Sam Freeman

Freeman, Cascades light up Ontario foes at preseason tourney

Sam Freeman's ruthlessly efficient 31-point outburst against the McMaster Marauders on Saturday night was impressive enough on its own.

Sam Freeman’s ruthlessly efficient 31-point outburst against the McMaster Marauders on Saturday night was impressive enough on its own.

Factor in that the University of the Fraser Valley’s fifth-year combo guard had his shooting hand heavily taped to protect a healing hairline fracture, and the performance was simply absurd.

Freeman shot 11-of-15 from the floor – including a scorching 7-for-10 from three-point range – and didn’t even play in the fourth quarter as the Cascades blew out McMaster 81-48 to wrap up their home preseason event, the Honda Way Tournament.

“If I don’t wear tape and it gets hit, it hurts pretty good,” said Freeman, who fractured a bone in his right hand during an exhibition game in late August. “I’ll probably be wearing tape for the rest of the season, but that’s all right.

“It looks a lot worse than it really is, I guess. The ball still comes off the right fingers.”

UFV’s blowout of McMaster, a well-regarded Ontario University Athletics (OUA) squad, capped an eye-opening tourney showing.

The Cascades opened with a 75-60 triumph on Thursday over the Langara Falcons, a PacWest college squad, behind 19 points from Freeman. On Friday, they thumped another top OUA program, the Lakehead Thunderwolves, 88-70 with power forward Kyle Grewal scoring 31 points.

It’s heady stuff for a UFV program in transition – former head coach Barnaby Craddock departed for the University of Alberta in the off-season, and starters Joel Friesen and Jasper Moedt followed him.

“I think people were looking at us like we’d be a young team and we’d be underdogs once again,” Freeman said. “But that just fires us up. You saw what we did.”

This weekend, the Cascades hoopsters travel to Calgary to open the Canada West regular season against conference newcomers the Mount Royal Cougars.

“These three wins provide us with confidence,” new bench boss Adam Friesen noted.

“We didn’t know what to expect going into this season, to be honest. We felt we had the talent, but it’s a long way from having potential to being a good team. We’re on the right track.”

CASCADES WOMEN IMPRESS IN REGINA

The UFV women’s basketball team also has reason for optimism heading into opening weekend vs. Mount Royal.

Al Tuchcherer’s squad won two of three games at the University of Regina Cougar Invitational, defeating the host Cougars (77-72) and the Saskatchewan Huskies (86-64), while falling to the two-time defending CIS national champion Windsor Lancers (82-56).

Nicole Wierks paced UFV in scoring on Thursday (18 points) and Friday (17), while Sarah Wierks led the way Saturday with 19 points and nine rebounds.

Just Posted

Abbotsford qualifies for national Communities in Bloom program

City awarded ‘5 Bloom’ rating at provincial level

Abbotsford raccoon dies from injuries suffered in a trap

Wildlife protection group offering $1,000 reward for information about incident

Motorcyclist suffers serious injuries from Abbotsford crash

Driver sent to hospital after crash with Mustang at Gladwin and Maclure roads

Abbotsford Visitor Centre closing for winter due to low attendance

Tourism Abbotsford says declining traffic during fall, winter months common for B.C. visitor centres

Nominations open for UFV Betty Urquhart Community Service award

Award recognizes those who make community a better place to live

VIDEO: More cameras, police coming after Marissa Shen killed in Burnaby park

B.C. privacy watchdog worries that the cameras are a ‘slow creep’ to a surveillance state

Arborist killed by fallen tree at Maple Ridge Golf Course

Was working near the 9th tee box of the golf course.

Rattie scores 3 as Oilers blank Canucks 6-0

Vancouver slips to 1-5 in exhibition play

Veterans Affairs ordered to take second look before supporting vets’ relatives

Liberal government ordered officials to adopt a more critical eye

Dead B.C. motorcyclist was member of group that raced down mountain road

Some group members record their rides on Strathcona Parkway and post times to page

Indigenous athletes in spotlight at BC Sports Hall of Fame

New gallery to feature Carey Price, Kaila Mussel and Richard Peter

B.C. couple who went missing on flight from Edmonton named by family

Family released a statement Wednesday saying they’re still intent on finding the two-seater plane

VIDEO: A close look at what you were breathing during the B.C. wildfire season

Electron microscope images show soot and tar particles generated by worst B.C. fire season

B.C. woman donates $250,000 to ovarian cancer research for friends

Two of Patty Pitts’s friends passed away from the disease within a year

Most Read