(HALIFAX, N.S.) – The Acadia Axemen and the Memorial Sea-Hawks opened up the men's portion of the Subway AUS Basketball Championships Friday evening at Scotiabank Centre in Halifax, N.S., facing off in the first of two men's semi-final matchups.
Acadia earned a 73-65 win to advance to Saturday's semi-final round.
The Axemen got off to an early lead, taking a 12-3 edge within the first four minutes of the opening quarter. Nick De Palma lead the Axemen with nine points in the first, as the Axemen held a 23-14 lead heading into the second frame.
The Sea-Hawks picked up the pace in the second, scoring 25 points to take a slight 39-38 edge over the Axemen at halftime. The Sea-Hawks were led by AUS second team all-star Vasilije Curcic (Kragujevac, Serbia), and Greg Manuel (Mineville, N.S.) in the second quarter, who had 12 and 11 points, respectively.
The Axemen began to pull away in the third quarter, as a Ben Miller free throw and massive dunk from Erik Nissen (Quispamsis, N.B.) allowed Acadia to take a 42-39 lead. Acadia outscored Memorial 18-6 in the third, to hold take off to a 56-45 lead with just one quarter remaining.
Despite outscoring the Axemen in the final quarter and a buzzer beater from Memorial's Manuel, the Sea-Hawks were unable to complete their comeback, falling to Acadia 73-65.
Kyle Arseneault (Fredericton, N.B.) led the Axemen with 19 points. AUS second team all-stars Nissen and Ben Miller (Winnipeg, Man.) also contributed to the Axemen's win with 12 points apiece, with Nissen recording 11 rebounds, five assists, and three steals.
AUS second team all-star Curcic lead the Sea-Hawks with 23 points, 10 rebounds and five assists.
The Axemen now advance to the Subway AUS Men's Basketball Championship semi-final round. They will face the top-seeded Dalhousie Tigers Saturday at 6:30 p.m.