Kelowna, B.C. - A strong second half would push the Winnipeg Wesmen on Friday night as the Heat miss an opportunity to gain ground in the playoff hunt.
With the two teams ahead of them both losing, UBCO had a chance to jump into the 12th and final playoff spot with a win but were unable to capitalize.
UBCO would hold a narrow advantage (44-36) at the halftime break but Winnipeg would put up 57 points in the second half en route to the victory away from home.
The win improves the Wesmen's record to (7-8) while the Heat drop to (3-14) with the loss.
"We did everything right and executed our game plan in the first half. We can definitely continue to build on that, we just have to learn to weather some of those storms." commented Heat head coach Clayton Pottinger following his team's defeat.
Winnipeg would shoot a season-high 55% from the field, including 44% from behind-the-arc. UBC Okanagan would snag down 20 offensive boards which kept them in it, however, they were unable to capitalize on their chances.
Forward Imoudu Ibrahim would tie his career-high with 15 points and seven boards for the home squad, while sharp-shooter Gus Goerzen and Owen Keyes would also finish in double-figures with 10 points each.
Five Wesmen players would finish in double-figures on the night, including Narcisee Amanza who poured in 22 points to go with seven assists and four boards. Winnipeg would also rack up 51 bench points on the night, their most in a game this season.
UBCO came out firing in the first and held the early lead (13-6) before ultimately holding a six-point advantage after one (22-16). The third would be the difference on the night as they outscored the Heat (33-17) to take a commanding lead into the fourth where they cruised to victory.
The rematch will go tomorrow night in the UBC Okanagan gym, with it also featuring as Graduating Player night for Heat senior Patrick Dujmovic.
Friday night also featured as a Bell Let's Talk matchup, a part of a nationwide goal to generate awareness for better mental health. For full details on the campaign, you can click here.
All action can be seen live and on-demand on Canadawest.tv presented by Co-op.
~ Oliver Rizun, Heat Sports Information