Lakehead Thunderwolves defeat McMaster Marauders

Lakehead Thunderwolves Ryan Thompson passes to Greg Carter in action at the Thunder Dome - Photo by Lynda Henshell
Ryan Thompson passes to Greg Carter in action at the Thunder Dome - Photo by Lynda Henshell
Lakehead Thunderwolves
Lakehead Thunderwolves – Quinn Spyrka Photo

HAMILTON, ON – Sports – Lakehead Thunderwolves defeat McMaster Marauders clinching a bye in round one of the play-offs. Coach Scott Morrison commented “It was an old fashioned gut-check kind of win tonight. Mac beat us in the first half with excellent ball movement and rebounding. I was proud of our toughness in the second half and also our execution down the stretch. It was a big win for our team that we can enjoy tonight before getting back to business.” 

Lakehead Thunderwolves Men tough up for win

The men’s basketball team managed a 78-75 comeback win over the McMaster Marauders on Friday evening. 

Lakehead made their push in the final quarter after trailing 45-41 at halftime, and 60-54 heading into the final quarter. A 24-15 effort in the final quarter would seal the deal, with Lakehead tying the game at 69 on a Ben Johnson 3-pointer with under 4 minutes to play. Following that both teams would exchange singular made free throws, tied 70-70 with under 2 minutes to play. 

On the subsequent play Ryan Thomson missed a three pointer, and with the rebound heading out of bounds Greg Carter would dive past a Marauder and play the ball of him and out of bounds, giving Lakehead possession and a fresh shot clock. Carter would score ‘and-1’ on the subsequent play, but miss the free throw. After Lakehead took a 2-point lead, Adam Presutti would hit a straight-away bank three pointer to give the home side a 1-point lead with 15 seconds remaining. 

Ryan Thomson’s number was called on the following play, and he scored 2 of his game-high 22 points on a post up feed from Yoosrie Salhia for a 1-point Lakehead advantage. Following a McMaster time out and a failed play to throw a lob to Rohan Boney, McMaster fouled and Ben Johnson who hit 2 free throws for a 3-point lead, which held true following a last-ditch McMaster effort that missed. 

Ben Johnson finished with 19 points (5-9 threes) with 5 rebounds, followed by Dwayne Harvey with 18 points, 4 steals and 4 rebounds, which included a buzzer-beating 3-pointer at the end of the first half. Yoosrie Salhia struggled with foul trouble for most of the game, finishing with a season-low 5 point, 5 rebound night with 3 assists in 24 minutes of play. Greg Carter was a defensive force with 6 steals to go with 6 assists and 6 points. 

For McMaster, Nathan McCarthy had a team-high 21 points with a game-high 9 rebounds (8 offensive). Joe Rocca had 11, Adam Presutti and Aaron Redpath scored 10 apiece.  

McMaster held a 38-30 advantage on the glass. Lakehaed’s biggest advantage was in 3-point shooting, hitting 11-of-24 (46%) to McMaster’s 6-21 (29%).

Lakehead Thunderwolves Saturday Night 

The two teams will rematch tomorrow evening at 8pm in the final game of the regular season, which has no bearing on final standings for either team. 

With the win, Lakehead clinches the #2 seed in the OUA-West, and thus a first-round bye in the playoffs. Their next (and final) home game will be on Saturday, February 23 in Round 2 of the playoffs against an opponent to be determined from Round 1 (Wed, Feb 20).

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Hugh Mullally is the Sports Information Director at Lakehead University. Hugh shares, "In the field of athletics, I aspire to continue developing my public profile as a source for sports information with my current employer, with a little bit of entertainment mixed in with my live game commentary and my weekly radio show that features athletes and coaches from Lakehead University".