Reserve Regis roars off bench to spark Redmen rally over Stingers in RSEQ hoops action
MONTREAL -- Regis Ivaniukas of Oakville, Ont., came off the bench to score a game-high 16 points and spark McGill to a come-from-behind victory as the Redmen outlasted Concordia 65-60 in men's basketball at Love Competition Hall, Thursday.
It was McGill's fourth straight win over the Stingers and their sixth in the last seven confrontations. The result moved the division-leading Redmen to 8-3 and four points ahead of second-place Laval with five games remaining in RSEQ regular season.
In a back-and-forth game that dfeatured eight lead changes, the Redmen found themselves trailing for most of the night and rallied from a 50-41 deficit late in the third quarter.
ConU led 21-19 after the opening frame and 35-30 at halftime. McGill slowly chipped away at the deficit in the second half and took the lead for good when Ivaniukas nailed a trey with 4:45 remaining in the final stanza to put the Redmen on top 55-54.
Ivaniukas, a 6-foot-2, 170-pound guard, had a career-best night with his 16 points coming on just 21 minutes of court-time. He shot 6-for-10 from the field, 2-for-3 from beyond on the arc and 2-for-5 from the line. The economics sophomore also chipped in three assists, two rebounds and a pair of steals.
"We struggled for a long time until Regis got us going," said McGill bench boss David DeAveiro, who was coaching in his 500th career CIS contest, improved to 302-198 overall -- including a 92-71 mark with the Redmen -- and was presented with a pair of McGill cuff-links in a brief pre-game ceremony. "Was I surprised he did it? No, Regis has always had that ability. He was a scorer in high school and it's just (about) trying to find that consistency with him from game to game."
Point-guard Ave Bross, a 5-foot-10 senior from Thornhill, Ont., also came off the bench with a hot hand. The sociology major dropped 10 points on 5-of-6 shooting from the floor and added five assists, four rebounds and a steal.
Francois Bourque, the high-motor sophomore from Terrebonne, Que., was the only other Redmen to reach double digit scoring with 11 points. He only shot 3-for-13 from the field but a successful 5-for-6 soiree from the foul-line salvaged his offensive output. The 6-foot-5, 192-pound power forward impressed in the other aspects of game, however, collecting seven rebounds, four assists and a pair of blocks. He now leads the Quebec conference with 95 rebounds in 10 contests.
Rounding out the scoring for McGill was Dele Ogundokun (9 pts), Vincent Dufort (7), Michael Peterkin (5), Sebastian Beckett (4) and Noah Daoust (3).
Ogundokun was credited with three steals and now leads the league with 30 in 11 games. The 6-foot-3 sophomore guard from Hamilton, Ont., has played a large role in why McGill is ranked second in the nation with 9.8 steals per game.
The Redmen struggled offensively shooting 33.3 per cent from the floor (24/72), 28.6 from the arc (6/21) and 73.3 from the line (11/15).
"This is a tough time for our young guys," added DeAveiro. "It's that period of time in the season where you begin to hit a wall and you just got to fight through it, continue to shoot and not hesitate when you have an open look."
Concordia replied on 31.4, 24.1 and 56.3, respectively.
Three Stingers reached double digit scoring. Mukiya Post and Xander Jean dropped 14 and 13 points, respectively, off the bench. Ken Beaulieu, a high-flying freshmen and leading scoring for Concorida, sunk 13 points of his own.
McGill, which committed 17 turnovers compared to Concordia's 22, had a 9-6 disadvantage in steals. The Redmen had a slight 4-3 edge in blocked shots and both sides pulled down 42 rebounds. McGill leads the nation with 47.3 boards per game.
The two teams will have another crack at each other in the backend of this home-and-home series when McGill (8-3) hops across town for a game at Concordia (5-6) on Saturday at 4 p.m. The contest is slated to be webcast live on stretch.tv They are also scheduled to cross paths on Feb. 21 at the Loyola campus.