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Top 10 CIS Men’s Basketball Performers: Week 6

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Rotimi Osuntola Jr. Top 10 Cis Usports Mens Basketball Performers Week 6

Week six (6) of the Top 10 performers is locked and loaded with bonafide talent and performances from across the country. Triple-doubles, double-doubles, assists, blocks and whole lot more on this weeks’ edition of the Top 10 CIS men’s basketball performers!

Rotimi Osuntola Jr. (G 6’5”, 175 lbs, 4th year) – Windsor Lancers

Just about the only thing slowing down Osuntola Jr. is his poor free-throw shooting (57-96 for 59.4%). The Windsor Lancers forward continues to dominate the opposition and leads the country in rebounding at 12.3 RPG alangside his 20.7 points per game ranking fourth in the nation.

Jan 14. @ Waterloo Warriors W, 79-74: 19 points (8/11 FG, 3/6 FT), 14 rebounds, 4 steals, 2 blocks
Jan 15. vs. Laurier Golden Hawks, W, 94-87: 24 points (7/13 FG, 10/18 FT), 16 rebounds, 4 blocks, 3 assists

Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson (PG 5’9″, 160 lbs, 4th year) – Calgary Dinos

We got the triple-double! After flirting with the rare feat all-season, Ogungbemi-Jackson delivered a 26 point, 11 rebound, 10 assist triple-double in a 95-84 W over the Lethridge Pronghorns.

Jan 16 @ Lethbridge Pronghorns W, 95-84: 26 points (7/14 FG, 4/7 3FG, 9/10 FT), 11 rebounds, 10 assists
Jan 17 @ Lethbridge Pronghorns L, 82-70: 15 points (4/10 FG, 0/4 3FG, 1/1 FT) 7 rebounds, 7 assists

Greg Morrow (G 6’3″, 185 lbs, 4th year) – Western Mustangs

The Western Mustangs perhaps the biggest surprise of the CIS season and Greg Morrow is large part of the Mustangs turn-around season. After going 10-18 the previous year Western (8-3) surpassed last years win total and find themselves atop of the OUA West division. Morrow poured in career-high 34 points in win over Laurier and added his second double-double the season. Morrow has upped his scoring average from 15.4 points per the previous year to 20.5 this season and has the Mustangs riding a season-high four game winning streak.

Jan 14. @ Laurier Golden Hawks, W, 75-69: 34 points (11/19 FG, 12/15 FT), 5 rebounds, 3 assists
Jan 17. vs. Waterloo Warriors W, 71-54: 19 points (7/14 FG, 5/5 FT), 12 rebounds, 4 assists

Brandon Brine (F 6’6″, 229 lbs, 4th year) – Lethbridge Pronghorns

Brandon Brine took matters into his own hands as the Lethbridge Pronghorns snapped a six-game losing skid behind a season-high 30-points on 9-of-15 shooting, including 5-of-8 from the outside. The Australian import has been consistent and is averaging 17.8 points and 5.8 rebounds while shooting 41.2 FG and 33.8% from downtown.

Jan 16. vs. Calgary Dinos, L, 95-84: 29 points (11/21 FG,  3/7 3PT, 4/6 FT), 8 rebounds, 2 steals
Jan 17. vs. Calgary Dinos, W, 82-70: 30 points (9/15 FG, 5/8 3PT, 7/8 FT) 4 rebounds, 2 assists

Mamadou Gueye (F 6’7″, 185 lbs, 2nd year) – Alberta Golden Bears

Mamadou Gueye broke-out off a mini-slump in big way with back-back 25-plus point games in 1-1 weekend split against a tough Manitoba Bisons squad. The Golden Bears will need this sort of output and production from their sophomore forward to if has any hopes of making any noise down the stretch of the season.

Jan 16 vs. Manitoba Bisons L, 75-69: 26 points (12/16 FG, 2/3 FT), 13 rebounds, 2 blocks
Jan 17 vs. Manitoba Bisons W, 90-73: 25 points (6/17 FG, 0/3 3 FG, 13/18 FT), 7 rebounds, 4 assists

Tychon Carter-Newman (G 6’5″, 200 lbs, 2 year) – Laurentian Voyageurs

Is there a better basketball name out there than Tychon Carter-Newman? Carter-Newman and his #North705 crew nearly pulled off an upset over McMaster in one of the toughest collegiate environments (Ben Avery Gymnasium) to play in Canada.

Jan 16. vs. McMaster Marauders, L, 83-80: 27 points (11/23 FG,  1/4 3PT, 4/5  FT), 10 rebounds, 4 assists, 4 steals
Jan 17. vs. Brock Badgers, W, 89-81: 24 points (10/20 FG, 1/4 3PT, 3/4 FT), 7 rebounds, 3 assists,

Must Read:  Top 10 CIS Men’s Basketball Performers: Week 1

Osman Barrie (F 6’2″, 197 lbs, 2nd year) – St. Mary’s Huskies

Who says CCAA transfers can’t play in the CIS? Osman Barrie (Ottawa, Rideau Rams High School) and his partner in crime Achuil Lual (Ottawa) assaulted the Acadia Axemen to earn their names on our weekly Top 10 list. Barrie & Lual both transferred from Crandall Chargers of the CCAA’s Atlantic conference (ACAA) with Barrie earning conference player of the year and Lual earning second-team All-Conference honors and leading the Chargers all the way to the National championships. Osman ranked-up a 20-point, 17-rebound, 6 blocks double-double while Lual dominated inside with 24 points, 17 rebounds on 10-of-18 shooting. Quietly and without anybody really noticing Mr. Barrie is entering AUS player of the year discussions with his 18.4 points and 9.9 rebound per game for the improving Huskies

Jan 13. vs. Acadia Axemen W, 89-75: 20 points (8/11 FG, 1/2 3FG, 8/14 FT), 17 rebounds, 6 blocks

Achuil Lual (F 6’4″, 215 lbs, 2nd year) – St. Mary’s Huskies

See above for more on Lual and his feasting of the Acadia Axemen this past weekend. Avid followers of CIS Basketball might remember the name Achuil Lual as his brother also named Achuil Lual played for the Axemen (2006-2008) and was a key contributor in dethroning Carleton in the National semi-finals, in one of the most epic CIS games ever played. So far so good for the younger Lual who is averaging 13.4 points and 9.3 rebounds for the St. Mary’s Huskies.

Jan 13. vs. Acadia Axemen W, 89-75: 20 points (10/18 FG, 1/1 3FG, 3/4 FT), 17 rebounds

Caleb Agada (G 6’5″, 200 lbs, 3rd year) – Ottawa Gee-Gees

Caleb Agada beat out some tough competition (Chris McLaughlin, Tommy Nixon, Scrubb Brothers, Japer Moet) this week to earn his name on back to back Top 10 performers list. Yes, the competition was rather soft but Agada played up to standard and shot the ball extremely well from the outside. Let’s face it, if Carleton is going to have two players in the first-team All-Canadian list why shouldn’t the currently number one ranked Ottawa Gee-Gees also have the same?

Jan 16. vs. Lakehead Thunderwolves W, 89-76: 22 points (9/13 FG,  4/5 3PT, 8/10  FT), 11 rebounds, 3 assists
Jan 17. vs. Guelph Gryphons W, 102-68: 20 points (5/6 FG,  1/1 3PT, 9/10  FT), 6 rebounds, 3 assists

Johnny Berhanemeskel (G 6’3″, 175 lbs, 5th year) – Ottawa Gee-Gees

Forget “Johnny Basketball” how about “Jonny Don’t Care”? Berhanemeskel is slowly creeping up on the 2014-15 CIS Men’s basketball scoring title. and if achieved, in our opinion his nickname should be changed to “Johnny MVP!”

Jan 16. vs. Lakehead Thunderwolves W, 89-76: 26 points (7/16 FG,  3/9 3PT, 9/10  FT), 5 assists
Jan 17. vs. Guelph Gryphons W, 102-68: 24 points (6/10 FG, 2/3 3PT, 10/11 FT) 6 assists, 4 rebounds

Honorable Mention:

Rohan Boney (G 6’4″, 190 lbs, 2nd year) – McMaster Mauraders

It’s natural to see why Rohan Boney is a fan favorite and valuable asset for the Marauders. The 6’5 sophomore plays limited minutes, guards multiple positions, can put the ball in the hole, cleans the glass, swats weak attempts at the rack, and if you don’t watch-out it might just be you kodak, youtube, poster time. (Yes that is Andrew Wiggins 22 watching Boney throw down a vicious two-hander (through contact) in his final high school in Canada). Since deciding to join the Mauraders Boney has racked-up 2013-2014 OUA West Rookie of the Year and is averaging 10.9 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1,8 blocks in 23 minutes of the bench for nationally ranked McMaster.

Jan 16. @ Laurentian Voyageurs W, 83-80: 17 points (4/10 FG,  0/1 3PT, 2/4 FT), 14 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals
Jan 17. @ Nipissing Lakers W, 83-53: 13 points (5/8 FG,  0/1 3PT, 3/4 FT), 7 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 blocks

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U Sports

Omar Shiddo: Soft-spoken assassin

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Omar Shiddo: Soft-spoken assassin
Omar Shiddo is Western University's leading scorer this season with 19.4 points per game. Photo: Western Mustangs

It’s around 8:30 p.m. on a frigid Wednesday in the dead of winter, and Omar Shiddo is having his worst game of the season. 

The fourth-year Western Mustangs guard, who has drawn comparisons to Damian Lillard for his clutch shooting, has just five points in the first half of a tight game against the Guelph Gryphons. 

In the second half his game marginally improves, but there are a series of missteps — layups that don’t go down, jump shots that rim out and an occasional lack of motion without the ball. 

Shiddo also gets hit with a technical foul after a physical bucket he felt should have resulted in an and-one, clapping back at two Guelph players who allegedly chirped at him during the play.

This is a far cry from the kinds of performance Shiddo is known for, and light years away from the 35-point outburst he had four days earlier in an 84-79 win over rival McMaster.

It doesn’t matter — not even remotely. 

Western clamps down on defence in the second half and several teammates make big shots. Shiddo helps neutralize Guelph guard Malcolm Glanville, who had 11 first-half points and showed signs of catching fire. 

Shiddo finishes with 12 points on 4-15 shooting, his lowest total of the year. Five other Mustang players players score in double-digits, including 27 points from sharp-shooting guard Eriq Jenkins. 

Western pulls away and cruises to a 94-73 victory that’s as ugly as it is decisive. 

Omar Shiddo: Soft-spoken assassin
Omar Shiddo knocks down a jumpshot

“That’s a win, boys!” someone shouts emphatically as the team gathers for a post-game huddle in the cavernous, mostly-empty Alumni Hall in London, Ont. — Western’s home court. 

“Guys on my team stepped up,” said Shiddo minutes later in an interview, his soft-spoken analysis tumbling out as quickly as he jukes opponents, like water over Niagara Falls.

“The second half was more of other guys doing their thing and me not having to do as much scoring, which I love to do. It’s all about team … we got a big win.” 

Shiddo is unquestionably a leader — and on most nights, the most effective offensive weapon — on a Western team loaded with potential. 

In his tenure, the Mustangs have been as good as they have been in a decade, with a legitimate chance to challenge for a berth in the U Sports Final 8 — Canada’s version of March Madness — in Ottawa.

“That’s our goal from the beginning of the year — trying to get to nationals,” said Shiddo, who grew up in Brampton, Ont., a hotbed that has produced several NBA players, including Cleveland Cavaliers forward Tristan Thompson and former No. 1 pick Anthony Bennett.

“We think we’re a top-five team in the country,” said Shiddo. “We’ve just need to continue to play like it.” 

Western is ranked outside the Top 10 nationally, but has the second-best record in the Ontario University Athletics (OUA), four points behind the Carleton Ravens.

Omar Shiddo: Soft-spoken assassin

They’re also first in the OUA West division, with a roster that skews relatively young: Seven of the 12 players are freshmen or sophomores.

Must Read:  Ottawa Gee-Gees awarded No. 1 seed at 2014 CIS Final 8 for the first time in school history

Nikola Farkic, a 6-foot point guard from Waterloo, is team captain and Jenkins (Windsor, Ont.) is arguably its most reliable three-point threat. Veteran forward Julian Walker (Barrie, Ont.) anchors a front court with considerable promise, thanks in large part to lean, athletic second-year players Aaron Tennant (London, Ont.) and Ukasha Khan (Brampton, Ont.).

“A lot of stuff goes unnoticed on the stat sheet,” said Shiddo. “But we’ve got a full team and we’re 10 deep. Everybody plays their role. We’re not a team where it’s one guy.”

He’s right. This win over Guelph is proof enough of that. And yet in crunch time, Shiddo has a penchant for taking over games, Lillard-style, and making big shots.

It has become part of Western lore. 

When Lillard puts a team on his back and wills it to victory in the fourth quarter, fans and media call it Dame Time. When Shiddo does this, it’s #Omellytime. 

Shiddo showed hints of his #Omelly mentality early against Guelph. After Western fell behind 10-2 in the first quarter, his demeanor shifted from deferential to aggressive, pushing the ball up the floor and calmly making a mid-range jumper to cut the lead to six. 

Minutes later, he drilled a three-pointer to make it 12-7, and attacked the basket for a layup that lingered on the rim but didn’t fall. His teammates took their cue and soon Western had its first lead of the game.

At the end of the first quarter the score was 28-28. At halftime Western led 47-46, and they never looked back. 

“I’m not the rah rah type of — football type of leader,” said Shiddo. “I try to lead by example.

Omar Shiddo: Soft-spoken assassin
Omar Shiddo – Western Mustangs Soft-spoken assassin

“Say what has to be said, and other than that just lead by example. It’s not how much you say, it’s about what you say.”

In U Sports, most teams are at the mercy of a Carleton dynasty that has won 14 of the last 17 national championships.

Western is a long shot to come anywhere near the title game this season, and Carleton is favoured to win it. When the teams meet for a regular-season tilt at Alumni Hall on Jan.  31, it will likely be for the last time. 

Shiddo is nobody’s fool. He knows the odds are stacked against his team, even if he’s at his best and #Omellytime is in full effect. 

His confidence is tempered with realism, but it’s still there.

“Against a team like that we’re not going to be up by one at half — we’ll probably be down by 20,” he said. “We have to play our perfect game.” 

They will almost certainly not be perfect. They will almost certainly lose. And yet Omar Shiddo, the soft-spoken assassin, has a question for you.

“Why not shock the country,” he said, “and beat the No. 1 team?”

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U Sports

Carleton Ravens set records in 129-44, 85-point beat-down of York Lions

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Carleton Ravens set records in 129-44, 85-point beat-down of York Lions
Photo: Valerie Wutti/Blitzen Photography

The No. 1 ranked Carleton Ravens improved to 16-2 overall and 8-0 in Ontario University Athletics (OUA) conference action with a 129-44 — 85 point beat-down of the York Lions to set a modern-day U Sports men’s basketball record, for most points scored and the largest margin of victory in a OUA conference game.

The Ravens’ 129 points is the most points scored in a (OUA) game and the third highest scoring output in historic programs’ 58-year history. Carleton routed the Fleming Knights (CCAA/OCAA) 130-78 in non-conference win on October 3, 2009. The 85-point win is the second largest margin of victory in team’s history — including CIAU, CIS, OUA conference, non-conference and games against NCAA teams.

carleton ravens set u sports basketball records in 129 44 85 point beat down of york lions
Carleton Ravens set U Sports Basketball Records in 129 44 85 point beat down of York Lions

According to historic records, and stats guru Martin Timmerman, the Ravens’ also hold the bragging rights for the most points scored and largest margin of victory in Canadian university basketball history. The all-time mark dates back to the 1964-1965 season with the Ravens’ beating the Ottawa Gee-Gees 144-52 — a whooping 92 point victory in the old Ottawa-St. Lawrence Intercollegiate Association (IAA) conference which was part of the Canadian Interuniversity Athletics Union (CIAU).

The OUA was formed on July 1st of 1997 in a amalgamation of the both the Ontario Universities Athletic Association (OUAA) and the Ontario Women’s Interuniversity Athletic Association (OWIAA).

The previous largest OUA margin of victory stood firmly at 81, 77 points respectively, dating back to two occasions involving the same two teams. January 15, 2011 — the Ravens pounded the now defunct Royal Military College (RMC) men’s basketball program with a 121-40 win in Kingston, Ontario. Two weeks later, on January 28, in Ottawa, the Ravens’ won by a easy 77 points, in a 101-24 cake walk victory.

Must Read:  Gee-Gees make loud statement with 68-66 thrilling win over Carleton

The York Lions (7-15, 1-10 OUA) never had a chance — trailing 32-7 after the first 10 minutes and down 64-21 at half-time. The Lions allowed the Ravens’ to outscored them 35-15 in the third-quarter and were limited to just 9 points in the final 10 minutes — while giving-up an another 35-point-quarter.

Stanley Mayambo 17 points, 4 rebounds paced seven Ravens’ players in double-figures. Lloyd Pandi added 14 points, 2 rebounds. Aiden Warnholtz played a game-high 28 minutes off the bench and contributed with 13 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists. All of Carleton’s players scored at least five points and attempted at least five shots with only one bench player logging less then 10 minutes of playing time. None of the Carleton’s starting five logged more than 19 minutes of action.

Carleton knocked down 45-of-77 (58.4%) field-goals, made 15-of-32 (46.5%) three-pointers and connected on a healthy 24-30 (80%) from free-throws — while limiting the Lions to just 14-of-62 (22.6%), 4-of-20% (20%) from downtown and 12-of-23 (52%) free-throws.

Carleton, currently on a four-game home stretch will take on the Nipissing Lakers before closing out the first semester with a highly anticipated showdown against nationally ranked and cross-town rival Ottawa Gee-Gees.

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