The Ryerson Rams men’s basketball team defeated the number-two seed Windsor Lancers, 82-68, Thursday night to advance to the national semifinal.
The Rams controlled the game from start to finish thanks to an impressive defensive performance and a potent transition attack that frustrated the Lancers.
The Rams were led by Jahmal Jones who tied the game-high with 20 points and Adika Peter McNeilly who poured in 19 points.
Windsor was led by Khalid Abdel-Gabar who tallied 20 points in defeat.
Jones says the game was one of his most physically-demanding to date.
“It was a draining game,” he says “This is the most tired I’ve felt in a while.”
The CIS second-team All-Canadian said it was a number of factors that contributed to the game being so demanding.
“There was nervous energy and we’ve been taking it lighter on practice court to keep ourselves fresh plus it’s a different feeling playing on this court than the smaller court,” says Jones.
He also credited Peter-McNeilly for stepping up in a big game. “Adika is the smooth one in the backcourt, he plays a different pace than me and he’s one of the best shooters in the nation. He’s never out of his comfort zone.”
Fourth-year guard Aaron Best said the fan support was instrumental to the Rams success.
“It pumps us up and it intensifies our runs because we can get buckets back to back,” says Best.
Best says the Rams know they can continue to get better even after a big victory.
“No matter who we play next we know we can improve and coach will tell us what areas to fine-tune to be ready,” he says.
Ryerson’s next game starts at 8 p.m. Saturday, where they will either play Bishop’s, who they’ve beaten twice this year by over 30 points, or rival Ottawa, who has gotten the better of Ryerson in both meetings this season.