WATERLOO, ON–The west coast powerhouse UBC Thunderbirds have infiltrated a new ecosystem and taken down the Wilfred Laurier Golden Hawks in game two of the host team’s tournament, the Hawks Challenge. After a back and forth contest UBC took it with a 74-69 decision, with Doug Plumb leading the way with 22 points, 4 rebounds and 1 assist. The Golden Hawks put up a pleasantly surprising battle against an elite and super-sized CIS program in UBC. Golden Hawks big man Patrick Donnelly was a stud for his squad with a very efficient stat line of 16 pts, 7 rebounds and 3 assists. He brings a lot of versatility with the ability to shoot from outside and post up, he will be a leader for the Guelph Gryphons all season.
While on the topic of leadership, a name that has to be mentioned was game high scorer Doug Plumb. Take all of his points away and this would still be a quality that describes him on the floor. As the Thunderbirds senior two guard, one can tell that there is a high level of respect for his thoughts in the huddle; when he speaks they listen. This is not to be taken in a condescending way because he leads by example, playing with energy on every possession and making good decisions.
At one point in the game, while sharp shooting Gryphon, William Coulthard was on the charity stripe, Plumb yelled to his team, “we have to attack the paint and take advantage of our size”. This is exactly what took place as the T-Birds got to the line to combine for 21 of 31 while the Golden Hawks only took nine free throws. The home team shot 46% from the field and this is what kept it a close one. Four points was the largest lead of the game for either team. Despite the size disadvantage, Laurier hustled on boards with a team effort getting many second and third chances throughout the game. Rookie center Matthew Chesson finished with eight and junior guard Jamar Forde had with seven of his own.
Rebounding contributions for the west coasters was distributed throughout the roster. It will be scary to see what kind of numbers they can put up in this category by mid season when the chemistry has formulated. There was some miscommunication late in the third and fourth that allowed the Golden Hawks a fresh 24 on the shot clock.
Maxwell Allin, a 6’4 guard for Laurier took advantage of these situations as he shot 50% from three point land. He is another one of the Golden Hawks scoring weapons for this year, hitting some big shots in this one to keep the game tight down the stretch.
No other than Plumb sealed the deal with a steal in the final 30 seconds which he converted into two game clinching free throws. UBC came out with a 74-69 and will play again in the next hour against the Guelph Gryphons.
Game 1: Concordia 82 vs Guelph Gryphons 62
The story of the game point blank is Adam Chmielewski. There wasn’t a Gryphon defender that could manage to stay in front of this PG. He finished the game with 28 points and 7 assists. What we loved about this player is that he can take the team on his back and lead both vocally and with numbers.
For the Gryphons we are expecting that rookie forward Ahmed Haroon could play a similar role for his very young team. It will all start with getting comfortable on the floor by controlling emotions and being a better communicator. There is no doubt that he has the skill and strength to fill this void. We look to seeing senior forward Daniel McCarthy to help in this area of team development.