Canadian freshman guard Luguentz Dort team-high 21 points led No. 11 Arizona State Sun Devils 74-65 past No. 11 St. John’s Red Storm to earn school’s first NCAA March Madness tournament win in 10 years in the First Four.
Dort completely dominated the game with strong takes to the basket, scoring through contact, shooting an efficient 6-of-11 from the floor and a near perfect 8-of-10 from the foul line.
The Montreal, Quebec guard continued to build his NBA draft stock showcasing his all-around game — adding 4 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals in front of a national audience.
No. 11 Sun Devils (23-10, Pac-12) advance and will play the Mid-American Conference champion No. 6 Buffalo Bulls. Sun Devils head coach Bobby Hurley coached the Bulls for two seasons (2013-2015) prior to taking the job with Arizona State.
Dort took a nasty spill early in the second half, after rising above the clouds for rebound — he briefly left the court, returning a few moments later to stop a Red Storm run and earn himself and his coach their first NCAA tournament win.
Bobby Hurley led the Duke Blue Devils to back-to-back NCAA national titles in 1991-92 and was a primary factor in landing Dort’s commitment over a bevvy of high major NCAA programs.
In what is sure to be his only NCAA basketball season, the Canadian guard and former Biosteel All-Canadian Game MVP has scored in double digits in all but four of the Sun Devils 33 games. Standing 6’4″ tall and weighing a running-back like 215-pounds, Dort is averaging 16.1 points per game, 4.3 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game.
Other notable Canadians to play major roles at Arizona State include guard Antwi Atuahene (Mississauga, ON) from 2005-2008 and big men Jordan Bachynski (Calgary, Alberta) a shot blocking machine (2010-2014) — leading college basketball in blocks (133) and blocks per game (4.03) in his senior season.
The Sun Devils last won NCAA Tournament game on March 19, 2009 — 66-57 win over Temple Owls in Miami.
Carleton Ravens and Syracuse Orange set to tangle once again
Defending champions Carleton University Ravens will once again tangle with the Syracuse Orange in a marquee match-up between U Sports and NCAA powerhouses.
The Ravens will make their second trip to the Carrier Dome on Tuesday, October 29, 2019 to wrap-up another jammed-packed 2019-2020 exhibition schedule.
The two schools first played back on August 23rd 2013 in Ottawa with Syracuse winning a thrilling 69-65 overtime victory as part of Syracuse’s Canada tour and the debut of Canadian point guard Tyler Ennis
The Orange also got the best of the Ravens, pulling-off a 88-76 win on November 2nd 2014.
The 2019-2020 will mark the debut season for new Ravens head coach Taffe Charles who takes over for Dave Smart who surprised the entire college basketball landscape by announcing his sudden retirement.
Montreal’s freshman Quincy Guerrier alongside junior point guard Howard Washington (Buffalo/NY) are the latest Canadian’s to suite-up for legendary player, turned hall-of-hame coach Jim Boeheim, who has been at the helm since 1976.
Boeheim is the king of getting Canadians in the NBA — having single-handily responsible for overseeing the growth of Leo Rautins, Kris Joseph, Tyler Ennis, Andy Rautins, and now Oshae Brissett and if it all pans out — potentially Guerrier as well.
Under the guidance of their own legendary hall-of-fame coach Dave Smart the Ravens played a Canadian record 59 games against NCAA teams – earning a more than respectable 41-51 record from 1999-2018.
The Ravens boasted an unreal and never to be broken 37-24 winning record against NCAA teams on Canadian soil but mustered-up only one victory in the USA — beating Providence 77-67 in October 28, 2017.
James Naismith Classic NCAA triple-header to feature big names
For the past 20 years NCAA basketball teams have been making the trip north of the border to take on Canadian U Sports teams in early August as part of the NCAA vs. U Sports exhibition series.
Now it looks like we are ready for the next step — regular season, non-conference games between NCAA schools on fertile Canadian basketball
According to multiple reports, and now
Sponsored by the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame — the St. Bonaventure Bonnies (A-10) will take on the Rutgers Scarlet Knights (Big 10). The Buffalo Bulls (MAC) will face the Harvard Crimson (Ivy) and the Tennessee Volunteers (SEC) will square off against the Pac 12 champions Washington Huskies.
A total of six Canadian’s could be featured in the marque homecoming event including, Rutgers’ Eugene Omoruyi (Rexdale, Ont.), Harvard’s Danilo Djuricic Brampton, Ont.), and Luka Sakota (Oakville, Ont.). The Crimson also features Ottawa, Ont. duo
Omoruyi a 6’7″, 234-pound bruising senior forward is coming off of his best season — leading the Scarlet Knights in scoring and rebounds at a respective 13.8 and 7.2 per game.
Noah Kirkwood (6’7, 215 lbs) guard had a productive freshman season with 11.1 rebounds, 4.4 rebounds, 1.9 assists as the Crimson (18-11, 10-4 Conf) just missed out on the 2019 NCAA March Madness tournament with a close loss to Yale in the conference title game.
The Buffalo Bulls’ are coming off their most successful season in the program’s history with an outstanding 32-4, 16-2 record and a six-seed in the West region.
The marquee match-up pits the Tennessee Volunteers against the Washington Huskies. Tennessee finished second in the SEC with a strong 31-6, 15-3 campaign for head coach Rick Barnes – bowing out to Purdue in the Sweet 16.
The Huskies, although not a traditional Canadian destination, will become the first NCAA men’s basketball team to make back-to-back trips to Canada.
In 2018 the Vancouver Showcase tipped off — bringing four NCAA men’s (Washington, Santa Clara, Minnesota, Texas A&M) and eight women’s basketball team’s to the west coast of Canada — marking the first time NCAA division one games played in Canada counted as non-conference records.
With Toronto continuously out-churning the mecca (New York City) and other traditional American powerhouses for quality NCAA and NBA basketball prospects — it makes more than dollars and cents — much like the Empire Classic — to ensure that the northern city that never sleeps has it’s annual NCAA regular season dosage.