HALIFAX – The LU Thunderwolves held their heads high as they entered the consolation round at the CIS Final 8 tournament; their determination to finish the season strong resulted in a 75-67 win over the Acadia Axemen.
LU was ready to go out of the gate in this game, out-scoring the Axemen 19-16 in the first quarter. The second quarter was Acadia’s by 2 points (16-14), to bring the half time score favoring Lakehead by 1, 33-32. Venzal Russell was providing most of LU’s scoring, with 16, by Acadia’s Owen Klassen had 13 points and 6 rebounds. The Acadia big man presented serious match-up problems as a 6’10” athletic post who can hit the 3.
In the second half, Lakehead continued to find their stroke from behind the arc. Venzal Russell kept on his pace and presented match up problems for Acadia defenders. Jamie Searle, who was slow to get going in the first half, found his range in the second and finished the game 4 of 7 from behind the arc. He also keyed a lot of plays for LU, breaking the full court pressure and once finishing in the lane with a floater over the 6’10” Klassen.
With the game 58-57 for Lakehead and 5:29 remaining, Lakehead turned tighter the screws on its defensive machine, and got some big buckets from Venzal Russell, who finished the game with 29 points and 5 rebounds. Jamie Searle finished with 18 points and 5 rebounds.
For Acadia, Owen Klassen had 26 points and 14 rebounds and Justin Boutlier notched 17 and grabbed 6 rebounds.
As a team Lakehead shot 50% from the field, 53% from three, and 56% on the charity stripe.
The win extends their season one more game, the consolation final for 5th place against the Dalhousie Tigers, which will take place tomorrow, Sunday March 13 at 10:30 am Atlantic, 9:30 Eastern time.
Unlike the game versus Acadia, which was erroneously announced to be webcast (our sincere apologies), the Consolation Final game versus Dalhousie will be webcast on SSN. Game time is 10:30 local, 9:30 Eastern – and don’t forget to set your clocks ahead Saturday night!