Saturday, September 4, 2010

Oh Canada! Cincinnati Over McGill to Open Tour

Another Season, Another Canada Labor Day Weekend Tour
After considering that his Cincinnati team bid farewell to most of their 2009 offensive production when Deonta Vaughn graduated and Big East Rookie of the Year Lance Stephenson bolted for the NBA draft, Bearcat Head Coach Mick Cronin decided to barnstorm Canada over Labor Day Weekend and take advantage of the 10 practice exception the NCAA grants for teams taking foreign tours. Carleton University has turned Labor Day in Canada into something of a cottage industry by hosting start-of-school basketball tournaments with an international flavor in the form of one or more USA college teams, often in competition with another CIS team, or a pro-am/alumn team.

Cincinnati, which had run daily practice sessions from August 20, left for Ottawa, Ontario on September 2 and opened with a resounding 89-58 win over the Redmen of McGill University Friday night at the Ravens Nest, the Carleton University on-campus arena in Ottawa, Ontario Province, Canada. The Bearcats' itinerary...

Friday 9/3 7:00pmMcGill University RedmenRavens Nest, 89-58
Saturday 9/4 6:00pmCarleton University RavensScotiabank Place
Sunday 9/5 2:00pmUniversity of Ottawa Gee-GeesMontpetit Hall

Carleton University's Ravens Nest (seating about 5,000) was the site for the first game. The Saturday match is part of the CAN-AM Shootout, one of several USA-Canadian exhibition tournaments that schools on both sides of the border use to prepare for their respective seasons.

Taking about two periods to adjust to nuances of the international game, the Bearcats, losing by four at the end of the first quarter, 20-16, tied the Redmen at 34 at the 4:00 minute mark of the second quarter, then scored the last eight points in that quarter to take a 42-34 lead into the half-time break. Cincinnati opened the third quarter with an 11-0 run to push the Redmen to an arm's length, 53-34, then quietly layered an additional 11 point edge onto that lead, closing McGill out with a 24-13 fourth quarter.

Sophomore Jaquon Parker, tabbed to start at the point, scored a game-high 15 points. Ibrahima Thomas grabbed a team-high six rebounds, helping the Bearcats assert a 33-17 edge for rebounds. The Cincinnati website has a game recap. Mark Wacyk, the CIS Blogger, offers a Canadian perspective of the game. No box scores available...yet. I will process numbers to determine efficiencies when I find a box. Hopefully Bearcat website will have one available soon.

Streaming Video
The CIS has a streaming video site where fans can catch the action Saturday and Sunday.

Further Reading
"Oh Canada! -- Cincinnati - McGill Post Game" -- found a box score and developed some possession-based numbers for a post game analysis.
"About the CIS" -- Guest contributor Mark Wacyk provides a brief background on Canadian basketball and The Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) organization.

No comments: