Kashrell Lawrence Pushes Dalhousie Past SMU for Rod Shoveller Gold, William Yengue Grabs MVP
HALIFAX, NS–Dalhousie University has been hosting the The Rod Shoveller Memorial basketball tournament since 1992/93 and the Tigers have only been able to lay claim to its title twice with the last championship being in 2001/02. Now they can add the 2012/13 title to their record books.
The Dalhousie Tigers who sit at 2-5 in league play in the AUS demonstrated they are team to be reckoned with in the AUS in the second half of the season showcasing a great weekend of team play. The host Tigers kicked off the tournament with a 82-69 win over Algoma and then dropped CIS number 2 ranked Acadia 73-59 in the semi finals.
Their opponents in the Championship game Saint Mary’s arrived at the championship game with wins over #4 CIS ranked Cape Breton 71-65 and 81-64 over St FX in the semi final.
This set up the dream matchup for the city of Halifax, as these two rival schools that are separated by a 30 minute walk. A rivalry that Dalhousie freshman guard Kashrell Lawrence compared to the Duke/UNC rival “its big for the city and these two teams go at it every time they play, we are just so close to each other”.
SMU jumped on Dalhousie quickly with a 6-0 run to start the game and looked like they would be in total control of the game. The Tigers woke up and took the defensive intensity to a whole other level as they used total team play for a 17-2 run to the end of the quarter giving Dal the 17-8 quarter lead. During this span Dal took five offensive fouls and forced Saint Mary’s to shoot late shot clock contested shots.
The second quarter started the way the first ended as Dal’s John Trabousli nailed a three to open up a 22-8 lead. With Dal in total control Harry Ezenibe‘s enrgy attacking the glass ignited the Huskies after an offensive board and a kick to Miguel Pink for the triple, closing the gap to 22-13.
Saint Mary’s continued to roll behind the strong guard play of Jeremey McAvoy and Miguel Pink, outscoring Dalhousie 27-16 in the quarter to take a 35-33 edge at the half.
The blow for blow boxing style and defensive intensity continued in the third quarter as Jarred Reid and John Traboulsi connected on threes on back to back possessions to give Dal the 43-40 edge with 4 minutes remaning. Saint Mary’s swung to take a six point lead at quarters end behind the dominant inside presence of Kevin Thomas.
Tournament MVP William Yengue also spoke of the rivalry after the game.
“The games against Saint Mary’s are always tough and we know its going to be a battle, last time we played overtime so you keep working to the end,” said Yengue.
This game was no different as Dal took the lead and looked poised to win the game when Jeremy McAvoy shook his defender and buckled his knees on a nasty cross over for the uncontested lay-up to send the game to overtime tied at 72.
In the OT baskets were hard to find as both teams locked in defensively, Harry Ezenibe had an 0ffensive board tip in with 1:50 left to play and Simon Marr nailed the jumper with 41 seconds left to knot the game at 74.
On the ensuing possession, tournament All Star Kashrell Lawrence picked McAvoys pocket at centre court and went in for the and 1 layup converting the free throw for a 77-74 lead. Jumol Mullings dropped two late free throws to give the Tigers the 79-75 win.
Speaking to Lawrence and Yengue after the game they both stated, “this is why we work hard, the 6:00 AM weight rooms, the practices to be fit and ready to win at the end of games and as the season wears on.”
Yengue also feels this is a solid base for the second half of the season.
“We believe we are a strong team in the AUS as our wins at St FX and Saint Mary’s indicate, now we just have to build on this and work toward AUS playoffs”
- John Traboulsi 17pts, 6 rebs
- Jarred Reid 14pts, 4asts
- Jumol Mullings 12pts, 4asts
- William Yengue 11pts, 16rebs
- Kevin Thomas 23pts, 12rebs
- Miguel Pink 16pts
- Jeremy McAvoy 15pts, 3asts
- Harry Ezenibe 15pts, 8rebs
In the 1:00 PM game, the semi final loser St FX played the Consolation round Laval Rouge et Or. Laval was led by impressive and versatile forward Rene-Pier Mathieu and guard Karl Demurs-Belanger as they dropped the X-Men 98-82. The X-Men for the third game in a row dug themselves a hole but the result was the same as the hole was just too big and Laval was just too good to let it slip away.
St FX took a 22-17 first quarter lead as they were able to get out in transition and create easy shots out of early transition. As Laval took control of the tempo and the ball with solid shot attempts they eliminated St FX transition and outscored the X-Men 26-14 in the quarter for the 7 point half time lead behind Mathieu’s 15 pts.
Laval maintained control throughout the second half and whenever X looked like they were going to make a run, Demurs-Belanger or Thibaud Dezutter stepped up and made a huge shot to stop the run and keep Laval with a comfortable lead. Each scored 13 and 17 respectively in the second half.
Laval Rouge Et Or
- Karl Demurs-Belanger 21pts, 8asts
- Thibaud Dezutter 20pts, 7 rebs
- Rene-Pier Mathieu 20pts
- Shane Coupland 17pts, 7 rebs
- Rodrigo Madera 17pts, 7rebs
- Jeremy Dunn 16pts, 7rebs
In the 11:00am game Cape Breton defeated Algoma 79-75.