Mountaineers knocked to bronze medal side in men’s basketball

(Photo: Elia Koolsbergen/Mohawk Athletics)

(Photo: Elia Koolsbergen/Mohawk Athletics)

BRAMPTON – Fuelled by a raucous crowd, the Sheridan Bruins got off to a fast start but had to weather more than a few runs from the Mohawk Mountaineers before clinching a spot in the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association Men’s Basketball Championship with an 86-80 triumph.

“We played very well, executed our game plan nicely and, really, when it comes down to it, it was just a few possessions that determined it,” head coach Jim Flack said.

“Basically we just made a few more shots than Mohawk did, so there’s no real difference between the teams. Everybody talks about Matt Fennell, and he’s a great player, but they’re so much more than that. They’ve got (Andrew) Cicuttini, (Taylor) Dowhaniuk, (Alex) Reis, great guards and great coaches, so you can’t just concentrate on one guy or one area.

“They rebound so well and execute their zone so flawlessly, so in the end we made shots when we had to and that’s what basketball comes down to.”

The opening stages featured both sides fighting for control of the momentum, with the Bruins using a 14-3 run to spark a 36-point quarter, leading 36-19 after 10 minutes.

Undaunted, Mohawk began chipping away at the margin and closed the half on a 10-0 run that had brought it all the way down to three, 50-47, at the break.

To start the second half, Sheridan began to re-build its advantage, pushing the lead back to seven, 69-62, heading into the final period.

An early free-throw make from the Bruins would push it to an eight-point game but after an 8-0 run by the Mountaineers levelled the game, Mohawk would took its first lead of the game when Fennell drilled a three.

The Bruins battled to pull back in front and while leading 82-80, traded a pair of five-second violations.

Dylan Periana nailed two free throws with 11.7 seconds left that served to ice the game.

Michael Selkridge led Sheridan with 18 points, while six others hit double figures — Trevor Williams (15 points), Paul Williams (13 points, 18 rebounds), Dylan Periana (13 points), Roshean Keen (10 points) and Denzil Abrams (10 points).

Fennell scored a game-high 20 for Mohawk, while also chipping in with 12 boards.

Dowhaniuk also posted a double-double for the Mountaineers with 11 points, 10 boards and six blocks, with more scoring contributions from Xzennis Brereton (13), Patrick Iavarone (12) and Reis (11).

In other games Friday, Algonquin whipped Humber 75-48, Durham downed Seneca 78-75 and George Brown beat Fanshawe 80-70.

Sheridan will move on to play Algonquin in the 7 p.m. championship game Saturday, while Mohawk will play Durham in the second bronze semi-final at noon. The first bronze-semi at 10 a.m., pits George Brown and Humber.