On Wednesday, the men’s Div. 1 White basketball team played against Woodsworth College, a game that decided whether or not UTM White would tie for first place with three other teams, including the team’s home rival, UTM Blue. A win would put the team in first place and a loss would keep them in second.
The game started out with two unanswered 3-pointers and a layup from the opposing team. Already down by eight points, UTM White needed to step up their game in order to earn their spot in the standings, but Woodsworth was not going down without a fight. After a slow start, the Eagles got more intense with their defence and more controlled on offence. The Eagles fought hard and brought the score within four points by the end of the first half.
One of the key players from the first half of play was #31, Omar Jallow. He only played for a few minutes, but during that time he scored eight points, including an unexpected slam-dunk. Another player who stood out was #11, Zakariah Khan, who grabbed a lot of rebounds and played with a black eye he’d received from the campus rec basketball championship game earlier that day. Barely able to open his eye, Khan was somehow able to make quick plays under the net, making good passes to the post players. Although he wasn’t named top scorer of Wednesday’s game, Khan earned the title of highest scorer in one game in last Friday’s extramural basketball tournament, scoring 26 points in one game.
In the second half of the game, the score went back and forth, neither team ever getting ahead by more than four points. Ahmad Ansary was a force to be reckoned with in the net, grabbing a majority of the rebounds, while Ferdi Peng and Daniel Pinnock shut down the Woodsworth point guards with intense defence at the top of the key. Pinnock was able to make a lot of steals and sprint past the other players to the net for a number of lay-ups. With a minute of play left, Ansary fouled out, allowing Woodsworth to make a foul shot and put the opposing team ahead 67–64. Woodsworth then scored two more layups, winning the game 71–64 and putting both teams in second place.
Top scorers of the game from UTM were Manpreet Gill with 15 points and Pinnock with 13. The Eagles continue their season next semester with a home game against Scarborough on Wednesday, January 18 at 8 p.m.
UTM Blue also had a game on Wednesday for which they travelled downtown in the hopes of facing UC, who failed to show up. The UC team had lost against UTM White the week before with a point difference of 45, and UTM White had also lost to UTM Blue by 29 points; perhaps UC figured they didn’t stand a chance by simple syllogism.