Russell and Schmidt Play Big in Game 1 Win Over Badgers
ST CATHARINES, ON – The Lakehead University Thunderwolves men’s basketball team won 82-73 versus Brock on Friday evening. The T-Wolves used a balanced attack, and got huge contributions from Venzal Russell (Detroit, MI), who was 2 assists short of a ‘triple-double’, and Matt Schidmt (Thunder Bay, ON), who stepped into the starting center role for the first time in his Lakehead career.
Lakehead got out to an early lead and would repel Brock’s best efforts to close the gap as the game elapsed. Adam Johnson (Baltimore, MD) got out to a quick start for Lakehead, scoring 10 points in the first quarter. Matt Schmidt would provide timely shooting start to finish, especially in the final minutes of the game to seal the victory, as he went 8 of 12 from the field to finish with 17 points and 8 rebounds in 28 minutes of work.
It goes without saying that Venzal Russell was a man on a mission, scoring 23 points, grabbing 13 rebounds, dishing out 8 assists and hawking 5 steals in an incredible display of all-around basketball talent. Adam Johnson, who has been flourishing of late coming off the bench, had 15 points, 3 rebounds and 2 steals in 14 minutes of play. Starting PG Greg Carter had 8 points, 6 steals, 3 assists and 4 rebounds.
The Brock Badgers were led by big man Mark Gibson with a double-double of 17 points and 16 rebounds. Andrew Ferguson was an efficient 8-of-11 from the field (3-4 from three) for 19 points and 6 boards. Point guard Andrew Kraus had 11 points and 7 assists.
Coach Scott Morrison, who was without Yoosrie Salhia and Brendan King to injury, mentioned some positives from the game but also cautioned against any sense of full satisfaction, “On the one hand we played hard and received some good production from our bench ‘bigs’ in the absence on Salhia and King. On the other hand we had the chance to put Brock away in the 2nd half and let them back in the game with sloppy transition defense and some poor turnovers. We also gave Brock some good looks on penetration kick-outs by being a little slow on our rotations. Brock is short-handed but the guys they have out there are very talented and can shoot the ball – we have to do a better job getting back on D and containing middle penetration tomorrow night.”
The two teams will rematch today at 8PM.