Huskies reach Shoveller final with help from unlikely sources

Saint Mary’s (12-4) 79, Dalhousie (13-5) 76… Getting strong efforts from two unlikely sources, Huskies held off a pair of fourth-quarter comeback attempts to defeat the Tigers on their home court and advanced to the Shoveller Memorial championship game against uOttawa.  Playing without their starting front court of 6’8″ Osman Barrie and 6’7″ Achiul Lual (14.4 ppg), coach Jonah Taussig reached deep into his bench and was rewarded as 6’8″ Brett Parrott came off the bench to knock down 3 3’s, part of his 11 point second quarter that gave Huskies a double digit lead they would not relinquish.  As well, unheralded 6’8″ reserve Brent Martindale started and had 9 of his team-high 16 points after halftime, including a momentum-breaking “and 1″ midway through the fourth quarter.  As importantly, Martindale made life difficult for Tigers 6’3” Kash Lawrence, protecting the rim and hauling down tough rebounds as Saint Mary’s showed that their is quality depth on their roster.  Parrott, who originally committed to Nipissing out of Kitchener’s Sir John A. MacDonald but decided on Saint Mary’s, came into the game averaging just 2.8 ppg but scored 13 points in the first half as Huskies built leads as large as 17.  Martindale, a forward out of Kingston Holy Cross and the Ottawa Guardsmen club program, had his second consecutive impact game, complementing SMU’s stable of athletic wings and guards.  Huskies had to deal with major foul trouble all evening as 6’5″ Theon Reefer, 6’5″ Brian Rouse and 5’9″ Marquis Clayton all were saddled with 4 fouls apiece by late in the third.  Dal did make a run early in the fourth, creating turnovers with full-court pressure that got the game back to within 5.  Coach Taussig then made a critical move, reinserting his three stars into the game with 9 minutes remaining.  While Reefer and Rouse eventually fouled out, the move early in the fourth re-energized SMU and the lead was built back up to double digits in a game where 56 total fouls were called.  6’2″ Kemar Alleyne was key during a third-quarter stretch with his fellow starters on the bench, scoring 12 of his 15 points – 8 from the foul line – to keep Huskies ahead.  Later when Tigers mount their final rally, Clayton hit a dagger 3 and Huskies advanced to the championship game.  Lawrence finished with 19 points and 7 rebounds to lead Dal while 6’0″ Ritchie Kanza-Mata came alive after halftime, picking Huskies guards to create turnovers and knocking down shots, and getting 15 of his 17 points after halftime.  Huskies will face the Ottawa Gee-Gees this afternoon at 3 PM AT/2 PM ET for the Shoveller championship.



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