Lakehead Thunderwolves take on Cape Breton

Lakehead University Thunderwolves Sports
Lakehead Thunderwolves
Lakehead Thunderwolves – Quinn Spyrka Photo

THUNDER BAY – Sports – The Lakehead Thunderwolves men’s basketball team will take on the Cape Breton U Capers in round 1 of the CIS Final 8 tournament, held at Scotiabank Place in Kanata. The ‘Wolves go into the weekend seeded 7th, while Cape Breton is seeded 2nd.

This will mark the 4th consecutive trip to the ‘Big Dance’ of Canadian University basketball for coach Scott Morrison and the Thunderwolves.

Lakehead Thunderwolves Playoff Action

This will also be the first time that his team has not faced a British Columbia opponent in the first round. The Thunderwolves and Capers last met at the national tournament in 2009 in the consolation round (which CBU won). They have had a couple exhibition meetings since then (all resulting in Lakehead losses), but no games in the current season.

Thunderwolves Coach’s Corner

Coach Scott Morrison said, “I am excited for our graduating seniors that they get the opportunity to go for #1 a fitting way to end their careers at Lakehead especially since our first appearance on the national stage occurred in this building back in 2010”.

“At the time we were a bunch of wide-eyed kids – this weekend we need to be men if we want to advance for the first time to round 2. Cape Breton is a formidable team with excellent coaching and one of this era’s top players in Jimmy Dorsey.  We will be underdogs for sure but I know our guys will come out fighting to extend their season one more time.”

The ties between these two teams run deeper than an outsider might assume, however. Lakehead assistant coach Nathan Johnson was assistant to now CBU Capers head coach Matt Skinn during their time with the St FX women’s program, just prior to Johnson coming to Lakehead. With that in mind there could be some tactical familiarities in the teams’ game plans.

As for personnel, shooting guard Joseph Jones was roommates with Capers’ star Jimmy Dorsey during their playing days together at Howard College in Maryland, before both players came north of the border.

The Capers are 21-1 on the season, their only loss coming to Acadia (73-49 on Feb 16). They do have a knack for winning close games, having beaten St FX twice by 5 points, St. Mary’s twice by 4 and 5 points, along with Dalhousie and UPEI by 2 points, all but one of those games played away from their comfortable Sydney, N.S. confines.

Jimmy Dorsey leads the Capers in scoring (20.8 PPG 6.4 RPG, 5.4 APG), and was also named a first-team All-Canadian earlier today. Of note as well is Shaquille Keith, who made the CIS All-Rookie team, and comes off the bench for the Capers.

One place the Thunderwolves hope they can have success against CBU is from the 3-point line, where the Capers shoot 30.5%, and average close to 26 long range attempts per game. The Thunderwolves have the second best 3-point defense in the country, limiting teams to 27.2% from beyond the arc.

Game time is Friday, March 8 at 12 noon ET.

Webcast Coverage of Game 1 vs Cape Breton Available via CIS TV

Games in the later rounds will be televised on The Score Television Network, and all games webcast on CIS TV.

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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".