EDMONTON - On Saturday night the Ravens entered perhaps the loudest and most hostile crowd they've faced in recent memory and stood tall eliminating the no. 2 ranked Alberta Golden Bears 64-63.
After a wild first half that saw both teams exchange massive runs, the Ravens led 40-31. Carleton’s bench was integral in their early success providing 17 first-half points including 8 from Connor Vreeken (Kingston, Ont.). After a strong first quarter, the Ravens saw the Bears push back hard in the second before a 10-0 Ravens run would end the quarter.
Despite the strong lead at the break, the Bears would storm back in the third quarter outscoring the Ravens 17-12. The strong effort from the Bears set up an epic fourth quarter. With foul trouble impacting the Ravens, and Alberta already in bonus, Alain Louis would foul out with 2:43 to play up 6.
The Bears would take advantage, battling hard and drawing a series of fouls putting Canada West MVP Tyus Jefferson at the line with a chance to take the lead. Having already hit two shots in the final minute seconds on the clock, Jefferson would miss both of his free throws with 13.1 seconds to play leaving the Bears with a sideline possession to try and win the game.
Despite over 2,500 fans rocking the Saville Centre a last-second jumper attempt by the Bears would rattle out at the buzzer.
With the win, the Ravens advance to their third consecutive U SPORTS Championship game. The Ravens will tip-off against the University of Saskatchewan Huskies at 8:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. MT after the Huskies routed the Queen's Gaels 86-60.
Lloyd Pandi (Ottawa, Ont.) was named the Nike Top Performer. The U SPORTS MVP had 14 points and 14 rebounds to lead the Ravens.