Pitt’s dynamic duo keeps Marauders perfect in win over rival WRCA
Wednesday, December 7, 2011 – Submitted by Howard Tsumura, The Province
WRCA’s Tyus Allen (left) drives in the paint against Pitt’s Trevor Severinski on Wednesday. (Les Bazso, PNG)
SURREY — The Telus Basketball Classic has a talented enough stable of teams to insure a dynamic boys championship final this Saturday evening at UBC’s War Memorial Gym.
That, however, didn’t preclude the annual tip-off tourney from getting off to a start as exciting as its finish promises to be.
As action in the four-day event opened Wednesday, two highest-rated teams in The Province’s Big 10 rankings actually wound up meeting on the first day of play.
The No. 2-ranked Pitt Meadows Maruaders held the host and No. 3-ranked White Rock Christian Academy Warriors to one made field goal over the final six minutes en route to a 67-58 victory.
Led by its dynamic duo of guard Matt Blackaby (32 points) and forward Trevor Severinski (21), the Marauders turned the game by forcing turnovers down the stretch drive, seizing a 55-55 game with 4:11 remaining by going on a 12-3 game-closing run.
“Our coach emphasized playing within the process and he put us in the right mindset,” said Blackaby, who scored 20 points in the second half. “From a personal standpoint, I expect that if we play this way, play together, we can achieve as much as we want.”
Blackaby, explosive off the dribble drive, combined with Severinski to score, at one stage, 32 straight Pitt points.
Added Pitt head coach Rich Goulet: “They are everything for us. They have to be ready to lead and be ready to take good shots. (WRCA’s) defence is as good as anyone in the province and in the first half we had a lot of breakdowns.”
The Warriors led 43-40 after three quarters, but Blackaby scored his team’s first six fourth-quarter points, each exemplifying his work ethic and well-rounded game.
First came a layin off his own steal, then came a medium-range back shot off the wing, then another layin that prompted WRCA head coach John Dykstra to yell “Who is guarding him?”
Said Dykstra later: “I am really glad we were able to face the toughest Fraser Valley opponent this early in the season because we are such a young team. We had lapses and we couldn’t take care of the ball. When that happens in big games, good teams make you pay.”
After a slow start in which it trailed 11-4 late in the first quarter, the Warriors came to life in the second quarter, extending its half-court defence and turning tips and steals into quick offence at the other end of the floor.
The Warriors’ senior forward Jake Newman scored back-to-back buckets, the 6-foot-7 senior showcasing his dexterity with high-tempo dribble-drive moves along the baseline. Sam Ykema came off the bench to join the surge and wound up fuelling it by stroking three straight triples, including the third off a bank shot, tying the game 21-21 and capping a 17-10 run. Point guard Tyus Allen then dropped a trey, giving the Warriors their first lead since 2-0.
The Warriors took a 43-40 lead into the fourth quarter after Blackaby banked in 26-foot trey at the third quarter buzzer.
Newman led the Warriors with 12 points, while Vartan Tanielian and Allen added 11 apiece.
In The Province’s Big 10 rankings, completed prior to the start of the contest for action through Tuesday’s games, the Marauders had moved up to No. 2 from No. 4 with a 5-0 record, based on key wins over the Kitsilano Blue Demons and Victoria’s emerging Mt. Douglas Rams.
WRCA, which started the season at No. 5, also came into the contest perfect on the young season, sitting with a 3-0 record including keys wins over W.J. Mouat and St. George’s.
Port Coquitlam’s Terry Fox Ravens moved into the No. 1 spot after beating former No. 1 Kelowna and former No. 2 Vancouver College. The Ravens played at No. 4 W.J. Mouat on Wednesday night.
The Marauders now advance to Thursday’s 2:30 p.m. quarterfinal at WRCA against the Winsdor Dukes, a 75-64 winner over the defending B.C. Triple A champion R.C. Palmer Griffins, the Richmond school which this season is playing Double A.
On the same side of the draw in a 2:30 p.m. tip at Vancouver College, it’s Vancouver College vs. Burnaby South for the second time this young season after the Fighting Irish defeated Surrey’s Double A Southridge Storm 94-58, and South’s Rebels topped Sir Winston Churchill 66-61.
The other side of the draw, which culminates with Saturday’s 7:15 p.m. finale at UBC’s War Memorial Gymnasium:
In one quarterfinal today (1:45 p.m.) at Kitsilano, Kelowna will clash with the host Blue Demons. Kitsilano beat New Westminster 68-57, while the Owls topped the Tamanawis Wildcats 88-81.
The other (2:30 p.m.) at Sir Charles Tupper Secondary sees the St. George’s Saints facing Tupper’s Tigers. Saints crushed Surrey’s Sullivan Heights Stars 89-35 while Tupper edged North Vancouver’s Argyle Pipers 74-67.
TELUS BASKETBALL CLASSIC
Kitsilano 68 New Westminster 57
Kelowna 88 Tamanawis 81
At Sir Charles Tupper
Sir Charles Tupper 74 Argyle 67
St. George’s 89 Sullivan Heights 35
At Vancouver College
Vancouver College 94 Southridge 58
Burnaby South 66 Churchill 61
At White Rock Christian
Pitt Meadows 67 WRCA 58
Windsor 75 R.C. Palmer 64
Top side draw
2:30 p.m. — Pitt Meadows vs. Windsor
At Vancouver College
2:30 p.m. — Vancouver College vs. Burnaby South
Bottom side draw
1:45 p.m. — Kelowna vs. Kitsilano
At Sir Charles Tupper
2:30 p.m. — St. George’s vs. Sir Charles Tupper