Give and take on the court
Weekend split for the Axemen and Axewomen
It was Minor Basketball Night in Wolfville and fans were entertained in both games, despite a loss by the Axemen.
The action took place Saturday night.
The defending AUS champion Axewomen defeated the winless StFX X-Women by a score of 94-76 in a game worth four points in the conference standings.
The Axewomen fell behind during the first few minutes of the game. Coach Len Harvey saw the opportunity to call for a time out and adjust his team’s play before the game got out of hand.
Three-point shots were not working well for the Axewomen and Harvey advised his players to take the open lanes to the basket instead.
Within a few plays, the Axewomen were on their way to a 10point run that would close out the first quarter 24-17 Acadia.
The Axewomen found their groove with quick passes and easy layups during the second quarter before getting comfortable enough to go for the longer shots.
Lanae Adams shot four for six from three over the game, posted 19 points, handled in eight rebounds, and added two assists. Her performance earned her Acadia’s Subway Player of the Game.
Acadia ended the first half up 43-32, shooting 15 for 30 from the field and making nine of 10 of their free throws.
The X-Women started to wear down by the third quarter and did not challenge Acadia for the lead for the remainder of the game.
It was not until the fourth quarter that the X-Women saw points come off the bench. The XWomen only had five points not from their starters, showing their lack of depth. The Axewomen took advantage of this weakness and kept a fresh lineup on the court all game.
Adams pointed out after the game the Axewomen score by committee and working on their defense will be a priority during the break.
“Our team is very versatile. Pretty much everybody down the line of the bench can score. Offense is not a big thing, we definitely have to work on our defense and stay under control,” said Adams in a post-game interview.
Two evenly- matched teams came into the men’s game that followed, looking to improve on their record before the December break.
The first quarter set the stage for this close matchup and saw the X-Men lead by only one point into the intermission - 22-21
Acadia managed to make nine of their 18 attempted threes but shot only 12 of 38 as a whole from the field. The opposite was true for the X-Men, who shot 18 of 43 from the field but only made three of 14 of their threes in the opening half.
With the X-Men ahead 45-41 at the half, the tides slowly started to turn on the Axemen in the third quarter. Down 71-59 going into the last frame, the Axemen struggled to shrink the StFX lead.
“First half we stuck to the game plan for the most part with only a few mistakes here and there that cost us some points on both ends. The second half, unfortunately, we got away from our strengths and credit to St. FX for playing a good game and converting on more plays,” noted Acadia head coach Kevin Duffie after the game.
X-Men forward Azaro Roker lead the attack in the second half of the game, intimidating the Axemen with massive dunks and fierce blocks. Standing 6’6”, Roker was a force to be reckoned with against any defender that tried to stop him. Roker would finish with 14 points, 14 rebounds, and four blocks.
The X-Men grabbed the fourpoint game with an 89-75 win and improved to 3-3.
X-Man Daniel Passley posted 21 points, 15 rebounds, three assists, and two steals. For his impressive double-double, Passley was named the Subway Player of the Game. Teammate Thomas Legallais recorded 16 points including two for five from the three-point line.
Nick De Palma was a constant for the Axemen in the loss, recording a team high 16 points and was four for six from the dis- tant arc. De Palma was named Acadia’s Player of the Game. Junior Moaka-Matia and Rowan Powers added 13 points each. Trevon Grant recorded a game high 14 rebounds and added three steals in an impressive defensive effort.
Duffie was positive following the game, despite the loss. “We now look ahead to the second half and continue to build on the fundamentals and grow our team identity and get everyone on the same page. Fortunately for us, there is a lot of basketball left in the season and we have a group that isn’t afraid to put the work in.”
The Axemen and Axewomen are back on home court Jan. 5 against the Dalhousie Tigers.
Port Williams, N.S. native Haley McDonald is guarded closely by X-Woman.
Junior Moaku-Matia drives to the net in the opening half vs. StFX.