A couple of local hoopsters played well despite being on the losing end of a match against Alberta.
Pitt Meadows’ Doug Plumb ended the game with 23 points and Maple Ridge’s Jared Casey earned nine.
No. 3-ranked UBC Thunderbirds men’s basketball team dropped a 68-66 decision in Edmonton to the No. 10 Alberta Golden Bears in a game that featured a heartstopping final possession.
The battle between the Canada West’s top two teams was not decided until the final buzzer sounded, after UBC missed five shots in the final 22 seconds.
The hectic sequence began when Alberta’s Jordan Baker, with his team up a bucket, failed on both his free throws with just over half a minute left in the fourth quarter. That allowed UBC to bring the ball down the court.
Brylle Kamen (Paris, France) was unable to convert on a three-point attempt from in front of his own bench. Plumb got the rebound and found Geoff Pippus (Colorado Springs, CO), whose shot from the top of the arc was strong.
Plumb got a second offensive board and then found O’Brian Wallace (Toronto, ON) but he couldn’t hit from the left wing. Kamen then grabbed another rebound at the left blocks before trying a turnaround shot that was off. The ball bounced off the rim and was tipped to Pippus, who corralled the loose ball in the air and, in the same motion, shot the ball towards the hoop only to see it rattle off the front and back rim.
The buzzer sounded soon after to signify UBC’s second loss of the regular season.
“Offensively, we executed for two quarters tonight and that wasn’t enough,” said UBC head coach Kevin Hanson. “On the defensive end, we didn’t execute very well for the entire game. We had too many missed assignments and not enough communication. That makes for a tough night when you are on the second night of a tough road trip. That being said we had five looks in last 22 seconds and missed them.”
The Thunderbirds started well, opening the game with a 14-4 run, with Wallace hitting a triple with 5:18 left in the opening period to put his team up 10 points.
The Thunderbirds turned the tables in the third quarter, opening with a 7-0 run to re-take the lead 35-34.
A layup from Casey extended the UBC advantage to 55-47 with 1:47 to go in the quarter but Kenneth Otieno’s jumper early in the fourth tied the game for Alberta at 55-55.
After that, the teams traded the lead five more times with the sixth coming on Dewar’s dunk.
Plumb ended with 23 points to lead UBC (6-2), while Otieno had 21 to pace Alberta (7-1).
The Thunderbirds hit 20 of 60 shots from the field and out-rebounded the Golden Bears 46-40.
UBC will return home to face Calgary (Nov. 30) and Lethbridge (Dec. 1) next weekend at War Memorial Gymnasium in the last regular season games of 2012.