Bandits players mob Ola Asaholu after he drained the winning shot in Saturday’s semifinal game. (Submitted)

Fraser Valley Bandits advance to CEBL Championship Game

Bandits post comeback 76-75 win over Hamilton Honey Badgers in Saturday’s semifinal

It wasn’t pretty at all, but the Fraser Valley Bandits have advanced to the Canadian Elite Basketball League final.

The Bandits trailed for much of the game, but the Elam Ending saw the club keep pushing and refuse to go away to squeak out a 76-75 win over the Hamilton Honey Badgers on Saturday morning.

Hamilton was up 73-67 with an Elam Ending target score of 76, but a little bit of hero ball followed. Hamilton missed three straight three point shot attempts and meanwhile the Bandits kept chipping away at the lead. Fraser Valley eventually went up 74-73, but Hamilton responded with a field goal to go up 75-74 with the Bandits getting the ball back.

Olu Ashaolu then battled in the paint to get the winning shot and send the Bandits to the final with the 76-75 win.

“Honestly that wasn’t the play,” he said, following the winning shot. “I set the screen, I didn’t get tagged. Junior [Cadougan] found me, I was looking for a foul or some contact and nothing came so I took my time and finished.”

Ashaolu said last year’s struggles are not on the Bandits mind as they prepare for the championship game.

“It’s a whole new team,” he said. “You can’t judge this team by last year’s performance. We’re going to go for the gold, we came here to win this.”

Hamilton shot better, grabbed more rebounds and controlled most of the game, but the Bandits hung around and got hot when it mattered.

Fraser Valley also faced some adversity when versatile forward Marcus Capers, who had been defending Hamilton’s post players, received a technical foul in the third quarter. As he returned to the bench Capers kicked the advertising sign at the scorers table and then was disqualified from the game. No word on the condition of the sign.

It was an all-around team effort in the win, but the Bandits were led by Malcolm Duvivier, who played nearly the entire game and collected 18 points and eight rebounds. Abbotsford’s Marek Klassen also had a strong game with 12 points and four rebounds. Jahenns Manigat added 13 points, six assists and four rebounds.

Fraser Valley will take on the winner of today’s game between the Edmonton Stingers and the Ottawa Blackjacks. The CEBL Championship Game is set for 9 a.m. on Sunday.

Visit abbynews.com for coverage of tomorrow’s championship game.

RELATED: Fraser Valley Bandits clinch first round bye with win

abbotsfordbasketball

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

New plan for industrial growth should still include western farmland, Abbotsford mayor says

Province denied city’s 2018 request to exclude lands from the Agriculture Land Reserve

Sunny skies ahead for Fraser Valley this week

Rain and smoke nowhere in the forecast after weeks of weather alerts

Submissions accepted for Anonymous Art Show

Online exhibit hosted by Abbotsford Arts Council in November

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 27 to Oct. 3

World Farm Animals Day, Drink Beer Day and Virus Appreciation Day are all coming up this week

Mission Mayor Pam Alexis to run for the NDP

Will take on Liberal Simon Gibson in the Abbotsford-Mission riding

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

A (virtual) walk around the world by 88-year-old B.C. man

George Doi says it’s simple: ‘I like walking’

End of CERB means uncertainty for some, new system for others

As of a week ago, the CERB had paid out $79.3 billion to 8.8 million people

Horgan, Wilkinson trade barbs over MSP premiums, health care at campaign stops

Horgan called a snap election for Oct. 24 earlier this week

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

VIDEO: COVID won’t dampen Lower Mainland woman’s Halloween spirit

Langley’s Tanya Reid posted video offering suggestions of how trick-or-treating might look for her

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

Most Read