Panthers advance to AUS men's basketball semifinal

Jason Malloy
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Victory represents first playoff win for Robbins, Doane

Geoff Doane had 18 points and nine rebounds to lead the UPEI Panthers to a 74-60 victory over the Cape Breton Capers Friday at the Atlantic University Sport (AUS) men’s basketball championships.

The third-seeded Panthers advance to today’s 8:15 p.m. semifinal against the second-place Saint Mary’s Huskies at the Halifax Metro Centre.

“We live to play another day,” coach Tim Kendrick told The Guardian. “It’s great to get this win, but we feel like we can play better.”

The Panthers held quarter leads of 17-13, 43-25 and 57-35.

Ellis Ffrench had 13 points, Donathan (Donnie) Moss 12, and Deontay (D.J.) Smith and Joe Kendrick each added 10 in the victory.

Cedric Kasongo had 21 points to lead the Capers.

UPEI shot 34 per cent (25-for-73) from the floor, 38 per cent (9-for-24) from three-point territory and 71 per cent (15-for-21) from the free-throw line.

“The best thing for me is it’s a first playoff win for Aaron Robbins and Geoff Doane,” Kendrick said.

Doane and Robbins are in their fourth season with UPEI and are the longest-serving active members of the Panthers.

“We played hard again tonight and we got rewarded,” Kendrick said.

Moss hurt the same knee that sidelined him all of last season during the second quarter. He was with the Panthers training staff after the game.

“He’s a warrior, so he’ll be ready to go,” Kendrick said.

The third-year Panthers coach said there was a “big contingent of green” in the crowd Friday night and the team is hoping for more faithful for the semifinal with the Huskies.

The Panthers defeated Saint Mary’s 92-81 on Jan. 11 in Halifax and 97-93 on Feb. 8 in Charlottetown.

St. F.X. beat UNB 89-88 in Friday’s other quarter-final to advance to play top-seeded Acadia in today’s 6 p.m. semifinal.

The final takes place Sunday at 2 p.m.

Organizations: UPEI Panthers, Atlantic University Sport, Halifax Metro Centre The Guardian Capers

Geographic location: Saint Mary, Charlottetown

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