Gaels open 1-1

Queen’s begins season with win and loss

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Unable to overcome a slow start, the men's basketball team fell to the Laurier Golden Hawks 86-59 in their season opener on Friday. On Saturday, they narrowly beat the Waterloo Warriors 63-62.

The Golden Hawks were able to control the game from the beginning, going on a 12-0 run finally broken by fourth-year guard Tim Boyle. Boyle added 10 points in the first quarter, keeping the Gaels afloat but still trailing 29-18.

Laurier continued to build on their lead in the second quarter, finishing the half with a 49-28 lead.

"It was a poor start," head coach Duncan Cowan said.

"We started to close it in a little, we made it respectable ... but they kept hitting shots and we didn't defend very well or rebound."

It only got worse in the second half, as the Golden Hawks extended their lead and pulled ahead by more than 30 points before finishing with the 86-59 victory.

Cowan said the team is still working out the dynamics of their players.

"We played a lot of guys,” he said. “We're playing a lot of guys because we don't really know yet who our mix is going to be."

Saturday's game against the Waterloo Warriors was a different matter. After another shaky first half, the Gaels pulled out a tough 63-62 victory.

After a back-and-forth first quarter, the Gaels took a 20-18 edge heading into the second frame. They extended this lead to 24-18 before the Warriors clawed back into the game, going 27-7 to finish the first half with a 45-31 lead.

"They went on a run at the end of the first half,” Cowan said. “They could have ended the game pretty quick."

The Gaels came out of the locker room hard with an 8-0 run led by Boyle, fourth-year guards Dan Bannister and Chris Barrett.

With about two minutes left in the quarter, a layup from fourth-year forward Jordan Kirchberger tied the game for the first time since early in the second.

The Gaels went into the final quarter with a slight 53-52 edge. The score stayed tight down the until the end.

With the score tied at 62-62 and about 10 seconds left on the clock, third-year forward Bernard Burgesson brought down an offensive rebound that found its way to Boyle who was fouled under the net. After missing his first shot, Boyle scored on his second and gave the Gaels their win.

With less than five seconds left, the Warriors were unable to score on their possession, and the Gaels came out with their first win of the regular season.

"I think we showed a whole bunch more toughness today," Cowan said, adding the team needs to work on their rebounding and free throw shooting skills.

"This group, the win is really good for them,” he said. “They deserve to win."

The Gaels will spend the next two weekends on the road, starting with a game against the Guelph Gryphons on November 12.

"More than ever, it's one game at a time for us because every game presents different challenges but we have to do simple things right," Cowan said.

"I think we'll get better but they're going to have to work really hard to do it."

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