By Ben Waldman
The Ryerson men’s basketball team improved to 5-0 on the season following its 103-51 victory over the Nipissing Lakers Saturday night.
After a tightly contested first quarter, the Rams began to pull away, led by a healthy balance of veteran and youth contributions.
For the second time in as many nights, Rams guard Aaron Best made a bang on the court.
On Friday, Best shattered the backboard with a dunk before their game against Laurentian — but he saved his greatest rim-rattling highlights for game time Saturday.
Best threw down a pair of eye-popping slams in the second quarter, triggering the beginning of the end for the Lakers.
No backboards were harmed in the making of this video. @abe5t with the emphatic dunk in tonight’s… http://t.co/uxanNODMaO
— Ryerson Rams (@ryersonrams) November 23, 2014
Ryerson continued to play an unselfish, exciting brand of basketball that had the crowd on their feet and energized. For Best, playing that type of game is an absolute treat.
“It’s honestly one of the reasons [we] play basketball in the first place,” he said. “That’s why I love playing basketball; when everyone gets into it.”
In 20 minutes of play, Best chalked up 21 points on an efficient 7-12 shooting night from the field. But he was one of several reasons for the sheer dominance of coach Roy Rana’s squad.
With an early and secure lead, Rana deployed a few different lineup combinations, giving young players an opportunity to get involved.
Rookie Filip Vujadinovic and second-year forward Adam Voll played tough, hustle-oriented basketball for 17 minutes apiece — something that team leader Jahmal Jones has nothing but praise for.
“Later in the year we’re going to need [those guys] to gain as much confidence as possible,” Jones said.
In the second half, the Rams shot a spectacular 50 per cent from beyond the arc, resulting in 27 points off of threes. Those points alone were enough to outpace the Lakers’ second half output by a basket.
Nipissing is in the midst of its first ever basketball season and though they fought hard, their inexperience showed and the Rams capitalized on it.
Six Rams players finished with double-figure scoring totals and the team was able to maintain its composure throughout the game, even with a growing lead.
“It’s what we expect,” Rana said. “It’s a veteran group, they know what they’re doing, and I’m pleased with the result.”
Now ranked third in the Canadian Interuniversity Sport national rankings, the Rams take on Laurentian Sunday, Nov. 23 at the Mattamy Athletic Centre. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m.