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CMU Blazer Athletics

Home Court Heroics Earn Blazers First-Place

The CMU men’s basketball team clinched the top-seed in the MCAC’s version of March Madness coming to Red River College on March 2nd and 3rd. In exciting fashion, first-place in the conference was decided in the final game of the regular season when the Blazers hosted the University of Winnipeg.

With the College Wesmen holding the season-series lead with 2 wins and 1 loss against the Blazers, the hosts would need to hold down home court to assure themselves of the regular season championship and led by Wyatt Anders 23 points and 14 rebounds, they did just that.

The teams traded blows through the early stages of the contest with the Wesmen pulling-out ahead at the end of the first-quarter on the on the back of Brayden Bernstein who drove, dished and knocked-down a three-pointer to give Winnipeg a 26-20 advantage.

Jon Piccici was equally dangerous for the visitors as he scored 6 of his game-high 24 points, while cutting to the basket, and 6 more from beyond the arc pushing the College Wesmen to their largest lead of 10 points mid-way through the second-quarter.

Second-year guard Jacob Miller again displayed his unique ability of finding ways to win games. On the defensive end of the court, the 5’10 Westgate graduate forced 4 steals and then executed on the offensive-end of the court, shooting 4-for-8 from behind the three-point line to bring the Blazers back to a 40-40 score at halftime.

Each time the College Wesmen threatened to pull-away, Matej Juric brought the Blazers back, scoring 13 of his 15 points in the second half. With 3:14 left on the clock, Miller’s four-point play sealed what would become an 8 point lead for CMU and the confidence they needed down the stretch to complete the win.

The Blazers shot the ball 87% from the free throw line with Anders leading the way on 7-for-7 from the charity-stripe – a stat that often factors in an important way down the stretch for championship-caliber teams. CMU also out-rebounded the Wesmen 54-41 on the night. Nick Miller grabbed 10 rebounds and added 12 points in a quiet double-double that saw the fifth-year forward play all forty-minutes for the Blazers.

The win confirms that the first-round opponent for CMU will be the #4 ranked Providence Freemen. The teams will tip-off at Red River College’s Notre Dame Campus on Friday, March 2nd at 4 pm.

 

 

 

 

Manitoba Colleges Athletic Conference Northern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association