The Scarborough Shooting Stars capped their inaugural season at home in style with a dominant 101-86 win over the Fraser Valley Bandits.
Scarborough (11-8) started the game on the receiving end of a nine-point run from the Bandits before Shooting Stars head coach Chris Exilus was forced to take a timeout to steady his team. Teddy Allen would eventually take the lid off the bucket for Scarborough to make it a 13-2 game, and the comeback was on.
Fraser Valley (11-8) was fueled by another outstanding performance by Shane Gibson, who had 28 points, six rebounds, and six assists. The other usual suspects for the Bandits chipped in notable showings as well. Thomas Kennedy had a 15-point, 13 rebound double-double, Marek Klassen had 14 points, eight rebounds, and repeatedly got under the Shooting Stars’ skin.
The Shooting Stars battled their way back into the game behind Jalen Harris’ game-high 31 points, where he shot 75 percent from three, and the return of Kyle Alexander, who had 10 points off the bench. A barrage of threes tied the game up 47-47 at halftime, and the Shooting Stars had momentum squarely on their side.
Kalif Young throws down a big dunk for the Shooting Stars (Courtesy Shaun McLeod)
The second half opened with another Fraser Valley run but was answered with another streak of three-pointers from the Shooting Stars, who shot 50 percent from deep as a team. Isiaha Mike had 12 points, six rebounds, and five assists, Kalif Young had 10 points and seven rebounds, and Allen had nine points and six rebounds.
Harris capped the game with a deep three-point bomb to reach 101 points in Elam time and took the time to bow to the crowd before being rushed by his teammates at center court.
Kassius Robertson became the latest addition to a Shooting Stars team that has overhauled their guard rotation in the last two weeks. With Šarūnas Vasiliauskas out and Xavier Rathan-Mayes playing in The Basketball Tournament, the Shooting Stars now have multiple options for guards to slot in around Harris in the starting lineup.
Jalen Harris takes a bow after clinching in Elam time (Courtesy Shaun McLeod)
The middle of the CEBL’s playoff standings is starting to take shape with the Edmonton Stingers and Saskatchewan Rattlers losing games earlier in the week, and the Shooting Stars have now slotted into third place – for now – with their victory over the fourth place Bandits.
With the win, Scarborough has clinched a quarter-final home playoff game in it’s first year in the CEBL.
The Shooting Stars have one game left in their schedule and will head out on the road to take on the once-maligned Newfoundland Growlers, who have crawled out of the last place spot in league with a four-game winning streak.
Scarborough Shooting Stars vs. Fraser Valley Bandits boxscore click HERE.
Scarborough Shooting Stars vs. Fraser Valley Bandits livestream broadcast below: