with 32, Paul Watson (Mississauga, ON) with 18, Osman Omar (Mississauga, ON) with 16, Kankue with 15, Ibrahim Gosselin-Diawara (Longueil, QC) with 13, Shacier Locke (Sydney, NS) with 12, and Callaghan with 10.
Watson pulled in a whopping 21 rebounds and Locke had seven.
For the X-Men, Justin Andrew (Hamilton, ON) scored 24, while player of the game Smith netted 23. Passley had a double-double night with 20 points and 12 rebounds, along with Azaro Roker (Nassau, Bahamas) leading the way with 15 rebounds and three blocks.
With the loss, the X-Men drop to 3-7 on the season in sixth place in the AUS standings. They are back in action on Friday night when they travel to Charlottetown to meet the UPEI Panthers (3-7). The Capers improve to 6-5 and now sit in a tie for second place with UNB (7-4). They will host Acadia (4-6) on Sunday afternoon in a 3:15 pm game.
Courtesy StFX Sports Information