VICTORIA – A 35-8 advantage in the third quarter of play powered the UVic Vikes men's basketball team to a 81-52 victory over the visiting UBC Okanagan Heat inside the CARSA Performance Gym on Oct. 28.
Eight players scored at least eight points in the game for the Vikes as the team's depth shone in the victory.
After getting 63 points (26-51) from Triston Matthews, Aldrich Berrios and Aloysius Callaghan in the Heat's exciting victory on Friday night the trio only were able to score 13 (4-18) combined points in the Saturday loss.
With the Heat's historic win on Friday night, their first ever against the Vikes, and Saturday's loss they open the season 1-1 after their first weekend of play and will open their home conference schedule this Saturday.
"It's a bit bittersweet right now," said Heat head coach Pete Guarasci of his team's weekend. "I'm sure Monday morning that I'll feel better about the weekend but right now it's a tough one to swallow."
Everything started to click for the Vikes in the third.
The team played stifling defence to force the Heat into multiple turnovers while making almost every shot they took on the offensive end.
"I thought we did okay in the first half but in the third quarter we got outscored 35-8 and a lot of those points were on uncontested layups," said Guarasci. "We didn't take care of the ball and weren't ready to play in the third quarter."
The two teams played to each other to a stalemate throughout the first half, ending the opening frame tied at 15 and the Vikes up just 34-30 after the opening two quarters.
With the lead at 31 points after that dominant display in the third quarter the fourth was mostly academic as the Heat tried to will their way back into the game but could only get as close as the eventual 29 point deficit that the game ended at.
Heat scoring leaders
Some fresh legs off the bench led the way for the Heat as the team struggled to find their rhythm offensively, shooting just 30. 9 per cent as a team.
Owen Keyes led the team with 11 points and four assists, Justin Melynchuk added 10 points and four assists while Triston Matthews rounded out the scoring with nine points and seven rebounds.
Vikes scoring leaders
Fourth-year forward Justin Kinnear led the way for the Vikes with 17 points and four rebounds. Mason Loewen added 11 points of his own while Jordan Charles finished with nine points, six assists and seven boards on the night.
Both of these teams are 1-1 after their first weekend of play and will be back in action next week.
The Heat return to Kelowna where they will play a pair of games against their rivals from Thompson Rivers on Nov. 4 and 5.
The Vikes meanwhile will hit the road for back-to-back games against the Brandon Bobcats on Nov. 3 and 4.
All of those games can be watched live on canadawest.tv
~ With notes from Cameron Doherty, Vikes Communications