Expansion BlackJacks eliminate defending champion Rattlers in blowout victory

Expansion BlackJacks eliminate defending champion Rattlers in blowout victory

In their first big game in franchise history, the Ottawa BlackJacks did not disappoint.

The expansion CEBL club stomped the Saskatchewan Rattlers 87-68 on Wednesday with a playoff spot on the line at the Summer Series in St. Catharines, Ont.

The Rattlers’ loss means the defending champions are the first team eliminated from the tournament-style season.

A loss for the BlackJacks would have spelled the same fate. Instead, the team shook off a slow first quarter to dominate the Rattlers en route to the playoffs. It’ll be a quick turnaround for Ottawa as it takes on the Guelph Nighthawks in the quarter-finals on Thursday.

The other quarter-final will see the Hamilton Honey Badgers square off against the Niagara River Lions, while the top-ranked Edmonton Stingers and No. 2 Fraser Valley Bandits await their foes for Saturday’s semis.

Former Carleton star and Team Canada mainstay Thomas Scrubb led the BlackJacks with 20 points, while team captain Olivier Hanlan added 10 points and five rebounds. Forward Tajinder Lall’s lone field goal of the night was the game-winning three-pointer to send the Rattlers home.

Saskatchewan’s Kemy Osse posted 21 points and five rebounds in the losing effort.

WATCH | BlackJacks stun Rattlers:

The Ottawa BlackJacks beat the defending CEBL champion Saskatchewan Rattlers 87-68 to eliminate the champs from the CEBL Summer Series. 1:00

Bandits beat Nighthawks to secure bye

The Fraser Valley Bandits turned on the jets and earned some time off.

Guard Jahenns Manigat led with 20 points as the Bandits defeated the Guelph Nighthawks 84-70 on to secure second place and an automatic semifinal entry.

The Nighthawks (3-3), meanwhile, now face a do-or-die quarter-final game on Thursday against the BlackJacks.

It was a sluggish second half that did the Nighthawks in and cost the team extra rest, as the Bandits (4-2) raced to a 46-25 advantage in the final 20 minutes. Guelph had led by eight points at half.

Starting point guard Malcolm Duvivier also contributed 14 points and 13 rebounds to the Bandits’ cause, and Oluseyi Ashaoulu poured in 17 points combined with a terrific defensive effort.

Nighthawks guard Kimbal McKenzie scored 12 points as one of four Guelph players in double digits.

Live coverage continues Thursday with quarter-finals, where the Honey Badgers face the River Lions at 5 p.m. ET before the Nighthawks square off against the BlackJacks at 7:30 p.m. ET.

CBC Sports has live coverage of the entire tournament, through to the final on Aug. 9.

WATCH | Bandits storm past Nighthawks to earn bye:

Jahenns Manigat had a game-high 20 points to help the Fraser Valley Bandits top the Guelph Nighthawks 84-70 and advance in the CEBL Summer Series. 1:00

Published at Thu, 06 Aug 2020 00:02:48 +0000