The no. 1 ranked Ottawa Gee-Gees men’s basketball team cruised to an 87-61 win over the Toronto Varsity Blues on Friday evening at the Goldring Centre in Toronto. The win moves Ottawa’s regular season record to 9-0 while Toronto drops to 3-5 on the year.
Mike L’Africain led a collective effort on the offensive end which saw five Gee-Gees register double-digit point totals. L’Africain dropped 15 points while dishing out nine assists. Toronto’s Devin Johnson equalled L’Africain’s scoring but was largely ineffective in the first half while Ottawa grew its lead.
After a tight first quarter the Gee-Gees took advantage of a series of Blues turnovers early in the second to build a 27-18 lead. Mackenzie Morrison, who started the game in place of Caleb Agada, and Calvin Epistola were active at both ends of the floor in extended minutes during that 8-0 run. Epistola would add a flurry of points at the end of the game to finish with 10 points which marks a regular season career high for the rookie point guard.
The lead was up to 20 points midway through the third quarter as L’Africain pushed the pace. Ottawa made excellent use of post players Brody Maracle and Nathan McCarthy in the second half and the pair contributed 12 and 14 points, respectively, to the cause. McCarthy also pulled down seven rebounds to lead the Gee-Gees.
Brandon Robinson and Mehdi Tihani made an impact on the defensive end in Agada’s absence. Ottawa will play at no. 5 Ryerson on Saturday night, facing a Rams team which soundly defeated the no. 2 Carleton Ravens by a 79-62 score. That game will be broadcast on OUA.tv at 8 p.m.