Royals snapped Hawks 17 game winning streak

by | Feb 11, 2019 | Sports, Varsity

Pirasanth Gunaskaram, Sports Reporter

ANCASTER, Ont. — It wasn’t all bad news for the Humber Hawks men’s basketball team when they were blown out by the Redeemer Royals on Feb. 9 for their first loss of the season.

The Hawks still won the West Division title of the Ontario College Atheltic Association on Feb. 8 for the first time since the 2014-15 season. Humber has also qualified for the OCAA postseason for the 36th straight season.

After being undefeated for 17 games, the Hawks lost its first game of the 2018-19 season against the 11-7 Redeemer Royals. And soundly, by 106-74, the first time the Hawks allowed more than 100 points in a regular season game.

“They’re undefeated for a reason so it’s always good to come out and feel you can beat any team and that’s what we did,” Royals forward Justin Lenters said.

The home crowd at the Redeemer gym was one reason why the Hawks lost their game. The crowd was energetic and loud all game long.

“Our home court advantage is maybe the best in the country,” Royals coach Jamie Girolametto said.

Lenters said he loves playing at the Redeemer gym and their fans.

Everytime we play at home we have the extra excitement, extra support and I love playing here because this is the best crowd in the OCAA,” he said.

Guard Trevon Mollison looking to pass the ball during the Hawks and Redeemer Royals game on Feb 9, 2019, in Ancaster, Ont. (Pirasanth Gunasekaram)

Humber started the game with a 19-7 run. But the Royals countered with a run of their own, ending the first quarter 25-24 with a buzzer beater shot.

The Royals continued its scoring drive in the second quarter, leaving the Hawks trailing at the half, 49-41.

Redeemer’s ability to get to the rim and hit their shots helped them get a double-digit lead with five minutes remaining the third quarter. The score was 77-58 Redeemer heading to the fourth quarter.

Redeemer sharpshooters continued to hit their shots and make stops.

“It feels like a playoff game every time we play Humber,” Lenters said. “Both teams came out and compete.”

Guards Jordan Francis (from left), Zach Marcellin and Trevon Mollison, guwere disappointed with the game against Redeemer on Feb 9, 2019.
(Pirasanth Gunasekaram)

The Hawks shot 35 per cent from the field and a season-low 11 assists and 19 turnovers.

“It was a tough loss,” said Humber forward Cy Samuels who had four points, two rebounds, and an assist.

Hawks coach Samson Downey was upset the way the Hawks played.

“We just got outplayed in every aspect of the game,” coach Samson Downey said.

He praised Redeemer for playing well against the Hawks.

“Their record might suggest otherwise but I have been following them for two years now and they’re a really good team,” Downey said.

Samuels said the crowd was rowdy all game long and it did get to the team.

“They throw us off a little bit but that’s a part of the game,” he said.

Downey said the combination of the crowd and the effort of the Royals took the Hawks out of the game.

“They made us uncomfortable, they took us out of our offensive, defensively we just couldn’t contain them and the crowd got involved so yeah that was the story of the game,” he said,

Under Downey, Humber’s 17 game winning streak to start the season was the longest streak by a first-year head coach.

Humber will play their final home game of the season on Feb. 13 against the 7-10 Mohawk Mountaineers.