(HALIFAX, N.S.) – The Saint Mary's Huskies and the UNB Varsity Reds faced off in the second of two men's semi-final matchups for the Subway AUS Basketball Championships Saturday evening at the Scotiabank Centre in Halifax, N.S.
The Huskies earned an 81-68 win to advance to Sunday's finals.
AUS first team all-star Marquis Clayton (Halifax, N.S.) led the Huskies with 22 points, seven rebounds and three assists. Theon Reefer (Toronto, Ont.) also added to Saint Mary's victory with 15 points, five rebounds three assists, and one steal.
The opening quarter started with even play from both sides of the court, until the Huskies began to take off, holding a 17-11 lead with two minutes remaining in the frame. With tight end zone position, Saint Mary's was able to hold their lead at 22-14 heading into the second quarter.
The Huskies maintained their lead throughout the beginning of the second frame, holding a 30-30 lead at the halfway mark. The Varsity Reds began to pick up the pace in the second half of the quarter, as two back-to-back jump shots from UNB's Chris Spurrell (Rothesay, N.B.) tied the game at 32-32.
A buzzer beater from UNB's Stephon Smith (New Orleans, Louisiana) shortened the Huskies lead to 38-35 heading into the second half.
The Varsity Reds looked for the comeback throughout the third quarter, coming within just two points of the Huskies with under two minutes remaining in the frame. Saint Mary's managed to maintain a lead, heading into the final 10 minutes of regulation with a 57-48 edge.
In the final quarter of play, the Varsity Reds strived for the comeback, coming within five points of the Huskies with the score sitting at 66-61 with five minutes remaining in the frame.
The Huskies took off in the final five minutes of regulation, solidifying their victory with a score of 81-68.
The Subway Player of the Game was awarded to St. Mary's Marquis Clayton (Halifax, N.S.), while Javon Masters (Kitchener, Ont.) earned the honour for UNB. Masters posted 21 points, adding nine rebounds, and four assists, three steals and one block.
Brent Martindale (Kingston, Ont.) earned the Wilson's Security Defensive Player of the Game for Saint Mary's, while Spurrell earned the honour for UNB. Martindale recorded 12 points, seven rebounds, and two steals, while Spurrell recorded 13 points and six rebounds.
The Huskies now advance to the Subway AUS Men's Basketball Championship finals to face the Dalhousie Tigers Sunday at 4:30 p.m.
Photo Nick Pearce