An explosive first quarter boosted the University of the Fraser Valley men’s basketball team to a 72-67 victory over the Manitoba Bisons on Saturday evening at the Lea Marc Printing Tournament in Winnipeg.
The Cascades, coming off a 71-64 win over the exhibition tourney host Winnipeg Wesmen on Friday, opened Saturday’s game scalding hot, racing out to a 24-7 lead at the end of the opening frame. They maintained a double-digit margin going into halftime, at 39-28.
The Bisons made a push in the second half, but the Cascades kept them at bay in the fourth quarter.
Vijay Dhillon led the Cascades with a game-high 19 points, while Kevon Parchment added 16 and Nate Brown finished with 15. Mark Johnson led UFV with 11 rebounds and chipped in with nine points.
Manitoba was paced by Joseph Medrano’s 13 points, while Justus Alleyn, Joey Nitychoruk and Wyatt Anders each scored 11.
“We just came out with great energy and had things clicking,” Cascades head coach Adam Friesen said. “We played some of our best basketball of the year in the first quarter, and showed our potential, I think.
“We knew Manitoba wasn’t going to back down. They made a great run, and we were fortunate in the fourth quarter to make some plays and secure a win.”
The Cascades wrapped up the tournament with a 2-0 record, while the Bisons finished at 1-1.
It was the last game action for the UFV men’s hoopsters prior to their Canada West regular season home openers – Friday, Nov. 6 (8 p.m. start) and Saturday, Nov. 7 (7 p.m.) vs. the UBC Okanagan Heat at the Envision Athletic Centre.
“It was great to have a chance to be on the road together and spend a lot of time as a group,” Friesen said. “From the game standpoint, two wins are great, but we understand it’s all about what we do now. We have a pretty clear picture of where we are now and what we need to get better at.”
– with files from Winnipeg Wesmen communications