In their first-ever meeting at the CIS Final 8 championships TWU Spartans Guard/Forward Kyle Coston drained a huge 3-pointer with the game on the line to send the #5 seed Trinity Western Spartans to their first ever national basketball final after a hard fought 74-72 victory against conference rivals UBC Thunderbirds.
Coston who had chance to ice the game with 39 seconds missed two key free-throws and the Spartans maintained a 71-70. Kamar Burke tapped in a missed shot with 19 seconds to put the Thunderbirds up 72-71 before Coston redemeed himself with his right side 3-pointer heroics. Alex Murphy missed a game winning three-pointer completing 16 point come from behind and well deserved victory.
The Trinity Western Spartans came out focused and determined to knock of the #1 seed, UBC Thunderbirds. Behind Calvin Westbrook early 6 points the Spartans lead 10-9 lead before Alex Murphy and Nathan Yu ripped off a typical 11-2 UBC run to close out the quarter and take a 22-12 lead.
All-Canadian Jacob Doerksen came out slow and scored his first points in the second quarter to cut the Thunderbirds spread to 22-15. Senior back-court duo of Alex Murphy and Josh Whyte keyed together 9-2 run midway through the quarter and UBC held its largest lead of the game at 31-15 with 5:41 to play.
Calvin Westbrook was the catalyst for the Spartans scoring 10 first-half points. Kyle Coston split a pair of free-throws and Nathan Yu scored on a buzzer beating layup to send the Thunderbirds up 39-30 at Half-time
Trinity Western Spartans came out blazing, opening up the third quarter on a 10-0 run and forcing the Thunderbirds Head Coach Kevin Hanson to call a timeout as the Spartans took a 40-39 lead before Kamar Burke scored UBC’s first two points of the quarter with 4:44 to play. The ladder part of the third-quarter went back and forth and was plagued by plenty of whistles as officiating crew changed the tone of the game. Tomer Jackson converted on a lay-up to end the third quarter as Trinity Western took a 53-51 lead into the final quarter.
J. Whyte 12 Pts, 5 Reb, 1 Ast
A. Murphy 21 Pts, 2 Reb, 3 Ast
K. Burke 13 Pts, 1 Ast
N. Yu 14 Pts, 7 Ast, 1 Blk 2 Stl
Trinity Western Spartans
C. Westbrook 15 Pts, 3 Reb, 3 Ast
J. Doerksen 16 Pts, 5 Reb
K. Coston 23 Pts, 11 Reb, 3 Ast
T. Mara 7 Pts, 8 Reb, 3 Ast
Both teams struggled from behind the arc with TWU shooting 4-20 and the Thunderbirds going 6-20. The Spartans almost gave the away by shooting 64% from the charity stripe.
#5 Trinity Western Spartans reach their first-ever CIS Final 8 National Finals and await the winner of the #2 Carleton Ravens and #3 Saskatchewan Huskies
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.
Dave Smart steps down as Carleton men’s head coach after 14 national titles
It’s the end of an era at Carleton.
The school has announced that Dave Smart, who built a dynasty that dominated Canadian university sport for nearly 20 years, has stepped down.
Smart has accepted a new role as the university’s director of basketball operations, Carleton said in a news release.
He will be responsible for “developing the men’s and women’s basketball programs and continuing to build a culture of sport excellence,” the release said.
“Smart will provide operational support, mentorship and technical leadership to the coaching staff of both programs, and he will work with the Department of University Advancement in fundraising and community development.
“He’ll also provide mentorship to other U Sports coaches in Carleton Athletics.”
Taffe Charles, who coached Carleton’s women’s program for 12 years and won a national title in 2017-18 will succeed Smart as men’s team head coach.
“It’s been a great run,’’ said Smart in a statement.
“Coaching is my second love, my first being my wife and children. I am very thankful to the university and I am looking forward to my new role.
“This gives me an opportunity to stay involved in basketball while having more time to spend with my family.”
Smart’s 19-year tenure at Carleton was one of remarkable dominance, with 14 national championships.
He also won a record number of coaching awards and has been active as a coach with Canada Basketball.
“Dave’s success on the court has given Carleton great national visibility and we are sincerely grateful,” said Benoit-Antoine Bacon, president of Carleton University.
“I wish Dave all the best in his new role where he will share his ‘playbook’ with all our Ravens programs.”
Charles played on Carleton’s men’s team from 1990 to 1995 and began his coaching career as an assistant in 1995; he then served as an assistant with the men’s program from 1998 to 2007.
Since returning to the women’s program in 2007, Carleton won four U Sports Final 8 berths, four OUA East titles, and two OUA championships.
Carleton’s women’s national championship in 2018 was the first in school history.
“I am truly honoured to be entrusted as the next head coach of the Carleton University men’s basketball program,’’ said Charles in a statement.
“I look forward to the challenge of continuing the high standard of excellence that has been set by Coach Smart, his coaching staff and the players.’’
Carleton said it has launched a national search for a head coach of its women’s program.