By: Tyler Costello
In a game that saw a sour end in the final seconds, the Algonquin Thunder men’s basketball team was able to come away with an 87-61 win over the visiting Durham Lords.
A skirmish started between players after Algonquin’s Amir Majidi took exception to Durham player, Jonathan Camuther’s physicality on Majidi’s drive to the basket.
The incident led to Durham head coach Desmond Rowly stepping onto the court to try to separate the players.
After the Algonquin bench voiced their displeasure with Rowly’s presence on the court, he said, “I don’t care, give me the [technical].”
Despite his statement, the only technicals handed out were to Majidi and Camuthers.
With 3.8 seconds left on the clock the Lords appeared to be expecting the Thunder to run out the clock, as they were up by 24 points, but Algonquin head coach Trevor Costello instructed his players to keep scoring.
This caused Rowly to gesture towards the Algonquin bench.
After the game Costello explained that it’s a points for, points against double-header, meaning that the team which scores more total points out of the two games wins.
“He refused to shake my hand,” said Costello. “I don’t know why he got so upset.”
It could have been the Thunder’s decision to call two timeouts in the last three seconds of game in which they were ahead by 26 points.
Rowly, clearly frustrated with the situation after the game said, “I’ve got nothing to say.”
In what was otherwise an uneventful game, Algonquin displayed accurate perimeter shooting, solid individual drives to the basket and stout defensive play.
Fifth-year guard, Mahamat-Ali Haggar, opened the game up with two successful drives to the basket in two of the Thunders first three possessions.
A bit of rust was evident in the first half with Algonquin struggling to maintain possession as they tried to pass into the paint and drive the baseline. These struggles continued into the second as Algonquin’s first two possessions of the quarter led to turnovers that resulted in uncontested layups for the Lords.
The possession troubles that characterized the Thunder’s play were easily overcome by excellent three point shooting from guards Brandon Young, Amir Majidi and Haidar El Badry. With El Badry hitting a three midway through the third that pleased the crowd.
The Thunder’s commitment to the fast-break was evident throughout the game despite trouble executing it early on.
Costello pointed to his belief that its hard to play the half-court game in their league and that they have players they feel can get easy points using that strategy.
“It’s definitely part of our game plan,” he said.
After the game Costello did say that although he was happy with his team’s defensive play and ability to get a win, he thought they let the Lord’s get to the foul line too much.
Although Durham did lose by 26 points, a positive was the promise their first-year player, Anthony Ottley, showed in scoring 15 points and grabbing seven rebounds, according to the OCAA website.
The two teams will finish their double-header at Durham College Jan. 19.