Ravens capture 8th CIS basketball title in a decade

Philip Scrubb had 26 points as the Carleton Ravens secured their eighth CIS men's basketball championship in 10 years with an 86-67 win over the Alberta Golden Bears on Sunday.
Carleton Ravens Philip Scrubb, tournament MVP, raises the W. P. McGee trophy after defeating the University of Alberta Golden Bears 86-67 in the CIS Final 8 men's basketball championship game in Halifax on Sunday. (Andrew Vaughan/Canadian Press)

Philip Scrubb had 26 points as the Carleton Ravens secured their eighth CIS men's basketball championship in 10 years with an 86-67 win over the Alberta Golden Bears on Sunday.   

The Richmond, B.C., native added eight rebounds and was named the tournament's most valuable player as the top-seeded Ravens defended their 2011 championship.   

"The biggest thing is to win the whole thing as a team," said Scrubb. "I guess I hit some shots and got lucky getting the award."   

Carleton also got 20 points from forward Tyson Hinz of Ottawa.   

With the eighth national title in school history, the Ravens tied a CIS record set by the University of Victoria.   

The win also capped an undefeated season for the Ravens, who beat the Acadia Axemen in the quarter-finals and the Fraser Valley Cascades in the semis.   

"We talked about enjoying the opportunity. We always talk about how the goal is to play in the national championship and play in this atmosphere, so enjoy it," said Ravens coach Dave Smart.   

"I don't know if that was the case in the first two games [of the tournament]. I thought we were playing like an undefeated team that was afraid to lose."   

Daniel Ferguson of Malton, Ont., led the Golden Bears with 25 points. Jordan Baker and Sahr Saffa, both of Edmonton, added 12 points apiece.   

While Scrubb and Hinz dominated play, Alberta stars Ferguson and Baker were held in check for most of the game.   

Ferguson made just six of his 22 field goal attempts and Baker went 3-for-12 from the field.   

"Ferguson missed a couple early, which helped a little bit," said Smart. "I'm not sure our plan was necessarily that good as much as he missed a couple and that gave us a little bit more confidence in what we were trying to do."   

Alberta coach Greg Francis said his team would learn from the experience of battling the Ravens for a championship.   

"It's a different thing when you're scouting them on tape and watching them play other people," said Francis. "To deal with them right here and now, it was a learning curve not just for our players but for our coaching staff."   

The Ravens wasted little time in taking control of the game, using a 14-2 run to establish a 14 point lead after the first quarter. Scrubb and Hinz keyed the offence, combining for 24 of Carleton's 31 points in the period.   

Alberta cut the lead to nine in the second quarter, but Carleton scored the final 11 points of the half. Willy Manigat of Ottawa hit a three-pointer at the halftime buzzer to make it 52-32.   

The Ravens did not let up in the third quarter and led by 26 heading into the final 10 minutes.   

The Golden Bears had advanced to the final with tournament wins over the Ryerson Rams and St. Francis Xavier X-Men.   

In Sunday's bronze medal game, St. FX defeated Fraser Valley 89-86.   

Jeremy Dunn of Wolfville, N.S., had 28 points, eight rebounds and six assists for No. 6 St. FX. Terry Thomas of East Preston, N.S., had 13 points.   

Kyle Grewal of Surrey, B.C., scored 35 points and collected 14 rebounds for No. 5 Fraser Valley.   

In the consolation final, the No. 8 Acadia Axemen needed a late comeback to beat the No. 7 Ryerson Rams 90-83 in overtime.   

Acadia, which trailed by seven points heading into the fourth quarter, got 21 points and 12 rebounds from forward Kingston, Ont., native Owen Klassen.   

Aaron Best of Scarborough, Ont., led the Rams with 30 points.