Reloading continues for Lakehead University T-Wolves
THUNDER BAY – Thunderwolves Sports – Coach Scott Morrison of the men’s basketball team announced three transfers to the roster this week: 7’1” center Andrew McCarthy (Scituate, Mass.), 6’7” forward Srdjan Pejicic (Waterloo, Ont.) and 6’7” forward Justin Bell (Mississauga, Ont.).
Ryan Thomson to sit out, Joe Hart to play in Spain
Says Morrison, “We were in need of front court size and depth this off-season and I believe these three gentlemen, in addition to freshman Brent Wallace, will help provide size, strength and experience in the paint. All three have much to improve with their games but are still expected to make an impact this season.”
Andrew McCarthy (photo left) arrives in Thunder Bay after having spent 2 years at UMass (1 year as a redshirt) and 1 year at Massassoit Community College, leaving him with 3 years of eligibility to play for the Thunderwolves. During his time at MCC, the big man averaged 7.2 points, 9.8 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game.
Srdjan Pejicic joins the Thunderwolves after playing 2 years for the Waterloo Warriors. Pejicic is 6’7” perimeter player with a good touch from beyond the arc, where he shot 47% for his former team. He is enrolled in Lakehead’s Master’s in Outdoor Recreation program.
Justin Bell will join his younger brother Josh in a Thunderwolf uniform to play out his final year of eligibility. The 6’7” forward played previously with Ottawa and York, having shot 50% from the field for 7.8 points per game as a Lion in the 2011-12 season. Justin will pursue his Education degree.
As Morrison states, “McCarthy is a solid finisher and shot blocker… if he can run the floor with our guards and get back to defend the basket he will be a major asset for us. Pejicic will challenge to be the team’s top shooter which is a big hole to fill with the graduation of Schmidt and injury to Thomson. Bell will be our strongest player and should fit nicely in a core group with McIntosh, Nitychoruk and the new bigs. He has a lot of experience and should be an earner on the glass.”
Morrison is taking steps to replace 6 graduating seniors, and 2 other key players from last season. Leading scorer Ryan Thomson (Oakville, Ont.) will sit out this year to recover from knee surgery in the spring. Add to that Joe Hart (Southend, England), who recently accepted an offer to play in the Spanish pro league (EBA div.4).
Coach Morrison offered his thoughts on the personnel changes, “It is disappointing to lose Joe especially considering he was one of 4 rotation players returning from last season’s roster. With his departure and Thomson’s rehab we are left to return 4 players (Harvey, Wainwright, Nitychoruk, McIntosh) from last season’s championship game roster. In many case this would constitute a major rebuilding year, however we are expecting our core of returning guys to show excellent leadership in training camp in order to help our new group learn the basics and catch up. Our goal is to get better every week and hopefully by February be a team that no one is interested in matching up with.”