Mohawk drops two squeakers in OCAA men’s, women’s basketball

For the Mohawk Mountaineers men’s and women’s basketball teams, it was a case of close but no cigars. Of course, if you don’t like cigars, it doesn’t matter.

The women were 44-43 losers to Fanshawe and the men lost a 78-74 squeaker to the Falcons in Ontario Colleges Athletic Association play Tuesday night at the Fennell Gym.

The women Mountaineers appeared headed for their first win of the season after leading 23-19 at the half and out in front 41-35 with 3:30 left in the game.

But the Falcons did a 9-0 run to grab the win and scored the winning basket with 38 second left to play.

Lisamarie Iavorone (Hamilton) was top point getter for Mohawk, scoring 15, while Carrie Lawton (Hamilton) dropped in 13 and Melissa Zwolak (Hamilton) led all players with 11 rebounds.

Taylor Knipe (Owen Sound), who scored the winning basket, and Jessica Finlay (London) paced the Falcons with 11 points each.

The men found themselves training for most of the opening half but surged to take a 39-36 lead into the dressing room at the break.

The Mountaineers took that momentum back onto the court to start the second half and built an 11 point gap. But the Falcons fought back and tied the game before taking the lead with two minutes left to play.

Fanshawe sealed the win when Jabari Cooper (London) scored the last of his game-high 31 points with 1:2 second left on the clock. Cooper also had 16 rebounds.

For Mohawk, a triple-double by Panyin Kyei (Toronto), 15 points, 19 rebounds, 10 assists, went for naught, while Nick Gaspic (Hamilton) scored 20 points for the Mountaineers, all in the first half, and Zivojin Tolmac (Hamilton) added 16.

The men are next in action on Saturday, when they travel to Humber for an exhibition game against the Hawks, while the women travel to Sheridan next Tuesday (Nov. 28) for a league game.