UBC wins big before season opener
By Josh Saggau
Lau – Mike Hull 11 points, 8 rebounds, 2 steals
UBC – Doug Plumb 17 points, 7 rebounds, 1 steal
Vancouver, B.C. – It wasn’t much of a contest but the UBC Thunderbirds aren’t complaining.
After opening the game on a 15-0 run, UBC cruised to a 108-55 win over the visiting Laurentian Voyageurs.
“They were fired up to play and we just weren’t ready, they smacked us right away at the start of the game with their defence. We got out of our offensive stuff and it rattled us for defence. I think that set the tone right away,” said Laurentian head coach, Shawn Swords.
It was the 5:49 mark of the first quarter before Laurentian guard, Manny Pasquale, finally sliced through the UBC defence with a nice finger roll for the Voyageurs first points of the game. After that, Pasquale seemed to have a bull’s-eye on his back because the UBC defence was all over him and held him to just six more points the rest of the way.
With his brother heavily guarded, it was up to Isiah to pick up the slack. He led the Voyageurs with 14 points in 30 minutes of action, but there was no stopping the steamroller that is the UBC offense.
The Thunderbirds had a 56-23 lead going in to halftime and were getting scoring from everyone. Eight of the T-birds 10 players had contributed to the onslaught.
When play resumed the Thunderbirds seemed to cool off a little, missing their first five shots of the second half. It wouldn’t last long and the Voyageurs were soon overwhelmed by the all around attack of UBC.
Five players for UBC hit double-digits for points including a game-high 19 from fourth-year guard, Nathan Yu.
“I think that everyone that played tonight really contributed at both ends of the floor,” said UBC head coach, Kevin Hanson. “As soon as they got across center we were applying pressure and we denied the wings real well. We didn’t give them many easy looks, they had to earn every hoop that they got.”
This was especially true for Manny Pasquale who was just 4-for-21 in the game, including a miserable 1-for-7 from beyond the arc.
“Sometimes Manny lets teams dictate stuff to him. He tends to sit back and just let the game happen. When he’s aggressive, when he’s not worried about whether he misses or makes or if he turns the ball over, then he’s a very good player,” said coach Swords. “I think it just credits to their intensity. They’re arguably the best team in Canada.”
The Voyageurs will finish their west coast trip in Abbotsford against UVF before returning to Ontario to begin their season.
Meanwhile, UBC will open their regular season next week with two games at home against Saskatchewan, a rematch of the 2009-10 CIS Championship.