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Men, women trump King’s

NAIT basketball domination was on full display this past weekend against the King’s University Eagles.
The women conquered the Eagles 64-43 and 72-26, while the men won 79-60 and 87-63. The sweep extends the guys’ undefeated streak to 16 games, while the ladies improve to 14-2.

This marks a complete Edmonton sweep by the Ooks, as the two teams combined for a perfect 8-0 against cross-city rivals King’s and Concordia.

Despite a sloppy start Friday night that saw the Ooks trail after the first quarter, the men played a good overall game in the victory. Donny Moss led the charge with 24 points, 17 rebounds and eight assists on the night. Cameron Smith had a nice night with 15 points.

Back home on Saturday night, the Ooks turned in another gritty performance. Without two regular starters, the team needed some of the younger players to step up and they got the performances they needed. Rookie guard Wyatt Beaver was second in scoring on the night with 16 points, going four-of-six from three-point range and was named player of the game. The team rallied around Beaver’s game and turned in a dominant second half, outscoring the Eagles 48-31. Long range sniper Connor Dolson led the squad with 19 points.

Head coach Mike Connolly was happy to see Beaver step up as he sees him as a big part of the program’s future. Connolly also felt good about his team’s performance Saturday.

“It was a team effort. We were short-handed tonight and had a lot of the young guys step up,” Connolly said.

The women also dominated their weekend set against King’s. The Eagles, winless on the ACAC season, were aggressive on their home floor, looking to find their first win but the Ooks would control the game from opening tip to final buzzer with a final score of 64-43. Torey Hill scored a team high 16 points and grabbed eight rebounds, while Chawncy McClenan also hit double figures for the Ooks with 10 points on the night.

The team turned up the intensity for their Saturday night rubber match as they crushed the Eagles, scoring 24 points in the opening quarter. Hill once again led the Ooks in scoring along with Nicole Ruptash, with both dropping 14 in the victory.
Head coach Todd Warnick was pleased with his team’s performance.

“We challenged ourselves tonight to come out defensively and maintain our intensity over 40 minutes,” Warnick said.
That compete at the defensive end of the floor was on full display as the Ooks shut the Eagles down all night long, only allowing 26 points in the game, the lowest point total they’ve kept an opponent to this year.

Both the men and the women will be in action this weekend as they take on the Lakeland College Rustlers. Lakeland’s women’s team sits one win ahead of the Ooks, while the men’s team is fourth in the Northern Conference.

NAIT travels to Lakeland on Friday and are back home on Saturday. Tip-off for the women is at 6 p.m. both nights with the men following at 8.

By Matt Mosewich
@MozesMadness

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