Coach Costello (left) standing next to Carter Normand (middle) and saying a few words about Chris Lachapelle in honour of the senior night. Photo credit: Sahlym Florestal

The Algonquin Wolves were defeated by the Durham Lords in their last home game of the season 85-81.

They suffered a significant setback by losing their star point guard, Nathan Garcia, in the second quarter. Garcia’s exit from the game coincided with the team’s downfall.

“It started to go wrong when our star point guard got hurt. He’s done for this year, he broke his collarbone,” said head coach Trevor Costello. “No one on the team is more valuable than him, and it’s going to be hard to play without him.”

In the first half of the game, the Wolves dominated the Lords, finishing the second quarter with a 47-39-point lead.

As the second half began, the momentum of the game shifted in favour of the Lords. Garcia’s absence was heavily felt as the Lords took the lead 56-54.

The Lords kept the lead until the very last whistle despite the Wolves’ efforts.

Although the game ended in an unfortunate loss, CJ Gallaza, played shooting guard in Garcia’s absence and had an outstanding game, scoring 20 points and taking nine steals for the Wolves.

After the game, Carter Normand, an important figure with the Wolves, expressed his determination to work on his ball-handling skills to make up for Garcia’s absence.

“We lost our point guard. I’m going to have to step up my game,” said Normand.

Saturday night’s game was also particularly emotional for the Wolves, as it was senior night and Chris LaChapelle’s last home game. He’ll be hanging up the Wolves jersey. It will be the end of an era.

“It’s an emotional game. It was the last home game for Chris,” said Normand. “It’s the end of the season and it’s hard to have it come to an end.”

The Wolves are planning on bouncing back from this loss by heading to practice and finding a way to fill the gap left by Garcia.

“CJ will have to run the points,” said Costello. “We’re going to be working on that all week.”

The Wolves will be looking to redeem themselves as they face the Mohawk Mountaineers in the playoffs.

“We’re going to be dealing with the pressure of playing without Garcia,” said Costello. “We’ll see how it goes.”