The grind of eight hours on the road and two games in less than 24 hours got the best of the St. Lawrence Vikings Saturday afternoon, as they dropped an 87-63 Ontario Colleges Athletic Association men’s basketball game to the Georgian Grizzlies.
The loss left St. Lawrence with a split of its weekend games, after the Vikings posted a 78-74 victory over the Canadore Panthers Friday night in North Bay.
St. Lawrence, not nationally ranked last week—despite beating two teams ahead of it in the standings, including No. 6 La Cite—is third in the East division with a 10-5 record. La Cite continues to lead at 13-1, while the Vikings trail both George Brown and Algonquin, 10-4, by half a game.
Georgian, which began the day with just four wins in 11 games, nonetheless won for the third time in its last four contests.
The game started slowly, with the teams combining to score just 17 points in the first quarter, one that ended with the Grizzlies leading 9-8. The Vikings trailed by five points at halftime and by 13 going into the fourth quarter, and Georgian put an exclamation point on the victory by dumping 30 more points on the visitors in the final period.
Georgian held a 40-29 advantage in rebounding.
Friday night at Canadore, St. Lawrence won its fifth game in a row, riding the crest of a 29-13 first quarter. That cushion enabled the Vikings to prevail, though they allowed 61 points in the final three periods to a Panthers team that was losing its seventh game in a row.
Andrew Dawkins led St. Lawrence with 29 points, a tally that including an 8-for-10 performance from beyond the three-point arc. Jaz Bains had his fourth double-double of the season, with 23 points and 10 rebounds.
In the game, the Vikings were good on 46 per cent of their shots from the field, including 58 per cent shooting from three-point range.
The Vikings resume their schedule Saturday, when they host the Seneca Sting at 3 p.m.
The St. Lawrence women, meanwhile, got 26 points from Sammy Gourdier as they defeated Georgian 53-40 Saturday afternoon. It was the first time this season that the Vikings, who upset division-leading Algonquin in their previous game, posted back-to-back victories.
The teams ended the first quarter in a 10-10 tie, then the St. Lawrence defence took over, allowing the Grizzlies to score just seven points in each of the next two quarters.
“Our defence got us through today,” Vikings coach Remy Simpson said, in a release. “We were able to contain them in three quarters, and that was enough to get us the win.”
Jackie Rodgerson added seven points to the St. Lawrence attack, while teammate Shian Noble pulled down 13 rebounds.
The Vikings, 4-5, are sixth in the East division, two points behind both Loyalist and George Brown but only four points behind second-place Seneca. They also resume play Saturday afternoon, at home against the Sting.