Mohawk holds back rebounding Lions for share of first in OCAA cage play

The Mohawk Mountaineers improved to 3-2 with an 85-74 victory over the Lambton Lions of Sarnia in Ontario Colleges Athletic Association men’s basketball at the Fennell Gym Thursday (Nov. 8).

Tyrone Berry led Mohawk with 26 points. Marko Gacic had 16 points and 10 rebounds and Jerome Smith added 12 points. David Akelatis scored 24 points and had 12 boards to pace Lambton. Teammate Chad Periera collected 23 points.

Mohawk moved the ball around smartly in the first half when they shot 61.5 percent from the field to take a 52-32 lead over the Lions (2-3). But it was a different story in the second half when Lambton narrowed the margin to just five points (78-73) in what started to look like Tuesday’s game against Fanshawe when the Mountaineers squandered the lead and ended up losing by one point.

“We relaxed in the second half (Thursday). There’s no excuse for that,” said Mohawk coach Brian Jonker. Lambton had already defeated Algoma and were beaten at the buzzer by Niagara. Jonker noted you can’t let good teams get back into the game when you’ve got them down, as they were in the first half. Still, the Mountaineers’ win put them, at least temporarily, into a first place tie with Niagara and Humber. Niagara next plays St. Clair.

Mohawk now heads stateside for two weekend exhibition games in Western New York. They’ll be at Hilbert College in Hamburg on Saturday (Nov.10), then go to Rochester Institute of Technology on Sunday.