OFSAA 4A Championship Day Recap And Standouts
Published by Drew Ebanks on March 11, 2011
Semi-Final #1 Oakville Loyola def. J Clarke Richardson: 76-73
The J Clarke Richardson Storm lived up to their name coming out the gates blazing and jumping to a 12-2 lead as Leon Alexander paced his squad with 6 pts in transition. Loyola would slowly claw back into it led by Rohan Boney’s 7pts and sub Shelby Taylor. Taylor, despite his lack of height used his strength combined with quickness to get to the rim. Richardson led by 3 after 1. 2nd qtr Loyola got inside the Storm defence attacking the seams on several occasions but still trailed by 3 at the half. Loyola, the GHAC champs took control in the 3rd as Mike L’Africain, Adam Presutti and Peter Rusic scored big buckets to give Loyola a 52-48 lead after 3. 4th quarter and Peter Rusic’s pull-up three put Loyola ahead by 10 late, 67-57. But J Clarke would storm back with 2 Samuels buckets and an Alexander and-1 play to draw within 2 with 45 seconds left. 4.1 seconds left J Clarke down three. Samuels is fouled, makes the first FT then tries to brick the 2nd but it clanks in and Loyola holds on for the win. Presutti and Boney team-high 17pts for Loyola and Leon Alexander a game high 24pts and Samuels 20pts for Richardson.
Standouts: Leon Alexander: He showed a complete game in his one scoring on the break and from mid range. He drove to the basket with ease
and got to the line 9 times, making 6 FTs. Tyrell Samuels: Was quiet in the
First half scoring 9pts. But went to work in the 4th on an array of drives and floaters in the lane. Samuels, while quick, crafty and a gamer, will need to bulk up physically to be effective at the next level. I see success in his future playing career.
Rohan Boney: Transition, Transition, Transition; he’s lethal on the move. Used his quick first step to get into the lane and score key buckets. Great future ahead.
Adam Presutti: Was aggressive all game scoring on dribble drives while using a simple head fake or jab step to get by his defender. Fundamentally sound and will be a solid player at McMaster where he will team up with Richardson’s Aaron Redpath to create a formidable back court.
Semi-Final #2 Vaughan Voyageurs def. Father Henry Carr: 72-63
2nd qtr: and Andrew Wiggins, content to stay on the outside conserving energy, got in a nice baseline jumper and a big block on Laureldo Dixon to make his presence felt defensively. Cy Samuels score 7pts in the qtr for Vaughan using his size to be very effective at the rim. Roshane Roberts contributed a cool 10 first half pts as Vaughan led it 40-23 at the break.
3rd qtr: and Carr took advantage of sluggish play by the #1 seed as Audu scored on a hard drive while being fouled to make it an 11 point game. Later, Wiggins gets a big put back slam off his own miss as Vaughan took a 52-38 lead into the 4th. His ability to get up twice with power before most players jump once is unmatched.
In the 4th, Audu caught fire from 3 point land with 3 threes in the qtr, cutting the Voyageurs lead to 6, at 67-61 with one minute left. Vaughan missed a ton of FTs down the stretch that would have saved them some tense moments. Carr got within 5 points but couldn’t come all the way back in this one as Vaughan wins it 72-63 in a hardly watchable 4th qtr.
Standouts: Richard Audu He showed an ability to drain shots from beyond the arc. He’s usually great in transition, but used the three pointer to keep his team close. He hit 6 threes in the game while scoring a game-high 30pts. He needs to continue to work on his outside game to be a true threat from deep and to be effective at the next level.
Andrew Wiggins: Did not display much aggressiveness in the game. His put-back jam off his own miss was stellar as he gave the crowd at least one thing to cheer about. Would have liked to see him play with more intensity and purpose in the game. Has suffered from cramps in the tourney which may have made him a bit cautious.
Roshane Roberts: x-factor for Vaughan along with Troy Reid-Knight. Roberts, whose dribble drive ability in the half-court against zones or man-to-man, and in transition is underrated. He scored 15 points including one three.
Reid-Knight is the best one-on-one defending guard I’ve seen all year. Does it all for Vaughan. But his offensive game doesn’t get enough praise. Can hit from beyond the arc and goes to the rack with purpose on drives past weak close outs. 6 pts in the 4th for Vaughan and 17pts for the game.
Bronze Medal: Father Henry Carr medals with 79-75 over time win over J Clarke Richardson. Aaron Redpath’s 30 points wasn’t enough to give J Clarke a victory, with Carr having nothing to lose. Richard Audu who has been good tournament chipped in 24 point to lead the Crusaders, Kenrick Lewis added 19 points and 2014 prospect Lincoln Samuel’s who is a major reason for Carr’s final four appearance put in 17 points.
2011 OFSAA 4A Championship: The dream match up between the consensus top two teams did not materialize in the OFSAA AAAA championship game, but a #1 seeded Vaughan Voyageurs vs. #3 Oakville Loyola game could not have been any less entertaining and compelling had #2 J Clarke Richardson advanced to face Vaughan, I’m certain of that. The atmosphere in the Fanshawe College Athletic Center gym was simply electric! People clamoured for limited spots in the stands, in chairs, in aisles and basically anywhere they could find a spot whether sitting or standing. Sometimes big championship games can be disappointing and unpredictable. Loyola, playing the role of David was peaking at precisely the right time, having dispatched of Richardson in the semi-finals. Vaughan meanwhile never seemed to mind their Goliath status and was looking to finish the season as the top dog with a 45-1 record. Their only loss to high school competition coming to Richardson in the Eastern Holiday Classic.
1st qtr: Andrew Wiggins scored the first basket of the game, a sign of things to come for Vaughan. They were aggressive from the tip-off and it carried throughout the game. Peter Rusic scored Loyola’s first 4pts but it was Wiggins again, this time on defence, with a huge left-handed block on Adam Presutti leading to a fast break bucket by Henry Tan, that drew oohs from the crowd. Jake Babic would follow with his own sensational left-handed block on Wiggins, followed by a two-handed slam by Rohan Boney cutting Vaughan’s lead to 12-11. But the defining moment of the first half was by the high-flying Boney. He stole the ball from Wiggins at mid court(looked like a kick ball) and I saw the look in his eyes from where I was filming the game and set his sights on some rim damage, throwing down an astonishing 2-handed tomahawk dunk on a Vaughan defender, that sent shock waves throughout the gym for several minutes. The slam was one of the best I’ve ever seen. Loyola led it 18-16 after 1.
2nd qtr: Vaughan comes out strong, trailing 20-17 they get a nice drive and soft finish by Roshane Roberts(5pts in 1st half) and a steal and layup by Tan over Mike L’Africain who was 1-for-5 in the first half. To go up 21-20. Same score, Roberts steals it for Vaughan, misses the layup but Wiggins flies in from out of nowhere with an out-stretched left hand and tips in the miss. More ahs from the crowd are heard marvelling at the athleticism of the 16 year-old;23-20 Voyageurs. Three minutes left…great crossover by super-sub Shelby Taylor(12pts in semi-final off the bench) and kick out to Babic who drains a three to knot things at 27. About a minute later, Wiggins with another nasty block on a fading Boney. Vaughan quickly outlets it to Tan on the left side…2-on-1 with Wiggins on the right…the crowd erupts anticipating an alley-oop or a rim-rattling Wiggins cram…but Tan gets tied up by L’Africain as he held on too long as Wiggins waited and waited for a pass that never came, much to the chagrin of the already highly entertained audience. Despite the missed highlight reel opportunity Tan was mostly sensational in the first half crossing over his defender several times while scoring a game-high 14pts(4-for-4 FT) as Vaughan led 33-31 over a Loyola squad not the least bit intimidated by the Voyageurs record and stature as the Province’s best team. Boney led Loyola with 8pts.
Stats: FG%: Loyola 46.4% Vaughan 54.5%
Team rebounds: Loyola 11 and Vaughan 14.
3rd qtr: Vaughan seemed to shift their game plan to start the 2nd half trying to use their size advantage with Aiddian Walters, Cy Samuels and Wiggins inside as he scored early on a tip-in of a Samuels miss. On defence, Wiggins was at it again, barely missing a two-handed backboard staple attempt on a missed layup by Presutti. Then he stepped outside for a trey that put Vaughan ahead 38-35. Later Wiggins hauled in a big offensive board, goes up and Boney rejects him from behind as the Loyola faithful cheered in appriciation for the effort!
For Vaughan, Reid-Knight given the task of defending and chasing Presutti, was rather quiet on offence but sank a sweet pull-up jumper to give Vaughan a 5pt lead. Later, Wiggins steals it and heads full steam ahead, crowd noise builds but Taylor zooms back to prevent the dunk, forcing Wiggins to simply settle for a slow Euro-step layup to put Vaughan up 7 with 4 minutes left. The momentum was shifting in the Voyageurs direction.
Back to the post for Wiggins and he’s fouled then he follows another Samuels miss with a put-back and foul on Rusic and just like that the Voyageurs lead by 10(45-35) after the made FT. Meanwhile Loyola went cold from the field.
Soon after Wiggins misses a layup going right but Walters and his 6’5″ frame is there to score off the rebound. Maybe Loyola’s poor shooting had to do with Vaughan turning up their defence as Tan stole an errant Loyola pass and went coast to coast for the layup as Vaughan went up 14.
At that point the situation was urgent for Loyola and L’Africain stemmed the Vaughan run with a nice pull up jump shot from the FT line for his 6th point of the game.
A buck-twenty left and Wiggins, still without a dunk, barely misses a crazy put-back attempt of a Reid-Knight miss, but still manages another tip-in. Then Tan, a one-man fast break again scores a left-handed layup to make it 53-37 Vaughan. Back come Loyola as Rusic buries a three to cut the deficit to 13.
Vaughan led it 54-41 after 3.
4th qtr: Do or die time for Loyola and Rusic makes it a 10 point game right away hitting another three as he clapped his hands in approval. Tan followed with another layup going right(who says he only goes left?). Vaughan up 12. About a minute or so later the crowd gets what it wants as Reid-Knight up-fakes a defender and passes underneath to Wiggins who goes up for a monster two hand crush off the vertical sending the Voyageurs fans into delirium! That dunk and then another put back by Walters with just over 5 minutes left sealed it for Vaughan. L’Africain and Loyola weren’t conceding anything though as he stroked another jumper, 2 of his 13pts in the game. But Wiggins was at it again, driving on Boney, missing but tipping in his own miss as Vaughan’s size and athleticism was simply too much for Loyola. Soon after the teams emptied their benches as the crowd cheered both teams’ effort in a 76-63 win for the Voyageurs capturing their first AAAA boys basketball championship.
Team rebounds: Loyola 15 and Vaughan 38.
Offensive rebounds: Loyola 8 and Vaughan 17
Second chance points: Loyola 7 Vaughan 20
Standouts: Vaughan: Henry Tan was stellar, controlling the tempo with outstanding dribbling and timely drives. He has tremendous handles and is almost unstoppable going left. Would like to see him with his head up to look for more assists and create for his teammates a bit more. Tan had this to say about the pressure put on by Shelby Taylor ”The defender was really putting a lot of pressure on me so I wanted to attack the gaps looking to be aggressive and I’m glad with the win. I want to especially thank the coaching staff ’cause without them we wouldn’t be in this position.”
Andrew Wiggins: Showed an improved all-round game from the beginning of the season. Was asked to bring up the ball and be a PG at times and was impressive doing so. Defensively a force as well with a condor-like wingspan allowing him to block shots with either hand. His jump shot and 3 point shot getting better. Will need to tighten up shot mechanics going forward though.
Peter Rusic: Stepped up big-time in the game scoring a team-high 17pts while knocking down 3 threes. Kept his team close for most of the game. Needs to be a bit more effective on the glass and getting to the tin.
Adam Presutti: Despite being defended and hounded by Reid-Knight for most of the game scored 14 points and made 3 threes. But not as effective as he usually is.
Mike L’Africain: tough game for him only making one shot from behind the arc, his speciality. But he’s a gamer and scored 13 pts and 5 assists. He’s the ultimate competitor and runs the team’s offence with precision. Still awaiting his decision on where he’ll play his post high-school ball.
Rohan Boney: Very impressive all-round player who’s not reached his potential yet. Defended well with 3 blocks and had the Play of the Game with the sensational 1st quarter posterization slam! He will want to continue to improve his outside shot to keep defences honest.
About the domination in the rebounding department Wiggins said” I knew Loyola wasn’t a tall team or as athletic as us and knew we could get on the glass and win it there.”
He didn’t let the big Boney dunk rattle him either saying ”2 points is 2 points to me whether it’s a dunk or a layup. I just went down and played my game, that didn’t faze me. ”
When asked about where he will play next year he said “down south, there’s more competition down there and a higher level of play.”
Off the record he mentioned somewhere warm and also hinted at a specific southern state…mmmn wonder which school that could be? He told us but I’ll save that for another CROWN article. It looks like it’s pretty certain that this game was Wiggins’ last high school game in Canada.